Instagram Updates 2022

New Instagram Updates for Businesses and Marketers in 2022

Instagram is constantly evolving and changing, so today we’re sharing all of the new Instagram updates 2022 that all businesses and Instagram marketing agencies should be aware of.

This includes a significant one that will carry more weight with the algorithm than anything we’ve seen in a long time. 

Instagram is now offering free credit to users who shop on their platform.

The first on our list of Instagram updates 2022 was a pleasant surprise for us was an Instagram popup offering us $5 or $10 to shop at our favorite Instagram shops. Another thing we’ve noticed is that Instagram is offering consumers a 20 percent discount and free shipping!

When we click the hamburger icon on the profile and then click Cart, our offers appear at the top. As a result, this is consistent with the significant push we’ve seen to transform Instagram from a photo and video sharing app to a shopping platform.

You can now use another Reel to respond to comments on your Reel.

Someone commented on one of our team’s Reels on her creator account, and Instagram prompted us with the following message:

“You can now respond to a comment with a Reel that contains the comment as a sticker.”

Your reply Reel will be visible in the comment thread as well as anywhere else you share Reels. We’ve seen this format on other social media platforms like TikTok, so Instagram is naturally following suit. If you get a lot of comments or questions about your reels, this presents a great way for you to engage your audience while also increasing your exposure.

Added text-to-speech and voice effects to Reels

The next item on our list of Instagram updates 2022 is about Reels once more. The text-to-speech feature, according to Instagram, “lives within our text tool in the Reels camera and allows an auto-generated voice to read your text aloud.” Text to speech allows you to add narration to your Reels without using your voice, allowing you to be more creative and add fun and humor.

You can see how the text-to-speech tool looks in this image. These tools simply give you a little more creative freedom as a small business owner to create trendy, attention-grabbing Reels.

Instagram is now allowing US creators to use Live badges.

“By enabling badges, you can get paid for the Live content you’re creating,” Instagram claims. Your viewers can buy badges in $0.99, $1.99, and $4.99 increments, and as supporters, they will receive a personalized thank you message as well as increased visibility in your Live. This is big news for creators because they now have the ability to monetize their content within the Instagram app.

This feature is now only available to creators in the United States who are 18 or older and have at least 10,000 followers. In addition, they must have a creator or business account. Finally, they must adhere to Instagram’s partner monetization policies as well as community guidelines.

You can check your Professional dashboard to see if you’re eligible. If you aren’t, you can apply for monetization on that page. This feature will not only help creators earn a little extra money, but will also encourage audience engagement.

The algorithm’s chronological order has been restored.

If you’re an early Instagram user, you’ll recall that the posts you saw on your feed were determined solely by the order in which they were posted. That was replaced a few years ago by an Instagram algorithm that allegedly serves you posts based on what it believes are your preferences.

However, after years of complaints from users who were dissatisfied with the algorithm- both on the consumer and business owner sides- Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri revealed that the company is working on a version of its feed that will display users’ posts in chronological order, in contrast to its current ranking algorithm, which sorts posts based on user interests. Apparently, this feature has been in the works “for months,” with Instagram aiming for a release in the first quarter of 2022.

Small businesses and influencers have been attempting to decipher the algorithm for several years by requesting as many likes, comments, saves, shares, and story engagements as possible. Despite all of their engagement, many of their followers were still not seeing their posts.

As a result, this one on our list of Instagram updates 2022 would be extremely beneficial to small business owners.

This is because a chronologically-based feed will increase your account’s chances of organic exposure and engagement. However, it is important to note that the chronological feed will be an option that users can choose to toggle on their home screen.

However, this leaves it up to the user to decide whether they want to keep the algorithm as is, view their feed as it has been for the last few years, or switch to a chronological view. According to one article, “the current feed uses AI to create what Instagram considers a more personalized feed, based on user activity.” Despite the company’s claims to the contrary, it has remained unpopular with a large number of users.

As a result, we may see a large number of people opt for the new chronological version. If you’re looking for Instagram marketing services to help you with your IG marketing, don’t hesitate to reach out.


7 Facebook Marketing Strategies for Small Businesses on a Modest budget

One of the most difficult challenges for small businesses may be achieving sustainable growth. Your company’s future must be able to generate leads and expand your customer base. Facebook marketing strategies can be used to your advantage. Concentrate your efforts on a few key areas, and you’ll be able to grow your brand while also attracting paying customers.

What Are the Differences Between Organic and Paid Social Media?

Both organic and paid social media tactics can help you achieve your objectives. The distinctions are in the amount of exposure your content receives and the speed with which results are obtained.

Paid social is a great way to get results quickly after placing an ad or paying to boost a Facebook post. When it comes to paid social, your exposure ends as soon as your budget runs out.

Organic methods require a little more time to implement, but the results can be more long-lasting.

Because online promotion can be costly, you must maximize the return on your investment. You can achieve excellent results by combining organic strategies with the best return on investment for paid methods. Check out these 7 Facebook marketing strategies and tips to help you grow your brand.

1. Optimize Your Profile Page

Most Facebook marketing agencies will tell you to start off with optimizing your profile page to provide your audience with as much information about your company as possible. Check that your contact information is complete, correct, and up to date.

When you reach 25 followers, don’t forget to choose a vanity URL. A vanity URL is a unique page address for your company’s website. Typically, it will be your company name or a phrase associated with your brand.

Your profile page should link to your website, and your website should link to your profile page. Create a banner for your cover image and use your logo as your Facebook profile picture.

2. Make a Content Plan.

Successful Facebook marketing strategies necessitate regular content posting. To ensure that you do this, create a content calendar that includes the following items:

  • industry and social events,
  • seasonal patterns,
  • popular subjects,
  • as well as interactive content

Additionally, keeping your communication linear will encourage people to return to your profile.

When planning your content, research keywords: find out what keywords are being searched for in your field and create content around those keywords. You can also use a tool like Google Trends to find out what topics are trending in your niche.

After you’ve created your keyword list, you can use Facebook Creator Studio to schedule your content ahead of time, saving you a significant amount of time by doing all of your social media and content planning for the month at once. 

3. Be Authentic. Be Consistent.

Though regular posting is necessary, you don’t want to get to the point where you’re simply uploading content for the sake of posting. If you want to maximize your return on investment, you should post with a specific goal in mind.

Try to relate to and understand your customers when creating content: how will your audience perceive your content? After all, you’re doing it for them. Be approachable, engaging, and informative.

Writing a useful post will not result in sales unless you can persuade your audience to take action. That is why you must include a strong, visible call to action – and don’t forget to include a phone number or page link.

4. Be Aware of Your Competitors.

Your small business isn’t the only one playing the Facebook marketing game. You’ll need to keep an eye on your competitors so you can compare your efforts to theirs. Try to take advantage of any additional research that you may have that your competitors do not.

When benchmarking, you should also consider what is working for your competitors: what types of posts generate the most interaction for them? What kind of return on investment do they get from their paid ads? What kind of money are the big players putting up?

5. Concentrate on Developing Your Community

Create a Facebook Group centered on the interests of your customers. The more tightly knit the community you build, the more people will trust your brand. Because not all small businesses can benefit from the creation of a Facebook Group, you must first consider whether your target audience requires this and then determine what conversation topics will pique their interest.

What will entice them to join your group? People appreciate having their own space. Consider how you can give back to your community while also supporting your clients. This will undoubtedly pay off, as you will soon notice an increase in brand loyalty and may even discover some brand ambassadors!

Participate in other community interest groups as well. By positioning your company as an authority in your industry, you will gain a loyal following, which will translate into sales and brand equity.

6. Make Use of Custom Retargeting Audiences.

Retargeting on Facebook is a type of digital advertising that targets users who interacted with your brand but did not convert. Here’s how to get started with custom audiences:

  • Navigate to your Facebook Ads Manager.
  • Audiences should be chosen.
  • Select Custom Audiences to create an audience.
  • Then, from the dropdown menu, select a target audience.
  • This will generate a pixel code, which you must then insert into your website.

With the Custom Audiences feature, you can use retargeting on your email and eCommerce lists. You’ll also be able to show ads to a custom audience that you’ve created using your email lists.

7. When Possible, Increase the Visibility of Your Posts (i.e. boost them)

When you share content on Facebook, it is not shown to your entire following. This is done to encourage businesses like yours to pay a small fee to boost their content. Though this may appear to be an unusual business model, it can be beneficial to your company. You can increase your following and generate leads by spending $5 to boost a well-crafted piece of content. Don’t forget to invite people to like your page and follow your brand when promoting a post. If done correctly, a small investment can go a long way.

Using Facebook to Get the Most Out of Your Marketing

With over 2.6 billion monthly active users, Facebook is a robust platform. With so many people spending time on Messenger, in groups, and simply scrolling through their feed, your company’s target audience may be on Facebook as well. If they are, use an effective marketing strategy to convert them into paying customers.

The best way to use Facebook marketing strategies for your small business is to combine organic and paid methods. Monitor your metrics to track engagement and compare your methods and results to the market’s top players.

With over 80% of businesses on Facebook, why leave the extra revenue on the table for someone else to take? Even on a shoestring budget, your small business website and a solid Facebook marketing strategy can generate leads and sales.

Even more importantly, you will have the opportunity to strengthen your relationship with your audience. This can only lead to increased business authority, as well as higher conversion rates.

What is earned media

What Exactly is Earned Media?

5 Points to Consider for a Successful Earned Media Strategy

If you’ve ever posted about the shoes you just bought or retweeted a brand’s hilarious meme, that is considered a form of earned media.

Although, people typically don’t just randomly post about brands. Something has to happen to encourage them to share, such as a high-quality product or an extremely informative blog post, to give them reason enough to post.

Just as you can’t completely control the earned media you receive from audiences, you also can’t sit back and expect it to come to you. To perfect your earned media strategy, as with most aspects of marketing, you must put in a lot of effort.

What exactly is earned media?

Earned media refers to coverage or promotion of your brand obtained through natural means. It’s a very effective form of content marketing, but it’s also the most difficult to obtain.

Earned media, owned media, and paid media are the three types of media. Paid media is anything you paid for, such as a magazine sponsored post, a social media ad, or an influencer’s post. Owned media refers to content you’ve created or distribution channels you control. A blog post on your website, for example, a social media post from your account, or a newsletter. To differentiate the social media channels, some people add a fourth type of media, social media or shared media.

Earned media differs from the other two in that it is media that you do not and cannot control. Earned media includes a mention on Instagram when someone visits your shop, an unsolicited Yelp review, and even a reshare of your blog post.

What is the significance of earned media for brands?

Consumers rely on recommendations from friends and family, as well as online review sites and unpaid social media influencer posts. All of these are examples of earned media that can help your brand’s reputation.

Earned media examples

Earned media comes in a variety of forms, and they all take time to develop. Many of these are the natural result of community building and a strong press strategy.

Review sites

Earned media from review sites includes feedback from sites such as Yelp, TripAdvisor, and Google My Business. Honest and positive feedback is media gold. According to a Brightlocal study on consumer review behavior, 87% of them read online reviews for local businesses and only 48% would consider using a business with fewer than four stars.

It is not enough to understand how consumers interact with reviews; it is also necessary to understand what they do after reading them. After reading a positive review of a local business, 31% go to the company’s website, and 28% look for more reviews. The average consumer will read 10 reviews before deciding whether or not to trust a company.

As you can see, reviews play a significant role in a consumer’s purchasing decision. If you want to stay on top of online reviews, you’ll need an effective review management strategy.

Coverage in the media

You may believe that media coverage is a type of paid media, which is correct in some cases. Media coverage that your brand pays for and controls is referred to as advertising spots or sponsored articles.

Earned media is when you are mentioned or written about in the media without having to pay anyone. For example, your product may be featured in a gift guide, or your company may have done something noteworthy that was covered in a television segment.

This is where public relations work comes in. You can certainly do outreach with press releases, but you have no control over when or where coverage occurs.

Social Media Shoutouts

Social media shoutouts can occur in a variety of ways. The customer may have had such an amazing experience at your restaurant that they felt compelled to tell others about it. Or your product met a consumer need, and they want to tell others about it. Or maybe you posted something amazing on Instagram that had to be shared with others.

You have no control over what people post on social media, but you can certainly influence them. You have control over how your brand behaves, how good your product is, and how interesting your content is. The more you do these things on a regular basis, the more likely it is that you will receive social media shoutouts.

Brands such as Red Bull retweet fan comments and may also repost them to other networks in order to capitalize on brand shoutouts. One way to encourage more of these shoutouts is to incorporate user-generated content into your content marketing strategy. 

Search engine results

Earned media is influenced by search engine optimization (SEO). Search engines take notice every time you add new content to your website. If someone’s search query matches one of your recent blog posts, you might appear on the first page of results. Paid media, such as paid search advertising, can be used to guarantee placement, but SEO tactics allow you to work organically to obtain ‘free’ placement if you execute them successfully.

There are numerous factors that go into a fully developed SEO strategy, ranging from keyword research to technical best practices. Some important foundational elements are creating high quality and useful content that meets your audience’s needs. Try to align with your marketing personas’ search intent and interests to create findable and share-worthy content for your audience. This approach will provide more value than simply pursuing the most popular keywords, which may or may not be related to people’s reasons for purchasing your product or service. 

5 Points to Consider for a Successful Earned Media Strategy

Now that you’ve learned about some of the different types of earned media, here are some pointers to help you get more of it. Many of these tips cross platforms and channels, allowing you to boost various types of earned media with just one of these tactics.

  1. Establish and maintain media relationships

Do you think of talking to journalists and members of the media only when you need something done?

Media relationships are similar to any other type of relationship in that they must be nurtured and built on trust.

A journalist may not require your product right away, but if you’ve established a working relationship, they may remember you when an opportunity arises.

This relationship-building does not have to be done solely via email.

Social media and public relations complement each other because they allow both brands and journalists to keep track of what the other is up to.

  1. Make content that is both interesting and engaging.

Content worth engaging with and sharing is an important component of content marketing success. If it strikes a nerve with the audience, they will feel compelled to share it. Earned media includes retweets and reshares, as well as accounts that share content on their own.

Domo’s infographic, for example, was so intriguing that Sprout simply had to share it with their audience. It counts as earned media for Domo in this case.

  1. Use all of your distribution channels.

Are you distributing your content in every possible way? Don’t rely solely on social media as a means of content distribution. Distribute your content through your newsletter and encourage your employees to share it.

Use an employee advocacy strategy to send your best content to people who are already big fans of your company to make this easier for you. Consider your employees to be another type of brand ambassador and a way for your customers to connect with your company on a personal level.

  1. Create and demonstrate expertise.

What is one strategy for getting your brand recognized as an expert in articles? Showcase your industry knowledge with blog posts, social media posts, and other types of owned content. You’ll naturally become a go-to source for your industry as you establish yourself as an expert.

Harvard Business Review, for example, is well known in management circles for publishing interesting and relevant articles on how to improve business management. This trust did not emerge overnight. It was built over years of producing consistently high-quality content.

  1. Be exceptional to your customers.

According to Statista, 59% of customers view brands that respond to questions or complaints on social media favorably. While social customer care has been around for a while, it is still an area where few brands excel. So, when it does happen, those fantastic social shoutouts occur.

This isn’t just limited to social media. Being great with your customers should occur in person, via email, and in any other way you interact with them. People notice when you go above and beyond for your entire customer base, not just the influencers. Chewy receives shoutouts like this on a regular basis because their customer experience team takes care of their customers in unique and personalized ways.

How to Monitor and Measure Earned Media

You may be wondering how to tell if an earned media strategy is effective. Depending on the direction of your strategy, your tracking method will differ. You can track earned media data on social media by keeping an eye on your brand mentions and keywords.

Earned media includes every retweet, repost, and reshare. Keep an eye on your brand’s share of voice to see where you stand in your industry. Are you receiving more attention than your competitors? If you’re creating content for your website, look at your referrals to see if you’re getting more social media referrals or being ranked higher in search results. 

Begin Developing Your Earned Media Strategy.

Earned media is one of those types that every marketer desires but does not always receive. This is because the strategies you employ do not guarantee success; rather, they increase your chances of success. Earned media, on the other hand, is some of the most influential media available. Every brand wants more earned media, from review sites to social media shoutouts.

Starting with influencer marketing is one of the simplest ways to get started. You can start a paid influencer strategy to build relationships with brand advocates, which will lead to more earned media.

9 unusual social media tactics

Nine Unusual Social Media Marketing Strategies To Promote Your Small Business


Updated: 6/03/2020

Getting noticed on social media is a constant challenge for any small business, especially with so much competition from other brands. If you have limited resources, it’s also difficult to maintain a consistent social media presence.

Fortunately, there are several things you can do to build your social profile if you’re willing to try a different approach. Here are nine unusual social media marketing ideas you can try to help you be more creative and boost your social media impact.


If you think your product or service is better than everything else out there, explain to your followers why you think so and refer to some of the competition. This is called “building selective demand” and toilet paper brands love to do it. It’s a good way to get people thinking about the benefits of what you offer and where your product or service has more value than competitors. If a competitor responds, it’s good entertainment for your followers and can benefit both parties. Obviously, don’t make claims that you can’t back up. And keep it fun (and respectful) by using a little clean humor.


A brand’s personality is a key part of any social media strategy, but many businesses fail to embrace their individuality. Social media is the perfect channel to show how unique you are and build a following of like-minded people. Being unique is more memorable and helps to differentiate you from the competition. So think about what makes you unique and boldly show your true personality – people will feel a stronger personal connection with your brand and are more likely to remain loyal customers.


Post questions that will make your followers think about your product or business in a different way. Many big brands use this technique. For example, if you sell ties, you could ask: “Who is your favorite tie-wearer of all time?” It sparks a conversation around your brand and people stop thinking about you as just another business trying to sell them something. What interesting questions could you ask your audience? Don’t forget to use an image alongside your question to make it more eye-catching (bonus points if it’s contextually relevant).


Most businesses understand that ignoring negative feedback is counterproductive, and the best way to deal with it is to respond directly, offering to resolve the issue. But you can go one step further by reposting the negative feedback alongside your response so that all your followers can see it. While you need to get the execution right – and clearly show how you can fix the problem – it’s a great way to build trust in your brand. Tackling negative feedback head-on will earn the respect of a lot of people.


Many brands only reply to a handful of questions on social media. Just look at any feed and you’ll see plenty of unanswered questions. According to one social media study, brands only respond to 11 percent of people (1). What if you were different? You probably can’t reply to every comment, but you could try to reply to 50 percent of people, or even more. It’s a great opportunity to build relationships and show you listen to your audience.


Professionalism is important in business, but this doesn’t mean that you have to be serious all of the time. Showing your emotional side from time to time is a simple way to humanize your brand and make more people notice you. If there’s a positive news story that makes you happy, share it with everyone. If something makes you angry, why not tell your followers? Also, don’t be afraid to use emojis to express yourself.


Do you have an unconventional opinion about something? Say something controversial that relates to your business to get people talking. Using the tie-selling business example, they could post this: “We think more women should wear ties. Do you agree?” It’s not too controversial, but it’s enough to spark a debate among followers. As long as you don’t say something too divisive, it’s a great way to get more attention on social media.


Understandably, most companies don’t want to come across as too promotional. But ultimately, every consumer knows you’re a business trying to sell them something. From time to time, clearly tell them why you think your product or service is great, and why you think they should buy it. You might annoy a few people, but the majority will appreciate your honesty. When done properly, it can be refreshing and many of your followers will like you for it.


Pick out an interesting comment from one of your followers and reach out to them, asking for a brief “interview” via direct message. Ask them about their experiences with your products and services, or what they would like to see from your business in the future. Then create a short blog post revolving around the results of the “interview” and post a link to social media.


If you’re struggling to engage your social media audience, remember that social media is a tool that you choose how to use. There aren’t any “rules” you have to stick to. By being a bit more creative than your competitors, you can stand out from the crowd, build a loyal following, and make sure your social media strategy isn’t a marketing dead-end, but a powerful tool for business growth.


That Time Our Giveaway Caused Downtown Gridlock Traffic


When the COVID-19 National Emergency was announced in mid-March, it was an obvious decision for Well Played Board Game Cafe to temporarily close their doors. Regardless, as their marketing agency we were still tasked to quickly come up with a plan of action to answer the daunting question: How do we maintain the momentum of awareness and engagement when our client is essentially out of business? All of our 2020 planning needed to be thrown out the window.

We dialed in on a revised communication and content strategy to best navigate our way through an unprecedented time, the best way we knew how. Ultimately, our goal was to focus on genuinely helping the community make the best of their time while under the #stayhome orders.

After conducting a thorough cleaning of their board game library (which I might add is quite impressive, being the largest board game library in North Carolina with over 650 games), staff identified close to 100 games that weren’t useful – either being duplicates or titles considered “NSFW.” The thought that came up was rather than letting the games collect dust in storage, why not give them to a good home? Especially at a point in history when people have extra time on their hands, and quite frankly, could probably use a little entertainment.


We knew leading with a PR strategy would be the best way to get the word out as quickly as possible, while utilizing social media as a support mechanism. Keeping it simple, we whipped up and distributed a press release and created a Facebook event along with a few posts early Friday afternoon.

Later that evening, ABC News 13 (WLOS) picked up the press release with a featured article and published the story to their social accounts. Jason Sanford of Ashvegas also published the story and AVLToday followed suit the following Monday afternoon.

By Tuesday evening, our Facebook event had received more than 1,000 attendance responses – all without a single dollar spent on advertising.


Even people who weren’t going to the giveaway became aware of the event and engaged across all social platform while (and after) it was happening.

In addition to the overwhelming turnout, we were also grateful to earn a 60 second spot on WLOS ABC13 Morning News:

Overall, the impact was significant and far reaching, from both marketing and philanthropic standpoints. By the numbers, our performance was remarkable:

  • 300 games & care packages donated
  • Total Potential Reach: 195K
    • WLOS – 89K
    • AVLToday – 78k
    • Ashvegas – 28K
  • 500% spike in website traffic
  • 300 new social media followers in 24 hours

However, in our opinion the greatest gain comes from doing something good for our community – the best marketing happens when business can impact peoples’ lives for the better.

At the end of the day, this is exactly the reason why we do what we do.