For the last 10 plus years, I’ve been a very active Instagram girl, right back when the platform used to look like this:

Old Instagram format screenshot example from username @abbietoynton
Source: @abbietoynton Instagram

Through the poor graining filters and tacky stickers over the years the platform now has more than 1 million monthly active advertisers (Source: Martech). After the past couple of years of crazy COVID (yes sorry we’re not done talking about it yet), Instagram has continued to grow and grow and still remains to be one of the most prominent players in the social landscape even after fast climber TikTok came onto the scene. During the COVID period, Instagram introduced many great features to help create an online community during the uncertain time, including small business support, fundraising features, and the expansion of the volume of users for Instagram live broadcasters. Instagram has reached over 2 billion active users worldwide which is a ¼ of the entire planet! Instagram has been able to keep up with new platforms by regularly introducing new functionalities to its users, which continue to make it accessible for all – and keep retention high on the platform. As someone working in Digital Marketing, it is essential to keep up with all the recent updates to the platform, I am going to be sharing all the latest updates and tips below to maximise your account whether that is organically or paid.

Grid Pinning


Instagram announced last month you can now pin posts to the top of your page. This allows users who actively post organically to pin any essential content e.g., announcements, competitions to push it to the user’s front of mind. Or it also allows you to pin your tip top selfies 🤳


2022 screenshot of Instagram feed by Abbie Toynton
Source: @abbietoynton Instagram


Reel Updates 🎞


The TikTok-like video feature is continuing to expand. Users were reluctant to use Reels at the beginning of the launch and from my experience, I found a lot of repurposed TikTok content on the platform which still had the TikTok stickers included. There has been a shift in behaviour with Reels now being labelled as Instagram’s fastest growing feature worldwide (Source, Hootsuite). Instagram has upped its game and introduced new features to keep up with TikTok. Including expanding the length to 60 secs, doodles, voiceover, and a wider access to the music library.


Instagram announced it is currently testing even more new features: (source, Napoleon cat)

  • Video Layout allows users to capture multiple videos in separate windows one after another and then play them combined
  • Double exposure feature that allows users to capture a photo and then record a video on top of it


Will these new features allow creators TikTok creators to move their amazing entertaining content (like the below) over to Reels?



As an advertiser, we now can boost organic reel content, much like how we can boost stories and grid posts. We further now have the option to advertise across this placement, and Meta reports that up to 676 million users can be reached with ads on Instagram Reels, therefore it is essential to have creative with the correct specs to be able to advertise within this space.


Longer Instagram Stories 🖼


Users are now able to upload Instagram stories up to 60 seconds in length, without having the break every 15 seconds, ensuring users don’t need to retag any user mentions, tags, or location links in each clip. As a paid advertiser as well, this is also a handy feature as you can boost longer forms of organic content.


Increased Instagram Insights 📈


Users now have further insights as Instagram has updated its analytic tool, which gives them a clearer indication of the performance of their accounts. A big player in this update is you can review data over a 90-day duration, whereas previously this was 60 max. This extension of data gives creators a longer time frame to collect learnings and consider optimisations moving forward. This is a game changer for active Instagram users as data trends can help us to plan, develop and amend our digital strategy for the future.


The big SO WHAT?


Essentially social media platforms continue to develop over time, so what makes Instagram so special? Instagram has remained a key player in the social media world since its launch in 2010. Keeping up to date with these organic features can help develop your paid media strategy by developing campaigns on a strong solid base. For our clients, it is important to tap into and utilise the new features which Instagram has to offer, as it makes you stand out in this ever-fast-growing competitive space.


Feeling inspired? If you need help/advice on how to grow your organic content, please get in touch with Megan O’Brien:


By Abbie Toynton
Senior Planning Manager: Paid Social

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