5 Instagram Hacks and Features You Didn't Know About

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Instagram constantly updates it's app with features to help make your content more interesting and visually appealing to users. I'm going to show you five hacks to step up your Instagram game.

1. Shrink Instagram Story Tags

In your Instagram Stories, you can add a location tag, a hashtag, and a mention to increase the number of people who will be exposed to your content. This is great, but what if all that text didn’t fit into your Instagram Story aesthetics? What if I told you I could make that text disappear while still benefiting from each feature? Well, you can and it’s so easy!

  • Go to your Instagram Stories. Take a photo or swipe up to choose one from your camera roll.
  • Press the square smiley face at the top of your screen and then choose a location. Once you choose a location, it will appear in the middle of your screen. Here comes the fun part!
  • Place each of your thumbs on both ends of the location tag. While your thumbs are still touching the screen, slide them towards each other. lift your thumbs, place them on each side of the tag, and repeat the sliding motion until you can no longer see the location tag.

Voilá, no tag with all of the benefits! 

2. Collections

No, I'm not talking about the department that calls you when you go long periods without paying your bills on time. Instagram's collection feature is similar to boards you can create on Pinterest. If you see a post on Instagram that inspires you or you want to view a post later, save it in your collections. This is a great tool that hasn't received as much notice in the headlines as some of the other Instagram features like Stories. This can be a great tool for content creators.

3 ways to use Instagram's collection as a content creator:

1. create collections that are essentially mood boards to garner inspiration for future posts.

2. Keep an eye on the competition. Collect there top performing posts to analyze their success factors. What are the common denominators that contribute to their high engagement? Maybe you can incorporate some of their strategies into yours.

3. Have you ever come across that long Instagram post that is more like a full-blown blog post? I must admit, sometimes I'm guilty of this, but not everyone has time for that. In that case, save it for later. You have the option of creating a collection specifically for long posts you want to read later or anything you can imagine. 

Below is how you can access your collections:

  • Open Instagram and choose the head and shoulders icon at the bottom right of your screen. 
  • Next, choose the flag icon under your profile description.

This is where all of your saved posts live. Under All is where all saved posts are housed. To separate and organize posts you can create collections.

Now here's how to create your first collection:

  • Scroll down your Instagram feed until you find a post that you'd like to archive.
  • press the flag icon at the bottom right of the post to save to your All collection or press and hold to save to a specific collection.

3. Screen Record

This isn't a feature of Instagram, but it looks great in your Stories. You may have seen profiles who show you a snippet of their blog posts or teach a short tutorial on their phone. I'm going to show you how it's done. I'm an iPhone user so I'm more familiar with how to screen record on an apple device. 

  • First, go to your phone settings
  • Scroll down to control center
  • Choose customize controls
  • Find Screen Recording under MORE CONTROLS and press the plus sign to add it to the include section.
  • Access the screen record icon by swiping up from the bottom of your phone or on recent models like iPhone X, swipe down from the top right corner of your iPhone screen.
  • Press the circle within the circle icon. There will be a countdown from three.
  • Once the countdown reaches one, you'll see a red bar at the top of your screen; this means that your screen is being recorded.
  • To end the recording, press the red bar or access your control center to press the screen record icon again.
  • Every screen recording is housed in your photos app. There you can edit your video and make it Instagram Stories ready. I like to edit my recordings in photoshop to cut footage, piece footage together, adds a voiceover, etc. 

4. Different text styles

If you want more text options than Instagram Stories offers, look no further than websites like Cool Fancy Text Generator. Type your verbiage into the blue search bar and watch your words generate more than 30 unique text styles. Choose your style then copy and paste into your Story. 

5. Canvas Fill

Have you seen Instagram Stories where a small portion of an image is revealed to entice the user to view and like a post on their Instagram feed? 

I love doing this to promote a new post on my feed. Here's how you do it:

  • Go to your Instagram Stories, then swipe up to choose an image.
  • Next, press the pen icon at the top of your screen.
  • Choose a color you'd like to fill the page with. Want a different shade of the color options you see at the bottom of your screen? Hold down the color and drag your finger to change the shade. You can also take a sample color from your image by pressing the eyedropper tool and touching an area of the photo.
  • Once you choose your color, press and hold on any area of the image. Your screen should be filled with color now.
  • press the eraser icon and erase part of the color fill.
  • If you want a more transparent color fill, choose the highlighter icon instead of the pen tool.

Now that you're aware of these Instagram hacks and features, get creative with it. You'll receive more attention with your unique content.

Bonus Feature

Hide People on Instagram Stories

I'm not sure what type of shenanigans you're up to that you don't want certain people to see, but you do have the option to block certain users from viewing your Instagram stories. Here's how you do it:

  • Go to your profile page and press the settings gear icon
  • Press story settings
  • At the top of the screen, you should see Hide Story From. Press that.
  • Search for the followers you'd like to hide and press the empty circle to the right.

Thank so much for taking the time to read my blog post. If you made it this far, leave me a comment letting me know about any other interesting Instagram features you take advantage of or give me suggestions on blog articles you'd like me to post.

In between blog posts come hang out with me on Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook, all at TishYvette. If you liked this article you'll love my post on 5 Ways to Increase Reach and Sales on Instagram.