It's no secret that Instagram is continually making improvements and devising creative strategies to help bolster their app. There are so many options when it comes to social media, but personally, and professionally, I think Instagram is the best way to grow.
I think of Instagram as a portfolio and a way to share my stories and images. For a long time, there was just not enough data to help me understand what was working or not, even with a business account. Now, Instagram has rolled out Creator Accounts! In this article I hope to explain Instagram Creator accounts, what they mean for you, and whether or not you should make the switch.
I'll be focusing on bloggers and entrepreneurs, since that's what I am myself. While this blog has gone through a lot of changes over the years (now I'm more of a travel blogger) I'll always echo back to my roots of focusing on social media and blogging.
My account was automatically rolled over to a Creator Account a few weeks ago. Immediately, I saw more analytics and data surrounding my posts. Right off the bat, one of my favorite features is to see how many people are following me or unfollowing me every day. This tells me if my content is working, if people truly like it, or if I need to switch things up. Truthfully, I was shocked to see a post I didn't feel very strongly about bring in tons of new followers.
Check out my analytics here:
Another post was a bit more “controversial” and I did lose a bunch of followers, but also gained many more in return. These kind of statistics help me understand what's working when it comes to growing and sharing on Instagram.
Until now, users have had to choose between “Business” or “Personal” accounts. I immediately switched to business when that rolled out to have better access to analytics and the “swipe up” feature on my Instagram Stories. However, the Business profiles were created for, well, businesses. Most often, those selling a product such as having a price tag feature. Now, Instagram introduced Creator Accounts for those that use their profiles in a bit of a different way. Basically, Instagram Creator accounts are for Influencers and designed to help them grow.
What you can expect from the Creator Accounts
Let's get real, we have all been frustrated with Instagram. From feeling they aren't showing our profiles to everyone following us, the constantly changing algorithm, and the analytics that just don't seem to help, there are so many frustrations on Instagram. Hopefully, Creator Accounts are a step in the right direction.
Here's a look at some of the changes on Instagram Creator accounts:
- A deeper look at analytics such as follows and unfollows, that will span across our feed, Stories, and IGTV.
- Filters for Direct Messaging. Such as “Primary,” “General,” and “Top Requests” from those you haven't conversed with before.
- More options when working with sponsors on Instagram or advertising. On a personal level, I have tested this out with ads and find the process much easier.
- More options for contact information and category labels. Now you have more options when it comes to choosing what you are on Instagram such as “blogger” “author” or even “athlete.” There’s also contact information you can turn off.
- Shop directly from your feed. This is a great way for YOU to tag brands and make it so that people can buy directly from your posts. Many people use Liketoknow.it to make their feeds shoppable, but Instagram released a big change last year that meant you could no longer “like” a post to get the shopping details. Now, you have to screenshot to get that information, or follow users on a separate app. With this new rollout, you’ll be able to find details and even purchase clothing right from the app. This is big news if you share about items you wear or products you love.
Creator accounts are a way for you to have more control over your account. This is great news and will help us figure out what works and what doesn't when it comes to creating content. Furthermore, Askley Yuki, a product manager for Instagram spoke with The Hollywood Reporter and said this about influencers, “[they are] an important part of our community. We want to make sure that Instagram is the best place, and the easiest place, to build fan communities and also build [creators'] personal brands.”
So, should you switch to an Instagram Creator Account?
If you're not a business, and you are a creator, blogger, storyteller, or want to grow your Instagram, then ABSOLUTELY. This is a more customized experience that will help you gain better knowledge of what works for your account. I also find the Direct Messaging system awesome and love that I can filter for “unread” messages.
Let me first tell you about the downsides, because there is a major one. Creator Accounts are not connected to the Instagram API, which is a bit concerning. This affects using features such as Auto Publish or the business analytics tools. However, I still feel like a Creator Account is the way to go for most bloggers and influencers.
How to Switch to an Instagram Creator Account
Switching to a Creator Account on Instagram is simple. First go to your account, click on the three bars on the top right of your profile.
On the bottom, click “Settings.” Then click “Account.”
You should now see “Switch to Creator Account.”
Click this, and begin entering in information about what kind of profile you have.
Now you’re ready to go with a brand new Instagram Creator Account!
How can you grow with an Instagram Creator Account?
Just like with any Instagram account, you need to have a a strategy to grow. Here are some tips on how to grow your Instagram account – creator or otherwise.
Tell a story – Share your why. Stop worrying about numbers and start telling stories that people want to learn more about. Make people want to scroll and interact with your posts. Make your posts a scavenger hunt, tell them to look for something specific or to “zoom in.” We want them to spend more time looking at your posts. This is one of the best ways to beat the algorithm and is a contributing factor to increasing engagement.
Give a call to action – Ask people to get involved with your posts. Tell them to double tap, click the link on your bio, swipe up, and more. Don’t be shy about telling people what to do. If you don’t, they might just scroll on by.
Get creative and diversify – Share a variety of posts. Switch it up and try video or IGTV. Change up your bio. Try something new! Now that you have a deeper look at analytics you’ll be able to see if what you’re sharing is working. You never know if something will resonate with your audience.
Stories, Stories, Stories – This is the BEST way to grow your engagement. I’ve preached before that Instagram stories are the future and I think the main reason being is that we want to watch a story. We want to be entertained and we want it to feel authentic. Instagram Stories bridge the gap between the unreality (sometimes) in our posts and the truth in our daily lives. Here, we can connect with our followers and potential followers.
Analytics – Taking a deeper look at your engagement and your reach is paramount in understanding your growth on Instagram. This is why I think Instagram Creator accounts are a step in the right direction for bloggers and influencers.
Bottom line: having a deeper look at insights and more control over your Instagram Account is a good thing. I think Creator Accounts are a way for us to have a better understanding of what works on Instagram. So, I say make the switch!
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