What are Instagram Collections?
So, it’s been a month since Instagram launched a bunch of new exciting updates! One of these, which I hadn’t really looked at too much until last week, was ‘Collections’ and what a trick I was missing. I am now obsessed!
If you’ve not heard about Instagram Collections, it’s basically Pinterest. Not sure how it works? here’s a handy guide. Anything you see on Instagram that makes you say “wow”, you can save into a folder (or Collection!) hidden privately in your profile under the ‘Saved’ tab.
Personally, I use Instagram daily – I’m a bit of an addict! It’s where I find food recommendations, long over cool travel destinations and window shop fashion I can’t afford. I recently booked a trip to Malta (very exciting!) and Instagram was my first port of call after getting the flights and Airbnb sorted. As I ‘ooh-ed’ and ‘ahh-ed’ over pictures of crystal blue waters and delicious-looking cocktails, I realised this was the perfect time to make my first Collection.
I was on my usual busy commuter train out of Glasgow and lost myself as I searched hashtags such as #VisitMalta to build a very handy album that held my upcoming holiday inspiration. In theory, I am building myself a dream itinerary with locations, tourist spots, restaurants and bars all in one (extremely aesthetically pleasing) place. See for yourself below!
Are Instagram Collections a ‘Pinterest-killer’?
For me, Pinterest never truly stuck, even though I’d always liked the idea of it, so Instagram Collections is very welcome in my world. I am on Instagram every day, as are 400 million other people around the world, so the question is…will Instagram Collections kill Pinterest like Instagram Stories is killing Snapchat?
The sheer number of daily active users Instagram have is definitely a factor when considering whether or not Collections can steal the limelight from Pinterest. However, they’re not completely identical. Instagram Collections are completely private to the user – you can’t share them with your friends and people can’t stumble across them – so only I can see my Malta collection! Some may see this as a good thing; other users can’t see that you have saved their content and what collections you have put together, but going forward, I think we’ll see Instagram letting users select whether collections are public or private. Some you might want to show off, others you might want to keep private! For brands though, one major appeal of collecting images or links is that it’s discoverable and sharable. Brands can position themselves as experts by curating lots of interesting content – earned, owned and UGC – to create something useful that others can use.
How I plan to use Instagram Collections
Malta-planning aside, I’m going to take a leaf out of one of my favourite blogger/vloggers and make my second folder all about must-eats. Lily Pebbles mentioned in her friend Anna’s vlog that she saves Instagram-worthy restaurants she wants to try into a Collection and then removes it once she’s visited. I think this is a great use of the tool as you build a bank and it acts as a sort of check-list – brilliant!
Work-wise, I can create a Collection that will inspire me in my content creation. Fun use of copy? Save it. Stand-out tone of voice? Save it. Unusual use of media? Save it. Our graphic designer, Chris, even uses the feature to save imagery and video he finds inspiring for future reference. Whatever your vocation, you’ll probably be able to find a use for this feature.
At the moment, there seems to be no sign of this feature being monetized by Instagram but I wouldn’t bank on this being the case for too much longer. The Facebook-owned platform is renowned for being more brand-friendly than the likes of Snapchat so they will no doubt be looking at ways to position this feature as an advertising/awareness tool. It may just be that brands start to fight for space on influencer’s Collections if Instagram look to introducing public Collections.
So, what do you think about Instagram Collections? If you’ve given it a try, I’d love to hear how you use it!