Now that Instagram is beating out Snapchat on most (if not all) fronts, they're working to press that advantage by adding in new creative tools which go beyond what Snapchat has on offer.
Their latest addition is a new way to share Instagram posts in DMs - now, when someone shares an Instagram post with you via DM, any photo or video reply you make to that message will automatically include a sticker of the image you're replying to, which you can place wherever you want in the frame.
As you can see, the user is responding to a shared post via DM with their own selfie which includes that image. It's an interesting, fun way to not only add more context, but to enhance engagement within Insta DMs - which, it's worth noting, have seen a significant increase in use of late.
Instagram reported in May that the number of people using DMs on their platform had increased by 75 million in six months, with more than half of their 700 million monthly active users now also using DMs. Catering to this, Instagram's also recently added the ability to include links in DMs, support for both portrait and landscape oriented photos within messages and has merged disappearing and permanent messages into one inbox.
In addition to the new stickers in shared posts, users will also have the ability to send a split-screen reply by tapping on the sticker.
"Add your own perspective by drawing on the sticker, whether you're painting a mustache on your friend's selfie or doodling on a beach photo."
In the wider scheme, it's not a huge update, it's not a game-changer, but it is another interesting, engaging tool which will no doubt prove popular, particularly as Instagram looks to cater to increased interest in sharing via private message.
And given that increased interest in DMs, it may be worth marketers considering how they can tap into this trend to benefit. It's possible that users don't necessarily want brands to be sending them direct messages (indeed, Instagram's data shows that 85% of people's Direct messages go to the same three friends, as opposed to being a broad-ranging communications tool), but still, the added context and creative options available may provide new capacity to keep in mind.
The new Instagram DM updates are available in Instagram version 10.34 and above for iOS and Android.