This could be interesting. Instagram is experimenting with a new option that would enable users to add their own images and videos to an existing post, facilitating more direct collaborations in the app.
As you can see in this example, shared by app researcher Alessandro Paluzzi, when switched on, the new option would enable post viewers to submit their own addition for consideration. Any additions would not be displayed until approved by the creator, essentially enabling curated group photo albums and shared experiences in the app.
Which Instagram has been leaning into as a key engagement driver of late. Back in 2021, Instagram added the “Add Yours” sticker for Stories, which enables users to prompt others to respond to their Stories content, while it also expanded remixes to all videos posted in the app last year, broadening the options for iterating on creator updates.
That trend, like so many social media engagement shifts of late, has stemmed from TikTok, where remixes and duets have become key interaction tools, driving more participation from users.
Virtually every TikTok trend now sparks a million replicants, which has opened up a whole new avenue for participatory content, where users move from passive consumers to active fans, which can also give them a leg-up to their own fame.
Though it does also mean that you have to hear the same song over and over again as you scroll through your feed. That’s not ideal, but it is interesting to see all the different takes that people have on trending audio clips and concepts, and it’s no surprise to see Instagram also looking to align with this wherever it can.
The new option could also have implications for brands, if it’s enabled on business accounts.
Rather than having to prompt users to add a specific hashtag, then go looking for UGC, brands could ask users to add their own takes to the original post, with that content then only appearing as part of the creator update, not on the users’ own profile.
Maybe, that would encourage more people to share their own takes, insights, and memories, related to brand accounts, and you can imagine a broad range of businesses that could use this to advantage.
The only issue might be whether these posts are made re-eligible for feed distribution after editing. For example, if I post an update and ask for people to add their own images, and I then approve those additions a couple of days later, will anyone even know about those new frames, or would I be better to re-share each update as a separate, new post, in order to maximize distribution?
The detail here will delineate whether this is a valid promotion option, or it’s more geared towards friends creating photo albums of group happy snaps. In the latter case, reach may be less of a factor, but for brands trying to maximize engagement, they will need to get that extra kick.
There’s no word on any official testing or a roll-out as yet, but we’ll keep you updated on any progress.