The battle in Instagram for reach and engagement is life-or-death right now. According to various sources, conversions are affected by:
- likes from users with a large number of followers;
- who knows what else.
Since no one knows exactly how the great Algorithm works, it won’t be surprising at all if the shamanistic practices of Instagram promotion open up.
Amid all this craziness, a clear and legitimate trend has emerged: gaming content on Instagram. It includes tests, mock predictions, puzzles, emoji games – anything that will make a subscriber give a reaction in the form of a comment. And not only bring the post up in the algorithmic feed, but also engage in a dialogue with you.
Let’s look at successful examples of games that can be adapted for any theme.
The most popular games on Instagram
Screenshot predictions. Screenshot feature with the advent of Instagram has become much more popular: save the name of the store from Instagram Stories, a recipe from a post, a funny picture. Screenshot games or contests are in full bloom right now, you can use that.
Using the example of “How Will You Spend Tonight?” game, you can create similar posts for accounts with different themes.
Here’s the gist: Ask subscribers to take a screenshot of a video with fast-changing captions and write the fallout below the game post. Later, we’ll go over step by step how to make such content yourself.
Labyrinth Game. Another common way to engage your audience on Instagram. Place the product you’re promoting in the middle of the maze and ask for help to get out and indicate the correct answer in the comments. Winners are often rewarded with some sort of prize, or just get a well-deserved likes. To make such a game, take a maze template and adapt it to your product.
Emoji Time. We all have our favorite emoji that we use most often. Ask your followers to play with them. For example, have them use an emoji to formulate a formula for love or a good mood. This trick works without fail.
You can also use emoji to play puzzles. For example, you riddle the name of the movie or its key moments, and subscribers guess what the point is. The main thing here is not to go overboard with complexity.
Relevant for all games: keep an adequate level of difficulty – the riddle should not be too easy, but not at the level of “What? Where? When?
“The last 3 digits of your phone number, or make up your…”. Popular in other social networks, the game has now made its way to Instagram. The essence of the game: offer the last digits of your phone number/letter of your name/number of your date of birth to make an offer or find out what your business will be. Topics can be completely different.
Users are also asked to post their choices in the comments.
Decipher the word. A simple game that doesn’t require much preparation. You make up the rules for subscribers to write some phrase in the comments. For example, the phrase should be of two words and contain the emotion of the view from the window: “peaceful beautiful” or “sullen and gray.”
Guess from the photo. A cool example from IKEA: Subscribers are asked to guess an Oscar-nominated movie from a photo. The genius is that a person gets involved in the game, and also gets to know the assortment of the store. We advise you to take note!
True/False, or X Facts About Me. The point of the game is to write a few facts about your life or an event. And ask subscribers to guess a false fact. If you sell a product, the game can be done about it. For example, offer five facts about a new shampoo or a coffee machine.
Associations. Also a game that does not require special training. It is often used for raffle prizes. The idea is that you set a word and the first commenter writes his association with the word. The next commentator will come up with an association for the word of the previous participant. For example: star – sky – plane – fear – zombie, etc.
Find the differences. Use a photo editor to modify a photo: add or remove details. Then you publish both photos in sequence in the Instagram Stories and ask them to find the differences.
Help to Choose. A very popular game, especially in Stories with bloggers who advertise clothes or accessories. In Stories, they publish, for example, sets of clothes, each set on one slide. And you put a “Reaction” sticker on it. You ask users to rate them and help you choose.
Manage Me and Surveys. Instagram Stories posts a “Test” sticker with two answer choices and a question. After readers vote, you execute what the majority voted for. The questions can be different: “Where to go tonight: restaurant or fitness club?”, “What to get a teacher: a bouquet of flowers or an edible bouquet?” etc. The same principle is applied to reader surveys. Only the questions may already relate to anything, not just you personally.
Quiz. Everyone wants to flaunt knowledge when he sees a question in the stories on the knowledge and ingenuity. This is often a technique used by avid travelers or education-related accounts. For example, you post a photo of you in front of the Eiffel Tower and ask: What year was it built? Who built it? Or even who once sold it for scrap metal? Below are four options for answers via a “Test” sticker, where the correct option is noted.
Battle. Uncomplicated, but exciting game for subscribers. The point is that you choose a blogger in advance and agree with him on the game. Come up with tasks. You simultaneously post tasks for each other in the Stories and ask your subscribers to follow them, moving from one page to another. At the end, you can offer your subscribers a poll to see who did better.
Spell the word. Also a game for a group of bloggers. Notify your subscribers that from a certain moment in the Stories of such and such people will have letters. These letters need to find, write them down and make a word out of them. Then in a certain account there will be a window for entering the word. Whoever collects it correctly gets a prize. The choice of the lucky winner can be done randomly, or you stipulate that the first three who guess correctly will get the prize.
Penalty. A game for avid subscribers. You notify your audience that for three days a bag of money, for example, will appear in Stories. Whoever sees it first and posts “Penalty for the bag” will get a small money transfer to their card.
There are other kinds of fines. For what subscribers did not see something. For example, you promise that there will be a ball in all the Stories during the day. If there isn’t, readers are immediately required to write “penalty for the ball.”
Q&A. A game many people love. Through a sticker in the Stories, you ask your audience a question, or write, “Ask me something.” After that, you post others’ answers or questions with your own answers
When you ask you questions, make sure you know you have the strength and capacity to answer them throughout the day.
And here, readers are warned right away – the blogger will answer only as many questions as he or she has time to answer.
Pros, cons and subtleties of game content
People love to play games and get involved in them even when they don’t get anything for them. They like to be winners, to share a good result with subscribers, so all games should be based on the system “Subscriber is good anyway”.
Don’t forget that it’s important not to miscalculate the level of difficulty. Before publishing test the game on a couple of friends. If they are interested and comfortable, publish it!
Gaming content has its disadvantages: it’s hard to make it pretty, and it almost always stands out among other posts.
It’s especially hard to fit a game into a stylish and atmospheric account, such as Simple + Beyond. Of all our examples, only an IKEA-inspired game would be suitable for such an account.
Tip: Put a series of images into your post. Make the main image a photo that matches your content, and the second one a picture of the game.
5 steps to create game content
Today you’re going to create the predictive game we covered in the first example.
Step 1. Go to Canva and choose the size of the future pictures. We chose a square. You can choose any layout, most importantly, don’t forget that only the text in the gifka changes, and all other elements are static. For example make a gif on a plain white background. At the bottom, place the brand logo – for that, upload it in PNG format with a transparent background.
Step 2. In our example, the target audience is girls under 30. The topic of the post is “What are you going to do tonight”.
We tried to imagine what answer choices might interest, make you laugh, or surprise you. Here are a few of our suggestions:
- Calling your ex (ex) – let’s not forget that guys can also play;
- Watching “Bridget Jones’s Diaries” and drinking wine;
- flipping through your Instagram feed;
- fall in love;
- receive a gift from a secret admirer(s).
In your game come up with whatever options you want, be independent, imaginative and creative.
Step 3: Now create a gif. Place the text in the center of the first slide and make as many copies of this picture as there are answer options.
Step 4. Place all the answer choices in the center of each slide. Then download all the files as an archive, unzip them and send them to Gifius. The main thing is to set the speed of changing the slides, so that you can not trace the answer choices you like, otherwise the game will be unfair.
Step 5. The gif is ready. To upload it to Instagram, convert it into a video. There are a lot of converter services, for example, here is a good service Convertio. If you want, you can put the background music, on the phone it is easy to do in Splice and IMovie.
Voila! Give it a simple caption, and publish it.
Instagram games are a legal and practically free way to engage your followers. The key is to design games intelligently, not with a “how to intrigue an idiot” attitude. Make games in such a way that you yourself would like to play them.
You don’t have to give subscribers who play them anything. The game isn’t a contest with a compulsory prize, you just need to get people interested in the idea.
Don’t steal games from other accounts, but adapt them to your audience.
In Instagram, visuals are especially important, so make games beautiful and accompany them with branded elements: logos, frames, and more. And how to upload content directly from your computer, read the article “How to post a photo to Instagram from your computer online” on the SMMplanner blog.