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New Feature: How to Add Music to Instagram Posts

Attention social media managers: if you ever wish you could go back to the simpler days of social media where the most difficult decision you had to make was picking your profile song, then you just might be loving Instagram's new music feature, which enables users to add music to static feed posts.  

And if you have no idea what Myspace even is (or maybe you need a quick dose of social media nostalgia for the sake of simpler times), here's a quick history lesson:

Over the past few years, music has become a central component of our experience on social media, thanks to TikTok, which completely transformed how we incorporate music or soundbites from our favorite media to share stories and entertain. Whether you're doing a trending TikTok dance, lip-syncing and recontextualizing a funny quote from The Office, or using a DJ's music mix as the background music for your latest 'life lately' vlog, music has not only transformed how we use social media, but how we create content for it.

Instagram's newest music feature can be yet another opportunity to explore how we can leverage music to transform how we engage our audiences with static content. Keep reading for all you need to know about Instagram's music feature and how (or if) using this feature can give your content a visibility boost.

Instagram began rolling out its expanded music feature in November 2022 and was slowly rolled out to all accounts throughout early 2023. With this new feature, you'll now see a musical note icon next to the usual filter icon after you've selected the assets for your post.

You'll also see the icon for this feature in the 'new post' section, where you draft the final details of your post before hitting 'publish.'

Using Instagram's music feature for static posts is similar to adding music to a reel. Here's a quick breakdown of how it works:

Step 1: Start drafting your post as usual by selecting the '+' button on your profile.

Step 2: Select the photos and/or images you want to add to your post, then select the 'next' button.

Step 3: On the top center of your screen, you should see a music icon. Select that button to search for music to add to your post. You'll also be able to access any music you previously saved.

Step 4: Once you select the music you'd like to add, you can select what part of the song or audio you'd like to play for your post. You can select the button on the left of the audio to adjust the length up to 90 seconds.

Step 5: Select the 'next' button and draft your post as usual!

Yup - it's that simple!

Here are a few things worth noting about Instagram's music feature for static posts:

Currently, this feature allows you to access official music, but it does not allow you to use popular reel audio. This means you won't be able to use funny or trending sound bites in your posts.

There is no limit to the types of music you can access with a business account, but every account has different allowances for the type of music they can use, so test this for the accounts you manage.

While adding music to your reels can lead to increased visibility, this is not the case for using music on static posts. Currently, static posts that use audio do not show up in the official audio tab. But it can be a way to attract attention to your post on the feed - unless the user's account is on mute. Also, remember that Instagram has emphasized prioritizing original content, so while this is a great tool to add dimension and pizzazz to your social media posts, it shouldn't be used as a strategy to increase content visibility.

Music is increasingly becoming a prominent wow factor for creating social media content. If you have yet to explore ways to leverage music to elevate your content, there are more opportunities than ever to start! So be sure to test this new feature out pronto.

Pro Tip: If you struggle to find good audio for your social media content, get trending audio recommendations weekly when you join PLANOLY.

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Gabriella Layne-Avery

Gabriella Layne-Avery is a Content Strategist, Creative Director, and the founder of the content marketing agency Strut Communications. Known for coining the term ‘sustainable social media,’ she believes it’s 100% possible for small business owners to leverage social media to cultivate engaged, loyal communities for their brands without spending 24/7 doing so.

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