How To Use Instagram™ Guides Replace (must you use guides?)

If you want your Instagram ™ account to be a place for your ideal customer to collect your content, Instagram ™ guides are a great place to start. Instagram ™ guides allow you to share more in-depth information with your followers and increase interaction with your existing content.

In this blog post, I’ll explain everything you need to know about guides. From setting up to choosing your guide content. Plus, if you shouldn’t share a guide.

In this blog post:

What are Instagram ™ guides?

Instagram ™ guides are an easy way to reuse your existing Instagram ™ content. From step-by-step instructions to instructions and tips, Guides lets you organize your Instagram ™ posts into cohesive content.

Where to find Instagram ™ guides

To find guides, navigate to the creator’s profile page. Then tap the Guide icon at the top of the feed.

Sue B Zimmerman's Instagram ™ Guide to Instagram ™ Engagement.

Now you can see all the guides that the creator has created. As soon as you tap on the individual guide, you can feel like a Instagram ™ carousel post.

Each guide can also be shared via Instagram ™ Stories or Direct Messenger and contain an individual link that can be shared outside of Instagram ™.

Should you create a guide?

In short, the answer is 100% yes. Here are some examples of guides you can share.

Curate content on a topic

Similar to a Instagram ™ story, Guides allow you to curate content on a topic. For example, check out this guide from. at Beats from Dre. Instead of leaving every Instagram ™ post to itself, they’ve put together this guide on how to support small black businesses.

A Beats by Dew Instagram ™ guide highlighting black owned small businesses.

Put a spotlight on related content

Another example is a guide I recently put together. After sharing a lot of content Instagram ™ engagement, I chose to put all of this information into one Instagram ™ guide. Instead of sharing a ton of Instagram ™ posts, I can now send a link to my followers.

Sue B Zimmerman's Instagram ™ Guide promoting her content to increase Instagram ™ engagement.

Another example is this Instagram ™ guide I’ve compiled to announce my new YouTube videos. If a follower asks about my weekly YouTube series, I can share all of my videos with one link.

Sue B Zimmerman's Instagram ™ Guide highlighting her latest YouTube videos.

But this strategy isn’t limited to YouTube videos. For example, if you’re a real estate agent, you can include all of your active listings in one guide. You can then share this link with your customers via a direct Instagram ™ message.

Present your products

Guides are also a strategic way of seeing your shoppable Instagram ™ posts. Summarized in a guide like this one Inspiration Guide for West Elm Tables, you can add additional context and add value to the elements together.

West Elm's Instagram ™ Guide highlighting table inspiration.

Introduce yourself and your company

It’s always a good idea to remind people There is a real person behind your Instagram ™ avatar. After you’ve created a few Instagram ™ posts explaining who you are and what you do, summarize them in a guide. Then demonstrate your worth and expertise to your new followers.

If you get the same questions in your instant Instagram ™ message, now is the time to direct other people to your guide. Just like Vestiaire Collective with this Instagram ™ guide.

Vestiaire Collective's Instagram ™ Guide showing 5 ways to keep clothes clean without washing.

Sue B tip: Avoid linking to other people’s content in your guide. This will direct traffic to your account and away from your profile.

When to avoid setting up a guide

Before you start creating a ton of guides, keep in mind that you need to create your profile first.

Focus on the essentials: set up your bio and share content consistently. If you’re not sure where to start, check this out Youtube video to get you started.

How to set up a guide

Now let’s dive into setting up a guide. First, tap the plus sign icon. Then swipe to the Guides icon.

If Guides don’t appear as an option, tap an account that has already shared a guide. Then scroll down to the end of their guide.

Sue B. Zimmerman's Instagram ™ Guide with the menu below open so other users can create their own guide.

Now you should see an option to create a guide for your account.

How to add content to an Instagram ™ guide

Next, we’ll add content to your guide. There are three guide options:

Remember, Guides only allow you to share feed content not Instagram ™ stories. If you’ve shared a reel or IGTV for your feed, they can be shared in a guide.


If you want to share a guide focusing on geographic location, you must select all of the posts marked with this geotag.


If you choose to create a product guide, make sure that you have already shared it shoppable Instagram ™ posts. Then, if you tap on this product, you can share multiple pictures in one carousel post. But don’t worry, it won’t Create multiple entries in this manual for this product.


When you select the Posting Guide, you can choose from posts in your own Instagram ™ profile or saved posts from other accounts.

Sharing content from other accounts is a breeze. Just save your contents first (tap the bookmark icon in the lower right corner). Note that you can choose up to 30 posts to share with a single guide.

Sue B. tip: When choosing the Instagram ™ posts to add to your guide, try to select them in a logical chronological order.

How to Format an Instagram ™ Guide

Now that you’ve selected the content for your guide, let’s focus on the formatting.

After you’ve chosen your content, tap Next. Then add a title for your guide. I recommend keeping it as short and concise as possible.

Next, add a description to your guide. Think of this as an introduction to a blog post. You want people to know right away what your guide is about and why they should care.

Finally, choose a cover photo for your guide. Note that you cannot upload an image for your cover. Instead, you have to choose from one of your selected posts.

How to Post an Instagram ™ Guide

Then it is almost time to publish your guide. Once your guide is formatted the way you want, tap Share. If you’re not quite ready to publish, you can also save your guide as a draft.

That’s it! You have published your first guide.

My last guide tip

You have put a lot of effort into creating a guide – so get the best out of it.

When you have a group of very dedicated followers, share them with them through instant Instagram ™. You can also use Instagram ™ Stories so others can share your guide on their accounts.

Discover the 4 ways to get more followers and buyers on Instagram ™

Free Instagram Strategy Guide
Are you struggling to get new followers to your Instagram ™ account? Get a copy of mine FREE Instagram ™ Strategy Guide. From starting conversations with prospects to driving traffic to your website, this guide will get you off to the right place.

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