How to use Instagram Direct Messaging to Generate Leads

Three Ways Colleges can use Instagram Direct Messaging to Retain Students

Instagram direct messaging was launched back in 2013. It continues to evolve but it still provides users with a simple way to send photo and video messages to friends. The direct messaging functionality allows users to send private messages and/or group messages to up to 15 people at once. And unlike Twitter, users have the ability to send direct messages to users who don’t follow them, prompting the option to accept or deny the message. This is great news for schools that can now hold conversations with potential students in a private manner.

How Instagram Direct Messaging Works

Once you have a photo or video ready to post on Instagram, choose the “Direct” option to send it as a private message (“Followers” sends it to, you guessed it, your followers)!


Once the message is sent you’ll be able to determine who viewed it. Recipients also have the ability to respond within the private message.


How to use Instagram Direct Messaging to Generate Leads

Yes it’s still true – social media is all about building an online community, expanding your school’s presence, and engaging with your students, graduates, and prospective students. A big part of that is creating engaging content that gets your online community talking, prospective students especially. Once you get your prospective students talking on Instagram, you no longer have to rely on providing them with an email address in hopes that they’ll contact your admissions department for more information (remember, you can’t provide links to lead forms since they’re not clickable on Instagram). Now you can use Instagram direct messaging to reach out to these leads and gather their information privately (asking people to leave their contact information publicly is never a good idea). Keep in mind that you’ll need to include a photo or a video in the direct message, so there needs to be a plan in place for that.



Instagram Direct allows marketers to create targeted messages to different types of followers. However, don’t use this as an opportunity to start spamming people. If you’re creating engaging content like you should be, then you can expect people to start raising their hands and asking questions. Take this as an opportunity to connect with prospective students without being invasive and provide them with value.

Does your school need help getting the conversation started on Instagram and other social media sites? ESM Digital can help! Request your free consultation now.