There are plenty of reasons why Instagram is one of the most popular social media messaging apps on the market today, with more than a billion committed users.
People love Instagram because it’s a place that they can share the pictures and videos that they love with the people that they care about. Instagram also offers endless forms of online entertainment through the Stories, videos and pictures of other users.
However, sometimes, staying connected on Insta isn’t just about the photos.
If you just want to keep in touch with a pal, then you’ll want to know how to send messages on Instagram, through the Instagram Direct feature.
Fortunately, your friends here at Socialfollow.co have you covered.
What is Instagram Direct?
Before you can learn how to send messages on Instagram, you need to get to know your way around Instagram Direct – the private messaging feature for Instagram.
Instagram Direct allows users to share plain text messages, photos, videos, profile information, hashtags, locations and so much more. You can even use Instagram Direct to send disappearing photos or videos taken through the Instagram app. Yep, it’s just like SnapChat in that regard.
Although Instagram as a visual social sharing app has been around since 2010, there was no option for private messaging until the company launched Direct in 2013. Instagram created Direct so that users could chat with other people on Instagram, without having to @mention someone in a new post or comment directly on their photos.
How Does Instagram Direct Work?
As a social media private messenger tool, Instagram Direct is very similar to most of the tools you’re probably already familiar with in the marketplace. Just like Facebook Messenger, you can use Instagram Direct to connect with anyone that you’re following on the social media app. You’ll also be able to send messages to people who you aren’t following.
If you send a message to someone you’re not following, the content will show up as a request in their inbox. That person will need to decide whether to approve your message. Once your message is approved, all future messages will appear in the user’s inbox like normal, even if you’re not following that person.
You can respond to direct messages on Instagram just the same as you would on most private messaging apps. Replies will appear in bubbles on a dedicated side of the screen, so you can track what you’ve said in your conversation.
Remember, though there isn’t a precise limit for how many Instagram direct messages you can send in a single day, it’s best not to go too over the top. The more messages you send, particularly to a multitude of different accounts, the more spammy you’ll seem.
Where is the Instagram Direct Inbox?
Now that you know what Direct is, the next step in learning how to send messages on Instagram, is finding your Direct Inbox. Every time someone sends you a new message on Instagram, you’ll receive a notification. You can tap on the notification as soon as it pops up on your device to respond to or read a message then and there.
At the top of your home page screen, you’ll also see a small paper airplane symbol. This icon will take you directly to your Instagram messages when clicked. Tap the arrow button in the top right to access your Instagram inbox. Within the inbox, you can also create new messages by tapping the + New Message button at the bottom of the screen.
Type the usernames of the people you want to reach in the “To” field to start composing your message. Remember, you can also create group messages on Instagram too.
How to Send Messages on Instagram: Step by Step
Okay, so you know where your inbox is and you’re ready to start sending messages.
The good news? This process is a piece of cake.
Anyone who signs up for Instagram will be able to use direct messaging as part of their social media experience. You can use direct messages for business purposes, like responding to customer queries and connecting with potential clients. You can also use your DMs on Instagram for personal reasons – to keep in touch with the people you care about in private.
To send a message on Instagram:
- Open your Instagram app and make sure that you’re signed in
- Tap on the DM option in the top right of your Instagram feed
- Search for the user you want to message in the “search” bar, or scroll through your contacts
- Write your text into the message bar
- Click send
As well as sending basic messages in Instagram Direct, you can also notify your friends about your latest posts and videos. Just click on the options button under any Instagram post, and scroll down to the option to share the post via a private message. You can then automatically send a link to your post to people in your follower list. This can be an excellent feature for businesses that are using Influencer marketing and social collaboration strategies on Instagram.
Another thing to note when you’re learning how to send messages on Instagram, is that you can create group chats. All you need to do is use the “+” button to add people to a message, rather than just selecting a single name and recipient. You can scroll through your list to add people to a group message or search for names individually.
How to Send Messages on Instagram Through PC
Up until now, we’ve been focusing on teaching you how to use Instagram direct messaging from your smartphone. After all, most people generally prefer to log into Instagram from a mobile phone. However, there are a lot of businesses that also like to keep track of their Instagram messages and feed on a desktop computer too.
If you’re managing a business campaign for Instagram, then checking your direct messages from your computer will give you a keyboard and a larger screen to type out quicker answers. You can also use the Instagram messaging for PC option if you’re at work and you’re not allowed to use your phone. While we’re not telling you to get into trouble at work – you could always check your Insta on your lunch break when you’re at your desktop.
Unfortunately, the desktop version of Instagram doesn’t offer all of the same features that you would get from the mobile version. For instance, it’s not always easy to upload content from a PC to your Instagram profile, unless you’re using special tools.
Similarly, you won’t be able to access the web browser on your PC to browse through your Instagram direct messages either. Instead, you’ll need to use a workaround. Your two best options are either Instagram for Windows 10, or the BlueStacks third-party app.
Let’s take a look at how to send messages on Instagram through both tools.
How to Send Messages on Instagram Through Windows 10
Windows 10 is one of the most common and popular operating systems available for today’s desktop users. If you have a Windows (Microsoft) PC, then you’re probably already using Windows 10. You’re almost definitely going to be using Windows 10 after January 2020, when support for Windows 7 stops.
To access your Direct Messages on Instagram through Windows 10, all you need to do is visit the Microsoft Store. In this “app store,” you’ll find an Instagram for Windows app. Once you install that program into your PC, you can open it and use Instagram just like you would on your smartphone.
Just like on your smartphone, you can tap the direct messaging icon on the Instagram home page to send a private message to someone or check your messages.
This is probably the easiest way to make sure that you can send messages through Instagram, even when you’re on your desktop PC.
How to Send Messages on Instagram Through BlueStacks
If the Windows 10 option doesn’t appeal to you for any reason, then there is an alternative. You can use the BlueStacks application instead. BlueStacks is an app emulator similar to the Windows 10 Instagram app. The feature is free to use, and it essentially gives you a copy of the mobile Instagram experience for your desktop.
Businesses and influencers today use BlueStacks to post pre-edited content from their computer to Instagram in seconds. You can also use the same software to access your DMs. To get started, download the BlueStacks app from the official website and install it on your desktop.
Once your install is done, click on the “Finish” option to be taken to the Welcome screen. You can click on the right arrow button here to enter your Google account credentials. These will be the credentials that you used on your Android smartphone when downloading Instagram. Type Instagram into the available search bar, and you’ll be able to tap on the Instagram app icon. Clicking on the icon will take you to an app store where you can download the Instagram mobile app onto your desktop.
Once Instagram is finished installing, you can launch it within BlueStacks and enter your credentials. The app will open on your computer and provide you an identical experience to the one that you get on an Android phone. This will include the option to browse through your direct messaging inbox and access DMs on your PC.
Sending Messages on Instagram
As you can see from the wide range of options available above, sending messages on Instagram doesn’t have to be a complicated experience. You can send anyone a message through the Instagram app, even if you’re not following them.
Instagram Direct and the messaging feature gives today’s businesses and individual Instagram users even more ways to use their favorite app. With Instagram Direct, you can network with potential influencers and thought leaders that you might want to work with when you’re building your branding campaigns. You can also use your Instagram messaging feature to simply keep up to date with your friends and family when you don’t want to rely on Facebook messaging.
Instagram Direct ensures that you don’t have to rely on sending messages through the comments section of Instagram, where everyone can see anything that you write. Just remember:
- Read the terms and services of Instagram to make sure that you’re using Instagram properly. You shouldn’t be using any automated bots to send messages through Direct.
- Don’t spam your followers on Instagram Direct. The more you use the messaging feature on Instagram, the more likely it is that people will end up blocking and reporting you for being annoying.
- Be careful with how you use Direct: You will be penalized if you use Instagram Direct for any offensive or bullying purposes. Be careful to use the application properly.
If you do have a problem with any of the messages that you’ve sent on Direct, you’ll either have to touch and hold the message you’ve sent and tap “Unsend”. This removes the messages that you have sent to the other person, but not the messages that they sent to you. You can also touch and hold the username of the person you’re messaging to delete the whole conversation from your inbox.
Ready to Send Direct Messages on Instagram?
Sending direct messages on Instagram can be a useful way to engage with your target audience, connect with clients, and even just stay social with friends. This feature is particularly useful if you have a lot of followers and you want to share specific information directly from Instagram with a select few people. However, just like any feature on Instagram, it’s important to make sure that you know how to use your direct messaging capability properly.
Follow the tips above to make sure that you’re getting the most out of your messaging experience, regardless of whether you’re sending group messages, or engaging in private conversations via mobile or PC.