Instagram’s Close Friends tool allows users to share content with a select inner circle while still posting publicly to their broader follower base. This in-depth guide will explain everything you need to know about how Close Friends works, who can see Close Friends content, tips for getting the most out of it, and answers to frequently asked questions.
What Exactly is Instagram Close Friends?
Instagram Close Friends is a feature that gives users more control over their privacy and enables them to get more personal with certain connections.
With Close Friends, you can share Instagram stories, posts, and live videos with a smaller group of followers that you select. It lets you segment your audience and share certain content with just your inner circle rather than your entire follower base.
To use Close Friends, you first add specific followers you want to your Close Friends list. This can be done by going to your profile, tapping the three line menu, selecting “Close Friends”, and then “Add Close Friends”.
Once you have added followers to your list, when you go to post a story, feed post, or go live, you’ll have the option to share it just with your Close Friends instead of publicly.
This lets you give exclusive access to content just for those VIP connections. Those not on the Close Friends list will not be able to view or even know that content exists.
Who Exactly Can See Content Shared With Close Friends?
Only the followers you have manually added to your Close Friends list on Instagram will be able to view any content you share just to that inner circle.
If a follower is not on your list, they will not see any stories, posts, or live videos that you share as Close Friends only content. These will be completely hidden from anyone not on the list.
You have full control over who is on the list and can add or remove people at any time. Instagram also allows you to create multiple different Close Friends lists for different purposes.
For example, you may have one Close Friends list for your family members, another for close coworkers or teammates, and another for your very best friends. This allows you to segment and target content even further.
When someone on your Close Friends list views a story or post shared to close friends just to that group, they will see a green badge indicating it is Close Friends only content. This signals that they are getting VIP access.
How to Use Instagram Close Friends Effectively
Using Close Friends effectively takes some strategy. Here are some tips to get the most value from it:
Be Selective About Who You Add
Don’t feel obligated to add casual acquaintances or lower-tier connections. Reserve your main Close Friends list for only your closest friends and family members that you interact with frequently. Having your real inner circle see your more personal content will strengthen bonds.
Share Exclusive Content and Details
Use Close Friends to give your real VIPs more exclusive access to your everyday life and behind-the-scenes details via stories. This content will only be for their eyes and feel more special.
Post Frequently But Not Too Much
Aim to share Close Friends only content a few times per week for the best results. Daily can cause people to disengage. But doing it rarely misses opportunities.
Reply to Reactions and Comments
When Close Friends engage with your exclusive content by commenting or reacting, make sure to take the time to thoughtfully reply. This shows you appreciate them and are grateful for their attention.
See Who Views Your Close Friends Content
Check on who is consistently viewing the content you share to just your Close Friends list. If you notice someone stops watching frequently, consider removing them.
Create Multiple Lists for Different Audiences
Segment further by making lists like “Close Family”, “Close Colleagues”, “Inner Circle” to target different groups. Share content tailored for each.
Instagram Close Friends FAQs
Here are answers to some frequently asked questions about Instagram Close Friends:
How Do I Add Someone to My Close Friends List?
In your profile, tap the three line menu > Close Friends > Add Close Friends. Type in the exact username of the follower you want to add to your list.
Can I Remove Someone From My Close Friends List?
Yes, just tap on their name in your list and select “Remove”. They will no longer be able to see any exclusive Close Friends content going forward.
Do Close Friends Know They Are On My List?
No, it’s completely invisible to them. The only indication is if they now see Close Friends content from you when they didn’t before. But Instagram doesn’t notify them or mark them visibly as a Close Friend.
Can My Close Friends Screenshot or Download My Content?
Yes, unfortunately there is nothing technically preventing them from taking screenshots or recording your Close Friends stories, posts, or lives. So share accordingly and with those you truly trust.
Is There Any Way to Prevent Close Friends From Resharing My Content?
No, there is no way to stop someone on your Close Friends list from capturing your content via screenshots or screen recording and then posting it publicly. So the list should only include trusted connections.
The Value of Instagram Close Friends
When used properly, Instagram’s Close Friends feature lets you easily provide exclusive access and content to just your inner circle. This can help you segment audiences, strengthen bonds with top followers, get more personal, and grow engagement.
Just be mindful of who you add to Close Friends lists, be selective about the content you share just to those lists, and remember that while you can limit visibility, you can’t prevent screenshotting or resharing. But overall, Close Friends is a very useful tool for Instagram users who want more control over their privacy.