5-Step Guide on How to Add Music to Instagram Posts Easily

May 28, 2024

There are two main ways to add music to Instagram stories, and in this guide, we have decided to give you in-depth instructions on both. With over 500 million daily active users, Stories are a go-to format on this platform, and since visuals alone won’t be enough to help you stand out, learning how to add music to Instagram Stories can make or break your reach. 

Various songs and sounds can give your content depth and improve its appeal, and that makes them an excellent addition to any social media post. So, in today’s guide, we’ll not only explain how to add music to Instagram Stories, but also share some creative tips to help you use it more effectively in your content.

Let’s start!

4 Crucial Reasons to Add Music to Instagram Posts

Adding music to your Instagram Stories has long been available on the platform, and according to Instagram, over 60% of users turn on their sound when viewing Stories.

Because of their success with Stories, it’s not surprising that Instagram introduced this feature to regular posts as well. In fact, there are several advantages to incorporating music into regular posts. Here are some of them:

#1. Enhancing Engagement

The different elements in your post will affect how it appeals to general social media users.

For instance, a study by Bakhshi et al. (2014) in the Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems revealed the overwhelming advantage of photos with faces when it comes to engagement on Instagram, citing that “photos with faces are 38% more likely to receive likes and 32% more likely to receive comments.

In the same way, adding music to your Instagram post can make it more interesting and engaging. High engagement rates are a great signal for the Instagram algorithm and can boost your content on the Explore page, giving it more visibility and chances for engagement.

#2. Expressing Creativity

While the visuals and editing can help communicate your post’s message, adding music to your Instagram post adds another layer of depth to your photos.

For instance, when sharing travel photos, consider using the music used in other posts with similar content to improve your post’s relatability. When viewers hear the audio, they’ll be able to associate it with traveling and may even bring up their own travel memories.

#3. Using Trending Audio

Adding music to your Instagram post means you can utilize the platform’s trending songs and audio. This will increase your post’s general appeal and improve its chances of being ranked favorably by the algorithm.

#4. Creating Video Alternatives

Research by Tenenboim (2022) in the Social Media + Society suggests that posts containing videos generate the most engagement online. This is evident in the success of Instagram Reels on the platform. However, producing quality video content consistently can be costly and time-consuming.

By adding music to your Instagram post, you can replicate the experience of watching videos and improve your overall engagement without the cost.

How to Add Music to Instagram Posts in 5 Easy Steps

From generating engagement to improving creative flexibility, adding music to your posts offers several benefits. If you want to learn how to add music to Instagram posts and start seeing results, here’s how you can do so in five easy steps.

#1. Choose the Right Photo or Video

The first step is to choose the image or video you want for your post. If you’re creating an Instagram carousel, you may want to plan the images, videos, and music you’ll be using beforehand to ensure that they fit the message you want to relay.

#2. Upload it

After choosing a photo, you can upload it on Instagram and crop the image to fit Instagram’s recommended post dimensions. Then, you can edit it by adding filters or adjusting the image’s hues and tones.

Choose the Right Photo or Video - how to add music to instagram post

#3. Tap “Add Music”

When you’re happy with how the media looks, tap the music icon in the upper right corner of the screen to access the app’s music library.

Choose the Right Photo or Video - how to add music to instagram post

#4. Select the Track from the Library

The Instagram music library has songs from popular artists and record labels that you can freely use in your content. These are governed by copyright laws, which means that some songs may not be available in specific regions. Additionally, Instagram limits the music selection for Business accounts to prevent them from being used for commercial purposes.

how to add music to instagram post

In the For you section, you’ll find a selection of recommended songs. If you have a specific song in mind, you can simply search for it using the search bar or tap Browse to view other selections.

how to add music to instagram post

The Browse section is categorized by genre, mood, and theme, making it easier for you to find the best song for your post.

#5. Customize the Start and End Points

Tap on a track to add it to your post, and move the slider to select the part of the song that you want for your post.

how to add music to instagram post

Then, tap 30 on the left side to adjust the duration of the snippet. 30 seconds is the default length for clips on Instagram, but since photos don’t have a set length, you can choose any time between 5 and 90 seconds. Keep in mind that after the clip ends, the song will loop.

choose clip duration

After setting the duration, tap Done, and your post will be ready for publishing.

Types of Instagram Posts that Benefit from Music

Adding music to Instagram posts can boost their appeal and captivate your audience. If you’re wondering what posts these benefits apply to, take a look at the list below:

#1. Single Photo Posts

Single photo posts are arguably the most common type of Instagram post. However, because there’s only one photo, they don’t generate much interest. In fact, they have the lowest interaction rates across all post types.

Without an eye-catching visual, users may scroll away from the post immediately, so incorporating music is a great way to make it more appealing to casual scrollers.

#2. Video Posts

Despite the popularity of Instagram Reels, video posts generate low engagement rates on the platform. However, this isn’t surprising, as Reels use a separate algorithm and are easily found on a dedicated tab.

Fortunately, adding music to Instagram video posts can significantly boost their discoverability on the platform. When you use trending audio, the algorithm is more likely to feature your content on the Explore page. And your post will show up when users click on the sound, improving its reach.

#3. Carousel Posts

Instagram carousels perform really well on the platform, second only to Reels in terms of engagement. But if you want to make your carousels stand out, consider uploading them with music.

By adding music to Instagram posts with multiple photos, you help create a cohesive narrative, which can make your carousel much more effective and engaging.

5+ Impactful Tips and Creative Strategies for Using Music in Instagram Posts

Now that you know how to add music to Instagram posts, it’s time to learn some creative strategies so you can utilize this feature effectively in your content.

#1. Storytelling with Music

Adding music to Instagram posts can help improve the storytelling aspect of your photos. For instance, if you are planning to post an image of a field of flowers, its meaning can change significantly depending on the music you choose. Without having to describe it explicitly in your caption, you can express a sense of melancholy, joy, or grief with your music choice.

#2. Creating Moods and Themes

You can use music to help you create the right mood or theme in your post and evoke an emotional response in your audience. Doing so will greatly improve the post’s engagement and help convey your message more clearly.

In fact, a study by Stieglitz and Dang-Xuan (2013) in the Journal of Management Information Systems found that user sentiment can strongly affect their response to social media content and that “content that triggers emotions … is more likely to be shared.

#3. Aligning Music with Brand Identity

Aside from setting the theme of the post, your music choice can also reflect your branding, so it’s important to be selective. Here are some questions you can ask yourself when choosing music for posts:

  • What kind of energy do you want your brand to be associated with?
  • Who is the target audience of the post?
  • What kind of music will appeal to your main demographic?

By consistently publishing posts with the right tracks, you can effectively establish your brand voice and improve awareness on the platform.

#4. Using External Music Editing Tools

Since it isn’t possible to add music to Instagram posts on a computer, one way around this is to use an external music editing tool. You can use third-party software, like Adobe Premiere or Filmora, to add music to your photos before uploading them to Instagram.

#5. Balancing Music and Visuals

It’s important that the music you choose balances your chosen media. For instance, if your post is about Halloween, you don’t want to use music that’s light and dreamy, as this can give off the wrong impression and confuse viewers.

#6. Testing and Analyzing the Data

Lastly, always remember to check post performance and experiment with different posting strategies. What type of music best resonates with your audience? What kind of posts received the most engagement? By analyzing these metrics, you can incorporate music more successfully into your content.

Key Takeaways

  • Adding music to Instagram posts can help improve their engagement and provide a great alternative to video posts. These also allow you to express yourself more creatively and use trending audio to improve your content’s appeal.
  • To add music to an Instagram post, craft your post as usual, then click the music icon during editing to access the app’s music library.
  • Adding music to Instagram single-image posts, carousels, and video posts is a great way to add dimension to their content and improve their discoverability.
  • Consider using music to set the mood or tell a story with your Instagram posts. You can also use music to establish your brand’s voice and analyze your audience’s interests.

How to Add Music to Instagram Posts FAQs

#1. Why isn’t the music feature showing on my app?

If the music feature or sticker isn’t showing up on your Instagram app, it may be because your app isn’t updated. If you already have the latest version of the app and still can’t find the music feature, it’s likely because it isn’t available in your region yet.

#2. Can I add my own music to Instagram posts?

Yes, you can add your own music to Instagram posts. Simply upload your music to a streaming platform like Spotify or Apple Music or add it to Instagram’s music library. Then, follow the steps we discussed in our guide.

#3. Can you add music to your Instagram post after posting?

Unfortunately, you can’t add music to an Instagram post after posting. If you want to upload a specific image with music, you can delete your previous post and repost it with music. Alternatively, you can schedule your Instagram posts in advance and add music to them right before posting to ensure that each post is properly optimized.

#4. How do you add music to Instagram posts on a desktop?

To add music to an Instagram post on a desktop, you need a third-party tool. The music feature is only available on the mobile app, so you need to transfer your photos and videos to your phone to upload them with music.

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