Instagram DMs

Instagram engagement is imperative for your brand and/or business. With Instagram DMs integrated in Sprout’s Smart Inbox, you’ll never miss an engagement opportunity with your audience. You can get a holistic view of your incoming messages, while creating a stronger and more organized 1-1 connection.

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You can access DMs from your Instagram Business Profiles in your Smart Inbox. 

You’ll see everything in real-time in Sprout where you can continue to use your team’s workflows to respond to and interact with your Instagram audience.

This article contains the following sections:

Required prerequisites

In order to receive DMs in the Smart Inbox, you need to ensure that privacy settings are configured correctly in the native app. For more details, see this how-to

Reauthorizing profiles

Once Instagram DMs are enabled in your Sprout account, you need to re-authorize each Instagram Business Profile you want messages to appear for in the Smart Inbox. To do this:

  1. Click image4.png to expand the notifications drawer.
  2. Toggle to the Issues tab.
  3. Click Learn More next to the notification regarding your Instagram Business Profile.
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  4. Click Reauthorize. A popup appears sending you to Facebook for reauthorization.
  5. Click Ok.

After you’re redirected, complete the authorization process and then you can access your Instagram DMs in the Smart Inbox.

Note: After you re-authorize your Instagram Business Profile in Sprout, you might notice there’s a delay in some of your DMs appearing in Sprout. This is a part of an initial backfill. Once this is complete, your messages will update in real-time. Sprout backfills from the previous 30 days of your DMs..

Replying to an Instagram DM

After you re-authorize the Instagram Business Profiles you want to receive messages from in Sprout, you can start interacting with those DMs and Story Mentions.

Note: In the Smart Inbox an Instagram DM is made up of both Direct Messages and Story Replies. You can’t separate these message types from one another.

To reply to an Instagram DM:

  1. Navigate to the Smart Inbox.
  2. (Optional) Update your filters in the Right Bar to select the Instagram profiles and Message Types you want to see. 
  3. Click image7.png to reply to a DM. The Chat View appears.
  4. Enter your response to the DM.
  5. Click Send or Submit for Approval based on your team’s workflow.
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It’s important to call out that if you read, complete or respond to a DM in Sprout, that message still shows as unread in the native Instagram app. This is because third-party integrations, like Sprout, can’t sync read status with the native Instagram app.

Filtering the Smart Inbox

If you want to focus on responding, tasking, tagging and interacting with just your DMs, use the new Message Type filters Direct Messages (DMs + Story Replies) or Story Mentions in addition to the Instagram Business Profile filters to remove the clutter from your Smart Inbox.

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You can also create a custom Inbox View that only contains Direct Messages or Story Mentions from Instagram. To learn more about creating Inbox Views, see this article.

Message/Reactions Availability

The following tables outline the types of messages that can appear as Instagram DMs in the Smart Inbox and/or Chat View as well as the actions you can take on those messages.

Incoming (received) Messages

This table outlines the actions you can take in the Smart Inbox and Chat screen when receiving Instagram DMs. Note that you can’t send emoji reactions from Sprout due to an API limitation.

Message Type

Message Type Supported (will show in the Smart Inbox)?

Actions supported in Sprout

Text

Yes

You can like, reply, task or tag the messages.

Links

Yes

You can open the link, like, reply, task or tag the message.

Image

Yes

You can like, reply, task or tag the messages.

Video

Yes

You can like, reply, task or tag the messages.

Sticker, GIF & Audio

Not currently supported. An “unsupported attachment” message appears due to an API limitation.

N/A

Story Mention

Yes

You can like, reply, task or tag the messages.

Story Reply - Quick Reaction 

Yes

You can like, reply, task or tag the messages.

Story Reply - Text 

Yes

You can like, reply, task or tag the messages.

Story Reply - GIF 

Not currently supported. An “unsupported attachment” message appears due to an API limitation.

N/A

 

Outgoing (sent) Messages

This table outlines the types of message responses a Sprout user can send in a DM conversation:

Message Type

Can I send this message type?

Instagram reactions supported in Sprout

Text

Yes

Like

Image, GIF

Yes

Like

Video

No

N/A

Sticker & Audio

No

N/A

 

Instagram DMs mobile

You can take your Instagram DMs on the go with Sprout's iOS and Android app. Make sure you complete the required prerequisites and re-authorize your profiles before trying to access your DMs in the mobile app.

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Enable push notifications

To enable push notifications for Instagram DMs on Sprout's mobile app:

  1. Tap Notification Preferences.
  2. Tap Instagram.
  3. Tap the account you want to receive push notifications for.
  4. Toggle on/off the notifications you want to receive.

Now you receive push notifications for DMs, Story Mentions and Mentions.

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Replying to an Instagram DM

From the Smart Inbox on mobile, you can see and reply to your DMs.

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You can reply, like, tag and mark messages complete. To reply to an Instagram DM, tap Screen_Shot_2021-03-11_at_1.18.49_PM.png. The DM opens in a chat window.

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You can also reply to a Story Mention by tapping Screen_Shot_2021-03-11_at_1.18.49_PM.png.

 

FAQs

How do I connect the API to my profile in Sprout?

All you need to do is re-authenticate your Instagram Business Profile when prompted in Sprout.

If an Instagram DM contains a link, can I access it in Sprout?

Yes. You can click the link directly in Sprout to open it.

Do the Instagram DMs that appear in the Smart Inbox include primary, general and message requests?

Yes. There is no distinction between these categories and they all appear as an Instagram DM in Sprout, even if they don’t approve the request in native.

If a Facebook user without an Instagram profile messages my brand via Messenger, will that appear in Sprout?

No. Due to an API limitation, this message won’t appear in the Smart Inbox. If you accept this message in native Instagram, it still won’t appear in Sprout.

Can I sort between primary and general messages like it’s currently formatted in Instagram? My team currently sorts between affiliates and potential partners from general inquiries.

No, there isn’t a way to distinguish between primary and general messages in Sprout. Instead, you can use message tags or custom Inbox Views to categorize and sort your messages.

Can I remove Instagram DMs from a specific Group’s inbox in Sprout?

No, you can only remove an entire Instagram profile from the Group or individual users. You can’t set public Instagram message types (like comments) as available and hide DMs. 

Can I filter by Instagram DMs and Story Replies in the Smart Inbox?

No. Instagram DMs and Story Replies are both considered Direct Messages under the same filter in the Smart Inbox.

Can I see when an Instagram user likes my message response in Sprout?

Yes. However, there’s a small delay from the time the user likes your message on Instagram to the time it appears in Sprout. You can change your filters or refresh the Smart Inbox to see message likes more quickly.

I was receiving Instagram DMs in Sprout, but new messages are no longer appearing, how can I fix this?

Your Messages Access control might have been reset or turned off for your Instagram Business Profile in the native Instagram app. Review the instructions in the Required prerequisites section to check the status of this setting and re-authorize the profile in Sprout, if necessary.

Some of the images within my Instagram DMs are not loading, how can I fix this?

Your Messages Access control might have been reset or turned off for your Instagram Business Profile in the native Instagram app. Review the instructions in the Required prerequisites section to check the status of this setting and re-authorize the profile in Sprout, if necessary.

I just re-authenticated my profile to access Instagram DMs. Will previous DMs backfill?

Yes, Sprout backfills Instagram DMs 30 days after you re-authenticate your profile to access Instagram DMs.

Can I use Bots for Instagram via DM?

No, not at this time.

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