Oct 20, 2016
Instagram is a great tool for businesses to promote their products and services as well as evoke a sense of brand. As of June 2016, there are over 500 million active monthly users on Instagram! Instagram provides an easy to use, visual platform for businesses so why not follow these helpful tips on how to utilize and optimize Instagram for your business!
Create Business Account
If you haven’t already, create business account on Instagram. Learn how to get started on Instagram’s business site. Make sure to fill out your bio, website, and contact information completely. Choose a photo that represents your business, for many this means using your business logo because it’s recognizable. Be sure to create a username that is as close to your business’ name as possible that way people can easily search for you.
Connect to Facebook
Did you know Facebook owns Instagram? Once you create your account be sure to connect it to Facebook! Instagram also gives you the option to connect to other social media platforms like Twitter and Tumblr as well. This makes it super easy to share your posts from Instagram onto your other social networks.
What do you want your photos to say about your company? Who do you want to buy your product? What kind of person are they, what would they like to see? Get ideas from other companies that have done a great job of providing interesting and appealing visual content for their customers that is of value. You want to brand yourself in a way that connects with the audience.
Do your best to cater your content to your followers and customers. Post photos and videos of value. For example, in the above accounts Wilton Cakes posts photos of tasty treats and helpful video tutorials. Herschel Supply Co. posts photos of their backpacks and other products being put to use in beautiful and inspiring settings. Remember that Instagram is visually driven – everyone likes a beautiful image.
Some common types of content companies post are contests and re-posts.
Alerting your followers of a contest you’re running through Instagram is a great way to boost brand awareness. Not only are you keeping your customers happy with fun contests/giveaways but if you tell them that in order to enter, they need to tag five friends, then…presto! Your followers are doing the marketing for you!
Re-posting photos from your followers is another fun type of content that keeps your fan-base happy. These posts also have a higher potential reach because if you tag the person, it will appear on their profile, and they are likely to share it again on their Instagram and other social sites!
Hashtags are a kind of controversial subject. Some people abuse the hashtag system and it distracts from the post. But, how are you supposed to get discovered if you don’t use any hashtags at all? Instagram recommends three hashtags per post. Yet, others say to really see a bump in your engagement you need at least ELEVEN. Some people use the limit of 30 hashtags, but “hide” them.
Things to Note
•Don’t put a link in the text of a photo. People can’t click on it! If you need to share a link, redirect your followers and tell them to click on the link in your bio. You can change your bio link at anytime and it’s a good way to send people to specific things like a recipe, a giveaway or a blog post.
•Use portrait and square photos since they take up the most space in the feed unlike landscape.
•Respond to comments, like/comment on photos of followers and people you want to follow you. Make sure to follow people as well!
•A recent study showed that Instagram photos with a lot of white space received more likes than photos with just a little negative space. Photos with a single dominant color also outperformed photos with multiple dominant colors.
•Be sure to add your photos to your photo map by including the location of the picture. This provides another opportunity for people to find your photos since anyone can search the photos taken at a specific location.
•Include @mentions and tags when necessary. This is another way to get as many eyes on your post as possible.
Did you find this article helpful? What else would you like to know? How can we improve? Please leave your comments below and we’d be happy to start a discussion! Good luck using Instagram for your business!