“Key Tips on Using Instagram to Promote Your Business” written by Mike Marko.
Can’t seem to find the right formula for using Instagram to promote your business?
With more than 700 million active users, Instagram has proven itself to be a platform worthy for businesses to be present on. It boasts an audience more engaged than any other social media platform.
Because of this, Instagram presents businesses with an opportunity to present themselves in a more innovative way.
But this is easier said than done.
Instagram places importance in visual and high quality content. So how does a brand set itself apart from the competition in an environment known for its aesthetics?
Today, we will talk about the proper ways of using Instagram to promote your business. We will go over detail per detail to attain your business’s success with Instagram’s unique platform.
Using Instagram to Promote Your Business
With millions of active users, Instagram’s considered as one of the most booming social media platforms when it comes to marketing.
According to Bob Hutchins of Social Media Today, your target is 60% of those people to engage and get to know your business.
But before going over to certain points on using Instagram to promote your business, let’s first talk about Instagram, answering what the platform is and how it functions.
What Is Instagram?
Instagram is a social-networking app for sharing photos and videos on social media. Similar to other social networks, Instagram is about engagement.
You can interact with other users the platform by:
- Following them,
- Being followed,
- Tagging, and
- Direct messaging.
Since Instagram is all about visual sharing, everybody’s main intention is to find and publish only the best photos and videos.
With all that being said, let’s go over step by step on using Instagram to promote your business.
Step 1: Set up a Winning Business Instagram Profile
Boosting your business in Instagram means setting up a winning profile for your business. Setting up a good profile is a must when you’re building a business on Instagram.
A business account is different from a personal account, and contains exclusive features such as:
- Accessibility to Insights, an Instagram’s built-in analytics tool.
- A contact button to add your company’s email address, phone number, or address directions.
- Links can also be added to Instagram Stories.
Add a Recognizable Name and Photo
The goal is to stay recognizable.
The name and photo will represent your business to your customers, so it needs to depict your brand well.
If they find your name and photo catchy (and memorable), they will be enticed to interact and engage with your account. These can then convert them first into followers, and then into potential customers.
Remember, the brand’s logo is the company’s face.
Include a Link to Your Website
Switching to a business profile gives owners the privilege to add their website link, which can also help boost traffic. Unlike Facebook where links are automatically made clickable on captions, Instagram only has one place where this can be done: the bio section.
Write an Informative and Interesting Bio
Make sure that your bio is not only interesting, but also informative.
Remember that this will be one of the first impressions your customers will have of you.
Drive your visitors’ interest by showcasing a concise description of what your business can offer. The tone must also be crafted to appeal to Instagram’s community and your audience.
You can also use your bio section to announce a campaign, a launch or a sale.
Also take the time to add in some emoticons to add interest to your bio.
Step 2: Create Content Strategy and Goals
Creating strategic, relevant content is a must to be able to achieve success on Instagram.
Using the platform involves more than merely posting photos. It starts with having a clear objective in mind.
For this, consider making use of the S.M.A.R.T. strategy, which stands for:
- Relevant, and
Creating a solid marketing plan is essential to see results, including:
- Frequency and schedule of posting,
- Theme of content,
- Guidelines for brand style, and
- Instructions for engagement.
Take note that visual consistency establishes brand identity.
Step 3: Post Creative and Professional Visual Elements
Instagram is a visual-centric platform, so attractive photos, videos, and GIFs must be essential to the user.
Whatever is seen in your profile must be appealing, consistent, and valuable to your audience. Make use of appropriate editing tools and filters to create professional-looking posts.
Step 4: Grow Your Following
More followers on Instagram means a wider audience reach for your business.
Instagram is brand-friendly and equipped with business tools to help grow your account’s following. A large Instagram following could potentially mean more sales, more blog views, and a stronger brand community.
Some tricks to help grow your followings are:
- ● Posting at the right time,
- Steal your competitor’s’ followers,
- Use the right filters,
- Use of sponsored posts,
- Invite influencers for product reviews,
- Use Hashtags.
Adding hashtags to your photos makes it easy for people to discover your brand. Make sure that these hashtags are relevant to your business… and to the people you want to attract to your Instagram page.
For example, if you are selling running shoes for athletes you should include hashtags like #runningshoes, #exercise, #fitness, etc. in addition to a branded hashtag to help your new customers find you.
A branded hashtag is a hashtag that has your business’ name or anything that is related to your business. Examples of these are #TheIMConsultantServicesWay or #IMConsultantServices.
Brand hashtags encourage your followers to share their posts using hashtags that you’ve created.
These hashtags helps you widen your audience. These hashtags are created specifically for your brand. It might be your company’s name or a phrase with your company’s name.
These branded hashtags can then be used to track engagement.
Offer Exclusive Promotions and Events
Social Media Today stated that 41% of Instagrammers indicated that they follow brands to take advantage of perks and giveaways. Your goal is then to give those followers that incentive.
Hence, Promotions and sales must be up-to-date in your profile.
Loyal followers can also be rewarded. It can be done by exclusively updating them first hand of upcoming events, products, and services.
One way of updating them is by creating teasers to build curiosity and interest of the audience for new releases and openings.
Utilize Your Instagram Stories
Instagram Stories is a new Instagram feature. It displays photos, videos, and Boomerangs, that only go live for 24 hours.
Instagrammers usually pay attention to what you post on Stories. Instagram Stories can be used to add a more personal touch to the account. These can be used for behind the scenes videos, quick updates, and more personal posts.
Step 5: Keep Track of Your Instagram Metrics
Accounts of loyal followers can be tracked as those who often like, comment, and share your posts. Keeping track of those can help you get an insight on the performance of your account.
I like to use Iconosquare to help determine my Instagram metrics.
Optimize your posting schedule on particular times and days when followers engage with your posts the most.
Final Thoughts on Using Instagram to Promote Your Business
Instagram has proven itself to be worthy of competing against social media giants such as Facebook (it is owned by Facebook), Twitter and YouTube. With millions of active daily users, the platform has become an avenue for businesses to present themselves in an engaging and innovative way to the audience.
However, standing out in a platform known for its beautiful aesthetics is not easy. Growing your brand on Instagram requires more than simply creating an account and posting photos.
That’s why in this article we covered using Instagram to promote your business successfully. We talked about the key steps that must be followed to ensure success.
These steps are:
- Setting up a winning business profile,
- Creating content strategy and goals,
- Posting creative and professional visual elements,
- Growing your following, and
- Keeping track of your Instagram metrics.
By following these steps, you can create a strategic plan that can ensure your business’ success on Instagram.
Be sure to also check out out this more comprehensive blog post: How to Market Your Business with Instagram And Get Results.
If there’s anything you need to know, leave a word or two in the comment section below.
And always keep in mind… have fun!
By the way, if you need help in getting traffic to your website then feel free to contact me and we can talk about the different consulting options we offer. Or use the link below to apply for your “Results in Advance” free consultation and let’s get started right away:
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Article: Key Tips on Using Instagram to Promote Your Business
Also published on Medium.