To help you achieve your goals in business, whether these be raising brand awareness, building relationships with clients, managing your online reputation or raising sales, Instagram has potential. For those new to the use of Instagram for business purposes, the suggestions outlined in this piece will assist your planning for future use.
1. Create an appealing profile. Instagram has allowed users to edit the display picture, account name, account description and the posted pictures. This is why it makes a great marketing tool to play with.
- Picking the correct and most suitable pictures and words all play a crucial role since the first impression that users have when coming across any profile page is what makes them want to engage with the account or simply ignore it. (Steeves, n.d)
2. Link to the business’s other platforms. This includes such platforms as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. This will allow your Instagram account to use the existing audience from other platforms to gain more followers. All platforms in some way enable a way in which they can link to Instagram accounts, whether it is by sharing the same image that is posted on Instagram into both Twitter and Facebook or by an icon in your YouTube profile page (Steeves, n.d) Linking and organizing contents across different platforms and optimizing them for searches can lead to high rankings in search engine optimization, which is what your company undoubtedly wants. (Frasco 2013)
3. Ensure sufficient post appeal. Since Instagram is all about visuals, here a few tips that will help your posts
get more interaction than other posts:
- Be unique and different rather then posting and doing the same as other companies. It is always interesting to be unique, different and to stand out from others. To present products or ideas in a different way and perspective definitely leaves an impact. (Huffposts, 2014)
- Ensure high quality. People want to see good posts. One easy way to provide that is to post the pictures in high quality. This will not only make the account look professional and attractive, but it will also increase credibility. (Huffposts, 2014)
- Prefer pictures of people. These are more popular in Instagram. According to a study undertaken by the Georgia Institute of Technology and Yahoo labs, posts that have faces get 38% more likes than those that do not. (Kazi, n.d)
- Use bright colors. Based on a study done by the University of Wisconsin and Olapic, bright colors increase sales and get more engagement. (Kazi, n.d)
- Having longer captions is best since they give the reader more information about the photo. Posts with longer captions are more likely to garner greater engagement and increase sales. (Kazi, n.d)
4. Use hashtags. Hashtags are a great way to be found. If used correctly, they can be of a great impact to increasing followers. (Instagram, 2014) Instagram’s own blog has mentioned that it is best to be specific, so if there is a picture of an iPhone, it is better to use #iPhone6 rather than #Apple. It is also important to use relevant hashtags. For example, if it is a post of some college friends, it is better to use #BPstudents rather than #photos.
5. Engage with other users. Like any other social media network, Instagram is made to connect people. The only way to connect is by engaging with them. Like other people’s photos and comment on them. When users see that the company is active and there is a human behind the account, they will certainly engage back, which is what the account needs; people to engage with it. (Hemley, 2013)
6. Reward your followers. One good way to keep followers loving your brand is to reward them. Some examples of rewards include offering giveaways, special discounts, promo codes or even showing your followers “behind the scenes” of the company. (Hemley, 2013) This will excite your followers and lets them engage more with the account and the brand.
7. Monitor posts. A lot of apps are designed to go along with Instagram. They are designed to analyze how the account is going to give feedback and detailed insights that will help improve the account. The apps can tell you what is the most liked picture in the account, the most used hashtag, the growth rate of followers, and more. (Lepore, 2014)
8. Use video. Videos are a big hit for marketing. Sales and statistics show that 100 million users watch online videos daily. Eighty percent of Internet users remember video ads that they have seen in the past month. Moreover, 90 percent of online shoppers find videos useful when deciding to buy a product. Fifteen second videos are up to 37 percent more shared than other time-frames, which is what makes Instagram videos a great hit. (Video Brewery, n.d)