Instagram is rocking the social scene with more than 500 million monthly users. On top of that, there are 300 million daily users, 95+ million daily posts and 4.2 billion likes daily. (Source) Instagram has more monthly advertisers than Twitter and ranks second after Facebook.
As the fastest growing and most engaging social media network, Instagram offers brands new opportunities to gain visibility and to dialogue with their customers. Source
Shrewd business owners are capitalizing on this fast growing trend to get their brands out there. Don’t get left behind. Putting the right images on Instagram is your sales pitch for marketing without having to use words. Get your product and brand seen and grow a customer base of people who want to buy from you. It’s time to make use of this photo sharing, video sharing and social networking to propel your business.
I will walk you through the steps to take to showcase your product, grow a customer base of people interested in your brand and earn money. Sounds too good to be true? It is true. Many businesses are doing it and so can you.
- The first step is to set up an Optimized Business Instagram account
If you already have a private account, you must keep it separate from your business account. Professionalism is the key to your business image.
Use your business name or choose one that you use for your other social media accounts.
For your profile, upload your business logo or a graphic image. If you choose an image, it should be professional. Be consistent with the image and present the same one across all your social media accounts. Remember, Instagram crops your logo or image and makes them circular. In addition, the standard measurement is 150 X 150 pixels.
Create a catchy, interesting bio with appropriate information about your business. If you run out of ideas about what to write, follow Instagram’s useful guide.
To optimize your Instagram account, link it to your website. This will also drive traffic back to your website.
- Create valuable, unique posts to attract new followers
Images are powerful. Our brains love visual content. Put images of your products on Instagram, but don’t bombard your followers with too many sales stuff. Know where to draw the line.
Social media influence buyers. It can sway them towards making a purchase. Therefore, your brand stands a good chance of attracting attention on Instagram.
Take professional photos of your products. Be creative. Make them eye-catching, full of personality and appealing to your audience.
When you upload images they are automatically shaped into a square and measure 612 X 612 pixels. Bear that in mind when uploading your images. They will lose their quality if they are in the wrong format.
Instagram has an amazing editing tool (in-app filters) to enhance your photos and create the mood or color you desire. However, have a goal in mind when posting images. Think about what you’re trying to achieve.
- Tempt followers with special offers, discounts and exclusives
Followers on Instagram are keen on brands. They will flock to you if you give them something exciting and useful. Create momentum and give away promotions, bonuses, exclusive inside offers and competition.
To enhance adverts, put text overlays on the photos with special offers. This is a cool way to promote your brand.
- Use hashtags to entice more traffic and keep your post trending
The feed in Instagram moves quickly. Therefore, your post can disappear quickly as well. Using hashtags will group your post into communities linked by keywords. Your posts will stay in that community. When that particular hashtag is typed, it will bring up your image.
The result of using keyword #shoes is shown above
Hashtags to Watch
Inventive ways in which the Instagram community inspires and connects with each other (source)
To use hashtags effectively, research popular or trending keywords, using iconsquare. Also, brainstorm keywords and phrases connected to your brand. Find the keywords that users are mostly searching for. Look at the images in that community to see if they’re a good fit for your brand.
For more added value, create your own exclusive hashtags to combine your content into searchable collections. People who like your images will put your exclusive tag on their photos. This will give you more publicity.
However, don’t overuse hashtags. A clever way of still getting the benefits of hashtags is to put them in your comments after publishing a photo.
- Reach out to Instagram followers to help promote your brand
Invite a group of followers and group them together. Encourage them to hype about the benefits of your brand to their followers.
This is how to do it. Create a unique hashtag. Use incentives to encourage your followers to write reviews and share your images. In return, you share their images and mention them to your followers. Think of the number of people who will see your photos. This will create more opportunities for extra sales.
To take it further, put your follower’s content on your feed. They will be flattered and mention it to friends, who will come to your Instagram account to take a look. This is another great marketing strategy to get more eyes on your brand.
Instagram case studies
These case studies prove how Instagram is making businesses successful across the world. Source
If you want to reach out to more customers, highlight your brand and make sales, tap into Instagram to grow your business. This platform will give you quality exposure, establish your business and get people talking about you. Customers will come to you without you having to look for them. In addition, the beauty of Twitter is that it works on your smartphone, iPad, laptop or PC desktop.