How to make Instagram work for your business

By now you should already know what Instagram is and how it has grown from, what some people considered to be, a fad into a major business growth opportunity.

More than 500 million people log into Instagram on a daily basis so it’s pretty safe to assume that if your business isn’t taking advantage of the Instagram market, then you are missing out. If you look around you’ll find that there are many small and big brands leveraging the power of Instagram to grow their audience. So why not you? It’s definitely not too late to get started, so check out the tips below on how to make Instagram work for your business.

Make your Instagram account a business accountFor most businesses operating on Instagram, it’s about getting more exposure and building a stronger brand so the first and the most obvious step is set up your Instagram account as a business profile. This mean that all your posts will be public and you get the maximum reach opportunity.

If you are not sure about the status of your account, tap the “Switch to Business Profile” option in your account settings to turn your account into a public business account. Having a business account allows you to advertise on Instagram as well.

Improve your Instagram business profileYour business profile is the heart of your Instagram marketing activity. You'll need to create an effective bio so that when people come across your brand on Instagram, they should get a wow impression/experience. If they don’t find the bio relevant and appealing in nature, they may skip over to another profile or simply scroll down. You want them to not only show interest in your content but also may click and visit your website. Your Instagram bio should:

  • tell people more about your business and what makes it unique

  • make sure it is relevant to the interests of your core audience

  • use your brand voice and tone to create a stronger connection

  • include a relevant link

Use a professional profile pictureKeep in mind that your audience should get an instant understanding of who you are when they visit your profile. Being a business, you can choose to have any one following as your profile picture:

  • company logo

  • company logomark (logo with no words)

  • company mascot

Remember, its ok to be creative, just make sure whatever you chose to go with matches your brand.

Get creative and deliver value

One of the most important Instagram for business tips to keep in mid is the importance of being creative and providing value to your target audience. In other words, don’t make your Instagram account look salesy. While there is nothing wrong in posting pictures of your products, be subtle in your approach. The fact that Instagram allows you to post visual content can work for you or against you, depending on how you use it.

Think outside the box and try to represent your brand in the most creative ways possible. The visual content you post can showcase many different things that give your customers and prospects a closer look at your business. Take people behind the scenes and show them how your business works, introduce your team or your suppliers, showcase your culture and provide informative content that keeps users updated.

Use the right kind of visual content

There are many different types of visuals you can post to Instagram so here are a few ideas to help you along:

  • If you want to sell more products, run special offers and post professional pictures of your product.

  • If you want to build brand awareness then post visuals that inform and educate your target audience.

  • If you want to grow your audience then post the type of content that people in your niche are sharing the most.

Instagram is not just about posting random images that look attractive. You need to go beyond that and post goal-driven content to reach your marketing goals.

Create a content strategy

Instagram for business will only work if you have a strong content strategy in place. There are four important components that go into formulating a solid Instagram content strategy that generates results:

Create a content calendarNo matter what industry you are in, you need to give your followers great visual content that they can share with others. This needs to be done carefully so that you don’t overwhelm your followers with too much content. A custom content calendar is the best way to do this. Find what works for your prospect and conversions and stick to it.

You will not only need to test what type of content to post, but also when to post it in order to generate the most response. Start by posting content to your Instagram account at different times of the day and see when you get the most activity.

You can do this yourself or hire a social media marketing company that can create, schedule and do the posting for you. Use hashtags

Unlike other major social networks like Facebook, hashtags play a big role on Instagram in terms of categorising and organising visual content. This allows users to find the right content at the right time. These simple yet effective tags makes your content discoverable in more than one way.

Some things to consider when using hashtags:

  • Limit the number of hashtags you. Stick to around 10 hashtags that accurately represent your brand & target audience and cycle them through your content.

  • Don't use overused hashtags that are way too broad. Get specific and take a more targeted approach.

  • Don’t use a hashtag just because it is popular. It has to be relevant to your post as well as to your brand.

  • Look for niche hashtags related to your marketing/industry rather than going for anything and everything. This will boost the chance of getting found by your target audience and increase the engagement rate of your content.

Go to it

If you’re already using some of these Instagram for business tips, then great! If not, now you have some more handy business tips to help you with your social media marketing. If you want to get started by putting our best practice Instagram for business approach in place, then schedule a free initial consult with us and talk to us about your project.

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