Top Tips to Maximize Instagram for your Small Business
BY: PJ TAEI ON WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 03, 2018
Visual content plays a major role in consumer purchasing. When deciding between multiple brands, 85 percent of consumers use visual content to make their final decision. The social networking app Instagram allows you to post pictures, videos and stories. Over 500 million users access the app daily, and 300 million users check out the stories each day. Additionally, 80 percent of Instagram users follow a business, an excellent reason to leverage this social media platform for your company. To maximize your Instagram account, grow your brand and connect with customers, implement these top tips.
Optimize Your Profile
With your profile, you introduce your company to Instagram users. In addition to pictures, add working links to your website, applicable hashtags, SEO keywords and a company description that includes the basic details of your brand.
Create Engaging Content
The photos, videos and stories you post on Instagram must engage current and potential customers and align with their interests. Think outside the box when choosing content and look for images and angles that provoke thought, share a unique view of the world or evoke emotion.
Post High-Quality Photos
To ensure your Instagram posts support your brand and reinforce that your company prioritizes quality service and products, post only high-quality content on your Instagram feed. Edit photos offline or in the app, and experiment with filters, brightness, contrast, warmth, saturation, color, highlights and structure. These and other photo editing tools help you create and post high-quality pictures that reinforce your brand values.
Share Action Shots of Your Products and Services
Customers want to see the items you sell or services you provide, so take pictures of your products and services in action. Feature new, cool or popular items in use, or share how multiple items work together. If you offer a service, show before and after pics as you showcase your company in action.
Show Behind-the-Scenes Content
Give consumers a glimpse into the behind-the-scenes workings of your company when you show them how your products are made or what happens before a big event. This content makes your company more relatable and gives you the chance to answer questions or offer exclusive peeks at new products.
Balance Serious, Sales and Fun Posts
While you want to sell your products or services, Instagram is meant to engage your audience. Try to limit sales and ad posts to 20 percent of your total content. The other 80 percent should be fun, entertaining and creative as you build relationships and engagement with your followers.
Your team members serve as the face of your company and work hard to ensure its success. Include their contributions and personalities on Instagram. These pictures improve your company’s relatability, show customers that your team consists of real people and demonstrates that you care about your team members.
Most consumers like a good bargain, and you can use Instagram to offer deals or giveaways. Offer a coupon code customers can use to receive a discount after they like your page. You can also create a special giveaway hashtag and reward a random customer who reposts your content. These strategies improve your brand awareness and motivate users to share your page.
Instagram’s live video feature allows you to answer questions, post fun content and document important brand moments. While the 15-second live videos automatically disappear from your Instagram feed when the recording ends, you can add recorded videos to your page and embed the videos on your Facebook page and website as you connect your online presence and extend your influence.
Choose Captions Carefully
Photo captions explain the picture and expand your brand’s message. Take your time and write engaging captions. They should be short and use emojis sparingly. Remember that you can also use the first comment on the photo as part of the caption.
Select Applicable Hashtags
When Instagram users want to find content about certain topics, they search the app for the topic or click on interesting hashtags. Tap into Instagram’s search feature and build brand awareness when you add relevant and applicable hashtags to the content you post. In addition to your company’s hashtags, select quality hashtags that describe the photo and enhance your brand. When applicable, you may also include popular hashtags like #motivationalmonday or #tbt.
Use Instagram’s location feature to geotag your company’s physical address or advertise when you’re attending trade shows or local events. Geotags improve networking since Instagram users who live, work or visit nearby can easily find you.
Users engage with your brand via comments, so allow comments and respond to each one. Include the user’s @name to grab their attention. This interaction invites ongoing conversation about your brand, products and services, and it demonstrates that you care about your customers.
Because Instagram is a social media app, you must access it regularly to keep your audience engaged. In addition to posting content regularly, follow your followers, like other business and individual posts, and share content that supports your brand. Stay present as you build your Instagram following and show users that you’re committed to building a relationship and not solely focused on making a sale.
Consumers use Instagram to see your company visually. With these top tips, you maximize this social app for your business and build your brand one photo at a time.
Image via Shutterstock