How to Effectively Use Instagram in Your Social Media Marketing Strategy
The potential of being able to engage a virtually limitless audience is encouraging businesses, both large and small, to take to the world’s most popular photo-sharing app in ever-increasing numbers. Currently, over 25 million businesses have a presence on Instagram for raising brand awareness, promoting engagement, and driving potential customers to their websites to continue their journey along the sales funnel. If you are not using Instagram effectively in your social media marketing strategy, you are losing out to competitors every single day. However, it is still not too late for businesses to take to Instagram. Some practical tips:
Establish an Instagram Business Account
Even though it is feasible for a business to set up and use a personal account, there are several advantages you get with an Instagram business account. These include the ability to access Instagram Ads so that you can configure, run, and track advertisement campaigns. Additionally, you can use Analytics to find out how your account is performing across multiple parameters. Also, very similar to promoting your page on Facebook, you can promote your posts on Instagram. A business account also gives you the flexibility to display contact buttons for including your business address, directions, email address, and phone numbers in addition to the 150 character limit imposed on the bio section. If you have more than 10,000 followers, you can also add links to your Stories. You can buy comments for Instagram, if it is taking some time for the engagement to build up.
For the best effect, you should use your company logo as your profile picture, however, if you use any other photo, you should make it relevant to your business and match the brand aesthetics. The account name should be your business name and also similar to your accounts on other social media. You are allowed to include only one clickable link in your profile. Normally, it points to the business website; however, if you are running a promotion, you can point it to a special landing page. How you craft your bio is important because you have only 150 characters to describe who you are, what value you bring, and include a compelling CTA. An effective CTA, according to the Search Engine Journal, can increase sales.
Focus On Making the Content High Quality
Instagram is a visual app, and with more than 90 million photos and videos posted every day, you need to make your content very high quality and visually interesting for it to be noticed. While you should ensure that your content looks good, is relevant to your business and audience, and is original, it is even more important to focus on curating the collection so that the overall visual impression is distinctive and bears your signature. Add value to the photos by using crisp and informative captions. The captions should be interesting to read, contain a compelling CTA, and be made informal with the addition of emojis. Be sure to include relevant hashtags to promote search visibility. Even though you have 2,200 characters, you should make them as punchy as possible.
Schedule Your Posts for Optimal Visibility
With millions of posts being uploaded by users, the chances of your posts being seen in the feed by users is remote even if they are following your account. To increase the visibility, you should find out when your target audience is most active and time your posts with it. By scheduling your posts, you can automate the process, so that you don’t have to remember to post your content manually. Additionally, when you schedule your posts, your marketing team also knows what is going to be posted. The biggest benefit of content scheduling is that your posts get to be seen by more people, observes an IIgers social media marketing consultant.
Build a Community
Instead of focusing on generating sales with every post, you should focus on the real power of Instagram which is increasing the reach of your brand and to build a community of loyal customers. Remember the point of being on social media is to be social and engage with your target audience. To start the engagement process, you can like and comment on the posts of your followers. It will spark off a relationship that will have many of them following you back. Another good way of building engagement is asking users to give their opinions on something that is trending at the moment or organizing contests. Make it a point to respond quickly, politely, and with the right information to comments, observations, and complaints so that users know you are committed to your business and them. If any issue does get contentious, switch to DMs so that the rest of your audience does not get distracted. The higher the engagement, the better will be the visibility of your posts in the feeds of users. It is because the high rate of engagement signals Instagram, that the content is of high quality and is relevant to the target audience. You can also ask them to contribute their content on a specified theme or using a predetermined hashtag. User-generated content has high credibility and is considered to be more authentic than paid advertising.
Most people desire predictability. Not only do your followers want to be certain of the times and the days of the week you will be posting but also of constancy of the aesthetics of your posts. As much as you may want to experiment with different aesthetics, people have a certain image of your brand in their minds, and if you constantly altering the appearance of your posts; it creates confusion and ruins the feed cohesiveness. Lend a distinctive appearance to your posts by establishing a theme or using a certain filter that users will recognize your posts by and avoid repetition by varying the content of your posts. While it is not necessary to post multiple times every day, you must post often enough to ensure you remain at the top of the minds of users. Ensure you are posting on the same days of the week and at the same time so that your followers can look forward to your posts.