When Instagram first began, the platform was used for sharing personal photos with friends and strangers who became online friends. As we all know, social media has morphed into one of the most important arms of a well-rounded online marketing strategy. More than 25 million companies worldwide are already using Instagram for business, and more than 200 million users visit at least one business profile every day. Instagram has become “the new home for brands,” where engagement is high, followers are loyal to their favorite brands, and business goals are achievable.
Not sure how to start using this powerful marketing tool? Here is your Beginner’s Guide to Instagram Marketing.
- Create an Instagram Business Account. If you have a personal account with posts and branding that appropriately focus on your business, you can convert your personal page to a business page. It will allow you and your users a seamless experience in the transition.
- Define your target audience. Who is a part of your key demographic? Before posting on Instagram, you need to figure out who is going to see it. An easy way to do that is to determine who is already using your services, check the analytics on your other social media accounts to see who follows you there and think about what that group of people might want to see from you.
- Commit to posting regularly. Once you build a base of followers, they will expect to see posts from you regularly. Instagram provides tools for scheduling posts in advance, which saves you time and effort. There has been much discussion surrounding the best time of day for posting to ensure the most users will see your content, but according to a study done by HootSuite and Unmetric, the best time to post on Instagram varies. You may need to do some testing of your own to see what time of day seems to create the most engagement from your followers.
- Utilize Instagram Stories. These are short clips that only appear for 24 hours from the time of posting but can be saved to your device to use at a later time. They can be used for everything from a quick video message from you, behind-the-scenes insider posts, product shares, customer reviews, or even GIFs and memes that you think your followers would enjoy. This is truly a place to let your personality shine and let your followers get to know you and your business on a more personal level.
- Make sure your profile is complete. Instagram offers an area for a bio. You only get 150 characters but it carries a lot of weight. It tells visitors who you are, what you offer, and why they should care. Make sure your profile picture is brand consistent (your logo is a great place to start). Also, be sure to list your website address. It’s the only place on Instagram where you can post a clickable link, so make sure to include it!
There are many aspects to creating a successful Instagram presence, and this Beginner’s Guide covers the first steps to get you on your way. If you’d like help with developing an online marketing strategy for your business, reach out. As always, we’re here to help!