Instagram is one of the largest social media sites with approximately 300 million active monthly users. Facebook purchased Instagram in 2012, but Instagram continues to grow under the social media giant as average engagement on Instagram has grown by 416 percent over two years. It has also gained 100 million new users over that same time period – a large number of those coming from an older audience. With that being said, Instagram continues to be dominated by the younger generation as 41% of users are between the ages 16 and 24. Thus, if you are mainly targeting an older generation than your time may be better spent on Facebook and SEO tactics, but if you are targeting a younger audience than Instagram is the perfect social media site for you.
Check out these links if you’re interested in setting up an Instagram and seeing how they can impact your business:
How is Instagram different from Facebook?
Instagram is unique in that you only share photos or videos rather than simply words as you do on Facebook. This need for photos can be a nuisance for some companies if you do not take photos, but it is ideal for other companies as it allows a more visual, creative form of expression.
How to Market your Business via Instagram
Cultivate a Following
You can grow your Instagram following by quite literally increasing your number of followers. You can go about this various ways but one of the easiest is to post links to your Instagram on your website, Facebook, and other online locations. Once you have followers it’s important that you follow them back and interact with them by liking and commenting on their photos. This interaction will likely be well received and will cause customers to respond with similar interaction on your posts.
Create Aesthetically Pleasing Content
Nobody wants to look at boring pictures. Your Instagram pictures should be entertaining and artistic no matter what profession you hail from. Coming up with creative content and taking pictures may not be your cup of tea, but odds are one of your employees has a taste for it. There are also numerous apps to assist you in creating artistic content whether it be a picture collage or words with a pretty font and background. In the end, a lack of creativity is no reason to not have an aesthetically pleasing Instagram and the only thing holding you back is effort.
Balance Business Content with Fun Content
We aren’t robots that work 24/7 and followers get that. Followers often want to see what is happening behind the madness and see the personalities behind your business. While a majority of your content should be business related, feel free to post a few pictures of your workers having fun in the office or on a business trip. This sense of personality will really bolster the character of your Instagram and encourage a following.
Give people a reason to follow you. We already said earlier that you should follow your followers back and be sure to interact with them, but you should also have contests and discounts for followers. Contests can be rather simple and can be done through a hashtag relating to your business.
As I just said hashtags can be useful in contests, but hashtags can also be used to just overall promote your brand. Hashtags can be used if you’re at a certain event so that users can find you and other businesses if they search the hashtag.
Generate a Gameplan and Stick to It
While we are encouraging you to create and maintain an Instagram, we are not encouraging you to just hop in and find out as you go along. You should generate a specific game plan of what you plan on posting and how you want this Instagram to benefit your business. You should have a goal clearly set and monitor the progress of this goal because if you are not making progress then there is no point in maintaining this profile.
Follow your Success
Instagram is unique in the various outside sources you can use to monitor analytics. There are numerous resources to track analytics that allow you to track follower growth, your top followers, all engagement on photos, and the best time to post photos. You should be constantly checking this data to ensure that you are growing and not remaining stagnant.
Instagram is a growing social media site as more and more users join daily, and while a number of these users may be older, the site continues to be dominated by a younger, teen audience. If you are looking to target a younger audience, Instagram may be the best fit for your company. Instagram may seem confusing at first, but through simple research you can devise a strategy and establish goals. Your Instagram should be mainly focused on your business, but at the end of the day nobody is going to follow you and interact with your profile if you are simply posting boring, business related content. This may sound difficult, but creating aesthetic content is easier than you’d think and odds are someone in your office has a knack for social media sites such as Instagram. Check out this link for inspiration: https://business.instagram.com/inspiration/
John Zahn is a Co-Founder of Omnibeat. As a long-time business owner with an interest in technology, he strives to help businesses embrace new technology while sharing their unique story online. John loves helping business owners “Catch the Wave of Digital Marketing.”
Omnibeat is the digital marketing outsource solution for growth in Los Alamitos and the greater Long Beach area.