by Mona Mangat
The word is out: Instagram is one of the most important marketing tools out there. With more than 500 million users, this social network is best geared towards small businesses who want to build their brand and engage new and existing customers.
It’s important to have an arsenal of tools at your side so you can begin to unlock the unique marketing opportunities that social media platforms like Instagram can provide. You’ll have to incorporate it into your existing workflow, but it’s definitely worth the effort.
It’s an exciting way to give your audience a visual idea about who you are. Using Instagram, you can share photos and videos with hashtags, allowing you to connect directly with your customers. The more you use it, the more you will learn how to create compelling content that will engage viewers and spark conversation online. Word of mouth is still the top way for people to learn about your brand, and this is one way to start a conversation by sharing your content across all platforms.
Once you’ve started, the next step will be creating a strategy to increase your following on a steady basis. You want the most people possible to come in contact with your brand and start following you on Instagram. It’s simple: the bigger your audience, the higher your potential to reach customers every time you post.
So, here is a video to get you started on how to keep track of how you’re doing on Instagram. And below you’ll find some tips that will help you implement an effective Instagram marketing plan, so you can grow your brand easily.
1. Use the free tools Instagram offers
Instagram just launched business profiles, which are similar to Facebook’s business profiles. Be sure to use their contact call-to-action tool, which allows people to email, call or text your business. Improve your engagement and find out how your users want to interact with you and your content.
2. Post across all platform and promote Instagram posts
Make sure you post across all of your other social media profiles such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ etc. and invite them to follow your Instagram account. Since they are already on one of your social media accounts, they are more likely to follow the others as well. The more ways you can find to get prospects and customers to socially connect to your brand, the better.
3. Don’t over-post
Make sure you maintain your integrity and image, and be relevant by posting only useful material. You don’t want to post so frequently that you overwhelm your followers. Figuring out your post frequency and optimizing is an ongoing task. Get a feel for what your audience and market want, then schedule posts accordingly.
4. Interact with your followers regularly to maintain relationships
When someone takes the time to leave a comment on one of your posts, make sure you take the time to respond and thank them or answer any questions. It’s simple engagement which will lead to loyalty from customers, who later on might rave about and promote your brand. Find ways to engage their social circles as well; an example would be “Tag three of your friends who would love this.” If they do, you’ll automatically get your name in front of a larger audience and attract new followers. Word of mouth recommendations mean that many of these tagged users might end up following your profile.
5. Come up with creative, interactive hashtags
If you want to engage, come up with creative and interactive hashtags that will motivate people to connect and take action. One example could be creating a hashtag that your customers can use to tag photos of themselves with your product. This will make other followers use the same hashtag and post their images of your product–since the tagged photos will be featured on your page and everyone loves a little attention, this is a great way to encourage participation. It’s also free advertising, since every time someone posts with that hashtag they’ll be exposing all of their followers to your brand and product.
Finally, just be creative in the way that you connect with your audience. Post, connect and respond. Repeat regularly. That’s the secret to success on Instagram.
Want help creating your own brand voice and valuble content to use for Instagram? Contact us today or sign up for our done-for-you social media service and we can start creating your social posts tomorrow!