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| Instagram is often overlooked

  1. Introduction To Social Media Marketing
  2. Promoting Your Business On Facebook
  3. Twitter Marketing For Small Businesses
  4. Instagram Marketing For Small Businesses

Instagram is often overlooked as an option for small business to market their brand. It has a reported 40 million user posting more than 80 million times per day. Figures also indicate a 93% of retailers saw growth month over month. This is the highest growth percentage of the top 5 social media networks. Instagram Marketing is a great tactic for promoting your small business.

As with all Social Media Marketing it’s important to do it right. Follow the tips below to get the best out of your Instagram Marketing campaign.


Create A Great Profile

Your profile is the link between your posts and your brand. So, it’s really important that your profile is complete and effective. There is a great guide to making an awesome Instagram profile at HubSpot, but we’ll summarise here.

The best Instagram accounts have some similarities which include:

  • Easily readable and recognisable usernames
  • A clear and logical profile photo
  • Includes a link to a relevant campaign page
  • Features inspiring & cool photos


Connect Your Social Media

Instagram Marketing is a fairly unique tool. But, it can also be a bit more work to maintain than other Social Networks. So save time and effort by connecting your Instagram Profile to your other Social Media Channels. Hook-up your Twitter and Facebook account, and have Instagram automatically share your content. This way, any image you share on Instagram will be posted to your other profile. Not only will this cut your workload, it’ll also lead followers to your Instagram stream. This will lead to more likes and comments on your images, and gain you more followers.

Less work, more reward!


Post Interesting Content

Instagram is all about images. So post inspiring images, quotes and memes. If your content lacks punch and personality, your brand will be ignored. Your images should also be relevant to your brand. But, that doesn’t mean all images have to be professional quality photos. Depending on your target audience, you might benefit from some gritty content too. Images that tell a story work wonders or engaging your followers.

Sometimes, ‘rough’ smartphone photos can be want your audience crave. A behind the scenes shot or an exclusive snap can be all you need to get fans talking about your business. If it’s relevant and delivers value to your channel then it’s worth posting. Content that can’t be found elsewhere is a big driver of engagement on Instagram.


Use Videos Too

Images may be the main focus of Instagram, but Videos are cool too. For a while short video clips were the ‘future of the web’. First there was Qik Video Messaging, then there was Vine. The closure of these two services has made Instagram the new king of video messages. So make use of it.

Add the occassional clip for a quirky alternative to static images. Remember, people have short attention spans. So, make your videos no longer than a minute or so. Add some personality, and watch the likes roll in.


Tag Your Posts

Hashtags are taking over the World! Social Media Platforms of all types are now making use of hashtags, and their influence grows daily. So make sure you Instagram Marketing include plenty of them. A great tag can help users find your posts and your brand easily. Users search for content based on specific hashtags. So, someone finding your brand with this route, is giving asking you to tell them about your business.

Just be sure to check that your hashtags are relevant. It’s all too easy to assume a hashtags means one thing when its being used for another. A bad hashtag can potentially ruin your brand image.


Be Responsive

The goal of Instagram Marketing is getting your brand known. A big part of that is engaging your target market. So when followers comment on your content, they are asking to learn more. Take the opportunity to engage them. Make sure you check your account regularly and take time to respond properly to your followers. Prompt replies go a long way too. It’s also a good idea to follow people that follow you. Make your audience feel important.


Repost Your Users

A nice Instagram marketing trick is to repost your followers images. The Instagram feed of you small business’s profile doesn’t have to be full of just your photos. Encourage followers to upload photos to your stream, or have them tag you. Encourage the use of your hashtags to give you an extra boost. This trick works best went combined with a contest. Reward the best images or just highlight the work of your fans. Make them feel important.

Instagram doesn’t currently let you repost images. My recommended app for this is ‘Repost For Instagram‘.


Be A Little Blue

Instagram is widely known for its speed in blocking nudity of any sort. But what’s not so widely known is that Instagrammers love a bit of blue content. Images on Instagram that have blue as the dominant colour receive 24% more likes!. That’s 24% more likes just because of a colour. So be sure to tap into the Instagram Marketing trick by making use of filters or simply adding blue hues to your shots.


Consistency Is Key

As with all Social Media Marketing it’s important to have a strategy and then stick to it. Do some research. Identify your target audience, know what they like and focus on it. Your posts need to have a consistent tone and theme for the duration of your Social Marketing Campaign. There’s scope for some variety every so often. Just make sure to stay on track.

It’s also a good idea to schedule your posts in advance. Have set days and time for posting. If you’d rather have this automated, try a service like Buffer. It’ll also work out the best times to post! Posting content on a regular basis, keeps your brand in front of your followers. Letting things slips is guaranteed to lead to a rapid decline in engagement.


Measure Your Success

Once your Instagram Marketing campaign is under way, you need to monitor your success. Even if things are going great, don’t assume your work is done. There’s always more than can be achieve, so do some tests. See what works best. Try posting the same image twice but with different filters. If one gets more likes and comments, use that filter more often.

Do memes get greater engagement that photos? Do videos work better than images? What happens if you post content in the evening instead of the morning? Remember, different people like different things. Find out who your audience is, what days and time work best. Putting in this extra work, pays off with better results. Greater engagement with your audience will lead to more sales.


Next Steps

Follow the rest of this series of articles, for more info and advice on how to get the best from your Social Media Marketing campaigns. If you need some help with your Instagram Marketing give Code Clinic a call.

Oh, and don’t forget to like our Facebook Page!

If you have any questions about Instagram Marketing, or have anything to add leave me a comment below.