One of the most common things I hear from new clients is ‘We don’t use Instagram’. When I question their reasons for this choice, the answer is always the same. Instagram has a reputation of being social not business media. However, isn’t that kind of missing the point? Facebook has a massive social only following, but it also has garnered a colossal business following and customers are looking to Facebook to find and connect with businesses. Instagram is NO different!
Instagram is owned by Facebook!
So, basically, I insist we set up an Instagram profile for my clients. You do need a presence on there. While it might be a different platform because it only allows an image sharing facility, do not underestimate it. Here are some ideas to boost your sales and brand using Instagram
- Share a balance of promotional pictures and general interest images
While you are looking to increase your customers the same social media rules apply, constant blatant advertising will switch people off.
- Harness the power of video – how to videos, product reviews, tour of the office
Be creative! The sky is the limit. Why not ask followers to send a video of themselves using your product? User generated content actually works. Look at GoPro to see just how well it works!
- Use hashtags build followers
Instagram allows for up to 30 hashtags per image or video. There are plenty of websites that can help you come up with related hashtags, but make them relevant otherwise, people will lose interest in you pretty fast. I often say 10 quality tags are better than 30 tenuous ones.
- Then interact with your audience
Follow your followers back, and get involved. If they comment on your photo or video – comment back! Be interactive and prove you are really out there listening!
- Aim to Inspire
Try and post content that is relevant to your area that inspires people. Inspiration and the idea of self-bettering and improvement sells. Customers like to see things that make them believe they can be better.
- Host a Competition
Use Instagram to host a photo contest. Encourage users to share their images for the competition – and once more you are creating user generated content that gives you a wealth of pictures to use at a later date. Make is clear in the contest announcement that images will be used for social media purposes and credit the user when you post their image.
- Share Your Team
Customers love to know who is behind a company. Share pictures of your team whether they are at work or out and about doing the things they like, and explain what is happening! If you are a sole trader – guess what – that means selfie time!
- Switch to a Business Profile
There is no charge! However, switching to a business profile means you gain access to the analytics. This useful information gives you insights that will help you understand your followers and learn more about people who like your company!
Anna Everett is a responsive social media marketing expert, author and self-confessed Geek Girl.