Using Instagram for business is an effective way to help connect to current and potential clients, reinforce your brand, and expand your reach as a business. With over 200 million monthly active users, and over 1.6 billion likes happening on the app every day, that’s a whole world of social engagement to explore. Brands that generate the active social engagement you want, who boast followers over 100K, see a growth in sales and business operations as a whole on an average of about 163% in a two-year span of time, according to a Simply Measured research study. With numbers like these, it’s only logical that you want to take a closer look at how Instagram can be used to help grow your business.
Here is an infographic that outlines 8 best practices for startups and small to medium-sized businesses when it comes to using Instagram for Business.
Show Your Products
Instagram allows you to spread high-quality photography or video of your products and services freely. You are your own filter, and it doesn’t cost you anything to post. Using hashtags and as many as 30 keywords per post, you can target specific markets, regions, trends, lines of business, groups of products, or even advocacy networks, with each post you generate. This means connecting more people to your product than ever, and faster than ever, because people naturally process visual images 60,000 times faster than words on a screen. Connection happens fast.
Show How It’s Made
In the same vein, Instagram allows you to provide a personalized insight into how a product is made. Give a face and a name to the woman who knitted the hat, the artist who curated the design, or the managers that facilitated the shipping of materials. This openness helps to humanize your brand, and creates a genuine connection between you, your process, and your product to potential clients.
Go Behind the Scenes
The Instagram Story feature is perfect for giving the most intimate expression of what your business is like behind the scenes. You can give glimpses of a company dinner, the excitement of an expo event, or even a sneak peak of a new product launch—without the need for such high-definition, permanent images that you’ll want on your business’ Instagram page. The Story feature is liberating, in that it allows you to tell the full behind the scenes story of your company, but without interrupting your branding or marketing strategies for specific Instagram posts.
Show What Your Products Can Do
Take your products for a test run, and document it for the whole of Instagram to see. This is especially helpful if you’re trying to promote a more obscure good or service, or help in a product launch. Quell customer skepticism with video footage or before-and-after shots. These can be great for convincing potential clients that what you have to offer is truly worth it. Today’s younger market is full of skepticism, but Instagram transparency helps bridge that gap and create trust.
Show Off the Office & Employees
You are more than just a fancy font and a logo. Your business is made up of individuals, each with their own excellent personalities, each contributing something a little different to the overall goals of your business. Real faces and real stories are what genuinely connect with customers, and social media is no exception to this rule. Keyword marketing gets you connected, but letting people see who your team members really are, understanding what they do, and hearing how much they love their office space can inspire a sense of genuine loyalty and trust in your brand. This means they’ll better trust the goods and services that you can provide.
Take Your Customers with You
Is your team taking a business trip? Perhaps part of your team is traveling to a different city to do some collaborating? No matter where your next big event or corporate retreat is, let your customers in on the scope of what you do by including that in your Instagram’s storytelling. This is another instance where utilizing the Instagram Story feature can really come in handy. Let a specific employee take over the Instagram feed, give some insight into their personal experience working under your brand, and present a more relatable and engaging narrative to your customers.
Quotes & Inspiration
Brand loyalty comes from more than just an understanding of a product or service. Clients and customers in our current age expect a level or moral acuity from the businesses that they regularly patron. If you want deep customer loyalty, one of the foundations of that can be expressive encouragement, positivity, and advice related to your business or service on Instagram. Clients are far more willing to follow and engage with your business Instagram if you have some variety in your posts. Sharing your latest fall fashion items on sale is certainly a must, but customers prefer to have the line blur between a sales pitch and a personality pitch, because they want to like you for who you are just as much as what you can do for them.
Instagram is the best social media platform for hosting raffles, giveaways and competitions with the online community. It works far better than Twitter or Facebook simply because the platform is both image-driven and keyword-driven, and engagement rates are 15% higher on Instagram than Facebook, and 20% higher compared to Twitter, according to a 2015 study by Simply Measured. Images hook potential customers far better than words. In addition, the keyword-based nature of the Instagram platform, combined with a liberated character usage, makes it an easier platform to use when trying to use keyword marketing to target specific subgenres of potential clients to enter your giveaway. These competitions are an incredibly effective tool in spreading your brand by word-of-mouth. It’s as simple as requiring one of the rules of entry to be tagging three friends in the comments section of a post. If only fifty people enter your giveaway, then that’s at least 150 new people who have viewed your Instagram page and become aware of your brand. These numbers can easily multiply into brand loyalty, purchases, and better long-term growth.
Around 70% of brands are using Instagram already to promote their products and services to a highly active online community. In order to ensure the healthiest growth and future for your company, you’ll want to make sure that you’re one of them. It might be time to reach out for expert help in how to maximize social media engagement in growing your business fast, and lastingly.
Lucé Media is a digital and social media marketing company in McKinney, TX and Frisco, TX and Plano, TX and Allen, TX that works with small to medium-sized businesses. Whatever social media platform you need, we are strategists with deep experience that can help you. Please contact us here and we will get right back to you.