In recent years, Instagram has grown to rival Facebook and Twitter in terms of importance for businesses. According to figures towards the end of 2017, there are around 800 million active monthly users with a particular focus on the younger audience. Of course, you should never be active on a social media website just because it’s popular; you should always go for the websites that hold the most concentrated audience of your target market. If the platform suits your company, you might be wondering how to use Instagram for a business and we have the answers today.
To keep things simple, we’re going to assume you know how to create an account, upload pictures, and do the basics. If you don’t and this is your first venture into the social media world, there are some fantastic guides that will explain the basics online. Today, we want to talk about how to be unique on Instagram as a business within a niche that’s highly competitive.
#1: Be Consistent
First and foremost, you need to be consistent because this is one of the most important features of any popular social media profile. If you aren’t posting frequently enough, you’re going to struggle to build a following. Even if it’s a simple image of your office or an employee, consistent uploading will yield results because it tells people they can expect something on a daily basis rather than waiting for a week just for one simple post.
#2: Don’t Just Advertise
As a business, your ultimate goal is to use Instagram to generate sales but this doesn’t mean you need to be advertising special offers every 30 minutes. The more you advertise, the more attention you lose from potential customers because they see you’re only on the platform to get their money. As a consumer yourself, why do you follow certain brands and people?
#3: Be A Personality
These days, posting facts and boring information constantly just isn’t enough because consumers are looking for a personality. When we’re asked how to use Instagram for a business, one of the first tips we suggest is ‘allow your social media manager to add a little personality to their posts, replies, and other interactions’.
Before you get started on Instagram, think about the personality you want your brand to have because changing it too frequently will make it hard for people to connect. For example, do you want to be a serious brand who talk about saving the planet and living responsibly? Do you want to add a little humor to your posts and make people laugh on a daily basis? Is your objective to become a market leader by posting interesting facts and infographics?
As soon as you decide your direction, your posts write themselves because the brand has a personality. If you choose to be a serious brand and then throw a joke in one of your posts, this can be taken in the wrong way so it’s important to stick to one idea. With your personality, make sure you use it with every post and every comment / reply.
If somebody posts a picture using your product or wearing your clothing, interact with them, like the post, repost it
to your followers, and build a relationship with your consumers. Furthermore, you can reply to comments and answer any questions that come your way. Just like getting close to celebrities, people like social media because they can get close to brands. If you become more personable as a brand, it will generate a buzz and your business will take off.
#5: Instagram Stories
Much like snapchat, you can post images and short videos to your Instagram Story for all your followers to see. Not only will these stories show at the top of your follower’s timeline, you can play with different styles such as boomerang videos, photos, rewind videos, and more. If you’re at an event, why not use the filters, take plenty of photos, and just have a good time with your followers?
#6: Live Video
Furthermore, when looking for how to use Instagram for a business, you can’t look past live videos. Let’s say you’re at an event, you can livestream to your audience, answer questions, generate excitement, etc. Especially if the event is your product launch, those who decided not to attend will suddenly regret their decision and your behind-the-scenes access makes the viewer feel special.
#7: Be Creative
Too often, we see the same posts over and over again and it’s because businesses say they ‘don’t know what to post’. Ultimately, there are thousands of things you could do from talking about your brand, asking questions to your followers, showing pictures of the office and your employees, discussing the charities you’re currently helping, any upcoming events, and, although it might seem strange, you could even post something completely unrelated to your brand.
In order to build a following, you don’t always need to link everything back to your brand because this is a mistake beginners often make. If there’s a debate on Instagram over music, sport, favorite foods, favorite drinks, video games, or anything else, you can have a little fun with the debate and join in. As long as you steer away from the heavy topics like religion and politics, you’ll be good to go.
#8: Use Hashtags
Thanks to recent research, we know that between three and five hashtags will see the best return on your post. When adding hashtags, make sure they’re relevant, always have one using your brand name, and use popular hashtags to make your content more discoverable. With popular hashtags like #tbt and #instagood, your post will show to all those who have searched for and clicked on this hashtag.
#9: Team Up with Others
Rather than going it alone every day, why not team up with other companies and individuals? In addition to sharing the success stories of your customers, you can work with charities (this will look great for your brand), other businesses (a complementary product as opposed to a competitor), and even influencers in the market. For example, you could run a competition with a blogger in your field and you’ll benefit from access to all of their followers.
#10: Be Clever
Next up, take your opportunity on Instagram to be clever and build interest. Firstly, you can generate excitement for your new product by teasing your followers or getting them to guess what the product is. Secondly, you can offer exclusive access or special offers to your Instagram followers. Why? Because these two ideas give people a reason to follow and tell their friends about your brand.
#11: Get Ideas
If you really want to know how to use Instagram for a business, your clever posting should extend to getting ideas from your followers. Why have thousands of followers/customers all in one place if you aren’t going to ask for their opinion? With a simple question put to your followers, you’ll learn what products they desire, how you can improve existing products, what the market is looking for, and so much more.
I hope you enjoyed this post and if you have any questions about how to use Instagram as a business or you just want to leave your own personal experience, leave a comment below. I would love to hear from you!
Check out some of our most popular product/service reviews…
- Wealthy Affiliate Review (#1 Ranked, LEGIT Recommended Program)
- Elite Marketing Pro Review (LEGIT, High Ticket Program With Good Earning Potential)
- Aspire Digital Altitude Review (NOT Recommended, Riddled with Upsells)