Using Instagram for marketing

We’ve focused on how Facebook, Twitter, Vine and Pinterest can help your business, but we haven’t yet looked at Instagram.

Instagram is an image sharing social site, which was bought by Facebook back in April for a massive $1bn. It allows users to edit images and videos and share with their followers. The social site has proven successful for a number of brands, mainly retail, as they use videos and imagery to share latest offers and their latest inventory additions.

There are hundreds of helpful articles out there informing small business about using Facebook and Twitter, but as Instagram gains one user almost every second, we thought this list would be helpful to all businesses.

Here’s how to promote your business on Instagram:

1. Complete your profile in full

An uncompleted profile can make your profile look amateurish. Be sure to find a suitable name, include your website, your bio, and explain what you have to offer. The top part of your profile will be the first thing users see when they land on your profile, and it must make a good first impression.

Why not include a link to your other social channels too?

2. Find and follow your customers

Hashtags work on Instagram in the same way as on Facebook or Twitter. When you first create your own Instagram profile, you will have no followers. Search for relevant hashtags to your industry, if you are a retailer of shoes, search for keywords #shoes, #heels, #trainers or #stilettos. Follow the people sharing pictures, and they may follow you back, or they will at least look at your page and see your brand. For example, see below for some fantastic examples from Topshop and Boohoo:

topshop insta edit boohoo insta edit

3. Show off

Instagram is the perfect place to showcase your products. Take some pictures, edit them, and upload them. Remember to include a description, a couple of hashtags so that they can be discovered, and an item number if possible. Ultimately, people should come from your Instagram page to purchase the item, so make it as easy as possible.

4. Be consistent

Your followers will learn to recognise your brand if you post content often. However, there is a fine line between consistency and spamming your followers. The frequency of your posts will depend on your business, for example, if you are a retailer, 2 or 3 posts a day will suffice. B2B companies will find it harder post images and as such the frequency will probably be lower.

5. Engage contacts

The whole point of social media is to be social. Tag people, talk to them, ask questions, comment on other images and add hashtags. Show your personality through your posts.

6. Show your internal workings

Humanise your brand by giving your followers a backstage pass. Give a glimpse of what happens in your office, introduce your employees or share your thought processes. This makes your followers understand your brand further.

7. Take pictures at shows and events

Use events as an opportunity to boost engagement. Offer value in another way by sharing quotes and tips from speakers or from what you have learnt at the event.

8. Remember to be unique

There are plenty of people posting boring content on Instagram – your job is to be unique. Give your followers a reason to continue following you. Tell your story through fantastic imagery, and tell the world what your brand has to offer.

How does your brand use Instagram for marketing your business? Let us know below, or tweet us @Wired_Marketing.

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