If you’re looking to boost your marketing strategy, look no further than Instagram. With more than 1 billion active monthly users, and 8 of every 10 users following a business account, Instagram is full of marketing opportunity. You can use Instagram to connect with potential customers and also engage more with your current customers. Get started with these Instagram marketing tips.
The first thing you should do when you set up Instagram is switch to a business account. To do this, go to your account settings and select “Switch to Business Account.” You’ll then be able to add contact information, get insights into your followers and content performance, and you’ll have the ability to run ads.
Figuring out what to post on Instagram is one of the most difficult parts of Instagram marketing. It can be overwhelming to come up with fresh ideas for daily posts, but one of the best ways to get content inspiration is to check out what other local businesses are doing. We rounded up a few examples of local businesses that have nailed their Instagram presence.
Swig, a local Utah company serving up flavored sodas and sweets, has more than 35k followers! Notice how cohesive the design of its posts feel. You can achieve the same cohesiveness on your feed by picking 1 filter you always use. Swig posts a balance of product photos and announcements.
Cactus & Tropicals is a greenhouse that specializes in providing flowers for weddings and events. Part of what makes Cactus & Tropicals' feed so effective is that it posts a mix of its own photos and photos reposted from customers, or user-generated content. User-generated content not only works as free marketing for you, but consumers are also more likely to trust content that comes from other consumers.
Project Sunday, located in Salt Lake City, builds furniture out of salvaged materials. Its Instagram feed features pieces it’s made, spaces it’s redesigned, and a look behind the scenes of the company. Notice how this company has used highlights to show what kind of projects it works on.
When it comes to posting on Instagram, not all times of the day are created equal. Posting when more people are active is more likely to get you better engagement. In general, these are the best times to post:
You’re probably thinking that 5 am is pretty early to be posting on Instagram, but instead of getting on Instagram and posting at each optimal time, try using a social media scheduling tool to schedule posts in advance. Using a scheduling tool is the easiest way to post to Instagram consistently.
The overall best day to post is Wednesday, but if you’re trying to garner consistent engagement, try posting every day from 10am-3pm CT. You can also check out the “Insights” tab of your account for info on when your audience is most active.
Once you have your account up and running and have started posting, the next step is to grow your followers. It can take some time for your account to gain traction, but there are things you can do to grow your audience faster. Here are 4 ideas to try.
Social media is about being social. Like, follow, and comment on other accounts. The more you interact with potential customers, the more they will check out your account and engage with your posts. Be sure to reply in a timely manner to the comments and messages you receive!
Doing a giveaway is a fun and quick way to grow your followers. Offer a free product or service to a winner or multiple winners and, in exchange, ask participants to like, comment, share, or tag other people on your post. The requirements for entering your giveaway should align with the follower goals you want to achieve.
Thoughtful hashtags are a great way for new followers to discover your business. Rather than spamming your posts with 30 generic hashtags, use a handful of specific hashtags that are popular among the audience you’re targeting. For example, if you sell outdoor gear, you might use #hikinglifestyle, #getoutdoorsmore, and #exploreoutside.
Lastly, feel free to get creative with the content you post to Instagram! Instagram is an innovative platform with a big focus on visual appeal. With features like stories and highlights, there are so many different and fun ways you can engage your audience.