Instagram is one of the social media platforms that some businesses don't use as they can't quite get their heads around how it actually works... Well, let me tell you - It is so easy to use! Now I am not going to talk you through how to make an account, as that's simple right? But what I am going to talk to you about is how you can actually use Instagram to grow your business.
But, Instagram will work in different ways depending on what business you own, whether it's a service or you're selling a product. The main priority you should have whilst using Instagram is your branding, your business aim and your personal message.
Many businesses only use Instagram to really define their brand and get their name out there as you are highly likely to gain a wider audience from Instagram than you are with Facebook because Instagram is all about imagery - So it is well worth looking in to if you don't already use it for your business.
Lets start from the top...
How can you make your little corner of Instagram perform well and look incredible at the same time?
The key points to create a well performing Instagram page are;
1. Regular posts!
2. Bright, intriguing content.
3. Using hashtags effectively.
4. Be organised and creative with your content!
Now lets go into a little depth with each of these...
Point one - Regular posts
Posting regular will keep your followers following. Now don't be a spammer Even one post per day is enough! Spread out your posts and try to ensure you are posting at times in which your preferred audience will be active, so if you're product/service is aimed at teenagers, then post out of school/college hours.
Point two - Bright, intriguing content
Bright things stand out, right? So keep your posts as clear from clutter and as bright as you can. If you are photographing products do your best to photograph them away from distractions, on a clear background and in good lightning! This will help them perform better and will be more clear to your viewers.
Don't be boring with your captions. Short and snappy is good, but make it relevant and really think deeply about it. If you're one for posting paragraphs, then make it intriguing, don't drag on your story... Who likes reading essays when their scrolling down their news feed!
Point three - using hashtags effectively
Hashtags, hashtags, hashtags... What the frig are they?
They are little magical links which links your posts to millions, billions, trillions of followers of that particular hashtags. Let me explain... On Instagram as well as being able to follow people - yes humans... You can also follow hashtags - which aren't humans... So if you follow for instance #CloeLeanneDesigns, every time someone posts using that hashtag their post will show up on your feed. EVEN if you don't follow them! Magic right...
Now... It's no good using irrelevant hashtags which your target audience isn't interested in or which don't relate to your business or even your post for that matter.
Keep hashtags relevant and try to use at least 15 in every post.
Interact with the hashtags that you use. So if you post and use the hashtag #Design then visit the hashtag and interact with some of the posts on there, this will help bring followers of that hashtag to your page! This tactic works really well - I have personally trailed and tested it!
It is always good to try and stick to using the same hashtags across your posts, a few stray ones here and there is fine, but if you stick to using the same tags then you will boost your chances of being seen by the audience you're trying to be seen by - As long as the hashtags are relevant to your audience that is!
I could go on for ages about hashtags but I feel like this whole post has been taken over by discussing them, but they are Instagram's finest asset and they work wonders for your business when used properly!
Lets move on...
Point four - Be organised and creative with your content.
This is quite vital... I have mentioned keeping posts clean and bright... But the presentation of your page when someone stumbles across it is just as important. You have five seconds to make an impact and if you're page looks boring, their going to leave. It's as simple as that...
Using branded templates to relay your branding and your message through all of your posts is a great way of creating a strong brand identity over Instagram. You can also use your branded templates in a pattern form, like I have...
Don't have any branded templates or want to find out how you can get your own branded templates, then check out my social media design services where I can offer template designs for you to use over social media and also a guide on how to use them effectively!
As well as being creative with the design of your Instagram profile, being organised is another point I will make. Now there are a lot of opinions on using apps to schedule your posts, I personally don't like these app's as whenever I have used them in the past I have noticed my reach dropping, however this can only be decided by yourself. So if you want to give one of these scheduling app's a go, then go for it, after all, they save you the hassle of remembering to post, they help you post at the right time and they are generally a good idea if you are one of those less organised people or even if you are just way too busy! If you do opt for using one of these app's then try and do it directly through Instagram itself.
I plan and put the designs together for my posts every Sunday and I always ensure I have at least one post per day, if not more. Doing it weekly I find that I can make sure my content is fresh and new! Everyone will have their own ways of scheduling their posts, but once I have designed my posts I email them to myself to save in my phone for when I need to post. This may be a good trick for yourself to do if you don't want to use the scheduling app's. You can then set a reminder for each day on your phone to make sure you don't forget to post. Simple...
So that's all folks...
I know all of this may sound overwhelming for some and some people may be thinking 'where the flipping heck am I going to find the time in my busy schedule to do this!'
Well... Stress no more...
I offer social media management packages to help you get on top of your Instagram and Facebook pages! Allowing you to focus on the other important parts of your business.
How relieving does that sound? Feel lighter?
Take a look at my packages here