Several months ago, we shared our insider tips on how to take advantage of your organization’s Instagram Stories to promote your brand. Now, we got the scoop on how to take your entire Instagram account to the next level.
With its witty captions, aesthetics photos and powerful influencers, Instagram is the platform Millenials and Gen Zs breathed into life. This app has more than 500 million daily users, half of whom follow a business. Combined with the fact that 70 percent of Instagrammers search for brands on Instagram, this is one app very few businesses can afford to ignore. Check out these five tips to keep your business’ Instagram fresh!
Around 95 million photos and videos are uploaded into the app every day. Even with a consistent and faithful following, boosting a well-designed post will help spread your name among the Instagram community. Depending on how much targeting you need, promoting a post usually comes at a very affordable cost of $5 a CPM (cost per thousand impressions).
Keep in mind that you’re only allowed to promote if you have a business profile that makes your account visible to everyone. As an organization, it would be best to create a business profile from the start as, in addition to being able to promote, you are able to monitor your analytics post by post using the free, in-app Instagram Insights.
Partner with an influencer.
Instagram arguably started and popularized the modern social media influencer culture….an influencer being someone regarded by their “followers,” usually numbering in the thousands if not millions, as a person of authority who gives honest recommendations on things to do or buy. Although it is possible to get Instagram stars with millions of followers to give your business or product a shoutout, it can get very expensive, and you might not reach the right target audience. A more practical approach is to connect with a local influencer whose personal branding fits your organization’s. That way you have more control over your target audience and at a cheaper cost.
Hold contests and giveaways.
People love free. Giving people something for their time and attention online is a great way to create buzz. Remember the “Red Swimsuit” craze? It started with two college entrepreneurs offering followers a free Pamela swimsuit if they reposted their image and tag the company within 24 hours. The image went viral, garnering the company, Sunny Co Clothing, thousands of new customers and followers on social media. Bonus tip: Get a local influencer to promote your contest. The Instagram culture has evolved so much that users expect contests and giveaways from their favorite influencers. (Instagram’s promotion guidelines are pretty lax compared to Facebook’s, but be sure to still check them out.)
Videos. Videos. Videos.
When it comes to videos, you have options. Whether you want a 60-second post, a story that only lasts 24 hours or a live stream of your event, Instagram has created a number of ways for users to use videos. Sure, aesthetic pictures garner attention, but videos capture the action, the heart of your organization, much faster than pictures can. Use video to show how your products work, how your services are carried out, how your business is run and the people of your organization. Whether you want a spontaneous behind-the-scenes or a short commercial, producing and posting videos is a great way to amp up your Instagram game.
Hashtags are more than just a way to spice up your captions; they open your post up to the entire Instagram community. It becomes very tempting to use as many hashtags as possible, thinking that more people will then be able to see your posts. And it works, to a certain extent. To take your Instagram to the next level though, narrow your hashtags. It might seem counterintuitive since fewer people will be looking for #velvetshoes than #shoes, but if you're promoting velvet shoes your business has in stock, a user specifically looking for that kind of footwear will, more than likely, type the hashtag, see your image and visit your account. When promoting a special event or contest, create a brand campaign hashtag. That way people associate it with your company, and both you and other users can find the images easier.
Despite Instagram’s popularity, especially with the Millenial and Generation Z groups, keep your SMART goals in mind when running your business account. Stay close to your brand identity. Don’t forget to monitor the analytics, and make adjustments as you go to make sure you’re getting a good return for your efforts.