Instagram is the second most popular social media platform behind Facebook. By the end of 2017, Instagram had hit 800 million monthly users providing a great platform for your business to engage new people and entice new customers.
Fortunately for you, unlike Facebook where 90% of the businesses in the U.S have a presence, only 70% of businesses have a presence on Instagram. Even though Instagram has a lower user count compared to Facebook, it has a higher engagement rate than Facebook. This means with a proper marketing strategy, you have better chances of getting users to notice your business and even grow your sales.
While Instagram has better chances of success, you still have to deal with the competition and work hard for your business to stand out among the millions. Here are a few exceptional strategies you can use to promote your business and get some traction on Instagram.
When it comes to online content, consistency is the keyword. You need to constantly engage with your followers and provide them with quality content.
With Instagram marketing, this not only means posting a well-placed photo every morning. It also means;
- Following other brands, other users and most importantly following influencers
- Engaging your followers in the comment sections of your post and any other posts that might be of interest to you and your business
- Publishing quality content and tagging your prospective customers on requests and questions
It might be tedious but your followers need to know that you’re listening and if the opportunity to respond to a prospective customer presents itself, you should be ready to take it and run with it.
Consider Using Testimonials
This is a rarely used trick when promoting businesses but one that could be a gold mine for you. Of course, every business out there believes they are the best at what they do. Expectedly, that is what users on Instagram expect you to say. Including testimonials in your page changes the game and gives your followers an insight into what your customers think about you.
Testimonials are a great way to earn the confidence of your followers and build trust in your brand. You might have to work hard to get the positive reviews but the effort is well worth it.
Run Hashtag Based Contests
This neat tip works particularly well if you just set up your account on Instagram and you’re looking to get some new followers. It also works on businesses that have been around for some time but would like to expand their follower base.
For this to work, you should be ready to part with some freebies for the participants. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy but nice enough to get people chatting and talking about your brand.
It is important to note that while Instagram hashtag contests are one of the quickest ways to get new Instagram followers and bring some much-needed attention to your business, they are only run by third-party contest builders.
The contest is quite simple. You offer an incentive for Instagram users. The catch is, they have to follow your page and submit a photo under your suggested hashtag and get their friends to vote on their photo. The photo with the most votes wins. It sounds simple but it is an effective way to bring in additional followers to your page.
Ride The Trends
Trends are a wildfire on social media. A simple event can blow up to a world event just because it is trending on social media. Before you start riding the waves on what is trending, it’s vital to note that you have to pick your trends very carefully.
You can’t jump on every challenge or video that you find trending. If you pick your discussions carefully, you can get some serious advantage and expand the horizons of your business.
The beauty with incorporating trends into your posts is, people are already talking about it and very interested in the topic. Adding the trending hashtags to your social media content helps you to tap into the traffic being channeled to the trending topic getting some new leads in the process.
Carefully Pick Your Moments And Your Content
Spamming your handle with videos, images and hounding the comment section might not get you positive results. You need to take time to understand essential factors that will help you be more effective on Instagram while spending the least time and resources possible. Some of the analytics you need to keep a close eye on include;
- How often should you post on Instagram
- When are most of your followers online
- What kind of content are they interested in
Once you have these statistics in place, you will also need to consider the main purpose of your business’s Instagram account. There are many reasons a business can have a social media account. These include;
- For online sales
- Creating brand awareness for your business
- Attracting new prospects and leads and turning them into customers
Depending on the reason why you’re looking to promote, you can tailor your content to drive this reason. It is important that the content you post online appeals to your kind of followers and speaks to the goals you have for your business.
Go All Out On Quality
Nothing can dent your efforts in trying to get your business going on the online world quicker than low-quality images and videos. Just as Instagram can help propel your business to unimaginable heights, it can just as easily bring the business to its knees.
Even though uploading quality, well-edited photos are paramount, you will be surprised by how many businesses fail to get it right.
If you’re going to have millions of people look at your products, the products have to look their best. The lighting should be perfect and the camera should be on steroids. If possible, your best bet would be to hire a video production agency and consider professional social media video production.
Think Outside The Box
You want to keep your followers interested in your business and your brand. Not all your posts should be product-based. It is okay to be creative and think of other innovative ways to increase engagement without taking attention from the products.
Ideally, 50% of your posts should be product based and the other 50% should be about the brand. The latter should include milestones you have made in your company, community service ideas you’re running, behind the scenes actions and you can even have an interesting section about letting your followers know some of the most important people in your business.
The most important tip you can get when promoting your business on Instagram is that success will not be overnight. You have to be patient and persistent. With these tips, if you practice them properly and religiously, you have an almost full proof plan that will help your business grow without investing significantly in online marketing.