Instagram has become one of the leading social networks today, with over 100 million active users each month. Many businesses have successfully marketed themselves to millennials on Instagram, and here are some important things to consider when using Instagram as a marketing strategy.
- What to Post?
When posting to Instagram for marketing, it is important to show off new or struggling products that you want to gain attention, but also to show your popular products to attract new followers to your business’ Instagram page. While the specific products you show in your Instagram posts are important to getting traffic to your page, the way you display them is important as well. Posts are much more interesting to consumers if they see your products being used instead of it sitting on a table. Instagram posts should connect your products to the lifestyle you want your company to represent.
Another way to get attention from your consumers is to post pictures and videos of day-to-day life at your company to form closer connections with your consumers. Posting photos and videos leading up to a product launch and the preparations made by your staff all help build hype for the launch.
Once you start posting, you need to look at what types of posts generate the most likes and comments, and which ones get the least attention. Maximize the kind of posts that get the best response and try to minimize the kinds that do not get much attention.
- When to Post?
At first, it is difficult to know when to post, but the main thing is to post consistently. Even if it doesn’t seem like your posts are reaching very many of your consumers it is key to continue posting multiple times a week, or you’ll never start to gain interest.
Once you post for a while analyze the likes and comments on your posts, but this time compare them to what time you post them. You can figure out what time your photos get the most likes, and post them only around the time you get the most likes. Timing your posts with product launches or times of year that certain products are popular also makes posts more effective, like promoting blankets in fall and winter or sunglasses in spring and summer.
Hashtags are words or phrases preceded by the pound/number sign, #. You can search on Instagram for hashtags in order to find posts related to your search. As a business, it is key for you to use hashtags on your posts so that people searching for things similar to your product will see the pictures you’ve posted. When hashtagging, only include a few short, relevant tags so that the caption of the post does not look cluttered.
Sometimes, due to current events, certain hashtags will become popular and they will start to trend, and if you see a trending hashtag that is somehow related to your brand be sure to use it. Hashtags often only trend for short periods of time, so it is important to use them quickly, but if you effectively use trending hashtags it can make potential consumers see your posts without meaning to.
- Engaging your Followers
Having a stellar picture is not enough to effectively promote your business on Instagram. You’ll also need to have captions that interest your audience, and one way to do that is to ask questions. If you ask a question about your brand to generate discussion in the comment section, it will help promote your business even more.
Another way to engage followers is to run photo contests. Giving your fans the opportunity to submit photos of your product to a special hashtag for the contest will get more excitement surrounding your brand. Offer a prize of one of your products as the reward for winning the contest. When you pick a winner, giving them and runner-ups a mention will help you appeal to people as being personable.
The overall goal of all of these strategies is to get people to visit your Instagram page, click the link to your website, and from there become a paying customer. The growing popularity of Instagram and the unique opportunities it presents to promote your business make it an advertisement platform that can’t be ignored.