Instagram started in the year 2010, with a usual social media platform idea- a site for sharing photos.
Cut to 2018, now Instagram is anything but a photo sharing platform. It has now developed itself into a full marketing channel.
In the last year alone, Instagram has released dozens of new tool for businesses, including advanced analytics, shoppable Instagram posts, and new ways to drive traffic from Instagram Stories.
By now you must be thinking, how can Instagram help me in my business? Can it provide me with leads or sales closure?
The answer to this is- YES!
It is currently the fastest evolving social platform- with 600 million users to a whopping 800 million users within a year. Also, it has more than 25 million active business profiles.
Moreover, Instagram engagement is roughly ten times higher than it is on Facebook!
Now with this increased population, brands are also coming into the scene. There is an ample amount of opportunity for brands and businesses to target prospective audiences who can relate to their products & services.
So if you haven’t yet started your business on Instagram, now is the right time to do!
Instagram Account For Your Business
Set up an Instagram Business Account from scratch, if you haven’t already.
Download the app from Google Play Store (for Android) or App Store (for iOS)
Tap the Sign Up button to get started.
Enter your business email address or sign up using your Facebook account.
Once you’ve made the account, tap on the settings gear & select ”Switch to business profile”
Then, enter your address, phone number, website address, business hours & other details.
Optimize your Business Profile
Once you’re done setting up your account, optimize your profile.
Choose a unique username by which people can find you easily, which is easy to read & understand. Moreover, your username should not contain numbers-because people tend to get confused between numbers.
It should match with your other profiles on social platforms- Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn.
It is ideal to keep your business name as your username if it is available.
The bio section should tell everything about your business in a compact manner.
Use this space to explain to people what your brand offers & provides.
You can include hashtags & your website URL in the bio section for information. Also, you can create your own hashtag in reference to your business and promote it exclusively.
It is always beneficial to set your profile photo as your company’s logo.
Try keeping it in alignment with your other platform’s profile photo. This will help people in recognising & recalling your brand easily.
Accounts to follow
Get started by following influencers & people who can relate to your brand. Find influencers from your industry, your expert area, & other people relevant to you.
Industry hashtags are a thing & it is a great idea for you to follow these. If your industry is Digital Marketing, follow the hashtag to get relevant posts & people.
You can also comment on their posts to expand your reachability and target your audience.
Ask yourself these questions before starting your marketing strategy for Instagram
1) Who are the people I’ll target?
- What’s their age and demographics?
- What are their interests?
- What catches their attention?
2) What set of people should I follow?
- Who are the influencers in my industry?
- What is the target audience that can relate to my brand?
- Which competitors should I keep an eye on?
3) How will I promote my business account?
- Will I include a link to my website?
- should I add a branded photo booth in my store?
- Are any influencers bringing awareness for my brand?
4) How often will I post?
- Will I have a set schedule for posting?
- Should I post on the fly, as & when things come up?
- What is the amount of content I’ll have to share?
Now that you know how to build your presence through organic efforts, Instagram also provides paid marketing benefits to reach out to your targeted audiences.
Instagram advertising is a method of paying to post sponsored content on the platform to reach a larger and more targeted audience.
This type of advertising helps in gaining more followers, more engagement towards your posts, website traffic & closing leads.
To get started with Instagram Marketing, first go to your Facebook’s Ads Manager. There is no separate Ads manager for Instagram. Advertising is managed through Facebook’s Ads manager UI.
The whole campaign can be created through Facebook itself. Moreover, it is helpful because then you don’t have to create two separate campaigns. One Ad set can do the work for both Instagram & Facebook.
There are 6 ad formats to choose from. Two of them are for Stories, the rest four are for the feed.
File type should be jpg or png.
Maximum file size must be within 30MB.
Minimum Image Width should not be below 600 pixels
Image Ratio must be 4:5 minimum & 16:9 maximum
Text length should be 2,200 maximum.
Hashtag Number should be within 30 maximum.
Image Ratio is 9:16 recommended.
Minimum Image Width must be 600 pixels.
Product Catalog Sales
Supported Call-to-Action Buttons
Instagram is already a big thing in digital marketing & businesses have started implementing it in their strategies. If you haven’t already, start now!