Instagram, the social media platform, makes a great marketing tool for small and big businesses. It has approximately 800 million monthly users. Amongst these, 25 million are business accounts. Although Instagram has grown substantially and continues to expand every day, more businesses could benefit from using it to maximize their customer base and grow their company. There are some tips you can use to get the most of your marketing on Instagram. Let’s talk a bit about several of them now. 

Check Out Your Competitors

Checking out your competitors is a great idea. It allows you to see what they are up too, what they include in their Instagram activity, how often they post, and how they set up each of their posts. For instance, you might find some of your competitors’ post images, along with short descriptions that relate to the products they sell. When you see this, you learn the images you post on Instagram need to include a short, engaging description that relates directly to your own products and services. The right message and image can help you grab the attention of current and new customers. You may also find your competitors using unique hashtags, as well. Many big companies spend hours researching the importance of hashtags, which many smaller companies often overlook. Do your own research and check to see how many of your competitors are using hashtags, images, and engaging content. It can help you see what works and what doesn’t work.

Instagram Stories

You should include Instagram Stories in your marketing campaign. They will help you encourage people to become interested in your business. In addition, stories will allow your customers to see a variety of things including the following: 

  • New products and services
  • Sales you have going on
  • Giveaways
  • Reviews from other customers

By using Instagram stories, you can tease people into coming back on a regular basis for updates and new information. Instagram stories sit on the top of your feed, which makes them easily recognizable. A current feature on Instagram is adding links to stories. This allows you the chance to get bring people to your site which is very beneficial to your marketing campaign. 

Influence Marketing

Influence marketing should be a huge part of your Instagram digital marketing. It is a platform where a lot of companies use and see the most beneficial. Let’s say your target audience is people who are into wine and food festivals. You can use influence marketing in many ways including: 

  • Finding popular accounts which fit your audience criteria
  • When you find accounts check to see if they have a big following, but sometimes even small followings can be beneficial to your company
  • Engage in a conversation to see if they actually will be a good fit or not
  • Send one of your products to an influencer for free and ask them to give you an honest review on the item

This type of marketing tool will help you gather information regarding the types of products people want and like to use, find new clients, and much more. 

Reach More Influencers

Part of your success in social media is reaching as many people as possible. So, you can try to reach people one by one, or focus on reaching many people at once by reaching out to all your loyal followers. You can easily promote your products and services by using referral programs. There are lots of these programs available on the market. Perhaps you can even find one for free or at a very reasonable price.

Use Videos

Not only is it smart to post photos to your customers Instagram, but it is also beneficial to create marketing videos that revolve around holidays, big sales, or your company milestones. Many business owners use Animoto because it allows them to create square videos, which work amazingly well on Instagram. This platform also offers you an easy format for placing text within your videos, making it great for mobile viewing. In addition, you can use Facebook ads manager to implement your Instagram ads, ensuring the perfect audience gets to view your videos as well. 

Maximize Your Presence by Using Raw Photos

One great way to maximize your presence on Instagram is by using raw photos. There is no need for photoshop or overlays. Instagram is owned by Facebook and uses particular algorithms in order to get your content viewed. If your posts and images get seen as spam, you won’t be reaching as many people. This may negatively impact your marketing campaign. Of course, you can increase your reach by using relevant hashtags, which is actually the simplest, most effective tip for getting your presence known on Instagram. Did you know Instagram was actually built for artists and photographers? You should keep this in mind when posting images on the platform. Raw photos are best and will help you more in the long run. 

Ask Yourself A Question

In order to have a successful marketing campaign on Instagram, ask yourself this question –  Would I follow myself on Instagram? If you would, great. However, if you wouldn’t then you should probably be spending some more time on your account and campaign. You could consider posting more which could potentially help you grow your followers and increase your sales revenue. Remember, you need to be posting photos and videos which display the quality and effectiveness of your business products and services. It doesn’t hurt to make sure your posts are also precise, interesting, and fun. Think of your Instagram page as your office and view it as a potential customer. Now, ask yourself again, would I be interested in coming back and checking into this business on a regular basis? 

Get Creative with Hashtags and Links

Many business owners prefer to use a lot of hashtags on each of their posts. This ranges to about 30 hashtags per post. The number of hashtags you use is completely up to you. Hashtag examples may include a variety of things. Let’s say you wrote a book about alcohol addiction and you want to market it on Instagram. You can use hashtags such as Alcohol Addiction, #Alcohol Abuse #You Are Not Alone. These hashtags can help you reach your audience and sell your book. The best advice is to start with a lot and change the amount if you feel 30 is just too many and not effective. Some businesses often use only a few tags in their primary Instagram posts and lead with another comment where they feature many extra relevant hashtags. These counts when people are searching for a certain hashtag. However, web traffic shouldn’t be the main priority when marketing on Instagram, but you can still send people a link such as the one you put in your bio. This is the reason you see IG posts which say “Click the link in our bio for more info.” Instagram purposefully doesn’t allow users to use active links in the text portions of their posts. Get creative with the methods you use to entice people to click your links and change them up frequently. Soon you should be seeing more people visiting your business site. 

Paid Ads Can be Useful 

You can benefit by using paid ads when it comes to creating a following on Instagram. In addition, it is a surefire way to target your audience and drive sales to your doorstep. In previous years, only people who followed a business account would be able to see their photos and updates. However, now you can promote your brand for all who are within your target audience. The best part is that Instagram advertising is relatively cheap, making it one of the best-paid options when it comes to advertisement. 

Avoid Automation Tools

Looking to build a following on Instagram shouldn’t be just about reaching a large number. It also needs to be about creating followers who you can interact with and communicate with you on a regular basis. You can achieve this by dedicating your time to finding users who are interested in hashtags that represent your business analogy. Once you find just the right user, click on some of their photos, posts, and choose to follow them first. Remember, your goal is quantity, not necessarily quality. 

Personal Passion Goes a Long Ways

Don’t just think about Instagram as a means to get business leads. Use it to connect on a personal level with your followers. Of course, you need to post business news including the following: 

  • Personnel achievements 
  • New products
  • Upcoming sales 
  • Events you have coming up
  • Company awards or certificates you receive

However, you also will need to establish a personal connection with your followers. People want to know you care about them. Showing your passion for things other than work will help you build a better relationship with your audience. It is truly important to let people know you care about your community and do your part in making it a better place to live. Remember to stay humble, don’t overdo it. The goal is to build a bond and create loyalty between you and your audience. 

Pick a Good Time to Share

Every business has a specific target audience. The reality is that your audience members won’t all be on Instagram at the same time. So, you might have wondered what time is the best to share, right? Generally, it is best to simply be conscious of the location of your audience. For instance, if your primary target audience is in Canada and the United States, you might want to rely on both time zones when scheduling your posts. Another option is to pick a time when the majority of your audience is on Instagram. This way more people are likely to see your posts. Just remember not to post too frequently. This can overwhelm and frustrate your audience. 

Focus on Other Businesses

In your message, make sure to tag businesses within your industry who can relate to your posts. Hopefully, they will like your post which in turn will earn you a repost and enhance your exposure to their audience. This will help you build strong relationships with others and possible collaborations with different brands. Collaborations on Instagram are important factors to increase your following and one of the easiest ways to reach your target audience. Remember, it is a good idea to do a little research on the businesses you are tagging. That way you will be able to see if they would be interested in seeing the posts you share on Instagram. 

Building Relationships Online

One of the best ways to build relationships online is by engaging in the Instagram platform. A few tips for engaging include the following: 

  • If you are growing your brand, engage for at least one hour per day
  • Engage using handles who have more followers than you by commenting, liking, and following other people 
  • After you actively engage your audience, reach out to larger influencers and get them communicating with you 

Marketing on Instagram is all about who you know and how you build relationships with other brands similar to your own. 

Monitoring is Important

It is very important to monitor your Instagram in order to evaluate your activity success. You should be monitoring things such as posts, followers, latest posts, top posts, likes, comments, engagement rates, history, etc. This will help you see if you need to change any of your methods or if things are running smoothly. In addition, you need to compare these results to those of your competitors. This will help you enable new practices. Don’t be afraid to implement any new marketing techniques you learn from other businesses.  

Marketing through Instagram is smart. Many businesses have seen great success from using this popular social media platform to market their services and products. You can as well. Happy marketing. 

The Digital Marketing Guru
Author: The Digital Marketing Guru

The Digital Marketing Guru is a full-service digital marketing agency. We’ve been providing a wide range of services to clients of all industries since 2010. Our digital marketing services include consulting and management options for a variety of online marketing tactics including search engine optimization (SEO), pay-per-click (PPC) ads, copywriting conversion rate optimization (CRO), and more. We also offer expert web design and development services for both eCommerce and B2B companies. Don’t just partner with any digital marketing agency; work with a company you can trust.