You’re mistaken if you think Instagram is only for sunsets, selfies, and staged food photos.
There is no better moment than now for your firm to come on board with Instagram as a marketing tool for your business, with Facebook at the helm, the number of active users expanding every month, and 85 percent of major companies using the social platform to reach their audience.
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On Instagram, there are over one billion monthly active users, over 95 million photos and videos are published every day, and those photos and videos receive over 4.2 billion “likes.”
Consider how much more engagement you could get if your posts got even a quarter of that.
Because consumers are so engaged with your brand, you have a better chance of reaching out to them and being heard, resulting in increased sales.
So, how do you go about doing it correctly?
Here are some of the most important dos and don’ts for marketing your business on Instagram in 2020.
In 2020, these are the dos and don’ts of cheap instagram likes.
Post on a regular basis.
If you’re going to bother with a brand presence on Twitter, you’ll need to commit to at least publishing on your account on a regular basis, just as you would on any other social network.
It’s worse to have an Instagram account with nothing on it — or no posts for weeks or months — than to have none at all.
How many times per day should you post to Instagram?
When it comes to Instagram, consistency is crucial. Brands that post two to ten times a day get the best results with their Instagram marketing efforts, according to data.
The number of posts you publish should be determined by the amount of information you have to share and the size of your audience.
It’s better to release fewer updates with outstanding photographs and videos than a larger number of updates that don’t hold your audience’s attention.
To increase engagement, use Instagram Stories.
Instagram Stories are extremely useful for increasing interaction because 500 million people use them every day. Some of the most useful features are listed below.
Polls on Instagram Stories
If you’re searching for a quick approach to increase engagement, polls on your stories are a terrific way to go. The poll in the image below is simple, but it engages the audience in the material that will be created.
People who vote will not only be more inclined to watch the decision, but they will also feel a feeling of trust and community because they were a part of crafting it.
Brands can pose comparable questions about upcoming content, compare two goods, propose new features, and more.
Emoji Slider Stickers are a fun way to express yourself.
Emoji slider stickers are another fast approach to engage your community. These sliders, as illustrated below, allow marketers to create a simple poll in which users simply slide the emoji along the slider to respond. This allows you to evaluate your audience’s emotions while also providing a fun and easy option for them to communicate with you.
As a brand, you could want to see how customers react to a new product’s design, try out a new logo, or even just publish something amusing like the pizza poll above to get people talking.
Stickers with Questions
Brands may use the Instagram Stories Inquiries Sticker to answer long-form questions or have a casual two-way dialogue with their followers.
As shown below, you can ask questions about specific goods to elicit feedback or thoughts from your followers, and then post the responses to your Stories.
This contributes to a favorable brand experience for customers who require quick responses prior to making a purchase.
A live AMA, a brand feedback session, or simply asking interesting questions to start a dialogue are all examples of ways your company could use the questions sticker.
Stickers for Quiz
Take a look at the popularity of Buzzfeed quizzes if you ever had any doubts about how much people enjoy quizzes or trivia.
These quizzes, like Instagram Quiz stickers, are a fun way to educate people about your company or products, as well as solicit feedback.
Missguided’s quiz below not only educates people about their company, but it also gives visitors a cause to visit their website in order to get the answer to the first question.
Because of the increased traffic to their site as a result of this question, it’s likely that they’ll see an increase in sales as a result of this simple Instagram quiz.
Retweets and Mentions
Finally, just like a Facebook share or a Twitter retweet, Instagram Stories allows brands to re-share posts that have been tagged in by their followers or to mention fans if they contribute something intriguing.
LiveTinted, a new makeup firm, does an excellent job at this, publishing stunning photos of their items as well as instructional and unboxing videos:
Encourage your customers to participate in the creation of content.
While you are limited in the types of content you may upload on Instagram compared to other platforms, it has one of the most extensive engagement archives. These are some of them:
Tags Re-grams Stories Likes Comments Private Messages (which enable polling, questions, etc.)
Regardless of these possibilities, there is no better method to increase brand engagement than to encourage customers to generate content for it.
User-generated content (UGC) is genuine and demonstrates brand loyalty, so take advantage of it!
Consider coming up with a unique hashtag, asking your fans to use it in their photos, and then sharing your favorites on your brand’s account.
Fans will feel more connected to your brand as a result of this, you’ll build buzz and engagement, and their content may even help you come up with your next great idea.
Instagram does a fantastic job with this.
They used to do something dubbed the “weekend hashtag project,” for example (WHP).
If you followed their account, you’d know that every weekend, the team would challenge their community by asking them to make images based on a specific subject, with the prize of being featured as one of their favorites on their profile for the rest of the week.
WHP aired its final episode in April 2019, however it doesn’t mean they stopped engaging their viewers.
#WeeklyFluff is one of their current regular postings, in which they upload a photo or video of animals doing something hilarious, adorable, or otherwise from users. (Who doesn’t want to be a part of that?)
Because animals are so popular on Instagram (the top 10 pet influencers have a combined following of 22 million), each post is inundated with likes and comments.
Creating a dedicated hashtag where users can share their images with you is another approach for your brand to create photos and communicate with its audience.
Ulta Beauty does something similar by using the hashtag #ultabeauty in their bio and encouraging users to upload photos with the hashtag #ultabeauty in the hopes of being featured on their feed.
Ipsy is another wonderful example of a company that regularly uses user-generated content in its marketing.
The ipsy team has built a thriving Instagram community where “ipsters” can visually display items from their subscription box, as well as their thoughts and experiences with them.
The brand then re-grams their favorites on a regular basis, tagging the user and giving them their 15 minutes of fame.
Don’t be afraid to tell a human narrative.
Stock photographs have no place on Instagram. Your photographs must be visually beautiful, but also authentic, original, and relatable in order to effectively express your message.
Consider sharing your account’s login details with members of your staff so that they may publish images as soon as something noteworthy occurs (but be sure to establish limits for what can — and cannot — be shared on your brand account).
If you follow StarbucksJobs on Instagram, you’ll notice that they frequently feature real employees who share their personal stories about their families, upbringings, and how the Starbucks College Achievement Plan has touched their lives.
Not only do you get a greater sense of the Starbucks team, but you also get to experience the positive and emotional impact the firm has on its employees.
Providing your audience with a tale like this will keep them coming back on a daily basis by giving their relationship with your brand a more personal touch. They want to know not only about your company, but also about the people that work there.
Make advantage of video.
Instagram’s video services have improved significantly over the years, ranging from in-feed video to Stories, live streaming, and even IGTV for long-form videos, and for good cause.
Sponsored Instagram videos receive three times as many comments as sponsored Instagram photographs, adding a new dimension to the content you offer.
So, use video to capture humorous team moments, tour people through your office, highlight how a product works, produce a tutorial, host an interview, or answer audience questions to broaden your brand’s storytelling experience.
Samuel Adams is a brand that does a fantastic job of using video into their marketing plan.
Jim Koch, co-founder and chairman of the Boston Beer Company, the makers of Samuel Adams beer, is featured in this film. He’s talking about how he met the love of his life in a special #ValentinesDay post.
Posts like this reveal a company’s human side, making it more likable and relatable.
Live video on Instagram
In addition to submitting films to your feed, Instagram also allows you to broadcast live videos to your followers.
“Live video is more enticing to brand audiences: 80% would rather watch live video from a brand than read a blog, and 82 percent prefer live video from a brand to social updates,” according to AdEspresso.com.
If you want to give your viewers exactly what they want, blending in some live videos appears to be the way to go.
Brands use Instagram live video in a variety of ways, including:
- Organizing a discussion
- Taking visitors on a tour of the office
- Introducing or showcasing a new product
- Executives, employees, influencers, and others were interviewed.
- Tutorials for Q&A Sessions
- Demonstrations of products
- And there are plenty more!!
In addition to the numerous ways to use Instagram Live, there are a few things to keep in mind.
Make sure to include a link to your bio.
Your bio is valuable real estate for directing users to what they should do and where they should go. Make a powerful call-to-action with those precious 150 characters and direct consumers to what they can do next with your business.
Instagram differs from other social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn in that it does not accept links in comments or captions. As a result, the link in your bio is your only opportunity to entice them to visit your website.
Use your Instagram posts to tease an offer, then direct them to your bio link to complete the transaction.
Make it a habit to advise them how to sign up for something or buy anything by clicking the link in your bio. When a brand shares a photo with a new deal, it’s usual to see this link alter frequently.
Within their Instagram bio, Victoria’s Secret, for example, provides a clear and straightforward call-to-action.
There are also a number of tools available to assist you in adding more links or even maintaining a link archive in this area.
For example, LinkTree allows you to link to a profile with several calls-to-action and track analytics, whereas Later’s Linkin.bio mimics your feed and allows you to attach a link to each photo.
Use carousel posts if possible.
Instagram formerly only enabled users to share one photo or video at a time.
With the introduction of carousel posts, users can now include up to ten photographs or videos in a single post, allowing followers to swipe through the content.
Carousel postings have a higher engagement rate per post (up to 5.13 percent) than video or photographs alone, according to studies.
Carousel posts can be used to display a variety of items, including:
- Various perspectives on a product
- A product’s various colors
- Photographs of the before and after
- Instructions in detail
- Customer feedback
Take into account Instagram sponsored advertisements and shoppable tags.
Instagram advertisements have never been more extensive than they are now, thanks to Facebook’s acquisition. Consider employing them to get in front of more potential buyers if you are a very visual brand or promote a consumer product.
It will not only increase the number of people who see your post (bypassing the algorithm), but it will also allow you to link users directly from your photo or video.
Tuckernuck is a brand that performs a fantastic job with Instagram Sponsored Ads.
Tags that can be purchased
Instagram’s ability to generate shoppable tags on posts is another important commercial tool. Shoppable tags allow businesses to sell the products featured in their Instagram images directly from the app.
When you click on a post with a shoppable tag, the item’s details and pricing will appear, as illustrated in the JackThreads post below.
“After seeing a product or service on Instagram, 79 percent sought for more information, 37 percent visited a physical store, and 46 percent completed a purchase,” according to SproutSocial. By eliminating the need to leave Instagram to make a purchase, those numbers will only climb.
Use hashtags, but don’t overdo it.
Hashtags can be a terrific way to connect with your audience and be found, but don’t overuse them.
While Instagram gives users a lot more latitude than Twitter, which has a limited character limit, it’s still vital to select hashtags that are relevant to your company, industry, or image.
#Catsofinstagram will gain you a lot of attention, but you probably won’t want to use it unless you’ll be accompanied by a friendly kitty.
Pillar & Post, a Washington, DC-based antique and home decor store, uses hashtags in just the right way.
Emojis should be used.
Emojis have grown in popularity and use since their initial release.
They’re not only entertaining to use and look at, but they also boost engagement in posts that employ them.
“Instagram posts with emoticons receive 17 percent more likes and comments than ones without emojis,” according to the study.
Tasting Table uses emojis in the post below to show all of the different meals that are contained in that sandwich (do you believe you can call it a sandwich?).
You don’t want to just use any emoji(s) in your posts, though. “You shouldn’t use too many emoji that your customers might not comprehend,” says Influencer Marketing Hub.
You want your social media communications to be clear to potential clients, just like any other communication.”
Determine which emojis will resonate with your audience and which ones to avoid before beginning to use them in your postings.
Use Instagram for more than just promotion.
You should never overpromote on any social media platform, but Instagram requires special caution.
It may be tempting to upload a lot of product photographs or advertisements that you’d normally see on a website’s sidebar, but try to avoid it.
Instagram users are searching for stunning, eye-catching photographs, not business pitches.
If you’re going to use Instagram Ads (the platform’s official sponsored advertisements), make sure your content is relevant to your target demographic while remaining genuine.
Post photographs and videos that others will want to interact with.
Don’t use stock or generic photos.
On Instagram, you want your business to have some personality. Don’t publish generic photos that appear to have been staged (i.e. a formal headshot). Demonstrate a bit of a wild side.
Take photos that reflect your company’s personality and culture. The accounts and influencers with the largest followings are those who post content that is true and genuine. You don’t want to come across as a knucklehead on Instagram.
Maintain your brand’s integrity.
Whatever Instagram features you choose to employ, everything your company does on the network should accurately reflect your brand.
Everyone who interacts as your brand should follow the same brand guidelines, from what to post, like, and comment on to how to communicate with followers.