Instagram is cool way to connect with your socially engaged consumers. There are 130 million active users on Instagram every month, and every day 1 billion photos are liked. Use Instagram for business purposes in the right way, and you could have an instant viral marketing success. Use it wrong, and your efforts on this young site could be a big empty fail.
Do you use Instagram to tell a visual story about your brand, instantly engage with your followers wherever they are, and even get very real user-generated content through photo contests on the app?
A few tweetable takeaways:
- Use hashtags
- Make your followers famous
- Show your products authentically
- Use Instagram photo contests to boost your engagement
1. Create your Instagram for Business account - It’s easy to make a business account on Instagram.
2. Make a business username - Use your business name as your username. If it is taken, choose a username that is instantly recognized with your brand.
3. Complete your profile - Include a cool, branded photo, a short informative bio, and a link to your website.
4. Connect your account to Facebook - Instagram is owned by Facebook. Connect these two very powerful social media sites to boost your marketing efforts.
5. Make an Instagram tab on your Facebook page - this enables you to instantly share your Instagram photos to your Facebook Fans.
6. Create a brand specific strategy - Keep your Instagram content strategy focused on your brand’s unique way of seeing the world. Instagram is a photo (and now video) sharing site. Connect your business with your ‘tribe’ on Instagram in a consistent and particular visual way.
7. Use hashtags (#’s) in your updates - Hashtags are a major part of Instagram. It’s a big way of how users can find you through their mobile Instagram searches. Unlike on other sites (such as Twitter), you’re not limited by character count. Include a few tags (but not too many - or you’ll look desperate) in your posts to get connected.
Here are a few strategies in using hashtags:
8. Use brand specific hashtags’s - Include your business name in some of your post hashtags. Also, use unique tags for particular marketing campaigns you run. For example, if you’re hosting a photo contest on Instagram, make a unique tag just for that campaign. This tactic both promotes your contest, and it gives your consumers a distinct tag to connect with others participants (so they can see their competition!).
Focus on Your Customers
9. Make your followers famous - Share followers photos on your social sites. Show your customers you appreciate them by acknowledging their cool photos, and share them with your Facebook fan or Twitter followers. NOTE: be sure to ask permission to use their photo first!
Starbucks is one of the top 3 brands on Instagram. They use this tactic frequently. Every few weeks they show appreciation for one their followers, by giving a shout out to cool image makers. The images include their products. They take it one step further by updating their Facebook covers, using the Instagram photos. Their fans love it.
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