One of the best things about the digital age is that it brings everything right to our fingertips. From communication to leisure to work – everything is done in multiple platforms that help save you time. For brands (big or small), social media has been the main channel for marketing and sales efforts. These platforms have proven to help businesses reach bigger audiences than traditional methods ever could.
We are turning our focus to one of the social media giants – Instagram. It’s since evolved into more than just a platform for photographers to edit their photos. With over 1 billion users, the platform allows you to reach and engage with your target audience. But how can you market your business on Instagram? Good marketing on Instagram is posting the right images or videos your audience gets value from while also conveying your brand message.
It’s safe to assume that Instagram users are consumers. And because they often turn to social media for references, marketing your brand on Instagram can be a sure-fire way to boost sales and increase traffic.
Successful Marketing on Instagram
Marketing your brand on Instagram doesn’t stop at uploading a great photo and praying to the marketing gods that your post will get a high reach. Marketing on Instagram will require your brand to send a consistent message through various digital media that captures user interest and is useful to your audience.
Build a professional page
When you want to bring your brand on to Instagram, you must learn the importance of separating it from your personal account. Marketing on Instagram is all about your audience and never about you. Have your business account follow industry-relevant accounts by leaving likes and comments as these accounts might return the favour by following you back, which can help boost your reach.
Your business account should also contain a short but very compelling bio. It’s always smart to include links to your website, landing pages, promotions or new content such as blogs.
A good marketing practice on Instagram is to follow a specific brand theme and colour palette. For example, Bentley Motor’s Instagram account has a particular colour scheme and feel to their posts. It makes luxury cars even more aesthetically pleasing to the eye.
It sets a specific tone on your audience that way, and when they see a particular combination of colours, they would immediately think about your brand. Setting a theme will help you reflect your brand’s personality and values and translate this to your audience.
Although Twitter proudly claims the throne to hashtags, this effective way to boost traffic is still very much applicable when you’re marketing on Instagram. Smaller brands can even benefit from leveraging hashtags, especially when they’re trending.
Hijacking trending hashtags is something that will prove to be beneficial for your brand. But it would be best if you used these sparingly and together with a string of other brand-specific hashtags.
For example, Nike’s winter campaign utilised the hashtags #projectnorth and #chooseyourwinter. The former relating to its audience who are avid runners who run through the 10-degree Charles River weather in the middle of the Boston winters.
A thing to remember is that although hashtags are great at generating traffic, be sure the ones you’re using are also relevant to your brand’s overall theme and image. It must also relate and be consistent with the image you’re trying to convey to your audience. Otherwise, it just makes you less credible.
Promote, promote, promote
Leveraging your Instagram account is pretty much the same as how you’d leverage your other social media networks. When setting up your Instagram account, it’s a great move also to connect it with your Facebook page to pull in your current audience.
When you’re promoting your Instagram, it’s important to remember that you avoid hard selling. Promote your account through your visuals showing how your products can solve problems. There’s a fine line between wielding your influence and coming off too pushy.
Creative and Professional Photos
Product photos have always been essential when trying to sell online. Consumers want to purchase products that look legit, and the only way you can achieve that is by posting high quality and detailed photos. Take Alexander McQueen’s Instagram as an example. His fashion-forward aesthetics focus on only the best details of his work so those looking into high-end and creative fashion pieces would most definitely lean towards his products.
Promotions and Exclusive Content for your Followers
One thing that’ll help promote your Instagram is giving exclusive content to your followers. For example, Stella McCartney often posts restocking announcements on her Instagram before any other channel. So if you like being on the cutting edge of fashion, you’re going to follow her.
Influencers have generally played a considerable role when marketing on Instagram. The app offers the perfect space for brand ambassadors with a good set of personal followers. For example, when people see celebrities using a specific product, they’re going to want to try it for themselves.
Aside from that, the pool of influencers is vast and diverse; thus, you can get in front of a brand new user base. It also helps you target specific types of followers. For example, when you’re in a clothing retail business, you’d most likely lean towards using influencers known for promoting clothes. When they do these promotions, their followers will then be curious and flock towards your page as they decide whether or not your brand is something they’d like to follow. This is where great content comes in – the better content you have, the higher the chance this traffic will start to follow you.
Paid ads are one way to help you promote your Instagram account as it allows you to reach a larger and more targeted audience. The best part is that the total cost will primarily depend on your target. Therefore, it can work around your budget. Essentially, Instagram provides you with five kinds of ads:
These ad formats then show in your target’s feeds and stories in a non-disruptive manner.
How to Market Your Business on Instagram
There are plenty of other ways you can market your business on Instagram. As the year progresses, you can only imagine the different features that are yet to come. The best way to properly market your business on Instagram is for you to explore the many features the platform provides you. Remember, the platform is free! Social media marketing can take a long time to see results, but like everything else in business, patience and creativity are key.