Instagram is a fast growing social media platform that is being overlooked by many business owners. Despite its impressive reach, many owners are not taking advantage of Instagram’s high level of engagement and branding possibilities, leaving higher profits on the table. Here are four ways to use Instagram to build your business and promote your brand.
- Partnering with other Instagram accounts.
Create a list of popular Instagram accounts that reach your target audience. When you’ve found them, you can then contact them to partner for what they call “shout-outs,” which can be either paid or unpaid.
Unpaid shout-outs are usually called “share for share.” You share one another’s content, and you both encourage your followers to follow the other account. You get access to their audience, and they get access to yours.
Focus on accounts that have a similar reach as yours. The owners of those accounts will be more receptive to a share for share partnership, since both sides will benefit about the same.
Paid shout-outs can be a great way to gain thousands of followers — and gain them fast. With paid shout-outs, you’re aiming for accounts that have much higher numbers and a strong level of engagement.
Make sure to ask for a call-to-action in the shout-out, in which the account owner is actually asking their followers to take action on something. One of the best strategies is to ask for their followers to follow your Instagram account.
As you begin to gain your first few thousand followers, you can begin to drive those followers to your website, engage with your brand, and subscribe to your email list.
- Convert your followers into subscribers
Having a substantial email list is essential to growing your business. You can increase your list by converting your followers into subscribers. These are your fans — the people who will purchase your products and services – your customers.
How do I do this you ask? That’s where a well-crafted bio comes into play.
Many businesses find it difficult to get followers to click the links in their bios because the tendency is to overload bios with … well, junk. Break that pattern by writing your bio like you’d write a Tweet: short, useful, and packed with intention.
Make sure you offer a ton of value to people who click on the links in your bio. They can land on a page that is not only informative but enrolls them in a free give-away or downloadable content. Drive your followers to your bio by including calls-to-action in your image descriptions. Your photo caption leads to your bio, your bio leads to your link, and your link leads to a huge offer of value.
- Create must share content
One way to explode your growth is to create easily digestible, beautiful, or compelling content that not only resonates with your audience but drives them to share and interact with your brand.
A great Instagram post can be boiled down to a simple formula, beautiful imagery and engaging text.
When posting your images brand them by including your logo somewhere on the image. This small step not only builds brand awareness with your Instagram followers, but it also spreads as your Instagram content is shared on other platforms.
- Engage your followers
Engagement comes in many forms; followers sharing your content, tagging their friends, and clicking on your calls-to-action.
One of the most important lessons for engaging your followers, is making sure you’re posting when your followers are actually going to see your content. Posting when the largest portion of your followers are online will ensure your content is working overtime for you.
Another way to get your followers to comment on your content, is simply to ask for your audience for engagement. You can either include the action you want your followers to take as part of the image itself, or include it in the description of your post.
For example, ask them to “double tap” if they agree with your post, or tell them to tag a friend that relates to the post.
Instagram is a social platform with tremendous potential for almost any business. And if you use Instagram strategically, it can have a significant impact on your reach, brand awareness, and ultimately more profits for your company.