Instagram is at the heart of social media platforms. With more than 1 billion monthly active users, 25+ million business accounts, and a projected 14 billion USD in revenue (Hubspot, 2020), the potential growth for the business is exponential on this social media platform. Especially if your target customers are from 18- 35, Instagram is definitely a must-have in your marketing strategy.
If Tik Tok is a video platform, then Instagram serves as a visual party where the fantastic, beautiful pictures can lead to winning the game. We have listed some of the most important features for your Instagram account to help your business breaking through in this digital space, and turn engagements into tangible ROI.
Choose a visually consistent feed.
Instagram is the visually-driven platform on which users will use their eyes first to decide whether they will keep exploring the post or not. Needless to say, the heart of Instagram is visual content, and this is the key feature to consider to grow followers.
Depending on your brand identity (colors, style, logo, characteristics), the Instagram feed should be well- presented, trendy, and reflect your brand personality.
One tip for a consistent look in your feed: Always start to design your new images with the signature color, and try to put that post in the feed to see whether it is consistent with the previous posts or not.
Have a succinct profile description
A clear, succinct, and informative profile description will create a great impression on the visitors and will guide them to the final destinations that your business want (website, shopping cart, etc).
One tip for business: Using “link in bio” tools can help you optimize and promote more than one link. These tools can help you improve your Instagram marketing strategy by measuring clicks, driving traffic to your site, and converting sales.
For example, our brand use linkinbio to drive traffic to the website. This link will be inserted in every post. Meanwhile, Thebodyshop Australia will use linktree to modify and categorize their products for the best customer- experience while shopping.
Create story highlights
If you would like to showcase your brand and promote your business, Instagram Stories Highlights are a fantastic tool that worth the investment. Because they’re placed at the front-and-center of your profile, new visitors can easily discover what your company is all about. There are many ways to organize your highlights, such as your product category, customers’ testimonials, customers’ trend, and so on.
We recommend that you should design the cover image for your highlight to complete the consistent look of the whole Instagram account.
Define your own hashtag
Fact: Hashtag is the most powerful tool of Instagram to help your Instagram profile to be found. With the right strategy in using hashtags, your account will reach a higher number of potential customers, attract followers in your niche, and increase engagement.
If you’re lost in the hashtags strategy, try to adopt these tips from Intelligence4Start:
- Don’t use up to 30 hashtags: Although 30 is the maximum number of hashtags that you can use in your post, don’t overuse it because the Instagram algorithm can define your post as spam.
- Create your own branded hashtags: the hashtag embraced your brand name can help content more discoverable and trackable, and creating a stronger community around your brand.
- Balance the high- volume search hashtags and your own specific hashtags: If your post merely using highly popular, generic hashtags, your posts will hardly to be found. Meanwhile, if you use your own hashtags only, the possibility of reaching a larger pool of audience will be limited. Therefore, Intelligence4Start recommends that 20% of your hashtags are highly popular ones, and 80% are the hashtags that are super relevant to your post (at around 5 – 6 hashtags).
Focus on user-generated content.
User-generated content is a must to grow interaction with your audience on Instagram, especially if your target audiences are Millennials and Generation Z. Marketing to these customers are not the one- way communication anymore. Instead, authentic and two- way communication are the holy grail to dig in. By creating competitions, engaging customers into the product development, and featuring on the posts, your brand can generate more brand followers, promote brand loyalty, and reduce the marketing costs.
Use the Instagram story
The report of Hubspot indicated that Instagram is a super incredible tool to engage with users. Users are not only consuming and interacting with content consistently but actively creating content regularly as well with 22% of users watch branded Stories (from a company, business, or brand) more than once a week, or 67% of users surveyed of users surveyed
have ‘swiped up’ on the links of branded Stories.
One trick to make your story more appealing: showing off the “human side” of your brand, including Q&A sections from customers, introducing human resources, and your company cultures.
Embrace the video format
85% of businesses use video in their marketing strategy because they feel clearer about the ROI of video. They said that video is becoming more affordable and easier to depict the brand values. Also, video marketers get 66% more qualified leads per year (Optinmonster, 2019).
There are many kinds of videos that businesses can deploy, ranging from explainer, presentation, testimonial videos, sales, and video ads. Apart from the video and gif on the newsfeed, don’t forget IGTV (original long-form video content) and the latest feature Reels (short-form video).
Fact: we did a small experiment on our own Instagram account. Two types of the same content: video and image, are posted at the same time of the day. We found that video content has a higher engagement rate (40%) than the image content (20%). Therefore, creating an insightful video can keep your customers staying at the end of the message and you’ll have a higher chance to convert them into sales.
Quality over quantity
Having a beautiful Instagram feed is not enough to keep people coming back for your Social media site. The content you provide must satisfy their needs in visual, and their desire in acquiring new knowledge and insights. If your content strategy remains unchanged, your followers will get bored and in turn, the engagement rate will fall significantly.
What do marketers need to do?
- Share the pots the provide the insights from their own experiences that add values to the customers.
- Post consistently: the average recommended posts of a day is 1.5 times. However, ì you cannot keep up with this tight schedule, remember that consistency is the key. Fewer but High- quality posts will generally generate better results than the low- quality ones.
- Analyze your own Instagram account to find the best time to post: depending on your type of business and target audiences, Instagram analytics can tell you what is the best time for a high engagement rate.
Influencer marketing is a powerful tool to increase your brand awareness. However, not all businesses have a huge budget to pay for famous figures such as Taylor Swifts or Ed Sheran. If you are a small business with a limited budget campaign, we advise you to keep an eye on the micro-influencers in your key area. Micro-influencers are defined as someone who has between 1,000 to 100,000 followers on a specific niche market and is generally regarded as a topic specialist.
A statistic indicates that micro-influencers can create higher engagement rates around 2-3% than macro-influencers. They spend a lot of time on their online presence, producing high-quality content, and addressing inquiries from their followers personally.
By partnership with these key opinion leaders, your brand can target the right audience, generate the authenticity in your brand, and build a positive brand image.
Promote Instagram account on other platforms
Obviously, if you have many accounts on different social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc, having Social Media management tools that integrate all platforms into one will be the ideal decision to save both time and effort. However, if your business only focuses on 2 platforms- Facebook and Instagram, you still can post the same picture on Instagram, Facebook, or any other social media space at the same time, instead of posting pictures on each website individually. Follow these steps, and your picture will be automatically posted on other platforms.
In your Profile section, Choose Settings → Linked Account → Choose the Account you would like to link.
Instagram is growing exponentially in the next few years. With the right investment in the marketing strategy on this platform, your business will reach a large number of potential audiences and turn them into your customers. If you need help with your business Social media account, let’s have a talk with our experts in Social Media Marketing to increase your audience and expand your online brand.
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