Social media marketing is a great, low cost, way for small businesses to spread their brand awareness, so if you’re not taking advantage of Instagram for Business, now is the time. With 90% of accounts on Instagram following business accounts, it’s apparent that there is a lot of value in creating and maintaining a business account. Users follow businesses for promotions, announcements, inspiration, and general information. It’s a great opportunity for small business owners to bring in new customers and keep their current customers engaged.
Small business owners all have one thing in common: lack of time. Setting up and running Instagram for Business does not have to be as time consuming and daunting as it may sound at first. You’ll need to invest the most time upfront, when creating your account, settling on aesthetics, and setting goals for your marketing strategy. Then it comes down to consistency and engagement. If you’re willing to take a minute or two to respond to a customer’s comment, and some time planning your weekly content, you can start to reap the benefits of one of the world’s most popular social networks.
Here are some tips to help you grow your small business with Instagram for Business:
Consider your website design, there’s a consistent theme throughout, no matter which page you are on. Your Instagram account should follow those same guidelines. The tone of voice and aesthetics should be consistent, or else it’s confusing for your audience and may be more difficult for you to gain the highly coveted follower count and customer loyalty.
Establish your brand’s color palette and fonts, especially when it comes to posting stories. The distinct style will help grow your brand recognition.
Don’t Ignore the Hashtags
Hashtags are the key to Instagram marketing because they make your content searchable and discoverable. Doing some hashtag research so you have a pool to pull from with each post is extremely beneficial. For profiles with 1,000 or fewer followers, posts that contain at least one hashtag receive 29% more engagement- and an average count of hashtags per post is about 10.
Stay up to date on trends and incorporate those hashtags into your posts and stories. Here are some free hashtag research tools for you to use.
Stories allow you to tell your brand’s story in a deeper way than just posting on the grid. There are many ways for you to leverage stories. You can do things like facilitate Q&As or polls, go behind the scenes, make announcements, and post sneak peeks. They do only stay active for 24 hours, but you can always categorize your content for your stories and post them to your highlights reel, which is displayed right above your grid. Instagram stories have a lot to offer, here are some tips and tricks.
Create Shoppable Posts
With Instagram for Business, you can easily sell your products directly from your page. Shoppable posts are for physical goods that you can tag in your posts with information like price. Your account must be a business account linked to your Facebook account. When your accounts are linked and your inventory is uploaded, you can start tagging your products in your posts.
It should be noted that Instagram has already made updates to their shoppable posts and they are constantly optimizing ways to sell on the platform. This article goes more into depth about shoppable posts and the latest developments.
Add Links to Your Bio
Your bio should explain your brand and what you do. Your target audience should immediately have an accurate picture of what they should expect from your page. Don’t forget to add a link to this section. You can easily drive people back to your homepage, or specific landing pages and content. Be sure to refer to the links in your posts.
Post User Generated Content
User generated content can be very effective when building credibility. This type of content is related to your brand but created by a user who is not officially associated with your brand. These representatives can help increase your engagement by nearly 7% and it has been found to be 42% more effective than branded content.
Consistently posting will help build trust and followers. There are many free tools you can use as far as content calendars, so you don’t need to spend time every day, or every couple of days, posting content in real time. Take advantage of some of the marketing automation strategies and tools for small businesses. Your audience will learn to expect content from you – this is your chance to maximize engagement.
Try Out an Instagram Ad Campaign
With one goal in mind at a time, create an ad campaign for Instagram. Your ad should offer value and be visually impactful. Check out your competitors’ ads if you’re looking for a place to start. Test your ads out to see which performs better to maximize your budget. The price will vary, but it’s relatively low (between 20 cents to $2 per click).
How to Create an Instagram for Business Profile
If you already have an Instagram account, you’ll need to switch your profile from personal to business and you’ll also need a Facebook for Business account. If you don’t already have an account, your first step is to create a personal account. You can sign up for Instagram on your phone or on your computer.
In order to switch from personal to business, go to:
- Linked Account
- Add Account
- Switch to Business Account