Why use Instagram to promote your small business? if it was created as a photo sharing platform for people to socialize? That may have been its originally intended purpose, but did you know it can kick-start your business and help you reach your sales goals?
Currently there are 1 billion monthly active users on Instagram and that number is still growing. That’s 1 billion customers for your business to potentially target! How and why use Instagram as a platform to target your customers and make your business successful?
Keep reading and we’ll tell ya why and how!
Why Use Instagram to promote your small business?
There are so many different social media platforms out there so why use Instagram? Instagram is considered to be the best social media platform for engagement or your ability as a brand to connect with your followers. It’s visual, simple and it’s attracting the younger generations more than other social media platforms.
Instagram can go beyond just visuals. In addition to showing your followers compelling photos you can create a social media profile that highlights your brand’s mission and goals, show your products and capture leads and sales. Instagram may seem small but it is a powerful tool that your business should be using no matter what!
Let’s start with visuals. Instagram obviously emphasizes photos more than any other social media platform. With Facebook there are posts and comments and articles and clutter that might allow followers to skip over a simple photo. But with Instagram the main event is your photo! It needs to be clean, sharp and provocative.
What this means is that it needs to be a high quality photo that makes your followers think. Since people can scroll on Instagram they often will scroll right past photos that don’t intrigue them. Your photos need to stop them in their tracks long enough to engage with your post, read your caption or click through to your website if you are running an advertising campaign.
So if a photo can say 1,000 words what more do you need? Photos may be able to tell the whole story but captions are just as important. Once you have captured your user’s attention with your photo you need to have an interesting caption. Ask your followers a question or provoke engagement in another way. If you just post a photo, people may not understand how you want them to engage with your brand or what action you want them to take.
Start with a hook to capture your follower’s attention and end with a call to action. This can be as simple as getting them to answer a question in the form of a comment or a like. You need to be writing captions that drive people to engage or take action.
Instagram is a mobile platform and since 80% of social media browsing takes place on mobile devices there should be no doubt in your mind about building a presence on this platform. Users can view Instagram as a web page but can only post photos from their mobile devices.
This may seem like a con to some business owners but the way people are shopping has changed since the advent of the smartphone. 80% of shoppers use their mobile phones to look up product reviews or compare prices online. It’s quick and convenient because smartphones are small and compact and most people have one with them 24/7. If you want your business to be successful, you will need to stay up with the trends.
Instagram is Linked to Facebook
You probably know that Instagram is owned by the social media giant Facebook but they’re still two different platforms. So why use Instagram with Facebook if they’re two separate social media sites? You can actually link the two platforms reaching both your Facebook audience and your Instagram audience.
If you run an ad on Facebook you can also run it on Instagram. Or if you post content on Instagram you can have it automatically post on Facebook as well. Linking your accounts is beneficial because it can save you a ton of time and help keep your social accounts consistent.
Advertising on Instagram
Why use Instagram you ask? One word: Advertising. If you are not utilizing Instagram (or Facebook for that matter) to advertise on social media, then you are missing out on a huge revenues!
Sure you can post great content on your page, but this will only reach your followers. If you want to reach people that do not follow you and strengthen your social media presence, you need to create advertisements. You can target specific demographics and locations, link directly to your website or landing page and gather data.
These sponsored ads will appear in users feeds outside of your follower base. You can run regular targeted ads or you can retarget customers.
Retargeting ads are beneficial because they help capture customers who may have been shopping on your site and abandoned their cart. And since Facebook and Instagram work together you can retarget people on both platforms!
Don’t know where to begin? Create a profitable Instagram advertising campaign that drives sales with our how to guide!
Utilize Instagram stories and highlights
Instagram Stories is basically a feature of Instagram that allows its users to share everyday moments quickly and easily with their followers. These moments could be through photos or short videos. Then each one of these photos and videos will be compiled as a slideshow on Instagram. This will stay on your IG account for 24 hours before it disappears. But the good thing is, IG Stories are featured and placed at the top of your followers home feed.
Instagram stories are the perfect way for your business to show your work behind the scenes. Give people a sneak peak at new products or take some risks. People love to see the inner workings of a business. So you can use your Instagram story to give followers a behind the scenes look!
If you own a restaurant for example, you can show how your food is made fresh every day. If you are unsure if you want to post about something or try new marketing tactics, use your Instagram story as a test run. Maybe you don’t know how a behind the scenes tour of your business will be received. Try a story and then check to see the engagement! You can even create a poll for people to vote in.
Have a favorite Instagram story? Save it and turn it into a highlight that never leaves your profile. Highlights can be used to show customers processes, answer frequently asked questions and more! The best part is that it won’t disappear after 24 hours like Instagram stories do. You decide when highlights come and go.
Milk Bar uses highlights to show fans a variety of their favorite stories. They also make sure to have engaging icons set for each highlight.
So Why Use Instagram?
Surely you know the answer to this by now, but let’s review anyway. You can engage with your customers, advertise your products and build awareness for your brand! It’s not enough to just post photos.
Instagram is a social platform that you should be utilizing no matter what your product or service. You need to be writing engaging copy, using Instagram stories and highlights as well as keeping up with new features.
Can’t think of what to post next? Let our social media specialists know! They are equipped to build a custom content strategy for your business that is professional and successful. Contact us today to get started building your Instagram profile.