Some Tips on Marketing Your Products on Instagram
Launched in 2010, Instagram now has 500 million users. More than just a photographic repository designed for mutual social flattery, Instagram is also a powerful social media tool in the world of business. Are you aware of its potential uses for your company? Like other social media platforms, Instagram is basically a free address book of countless potential customers right there at your disposal! Though sifting through all the many multi-faceted users and profiles on Instagram in order to find those who may potentially be of interest requires a certain amount of effort. Here’s some advice to help you become an Instagram guru..
1. Learn hashtagology and instagrammar
When you publish a picture on Instagram, hashtags (formerly know as the pound sign), and written as “#” (to all you neophytes and dinosaurs out there), allow you to classify your products by category. For example if you click on #shoes, you will automatically be redirected to a page which groups together all the photos that have been tagged with #shoes. This feature helps people find other Instagram users posting about the themes they are interested in at a given time. Moreover, when people like pictures and follow accounts, Instagram’s algorithm records and analyses which hashtags are frequently used by the Instagrammer in question, with the goal of subsequently emphasising posts that may be of interest to the user in the future.
There are a multitude of websites out there that can point you in the right direction with regard to the hashtags that are most used or that are trending. This can give you a good indication of which ones to use in order to increase traffic and exposure via your Instagram posts.
You can also create your own unique and interactive hashtag to encourage your followers to publish photos with your product while scrawling it underneath the pic. This can be particularly effective with slogans. In this way, you can create a kind of free advertising campaign and reach new followers and potential customers as their followers will be exposed to this hashtag and may begin to follow your page as a result. You can interact with the user by reposting their picture and accompanying use of the hashtag on your company’s account, which will foster a sense of brand loyalty and encourage to other to directly engage with the your company.
2. Be creative
Creativity is really appealing to Instagram users. If they see something they like, they will scroll through your photo gallery, like your posts and, with a bit of luck, follow your account. Fortunately, creative tools aren’t in short supply on this app! Filters are one obvious way to give otherwise relatively mundane pictures an artistic and more striking appearance. Adopting a particular style or using filters that mesh well together from one post to another also gives a sense of harmony within your Instagram gallery. If you always use similar filters or similar colour tones, your account will already begin to take on an identity of its own.
On Instagram today, you can also make use of videos (of a maximum duration of 60 seconds) or the platform’s latest feature, Instagram Stories (temporary videos similar to Snapchat Stories). These can all be useful tools to promote your product or your company culture by creating a narrative to go with it. A particularly inventive video format that may be worth trying is publishing short clips using the Boomerang app. This is specifically designed to show an action and then show it in reverse by rewinding it.
3. Promote your account
If you don’t make efforts to promote your Instagram account, you will find it tough to gain followers in substantial numbers. Asking your friends and colleagues to follow your account and/or like and comment on your posts can seem a little bit silly, but it is actually an essential first step when it comes to launching your Instagram account. This is an easy way of increasing your exposure almost instantaneously.
You can publicise the creation of your Instagram account on your other social networks, such as Facebook, Twitter and Snapchat, thus touting for followers ther. And it never hurts to remind your followers of your presence on this app, even a few months or years down the line. You can also add an Instagram icon on your website or on your email signature to create a direct path to your account.
4. Don’t post excessively
Posting regularly is a good thing, but don’t inundate your followers with your pictures. Indeed people have to know that you exist and they appreciate creative output, but they don’t wish to be constantly pestered by your posts, as this could give the impressions of receiving spam, and they may subsequently unfollow you.
It’s important to analyse your audience’s habits and response rate, and to act in accordance with these. Otherwise, you’re just taking a stab in the dark. And stabbing is a dangerous thing after all. You should test out what works best for your account and elaborate your strategy accordingly. Twice a day, once a day, every 2 days? When you find a routine that works, go with it. But remember not to rest on your laurels. This is an ongoing battle, so reoptimising and changing your approach will be part and parcel of your strategy.
Instagram is one of the best tools for direct marketing because it gives you free access to a global repository of individuals and a captive audience to showcase your company to. Much more than merely posting a picture, it’s the way that you promote your posts that will bring you potential customers.
Crucial elements, such as your company identity (which may be expressed through hashtags) and the time at which you post are key factors to be taken into account. If you follow these rules you will quickly gain in followers and engage audience that will enjoy keeping up to date on your company’s activities.
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