Debamalya, 31 mins ago
An Advanced Guide To Instagram For Business
In 2019, Instagram for Business is helping millions of small brands all over the world increase their sales and hit desired revenues. If you are someone who has not yet experimented with Instagram for Business, now is the right time to start.
With more than one billion active users every month, every brand wants to be on Instagram. From being one of the coolest social platforms for individuals, Instagram has evolved into the perfect destination for brands.
This change has not come overnight. As more businesses realize the benefits of Instagram for Business, Instagram keeps rolling out more business functions for brands. Given the right social media marketing strategy on Instagram, brands can-
Let us look at some official statistics from Instagram itself. This is important, as it gives us concrete reasons why brands, global and local, should consider Instagram for Business.
There are 25+ Million Business Accounts on Instagram
More than 2 Million Businesses Advertise or Promote on Instagram
More than 60% of Instagram Users first discover a Product or Service on Instagram
More than 200+ Million people on Instagram follow at least 1 Business Profile
80% of people on Instagram spend more time on Videos than static images
Of all stories on Instagram, brands contribute 1/3rd of them all
These statistics are staggering in terms of the volume of people and brands on Instagram. For brands, it does not make any sense whatsoever to ignore Instagram. Given such high numbers, Instagram for Business is the preferred choice of many brands. Some brands do not even want to be on Facebook. All they ask is for a brilliant Instagram social media marketing strategy.
The first thing you need to think about is the username that you will be choosing for your business profile. While this might sound simple enough, you will be surprised that nearly all the terms and names that you will likely enter have already been taken! You might be frustrated, but there is a way out. You can use something like this instagram name generator to find a suitable name and know if it is available for use. You can add your business name, choose certain adjectives and verbs and let the software do the rest for you. This is a simple, effective, and efficient way of choosing your businesses’ user name.
Unlike a normal profile, Instagram’s business profile gives you access to a host of professional tools. These include statistical insights, added features, and reports. Creating an Instagram for the Business profile is easy. However, optimizing it requires investment, effort, and smartness.
For small businesses, Instagram for Business makes real sense, as it is free, and we hope it always will be.
Step 1: You need to download the Instagram App for Windows, Android, or iOS.
Step 2: You need to Sign Up using your brand email id.
Step 3: At this stage, Instagram for Business will ask you to choose a username and password. (Make sure the username is exact or similar to your brand name).
Step 4: You need to enter your Instagram for Business profile information.
Step 5: Select a Profile Picture that represents your brand. It can be a logo or a location, but it needs to be legible and attractive. (It will become the identity of your brand).
Step 6: Done. You have your own Instagram for Business profile complete.
If you already have a personal account, which you want to convert into a business profile, you can do that as well. Once you have created the account, you need to focus on three key things-
Once you are done with setting up your account, you need to start creating content and sharing them with the Instagram world. Many sites will tell you what to do after reaching a certain point in your Instagram journey. However, our advanced guide to Instagram for Business will help you start your profile from scratch.
If you are new to any social media platform, the world can seem unmanageable and confusing. However, we are here to help you make sense of the chaos, create your own method to madness story.
This depends on what kind of a brand you are and what is your target audience. An insurance company and a toy brand cannot have the same kind of social media strategy. You need to identify your audience based on-
Once you have created a list of affinities, you can have some surety of what kind of audience you would want to attract.
Instagram is all about authenticity. If you are not ‘real’ on Instagram, you will not be successful. Given the high number of young users on the platform, every brand needs to have an authentic storytelling process.
This involves evolving your own narrative and sticking to it. Gone are those days when brands used to play it safe and be diplomatic. Even a brand like Nike went ahead and reaped billions because of its anti-racism Colin Kaepernick advert.
Whatever the brand, if you strike a chord on an emotional level, you will succeed. From a food brand to a clothing brand, you can align yourself with various social issues. Audiences want brands to speak out and take a stand.
Borrowing from the previous point, creating an identity on Instagram is essential to success. No matter what size your brand is, the platform offers you such an opportunity. After you have chosen your target audience and set your narrative, it is time to create your identity.
The following are some of the options that your brand can espouse-
Again, no matter what industry you are in, the above topics have a huge following. This is not to say that you should not believe in an issue to start promoting it. You definitely need to believe in something close to your heart and create a brand identity out of it.
The above three points also qualify as being part of a social media marketing strategy. However, specifically, this means creating actionable plans. Here you need to decide how many posts you are going to do in a day. Alternatively, what kind of content format you are going to publish.
You should plan the following things before you start creating content-
Planning a social media marketing strategy for Instagram for Business is not an easy task. It is a roadmap. You will have to define it properly before you jump right in.
Once you have a clear idea of what you want to do, you should see what others are doing. In every industry, there are always global players and local players. As a brand owner, you should be aware of what both are doing.
Go through their social media feed (including Facebook) and see what kind of language, imagery, content types they are focussing on. See which posts are getting more traction than the rest. Check for the hashtags they are using.
Doing your research is crucial for you to understand what direction your brand should take. I have often seen brand owners have a stringent view of what they want to do. However, it does not have any correlation with the existing reality.
Only when you are done with the above is it time to create content. A content strategy is something that will help you identify the types of content topics. A brand’s Instagram for the Business page should have-
It is key that your content strategy is a healthy mix of all the above-stated content types. The content needs to be beautifully shot in a professional way. If you are planning to do videos, they should be edited professionally. Brands should also try to limit the ‘text on image’ limitation of Instagram (the lesser the text on the image, the better it performs).
Instagram stories are the next big thing in terms of reaching audiences. Statistically, stories have a more extensive organic reach than even posts on Instagram for Business. A good social media marketing strategy requires that you post at least 5 to 6 brand stories every day.
The best part about stories is that they will be gone in 24 hours unless you choose to share them as highlights. The best content for stories can be daily experiences about the brand. According to Sprout Social, more than 400 million Instagram users share stories every day. By strategically using stories, you can increase your engagements and audience base quickly.
The key for brands, which are new to Instagram for Business, is to post daily and regularly. Do not do three posts in a day and then have no activity on your page for a week. Try doing at least one post per day.
This will help define your brand in a positive way. The impact will be effective on both Instagram’s algorithm as well as on your audiences. They will have something to look for every day from your brand.
To grow a steady follower base and engage people, posting regularly is a must for any small business.
I have already said that Instagram is all about authenticity, Unlike Facebook, which has tended to become a formal sphere, Instagram is still all about the community. By personally engaging with people, you will create a following that will last for a very long time.
It does not require much- just responding to comments and likes that you receive on your post. This might just take 15 minutes every day, but it contributes a lot to brand building.
As a brand new to Instagram, engaging people who like your brand will set in motion a chain of events. These reactions will help you grow organically. Again, unlike Facebook, Instagram retains some organic reach potential.
Resharing or Regramming (Instagram lingo) will help you get the word out about how your customers perceive your brand. A new business can use this effectively to help gain new customers.
Regram is an app on the Play store. It is used to post client pictures to your Instagram account. Rather than you saying good things about your own brand, let your customers be your brand ambassadors. Let them speak on your behalf.
Reframing helps build credibility and positive vibes about your brand on the market. Regrams should be part of your content strategy. You can use Regram once a week and put out the content on your page.
I have already stated at the outset that this guide is a guide for new brands who want to venture on Instagram.
However, once you get familiar with the process, it is time to optimize the page and the strategy. This is where a proper hashtag strategy for your brand needs to be implemented. Following some experience, you can also go for some local Influencers and a preliminary Influencer Strategy for your page.
However, these are advanced mechanisms that should be done only after you have gotten a hang of it. Strategies like paid promotions, Instagram advertising, and shop features come later on, once you are familiar with the platform.
(If you want me to do a separate post on such strategies, please comment in the comments section).
As more and more brands are moving away from Facebook, Instagram is becoming the new destination for them. The emphasis on visuals on Instagram helps it appeal more to brands. There are some brands, which ask about the future of Instagram for Business. The skepticism is genuine, given Facebook’s organic reach bloodbath.
However, in the case of Instagram, there is some light at the end of the tunnel. Instagram has already started rolling out an e-commerce platform for brands. This will enable brands to set up a virtual e-commerce shop on their Instagram page.
The entire digital industry is talking about how Instagram might bite into Amazon and Alibaba for example. For new brands, who sell products, this is a very interesting opportunity. The rollout has already been in the USA. It is expected to be launched globally by the end of the year.
Let me know what you think of this advanced guide to Instagram for Business in the comments section.