How To Get Started On Instagram For Business
Instagram has become a super popular platform in a short amount of time. In fact, the average user spends 21 minutes on Instagram EVERY DAY. Imagine your content, services, or products in front of your ideal customers every day? Yep, it can definitely grow your business.
So how do you get started on Instagram for business? Here are the 7 guidelines you need to follow.
#1. Choose Your Username Wisely
Number one, choose a great username that is easily searchable and recognizable.
If you’re marketing your personal brand, use your name. If you’re a larger company, use your company name.
The best option is to match your Twitter handle if you already have one. If your name has already be taken, maybe add a middle initial, use an underscore or period, or add a word like tv or your city to the end.
Never use numbers because they make it difficult to find you.
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#2. Craft An Informative Bio
Number two, craft an informative bio. Besides having an eye-catching avatar photo, your profile should tell people what your business is all about.
Use industry keywords that help strangers easily figure out what it is that you offer. A strong bio also includes a call to action whether it be “leave a comment”, “use our hashtag”, “email for inquiry”, or “visit our website”.
Lastly, you need to have a link to wherever it is that you’d like to drive traffic. This could be your website, blog, youtube channel, online store, or any other site.
I recommend that you lead followers somewhere that will add them to your email list. Once you have an Instagram follower on your email list you’ll then be able to nurture and communicate with them regularly.
#3. Post Great Visuals
Number 3 is to post great visuals. Your content needs to reflect a great representation of your business.
What are some words that describe your business? Think about how others might describe it. Then write them down. Then choose to only post images that align with those descriptions.
You’ll want to share a variety of content, for example, happy customers or employees to show off company culture, inspirational quotes or action shots, your products out in the world, or pictures from events. You’ll want to make sure that in each post you’re actually providing value for your followers.
Use your smartphone, avoid blurry pictures and bad lighting, and have fun with the built-in Instagram filters. You’ll also want to stick to a consistent look by using the same filters and colors across the different posts.
Number four, write thoughtful descriptions and hashtags. The description of your post is just as important as the image itself. You’ll want to provide additional value, insights, or inspiration as context around your post.
Tag people or other brands that are in the picture. Before posting a post, ask yourself if “this post is meaningful, entertaining, interesting, funny, informative, resourceful, or motivational”- if not think again before your share it.
Instead of just stating what the picture is about, consider what supporting stories you could describe in the post to add context for your followers who likely don’t know much about your brand yet.
#5. Engage With Other Instagram Accounts
Number five, start engaging with other Instagram accounts. You increase engagement by first engaging with other accounts.
Identify potential customers and start by following a minimum of 200 people. Use the explore button or hashtags to discover new people you might like to follow. Some of the people you followed will follow you back in return if your content is appealing. Like their posts and leave genuine comments.
The more you interact with others the more they will interact with you. You can start out with just 20 minutes a day engaging with others.
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Number six, use specific hashtags. Figure out which hashtags work best for attracting your ideal followers, but you won’t know until you start playing around with them.
Start by using a variety of very specific hashtags while avoiding wildly popular ones. The goal is to use hashtags that your potential customers are already browsing. Look at some of the hashtags your competitors are using as well as ones your followers are using.
Choose at least one hashtag that is unique to your business, and start tagging your own pictures with it and promoting it in your bio. As your account grows, your followers might start using your unique hashtag.
#7. Cross Promote On Other Platforms
Number seven, cross promote on other platforms. If you’re already using other social media platforms you should promote your new Instagram account to your existing audience.
Be careful not to share duplicate content across different social media channels. You don’t want to bombard your network with the same images over and over again. Instead, keep your followers interacting on Instagram by keeping most of your content exclusive on Instagram.
Whether you have a product or service based business, a strong Instagram strategy allows you to gain brand awareness and increase your visibility online. When you’re able to connect to your audience in the ways that they already enjoy consuming content, you’re much closer to converting real customers.
What are you doing to make your Instagram content engaging for your audience? Let me know in the comments section below.
Chrys was bitten by the entrepreneurial bug at an early age. By age 27, Chrys has started and ran two online businesses. Chrys now runs Chrys Media, a company that runs online conferences for online entrepreneurs.