4 Instagram Facts Every Business Owner Needs to Know

At the end of 2013, Instagram was the fastest growing social media network in the United States (GlobalWebIndex Q4 2013).

Instagram is an online photo-sharing, video-sharing and social networking service that enables its users to take pictures and videos, apply digital filters to them, and share them on a variety of social networking services, such as Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and Flickr (Wikipedia).

Using Instagram for business poses a few questions in business owners minds: How can we market our business on Instagram? And how can we make it a valuable platform for driving new business?

First off, lets make sure we know the in’s and out’s of Instagram:

Fact #1: Instagram photos crush video posting 96% to 4% (trackmaven.com)

What this means: Quite simply post more photos than videos. Use videos to tell longer, well-thought-out stories about your business. For example, instead of just posting a video of an employee being goofy – organize a staff wide dance-off, or a limbo contest, or an eating contest. Get it professionally edited, throw some graphics in there to spice it up and get your message across to your audience. In the days leading up to the launch of your video, tease your audience with behind the scenes and curiosity-peaking pics.

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Fact #2: For every 33 likes, you will get 1 comment (trackmaven.com)

What this means: Across all social media platforms, people tend to be “like” happy – often clicking the “like” button before they even realize what a post is about. Likes are good because it shows authority and popularity, but comments will open up a line of dialogue, which can be more valuable. If you are doing social media right, you will be keeping a close watch on your conversations – making sure that you respond to all (or most) of people connecting with you. One way to open up the lines of communication is to comment on other peoples posts. This will get your brand out there and show people that you want to chat.

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Fact #3: Urban, ethnic, younger, middle income demographics use Instagram the most (pewinternet.org)

What this means: All consumer brands can see great branding and audience engagement results with Instagram; but if your target audience falls into any of these categories, you can build a huge following on Instagram.

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Fact #4: Mayfair and no filter get the most interaction out of all the filters

What this means: You can get engagement from any photo and filter combination if it’s a work of art. However if you’re business is new to Instagram, stick with great natural lighting, taking pictures from angles and be sure to focus your lense (tap the screen if using a smartphone). If you’re not sure, try the Mayfair filter to add some character.

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Conclusion: Post artistic pictures, know your audience and be engaging

What this means: Using Instagram for business is a great way to engage your audience and introduce them to your culture. To post artistic pics, make sure you take pictures from different angles and good lighting, and don’t rely on filters too much. Plan ahead for high quality, engaging videos – make sure they are well produced to get the most miles out of your post. Always keep in mind the type of engagement you want – if you want more comments you have to open up the lines of communication by being proactive, not just reactive to comments.

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