Do you want to attract more attention from fans and followers? Of course, you do. With currently 300 million active users, Instagram can be a key marketing tool for your business. However, there are 70 million photos posted on Instagram each day to go along with 2.5 billion likes. The trick is, what can you do so that your brand is one that not only stands out but is one that users want to engage with.
There are plenty of articles saying you need to be doing this, that and the other thing on Instagram. Lucky for you, we’ve found the best ways your business should be using Instagram.
Instagram is turning 5 this year and according to L2 Intelligence, it grew its user base to 150 million active monthly users in half the time that it took Twitter, and in two years less than Facebook. And its growth is showing no signs of slowing down. Pew Research Center a nonpartisan fact tank that informs the public on various trends, found that when it comes to attracting new users, Instagram is king. The amount of US adults using Instagram grew 9% in 2014 which means 26% of all US adults now use Instagram.
One brand taking advantage of Instagram is Ben and Jerry’s, they were also featured in a case study on Instagram’s business blog. They found that of the users who saw the ad (9.8 million users reached) for their new ice cream “Scotchy Scotch Scotch”, 17% not only became aware of the new flavor, they also associated it with Ben & Jerry’s.
So how can you get a piece of this action? How can your business use Instagram to generate more engagement and more brand awareness?
WHAT SHOULD YOU BE DOING?
Measure twice cut once. When implementing a new strategy on Instagram (or any strategy for that matter) set your goals so you are able to measure how effective or ineffective a particular strategy was. One goal you can set today is a formula by Track Maven. He put together a report about Fortune 500 companies on Instagram. Maven notes that big brands receive an average of 37 total likes and comments for every 1000 followers. While you might not be a Fortune 500 company you can still apply this same formula if you multiply your followers by .037. So, for example, if you have 500 followers, set your goal to 19 likes and comments per post.
Now that you have your strategy made and your goals stated, remember that the best ability is availability. This principle translates to Instagram perfectly. No one likes to follow someone who posts whenever they feel like it. If you can incorporate Instagram posts into your editorial calendar and commit to posting consistently your brand will be available to consumers and lead to building trust.
So you have your strategy made, your goals set and your editorial calendar ready to go. But when is the best time of day to post? Analytics app SumAll recently studied the best times to post on Instagram. They found that between 5:00-6:00 during the week except for Mondays, which they found that 8:00pm is best to post.
Show a Unique Point of View
Instagram offers you the opportunity to showcase your products, services, and culture in a way other social media platforms can’t. This platform gives you the ability to let consumers behind those closed doors and see the product development side of your brand. You are also able to allow consumers behind your office doors allowing them to check out your culture, much like Pop Chips. They did a great job of incorporating their product in the “game room” of their offices asking “*Like* if would rather be playing video games #caseofthemondays #popchips #justdance”
In addition to this aspect, Instagram lets you show off your photography skills by showing unique vantage points. Going off of Drones and GoPro cameras that showcase unique angles and points of view, your business can take advantage of this idea. For example, if you are a restaurant, by bringing a ladder or even a step stool with you into the kitchen, you can show really cool angles and show consumers what’s involved in making a meal.
Instagram doesn’t have as many promotion limitations as other social media platforms. This makes it great for implementing contests as a way to engage with consumers in an unforced, organic way. Brisk did a great job at providing value with their #briskpic campaign. They sponsored an Instagram contest soliciting Instagrams tagged with the hashtag brispic to be used on their next Brisk beverage cans. This is a simple way to provide some awesome and easily accessed value to users and it was as simple as adding a hashtag to a photo.
Why is Instagram is Right for Your Business?
Instagram is all about creating engagement through high quality, captivating visuals. 2014 already marked a significant year on the transition from written to visual content. This is good news for the platform since visual content is expected to be more dominant than ever this year. We know how important mobile marketing is, but what’s great about Instagram is that it is strictly a mobile platform. Instagram users check their feed any time of the day whenever they want, which means that the chances to grab their attention are increased, comparing to a desktop. Because of this, it’s important to appeal to consumers in a way that even one second can make a difference.
So what’s the first step? There are plenty of great tips on creating a winning Instagram profile. Once that is set up, what should you expect from utilizing Instagram?
- You will be creating visual content that consumers can access whenever they want, wherever they are.
- Instagram continues to grow and offers a number of things other social media platforms don’t
- It allows consumers to interact with your brand and become more than just part of the conversation.