Create an Instagram business account to take advantage of this social networking tool. You can use Instagram as a marketing tool to promote your business.
With 400 million active monthly users, Instagram has become the ideal social network for sharing photos and videos. Each day more than 80 million photos are published and 3.5 billion likes are exchanged.
It is a fascinating channel regarding commitment, with a strong popularity among digital natives, those people born after the 1980s, who will be the decision-makers of tomorrow.
In this article you will discover how to start their business on Instagram and how to produce compelling content regarding commitment, not to mention how your watch on this social network.
1 # Create your Instagram account
So you decided to create an Instagram account for your business, congratulations! But now, where to start?
First of all, you will have to choose an account name. The most obvious are to choose your company name or a name that allows for direct recognition of your brand.
Complete your profile with a photo of your logo, offices or products, as long as you identify your brand, and fill in your description with a short informative text about your company. In this bio is an element that will be decisive to redirect your public to your site: the link. Because Instagram does not allow you to insert clickable links in the description of photos, the bio of your profile becomes the only place to encourage your subscribers to visit your web page.
There are two ways to use this link optimally:
A permanent link, which will return to the page of your most relevant site: presentation of your products, your spirit of enterprise, it will depend on your strategy.
A link that will change regularly. Do you have a blog or frequently have news to share? Instagram can be a good way to highlight these contents. Publish a photo related to this story and indicate in the legend that the link is in the description of your profile, link that you will have updated.
Whatever the strategy that works best for you, consider shortening your links, to lighten your description!
If you want to open several accounts for your business, as the industry or geographical area, Instagram recently introduced the ability to manage multiple accounts using the same profile.Enfin, remember to connect your Instagram profile to your page Facebook if you have one. Nothing like a little cross-channel to gain visibility!
2 # Define your content
Before posting anything set an editorial line, which will guide your content creation. What topics to address or avoid? What tone to adopt? What type of content to offer? The goal of this editorial line is to retrace the tone of your brand while taking advantage of the tools of Instagram. It can, of course, be flexible, and adapt according to the success of your contents and the trends that seem to you timely.
Your content must meet 3 of the most important criteria: Quality, Creativity, and Relevance.
Mind the quality of your content. Your Instagram account will be a real showcase for your business, and if your photos are blurry or the sound of your videos saturates, your subscribers will quickly decamp.
To make good pictures it is not necessary to equip a professional SLR, the smartphones produced these days are equipped with cameras of a quality quite suitable.
Moreover, these have the advantage of often offering the possibility of taking pictures directly in square format, preferred form on Instagram. You will have a direct overview of what will be on your photo at the time of taking it, without having to crop it.
And the work does not stop once the picture is taken! Your photo can be improved before being posted. Many applications exist, here is a small non-exhaustive list:
- Edit your photos: these apps offer effects that Instagram does not have, frames, filters and other original effects, there’s something for everyone! Afterlight, Snapseed, Photo Editor.
- Colorize parts of your photo only: Color Splash
- Add text to your photos: PicLab and Typic
- Insert emoji and stickers: Line Camera
- Create collages of multiple photos: Layout and Pic Stitch
- Make GIFs: Boomerang
- Taking photos with long exposures (ideal for light painting type pictures): Long Exposure Camera 2
- For copyright reasons, you can insert your logo and your signature on your photos: iWatermark
With every photo editing, you will find an application that will help you. After all, there are many applications to insert animal heads on our pictures.
Instagram is not your catalog, do not just show your products, be creative. Many brands use the social network to promote a lifestyle and showcase its consumers.
Do not hesitate to visit photo sharing sites like Pinterest or Flickr to find ideas. Drawings, stop-motion or panoramic videos, any type of visual content has its place on Instagram, and many brands benefit, so why not you?
You can express your creativity as much on the background as on the form. The smartphone, compact and mobile, is a camera that offers more possibilities than you imagine, as illustrated in this video. Duplication, macros, underwater photos. It’s up to you to find your own tricks!
Your unlimited creativity must still serve your brand. Your photo or video must remain linked to your brand universe. This need should not hinder your creativity, but feed it!
Among the brands that operate best products to offer the very visual content, the Pilot pens are a perfect example. Their Instagram account features their different pens with drawings made by them.
# 3 Engaging Your Community
The goal of your presence on Instagram is to build a loyal community around your brand and to gain visibility.
Start by offering content that your community will appreciate. Fortunately, science is there to help us. The far-reaching study of Yahoo Labs and Georgia Tech has focused on the impact of Instagram filters on commitment. As a result, photos published with a screen generate more engagement than filters, especially those with warm hues, which increase exposure and contrast. Equipped with the right filter, your visuals have 21% more chances to be seen and can generate 45% more comments. The study concludes that those to be favored are Mayfair, Rise, Valencia, Hefe, and Nashville, while Lo-Fi and X-Pro II are to be avoided.
Simply Measured analyzed Instagram accounts of the 100 largest brands by Interbrand and drew several conclusions about the commitment that generate these brands. First of all, despite the increase in the publication of videos, photos remain the most engaging content type. Then, 7 of the 10 most used hashtags in 2015 are created by brands with #BMW and #MercedesBenz leading. Finally, the emoji Heart is the one that generates the most commitment, which explains why it is the second most used by brands.
From this study and from our own experience, we have written for you a few best practices to engage your community on Instagram:
- Use hashtags: Hashtags (or word-sharp for the pickiest) are an essential factor regarding visibility. Find the right hashtags for your content and audience. Use generals (#fun #mode #selfie #instamood) and hashtags trends related to news, event, and your content will have a much better visibility! But limit yourself to 15 hashtags, or your subscribers will graze the #indigestion.
- Create your own hashtags: to give your audience a way to identify themselves as such, generate hashtags in your name. You can create them for your marketing campaigns, events and news. The hashtag is also very useful to launch competitions on Instagram. For example, encourage your subscribers to post a photo of them according to a theme related to your brand, using a hashtag unique to your competition. You will gain in visibility and competitions are always a good way to retain your audience.
Locate your content if you want to target a very particular geographic area, Instagram offers to find your photos and videos, feel free to use it as often as possible!
- Like, comment, mention: the relationship between you and your subscribers is not one way, show them your interest in them. Love and comment on their content when they are relevant to your brand, and mention them in the comments.
- Make your subscribers stars: nothing like a bit of marketing ego to engage your brand ambassadors! If a customer publishes a visually appealing photo of your product, post it on your own page by thanking it directly (after asking permission!) The customer in question will be grateful to you, and it will inspire your community to Identify you in their contents.
- Speak directly to your audience: You are interested in the opinion of your customers in your photo captions. Ask them questions, or give them hidden texts (“I never leave without my ___”) and let them respond in the comments. In addition to generating comments under your publications, this will allow you to have a direct feedback on the appreciation of your products by your audience.
- Use your partner: you work with many suppliers and partners? Do a little cross-promotion and enjoy your visibility! For example, you will sell your brand in a new shop. So make sure your products are available in this shop by mentioning it on Instagram and ask them to do the same. Unity is the strength!
- Submit exclusive content: Instagram your audience wants to feel privileged, create the only dedicated to this social network content and do not connect all your photos on your Facebook or Twitter page.
- Be regular: the board last but not least. Be constant in your frequency of publication. Find the one that best suits you and settles there. To help you know where you stand, create an editorial calendar dedicated to Instagram and plan your publications ahead of time.
Finally, always keep in mind that your goal is commitment. Submit more content on your community than on your product. Put forward your audience, your vision, your team, and you will gain sympathy and authenticity.
# 4 Watch Instagram
Want to know in real time what your content is about? Understand the impact of your Instagram account? Know the trends of the moment to exploit?
Then, you will have to set up an active watch of the social network. It will not only help you understand the public’s feelings, but it is also a good way to always improve your content creation.
By monitoring data such as your subscriber growth, the number of mentions, likes and shares and comparing them to those of your competing brands, you will know where you stand in your market.
To analyze Instagram content according to a specific theme, to identify trends to follow and evaluate your brand, many tools are available, such as the Locowise service.
# 5 Inspire yourself from the biggest
Whether we are a start-up just born or a well established SME, we all have interests to look at what is done elsewhere to be inspired. Large multinationals have managed to create a large community on Instagram, which keeps growing.
Here are some lessons to be learned from these accounts:
Use the emoji as Starbucks
Starbucks can boast one of the most engaging Instagram accounts. And this can be explained in part by their use of emojis. By linking them directly to the content of their photos, Starbucks offers content that seeks to appeal to the emotions of their audience.
Be cool like MTV
MTV is definitely an account to follow if you want to associate a lifestyle with your brand. GIFS, Memes, MTV offers content that fits perfectly with its young audience. Nothing surprising coming from the television channel who knew how to redefine the fresh for years.
Master the cross-channel as Louis Vuitton
The luxury brand has totally integrated Instagram into its communication strategy, to offer its subscribers, not pictures or videos, but user experiences. With the creation of a site dedicated to their Instagram account, where you can learn a little more about each of their posts and the promotion of their other social networks, Louis Vuitton offers content that does not stop Only at Instagram.
Repeat as H & M
If you want to redirect your subscribers to your site, H & M is an example to follow. The brand mentions in all its posts a short link, hm.com/life, which refers to a lifestyle webzine. Keep in mind that the link must be brief and memorable, as it will not be clickable in the description of your photos.
Highlight your teams like IBM
Instagram is the ideal platform to uncover behind the scenes, and IBM understands that. The brand regularly publishes photos of their teams at work, testing new products or developing IT, and its subscribers are delighted to see the back of the decor of this company. It is an exercise that also helps to strengthen cohesion within your business.
Once your Instagram strategy is defined, find your own examples to follow, to inspire them, and who knows, to surpass them!
Now that you know everything, you have no excuses for not publishing your best photos on Instagram. You can also find us on our account @nashasinc.
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