Instagram is quickly becoming a go-to staple for many of its users. With 600 million monthly users and 400 million daily users it’s about the time to start asking ‘are you using this incredible tool well enough?’ 52 million images are shared every day and 1.6 billion likes distributed on a daily basis. It’s time to ask, are you really doing all you can?
There is a theory, which I’m a strong believer in, which is that depth is much more important than width. What this means is that generating responses from existing customers is much more beneficial to a business than gaining new customers. Your existing customers already have the buy in to your company and hopefully your ethos – this is where the ‘attention’ in your business currently is. Instagram, for me, is the opportune location to build a relationship with these customers!
If Instagram is where you think you should be, any account can be improved with the implementation of the following steps:
- Use high quality Imagery
The difference between images taken on a phone and images taken on a DSLR (and then edited in editing software) is huge. A company page needs to seem professional, which isn’t to be confused with ‘formal’, in order to gain trust. An Instagram account that looks like a personal account of its users is a sure way to lose both the trust and interest from your audience.
High quality imagery can evoke a much stronger response, it can provide reassurance for the viewer and ensure that your brand reputation is associated with one vital word- ‘quality’.
- Easy on the hashtags
Hashtags are great, they show trending material, they allow people to stay up to date with global issues whilst communicating online, they make finding other content incredibly easy. It’s important to remember context however, #ExcitingTimes is nearly guaranteed to add zero value and bring in zero new customers. #LikeforLike, #Follow4Follow #PicoftheDay will all get your post an extra 30-50 likes for sure. However if you sell Mens jeans instore only in Manchester and a 14 year old girl in Russia likes your photo your business will gain no real engagement.
This argument comes back to depth vs width. The depth of customers who may actually step into your business premises should far outweigh the vanity data of people who will never purchase your products/services. Depth wins.
- Provide content – not sales
Ever heard the phrase ‘content is king’? Well, it is. Instagram is no different. Worry less about highlighting your latest offers, worry less about telling people the prices of your content, worry less about the hard sell. Instagram is where you can share your brand story and experiences, then when your customers want to buy your products/services you’ll be in their thoughts.
Content is a staple part of any balanced digital marketing strategy and what better way to provide content than purely through visually pleasing images?
Trust that your customers want to spend time with you, and when they want to give you their money, they’ll give you their money.
- Post at least once a day
Consistency is key, if you post a photo once a week or once a fortnight you’re giving your audience the best possible opportunity to forget all about you.
You don’t want to bombard your audience so they’re sick of you, but consistent and regular posting is a trait found in any successful Instagram page. There’s no coincidence that regular posts result in increased page followers and post engagement.
- Communicate with others
Possibly one of the most overlooked aspects – Instagram is the ideal place to tag friends somewhere to highlight something they’ll appreciate. Find a funny photo? Tag a friend. See some furniture for the friend who’s just moved house? Tag them. See a potential gift for an upcoming birthday? Tag them. This happens all day long.
Not only do people tag each other, but they happily leave comments with their own thoughts and opinions on your posts.
If someone comments saying they like your photo or appreciate something specific within the image and the context of the post, thank them. It’s that simple.
A lot of this advice is very contextual and subject related, but there are ways to make every single one of these tips work for you. If you’re unsure that you’ve got anything interesting to photograph, remember there is a page called ‘samepictureofmichaelcera’ that has over 30k followers.