If you haven’t jumped on the Instagram bandwagon yet for your business, that may not be a good thing. New social media outlets come out almost weekly, and they all claim to be the next big thing. Instagram has been around for a few years now, and with over 300 million users, it has proved its staying power. If you don’t have an Instagram presence yet, or you have created an account and haven’t capitalized on it, now is as good a time as ever.
Do Your Homework
Just like with any new marketing strategy, you need to do some research first to find out how others have successfully used the same platform and how you can adapt it to your business. The first thing you need to decide is what your goal for this particular outlet is and how can you reach that objective with Instagram. Do you want to generate direct sales or just generate traffic back to your website? In order to determine how to best use Instagram, you first need clearly defined goals in mind.
Create an Account
This may sound simple, but some thought needs to be put into it. You will be able to upload a profile picture, create a name for the account and provide a description for your account. These should all tie into your overall marketing strategy and fit the theme and look of your website and other marketing material. This is the first impression potential clients will see, so create a profile that lets customers know who you are and, more importantly, make them want to click further.
Link All Your Accounts
Any and all social media outlets you create for your business should be linked. Some sites are better than this than others, but always make it easy and desirable for clients to click through from one site to another, all the while staying with your company. Don’t just post the same images in multiple places, decide where you want the client to end up and share that location from the other sites. Take advantage of any site that allows you to put direct links to your other social platforms, and your primary web page should have links to all of them. Put links in the footer of all of your emails and other correspondence. This linking and back-linking is what search engines thrive on and will build credibility and high rankings.
Think About What You Post
You can post pictures on any social media site, but images are what Instagram is all about, so make sure the images there are your best, high-quality images that convey a clear and consistent message to your clients. But don’t just post a picture and move on. Use interesting and fun descriptions to keep your audience engaged. A good strategy is to ask a question as part of your post to increase replies. Replies mean higher rankings in search engines.
Always Use Hashtags
But don’t overdo it. Search engines love hashtags, and there should be at least one in every post. Two or three is even better as long as they are relevant. More than that, and they become annoying to the audience and look spammy. Hashtags should be used to draw the right audience to your image and then the description should engage them and keep them there, or better yet, send them on to your website. Attracting people with irrelevant hashtags will cause them to block or ignore you.
Instagram looks like it is here to stay. So create some visual appeal and draw more clients to your site and business by utilizing this fast grown social media site.