Instagram boasts of a number of 800 million monthly active users, as of September 2017, up from 90 million in January 2013. This web-based photo-sharing mobile app is one of the most popular social networks all over the world, undoubtedly.
It possesses a huge capability for any business, as the target audience you’re trying to reach out could easily be available on this platform. Instagram happens to remain more popular with teens and youngsters, where about 40% of the global user-base is between 16 and 24 years old.
So what’s your killer strategy for Instagram? Following is a beginner’s guide for you to get going.
1) Keyword-focused profile name:
A profitable and useful tip would be changing your profile name to the keyword that you’re focusing on, related to your business/niche. It means, optimizing your account bio name for search queries.
It is mainly because the Instagram algorithm will consider your username and actual name as the only fields that will get importance in search queries.
2) Fascinating emoticons:
You can add ’emojis’ as a bullet list in the ‘bio’ area to accentuate different components of your business, which further tells your followers about the niche that you’re talking about. Similarly, a short phrase/sentence after the emojis is able to draw much of the required attention from visitors.
It also boosts the visual appeal of your profile to a certain extent. The bottom-line is to try displaying your creative and fun side more, instead of focussing only on formal sentences.
3) ‘About’ your profile:
As the total space in the ‘Bio’ portion is limited, owing to its 150 characters limit, choose to write constructively and precisely. Remember – ‘The first impression is the last impression’. Incorporating peculiar hobbies, interests or skills in your bio is another good trick.
When you determine the list of keywords to highlight in your bio, focus on the central importance or specific needs of your target audience. So that way, when someone sees your account name or even visits your account, he gets a fair idea of what content you’re offering and what topic it is basically about.
Having said that, referring your email address also gives you an advantage. Since it drives your followers to get in touch with you in a professional manner if required (in case the ‘comments mention’ or ‘direct message’ are missed out in the first place).
4) The inclusion of hyperlinks:
The ‘Bio’ region is the only place on Instagram where a clickable link can be posted since there is no provision for including links in the comments section or photo captions. Even if we try to write a link in a comment or caption, it won’t be clickable. Redirecting the users to your main account’s ‘bio’ field by asking them to do so in photo captions would be advised.
You should use your ‘bio’ for indicating your website link or any landing page/capture page, or a specific product along with it’s a short description or a definite ‘Call To Action’ (CTA) button. This also helps new viewers getting identified with your business and what it offers about.
5) Care for right content:
Though it is rightly said that “Content is the King”, but on a visual platform like Instagram, one needs to check the kind of content that he plans to upload. Publishing breathtaking raw images, editing various fun-filled digital filters for photos, posting one-minute looped videos, adding locations through geotagged photographs are some of the top features that this service provides to its users.
It would be wise to appeal more to viewers, rather than just focussing on writing. Even while writing the captions, try using succinct sentences, that resonate well with your audience. All this will be crucial in deciding whether users will follow your profile and would engage with your content or not.
6) Instagram ‘stories’:
‘Story’ section on Instagram is very powerful because it easily allows mentioning clickable ‘@’ symbol (followed by your Instagram name) to be put inside photos or short videos and get the user redirected back to your main account. Your followers have the option to replay the ‘stories’, as this feature lasts for next 24 hours and it disappears later.
Instagram introduced this feature in August 2016.
7) ‘Live’ broadcast:
Just like the case of ‘stories’, similar is the case with Instagram ‘Live-video’ option. It can be added to your Instagram story by hitting the ‘share’ button after it has ended. Since it doesn’t have any time limitation, it’s an exceptional method to discuss your business, let people know why they should visit your account, build your audience and drive high user-engagement.
Instagram introduced this functionality in November 2016.
8) Relevant hashtags:
You can research the top hashtags that are in sync with the post that you publish on Instagram. This encourages to link up the subject/theme of the photos or videos to Instagram’s other content appearing on the same topic. Instead of using the same types of hashtags in every other post, try 4-5 group sets of different hashtags, typically 15-20 hashtags in each group.
When your followers get into the habit of posting with your brand hashtag, it definitely steers good amount of engagement on your posts.
9) More videos than images:
Instead of posting only images, ‘videos’ are a great means of storytelling. So one option could be posting pre-recorded videos on Instagram (which are edited and have a logo of your business) on a regular basis on Instagram, irrespective of whether you possess a business of your own or not.
10) Stay responsive and authentic:
Responding to your followers’ comments and following some of the important ones back is equally important on Instagram. Big brands position themselves as ‘engaging’ by appreciating present-day followers or attracting new ones by tapping on user-generated content.
11) A/B testing:
Lastly, never forget to track the efficacy of your strategies by experimenting with your available options. If a particular post on a particular day at a particular time doesn’t drive you a good number of user-engagement on Instagram, don’t hesitate to split-test by trying out multiple possibilities. It principally includes aspects like frequency of posts, the time of day that you post, popular hashtags, off-beat captions, and calls-to-action.
Owing to all these phenomenal reasons listed above, Instagram can surely be labeled as a profitable social media marketing tool. By following the above tips, one can easily transform from an ‘Insta-amateur’ to an ‘Insta-pro’.