Instagram for business has been a valuable tool for over a decade, offering a powerful platform for businesses to boost their online presence, connect with potential customers, and build a loyal following.
With the right strategy in place, Instagram has the potential to drive engagement and boost ROI.
In this article, we’ll explore the essentials of promoting your business on Instagram, covering everything from creating a business profile to leveraging the platform’s unique features and trends.
Why you should create a business Instagram
Instagram boasts a massive user base and, as a result, should be part of your marketing strategy. By establishing a presence on Instagram, your business can increase its visibility.
To build a following with the right audience, you’ll need to develop a content strategy and brand voice that resonates with your target demographic.
When you create a business profile, you also gain access to tools like Instagram Insights, which provides valuable data on your audience’s behavior, helping you refine your strategy.
How to create your business Instagram
Follow these simple steps to get set up with your Instagram business profile.
- Click Settings
- Select Privacy
- Find Account Type, then Tools
- Choose the option to switch to a professional account.
- Choose a category that’s closest to what your business does
From there, you can start with branding your profile, filling out your bio, adding a profile picture, and posting content to your feed. Be sure to include your site info on your Instagram profile (and vice versa) so people know they’re found the right account if they’re looking for your business. You can also consider becoming Meta Verified—a blue checkmark can go a long way for your Instagram profile.
Define your brand according to your brand guidelines, including colors, logos, tone, mission, and products. The right execution can help customers understand your business mission and offering, plus build trust and credibility in your brand.
By regularly reviewing Instagram Insights and experimenting with your content strategy based on the data you collect, you can optimize your account’s performance and engage your audience in more effective ways.
9 tips for how to use Instagram for business
One major difficulty brands face while trying to grow their Instagram audience is the sheer amount of competition. With the helpful tips below, you’ll have a launchpad for carving out your niche in one of the most popular social media platforms on the planet.
1. Post high-quality content
First, make sure your profile is strong with a clear profile picture, an easy-to-remember username, and a concise bio that features relevant keywords. It’s also important to create high-quality images and keep a consistent posting schedule that uses a combination of posts and stories. You should vary photography, illustrations, and videos so your feed doesn’t become monotonous––and don’t forget about the captions.
Consistency, both visually and in messaging, is crucial across your profile, bio, posts, and stories, to ensure your audience gets value and a clear representation of your brand identity.
2. Use Instagram ads
Instagram ads allow you to reach your demographic instead of dealing with the long-winded process of trying to stand out organically.
Developing high-quality content for Instagram ads is pivotal for engaging your audience effectively. It involves crafting visually compelling ads that align with your brand’s aesthetic while adhering to platform guidelines. This includes using high-resolution images or videos, concise yet persuasive ad copy, and clear calls-to-action. Ensuring your ads are tailored to your target audience’s preferences and interests is crucial, as well as maintaining consistency in messaging and branding across all ad components. By focusing on visual appeal, relevance, and audience targeting, high-quality Instagram ads can significantly enhance engagement, click-through rates, and overall campaign success.
3. Harness the power of hashtags
Hashtags are instrumental in increasing your content’s reach and visibility. Using relevant and trending hashtags can help you reach new customers and engage with your existing ones. The most you can include in a post caption is 30 hashtags, though best practice is less than 10 so you don’t clutter the text.
Include relevant hashtags in your bio to help categorize your profile and make it more discoverable in searches. However, ensure they are concise and directly related to your brand or content to maintain relevance. Use a mix of popular, niche, and branded hashtags relevant to the content you’re sharing.
While hashtags in stories aren’t directly clickable, they can still increase discoverability. Experiment with hashtag stickers or text overlays in your stories. You can use up to 10 hashtags in a story, but it’s important to keep them visually appealing and not overcrowd your content.
4. Engage your audience
One of the key metrics for succeeding on Instagram is engagement, which is a crucial part of building an online community around your business. This means fostering meaningful interactions, building relationships, and creating a sense of belonging among your followers.
Actively engage with your audience’s content by liking, commenting, and sharing their posts if appropriate. Brainstorm ways to integrate user-generated content into your marketing strategy to increase engagement.
5. Collaborate with influencers
Influencer marketing is an immensely powerful marketing strategy because influencers already have a wide audience you can leverage. In fact, influencer partnerships can help supercharge your growth overnight.
To make the most of this strategy, partner with influencers whose values align with your brand. Influencers can add authenticity by sharing guest posts on your business account. When an influencer’s follower base aligns with your target audience, you can also have them create sponsored posts on their own account to expand your reach. This can include product reviews and demos, behind-the-scenes content, and more creative ways to promote your brand in a way that feels natural.
6. Run an Instagram ad campaign
Host Instagram campaigns that offer discounts, rewards, or giveaways to your followers. Grab their attention with thumb-stopping content. Encourage users to follow, use a specific hashtag, and/or comment on your posts. Track the campaign’s success using Instagram’s analytics tools.
Give your audience a reason to engage with you on Instagram specifically. This could be an excellent way to bring your followers from elsewhere over to your Instagram feed.
7. Follow social media trends
What’s trending right now? If you don’t know, then you should hire someone who does. Staying on trend is pivotal to making your brand’s business feed relevant. It’s also a chance to shake things up and do something a little different.
Stay current by keeping an eye on social media trends, popular hashtags, and relevant holidays or events. Position your brand alongside these trends to stay relevant and connect with your audience—the true challenge is doing so without being cringy or overtly self-serving.
It’s important to only lean into what feels most natural for your brand. It can be easy to get lost in the digital world and feel like you need to keep up with fast-changing trends, but brands don’t need to insert themselves into every conversation.
8. Promote your local community
If your business has a brick-and-mortar storefront, incorporate your local community into your posts. Showcase other businesses, landmarks, and people in your area to add authenticity and create a unique brand story. Instagram also lets you target specific areas through geotags and locations, which can be useful when you’re hosting special events or sales, or releasing a new product or service.
Community engagement on and off the platform is super important, so be sure to come up with ways to engage both your local and digital communities.
9. Share yourself and your employees
People know what is and isn’t authentic. Pull back the curtain and show your audience what’s going on behind the scenes. Instagram is a useful tool that helps demonstrate that you’re not a cold, faceless entity but a place filled with real people with real stories.
With your team’s consent, post photos and profiles of yourself and your employees on the job. Show off your company culture, celebrations, and day-to-day activities to humanize your brand and foster a personal connection with your audience.
By following these best practices and Instagram tips, you can bolster your brand and gain a competitive edge that can support your business as it grows––on social media and beyond.