As a business owner you know it’s important to be on Instagram, but simply existing on the platform isn’t enough to hook an audience. To gain followers, and eventually customers, you must learn how to promote your Instagram account.
The good news is that there are several proven strategies that work for businesses in almost every niche. In this guide, we will explore how to promote your Instagram account by:
- Publishing more content
- Publishing more Stories
- Creating a branded hashtag
- Tagging locations on posts
- Partnering with influencers and other brands
- Running giveaways and contests
- Using Instagram advertising
- Integrating Instagram with your WordPress site
- Cross promoting Instagram posts on other social media networks
By the end of this article, you will have a comprehensive understanding of the many ways to promote your Instagram account.
Publish more content
One of the best ways to set yourself up for success on Instagram is to post more content. While individual posts will receive fewer views, your daily overall reach grows significantly with each post. If you post five times a day, you will reach five times as many people as you would by posting once per day. This is in direct contrast with Facebook, where you want to limit your number of posts.
Five posts every day might seem unreasonable, but there are many types of content you can post on Instagram:
- Behind-the-scenes photos of you and your team at work
- Product photos
- Pictures of your work lunches
- Photos of you interacting with members of your community
- Images of happy customers using your products or services
- Useful or inspirational quote images
- Pictures showing your support for charitable causes
- Announcements of sales, giveaways, etc.
Of course, posting frequency needs to be balanced between what is ideal and what you can reasonably accomplish. This is why most businesses only post 1.5 times per day. To maximize your odds of long term success, start with one post a day and only increase posting frequency when you’ve gotten used to those daily posts.
Pro tip: Take several photos at once whenever possible so you can schedule posts in advance. This will help you maintain your posting frequency in the face of emergencies.
Post more Stories
Technically, this could have been filed under “publish more content”, but Stories are important enough to merit their own discussion. Over 500 million people use Instagram Stories. According to a survey by Facebook, Inc., 62% of those users have become more interested in a brand after seeing their published Stories.
Stories are one of the best types of content to invest in, as they appear at the top of users’ feeds. They also allow you to combine photos, videos, and music to create something truly unique. And there are several different ways to use Instagram Stories:
- Create tutorials – The slideshow format of Stories, and the ability to incorporate video, make this the perfect way to share tutorials featuring your products or services.
- Advertise a line of products – Instagram Stories allow people to tap on them for more details or swipe up to see prices. This is a great way to get people excited about upcoming product lines.
- Tell a story – Share your experience at an event, the progress of your brand over a year, or even what your regular workday looks like. Get viewers interested in the story behind your brand or a specific product.
New to using Instagram Stories to promote your Instagram account? Consider using story templates to structure your first few. There are hundreds of options available, so you’re bound to find something that fits your needs.
Create a branded hashtag
A branded hashtag makes it easier for you to leverage the power of user generated content. Your customers can use the hashtag in posts that show them interacting with your products or services. This acts as a powerful form of social proof. You can also use this hashtag to facilitate contests and giveaways (more on that later).
Here are a few simple ways to create a branded hashtag:
- Turn your brand name into a hashtag – The easiest way to do this is to use your name directly, like #GoPro. You can also modify your brand name by shortening it or even adding a word. One great hashtag that uses both of these techniques is #MyCalvins.
- Create a hashtag that conveys the experience of interacting with your brand – Consider what people do with your products and build a hashtag to reflect it. Some great examples of this are the #ShareACoke and #TrippinWithTarte.
- Build a hashtag around a specific product – Do you have a flagship product or product line? Turn its name into a hashtag or create a hashtag for people who want the product, like Audi did with #IWantAnR8.
All of these options provide unique advantages. You might even want to create multiple types of branded hashtags over time.
Once you have created a branded hashtag, you can promote it by attaching it to your posts, getting customers and influencers to use it, or running a contest around it.
Every social media platform offers some form of geotagging, but it is particularly important on Instagram, where people are likely to search for photos of specific places. If your business has a physical location, you need to be using geotags. They can also be useful when you’re visiting well known or picturesque locations or even just other shops.
There are a couple of ways to make geotags work for your business:
- Add geotags to your own Instagram posts – If you are in a known location, Instagram will automatically suggest the tag. If you’re posting images from your own business, you can create a custom location.
- Encourage employees and visitors to tag your location in their posts – You can do this with a sign saying “Sharing your visit? Remember to tag our location in your posts!” or by asking people directly.
The amount of use your business will get out of geotags depends largely on where you work. If you work in a private office most of the time you might only use geotags occasionally. On the other hand, if you run a restaurant, geotags might be one of the core aspects of your marketing, used in every single post.
Giveaways and contests are excellent tools for gaining massive amounts of followers in a short period of time. There are three main types of giveaways you can run on Instagram:
- Solo giveaways – These are giveaways that consist entirely of your own products or services. Solo giveaways showcase only your brand and are only dependent on your resources. However, these giveaways don’t offer the built-in promotional opportunities of other giveaway formats.
- Collaborative giveaways – This is when two or more brands are giving away at least one product/service in the same giveaway. These giveaways will often be posted on the pages of all brands involved. Sometimes there will also be multiple prizes, allowing a member of each audience to win something. Collaborative giveaways are a great way to build relationships with other brands while also gaining new followers.
- Sponsored sweepstakes – Sponsored sweepstakes occur when a person or brand gets somebody else to donate prizes for a giveaway. They are typically promoted on the account of both the sponsor brand and the account running the giveaway. The sponsor company often delivers the prizes themselves, saving you the headache of shipping and greatly reducing your cost.
You might find it difficult to find sponsors or collaborators for giveaways when your Instagram account has a small following. Run a few solo giveaways to get people engaging with your page, put your content in front of new followers, and show potential collaborators the merits of working with you.
Partner with influencers and other brands
You can talk about how amazing your work is all you want, but it will never carry as much weight as another person’s opinion. When an influencer or brand endorses you, they give you their credibility.
Sponsored sweepstakes and collaborative giveaways are two great ways to form partnerships, but there are several other ways to partner with brands and influencers:
- Instagram takeovers – In this scenario, you are the person posting to the other brand or influencer’s social media accounts for one day. You will also have the responsibility of responding to comments on the posts you create. Often these takeovers are reciprocal, so if you want to participate, be prepared to share your Instagram account too.
- Live events – If you work in an environment where guests are welcome, host an event for local influencers. If you work in a private office, offer to take local influencers to great restaurants or other locations with excellent photo opportunities.
- Reviews – Send your products to influencers or offer your services to other brands in exchange for honest reviews. Ask them to both post a review on their account and give you a testimonial you can use in your own social media content. This is also a great way to work up to other forms of partnership if they love what you do.
- Sponsored posts – If you have some wiggle room in your budget, you can hire an influencer to make content for you. Some influencers might also accept sponsorship in the form of free stuff. This content can be published on your account, their account, or both accounts at different times. However, most brands are not open to this type of collaboration.
All of these options are great ways to build your audience. However, choosing your approach is only half of the battle here. It is also important to choose the right influencers and brands. You want to work with a person or brand whose content and audience are relevant to yours. Tools like Traackr are great ways to find influencers to work with.
Use Instagram advertising campaigns
Social media, and especially Instagram, can still be great free marketing tools, but advertising has become a major part of the social media world in recent years. Advertising on Instagram specifically is huge, with over two million advertisers already invested.
The easiest way to get started with Instagram advertising is by using Promoted posts. These work in much the same way as Facebook boosted posts. You post something, it does well, and you pay to keep the success going.
You can even rely on Instagram to choose the content. If Instagram notices a post doing well, it will automatically suggest a paid promotion.
If you want to start an advertising campaign, you can choose from several different ad types:
- Stories ads
- Photo ads
- Video ads
- Carousel ads
- Collection ads
You can also buy Instagram ads in a variety of ways, including in-app purchases, but we recommend using the ads manager for more precise control of your campaigns.
Pro tip: Study examples of effective Instagram ads to gain ideas for your own campaigns.
Integrate Instagram with WordPress
Instagram is a great place to find new audiences, but it’s also a great place to strengthen connections with your existing customers. You can encourage those strengthened connections by customizing your WordPress site with Instagram plugins. These plugins allow you to do a variety of things:
- Display your Instagram feed on your website
- Import content from WordPress to Instagram
- Automatically share images from your WordPress library on a set schedule using our very own Revive Old Posts plugin
- Make it easy for visitors to follow your Instagram account
These integrations encourage people from your website to visit your Instagram account and vice versa. In a world where people need to interact with a brand 5-7 times before they buy something, every extra interaction might be the one you need to make a sale.
Cross promote on your other social media networks
Do you have a notable following on another social media platform? Get them to follow you on Instagram as well. This increases their exposure to your brand, putting them one step closer to becoming a customer.
Of course, no two social media networks are the same. You need to use different tactics for effective cross-promotions on each platform.
How to cross-promote on Facebook
There are a few different ways to promote your Instagram account on Facebook:
- Include a link to your Instagram in the “About” section of your page – Include the URL of your Instagram account in the “Description” area of your “Page Info”. Use a direct call to action to encourage people to follow you on Instagram as well.
- Participate in relevant Facebook groups – Facebook groups haven’t suffered from declining organic reach to the same extent that business pages have. Most groups will allow you to post relevant photos from your own Instagram account. Some also allow promotional posts.
- Post about your Instagram on your page – People who like your page don’t always go to the “About” section. When you post a photo or video that you’re exceptionally proud of, let people know about it.
How to cross promote on Twitter
You can also use a few different strategies to promote your Instagram account on Twitter:
- Link to your Instagram account in your bio – Twitter only allows one link in the official “link” area of your profile, but you can put as many links as you can fit into the bio.
- Tell people when you post something awesome on Instagram – Brag about your content! One great way to do this is to post some of your Instagram content on Twitter as well, telling people to follow you on Instagram if they want more.
- Participate in Twitter chats – Twitter chats are events where people gather for 1-3 hours to discuss topics related to a specific industry or hobby. Most of these events happen on a weekly basis. You can post links to Instagram photos that are relevant to the topics being discussed in any given week. Some chats also leave space at the end for people to promote their work.
Final advice on how to promote your Instagram account
Just to recap, to build a large, engaged audience on Instagram you will need to employ a variety of tactics. We recommend the following strategies:
- Publish more content
- Post more stories
- Create a branded hashtag
- Tag locations on posts and encourage your customers to do the same
- Partner with influencers and other brands
- Run giveaways and contests
- Build Instagram advertising campaigns
- Integrate Instagram with your WordPress site
- Promote your Instagram account on other social media platforms
Feeling overwhelmed? Start with one or two of these strategies and expand your promotion efforts from there.
Want more information on how to promote Instagram account? Make sure you sign up for our free ebook, How to Market Your Business on Instagram, below!
The post How to Promote Your Instagram Account: Strategies That Work appeared first on Revive Social.