Instagram has huge potential for marketers, because when used correctly it can be a highly targeted, visual advertising channel for your brand. With over 300 million daily users across the world, there are over 500 million Instagrammers. It allows you to potentially reach customer from all over the world.
A hashtag is an excellent way of engaging your audience and increasing your exposure, but it’s crucial to use hashtags in moderation and ensure they’re relevant to what your brand is promoting.
- Be specific with your hashtags
- Cater hashtags to the social network your using
- Come up with unbranded relevant hashtags
- Don’t hashtag everything
- Don’t hashtag more than your word count
You can find the Hootsuite guide on “The Dos and Don’ts of How to Use Hashtags”
You can find the current 20 most popular hashtags on Instagram according to Webstagram, with the top 5 being:
#love 546,312,756 posts
#instagood 252,226,047 posts
#me 238,166,943 posts
#follow 208,003,100 posts
#tbt 205,718,608 posts
These aren’t relevant to my brand? This statement is most likely correct. This is where you need to be specific and use relevant hashtags, so you need to conduct some keyword research to find popular hashtags which are appropriate for your brand.
Interaction with your following
Once you’ve posted it’s important to be mindful of not forgetting about your previous posts. In this blog post from Pilot Fish Media a digital marketing agency state: “Keep a close eye on everything you plant in the social media garden to see what type of interaction you’re getting. Get involved in the chat, reply to everyone that makes a comment”
People have taken the time to follow you, and ’like’ and comment on your posts, so you should do the same back, after all, it is more exposure for your brand online. Especially if you are able to find the ‘influencers’ in your target market, these are the people who have thousands, possibly millions of followers and are loved, their posts are regrammed and talked about within the online platform. Wouldn’t it be great exposure for your brand if your market influencer shared your brand’s content, the ultimate goal is to have your own content shared by an influencer.
Another great way of interacting with your following and to increase brand exposure is to run a competition, do this by creating an interactive hashtag personal to your brand, and encourage others to use it on their own posts for a chance to win.
Cross promote your brand
Ensure existing fans of your brand are aware that you’re on Instagram through cross promotion on social media channels. It’s super easy to share Instagram posts to your Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and Flickr, which is a golden opportunity to gain more brand exposure.
In addition, you can add an Instagram feed to your Facebook page to make it even easier for fans to discover your brand on multiple social media channels.
On Instagram, there’s only one place to directly lead potential followers to your website, and this is in the bio under your name, ensure you have a link here to your website homepage or a specific offer your brand is currently promoting. Also, ensure you have a concise and relevant bio to inform potential followers what exactly you are offering them.
Work with a brand ambassador
Analyze your followers on Instagram, who is the most enthusiastic about your offering? Message them and build a relationship with them. Brand ambassadors can be highly beneficial for brands on Instagram, they can assist in building your following, increasing your reach and general brand awareness, just a few reasons why they can be beneficial:
- Increase social reach
- Provides positive word of mouth interaction
- Helps to increase traffic to your website
- Increase brand awareness of your brand in regions where your brand may not be as prominent
- Helps to humanize your brand and become more relatable
For more information on why you should use brand ambassadors for your business click here
Utilize the tools Instagram provides
Use the right filters, Instagram provides loads of filters for us to choose from, and on top of that, there are lots of ways to edit a photo after a filter has been chosen, e.g. further increase the brightness. Researchers have found that filtered photos are 21% more likely to be viewed and 45% more likely to be commented on than unfiltered ones.
Instagram provides you with an option to have a business profile, this is essential for your brand! These are free and provides a ‘contact’ button to give the potential followers the option to contact your brand directly. In addition, it also provides directions to your brand’s shop if applicable and gives your brand an insight into how successful your brands doing on Instagram, for example, you can monitor which posts are more successful than others by learning about the demographics and behavior of your audience. In addition having a business profile gives you the option to promote well-performing posts into adverts – enabling your brand to connect with even more customers.
Overall, there are lots of various methods which you could employ to grow your brands following on Instagram, the key point is to remember to stay social! It is social media after all, and if your fans are taking the time to interact with you, you should take the time to interact with them. Finally, another key point is to create visually appealing content and do keyword research so you can target the correct audience.