With all the changes coming to Facebook, it’s no wonder that many business owners are turning to Instagram marketing.
If you want to FINALLY grow a massive following on Instagram, follow these tips to use Instagram to market your small business.
1. Connect with an Existing Audience
Instagram has one of the highest engagement rates among social networks. If you want to start growing your audience, then find one that’s already engaging with your brand.
You can do this by letting your Facebook fans, email subscribers and website visitors know that you are now on Instagram.
You might also consider partnering with another brand, influencer or blogger, to tap into their existing audience.
Another way to tap into an existing audience is to join an Instagram pod. Instagram pods are private groups of 10-15 Instagrammers, bloggers and business owners who get together to support one another on Instagram.
The members of this group have similar audiences, and they use their pod to increase engagement on posts, therefore boosting the reach and exposure of each post.
When you opt to join an Instagram pod, you'll communicate with one another via Instagram DM’s and every time someone in the pod publishes an Instagram post, they share it in a group message thread.
The pod members will then click on the post to like it and leave a genuine comment. Instagram prioritizes highly engaging posts, so it’s an excellent way to keep your post at the top of the feed.
2. Encourage Comments
Again, the whole trick to the Instagram algorithm is to have engaging posts that rank high on the feed. You want more than just likes! You want your followers commenting as well, and the best and easiest way to do that is to ask!
Give your followers a task in each post—ask for opinions, ask what they like, ask their experiences, whatever relates to the post, ask! Instagram only counts comments that are 3 or more words. By asking genuine questions, you encourage people to have real conversations, and share real experiences.
Don't forget to respond back, when someone has left a comment!
3. Use the Right Hashtags
Hashtag strategy is a critical element to grow and engage on Instagram, however hashtags are frequently misused, or used incorrectly.
Avoid using every applicable hashtag that exists. Instead, be thoughtful and strategic about your hashtags.
Always check out a hashtag before you use it, to review the type of posts that are associated with it and make sure it connects with your audience. Also try to find niche hashtags with low competition.
A hashtag with less than 500,000 uses is considered a low competition hashtag. Basically this means that your posts have a higher chance of being discovered through that hashtag because the whole world is not overusing it!
Mix up your hashtags on a regular basis. You’ll just be attracting the same followers and likes, if you don’t do this. If you need help finding other relevant hashtags, you can use a tool like Hashtagify, or hop onto trending topics like National Holidays, to reach new audiences.
Instagram is an excellent marketing tool that can translate to sales and customers quickly, if you use it correctly. At the end of the day, don’t forget to have fun and be willing to experiment!