What is the Key to Building a Successful business? I think there are many keys that will open doors that lead to success for your online business. In this particular post, I want to talk about INSTAGRAM! It is not just an APP to share selfies and goofy videos. It is a very lucrative marketing tool!
Do Your Research And Create A Strategy
If you are here, you must realize that Instagram can be a very important social network that you can use as a tool to build your brand and get recognition for your brand. The photo-sharing app is not just important to businesses such as major retailers, restaurants, or any other large company. It is quite an essential tool for every kind of business, including ONLINE businesses.
Instagram is where people can visually identify with your business. You can tailor make your Instagram page for your audience. When you have a strong presence on Instagram, you keep yourself relevant. You keep yourself from being ignored or forgotten by potential consumers of your products or services.
Instagram will open up so many opportunities for your brand, if you take it seriously. Engagement is key. The more engaged your are into your post the more people will be engaged in you and your business.
Now that you know how important Instagram is to your online business, it is time for you to learn how you can make it work for you. Below, I will show you how to build an Instagram strategy, set up an account, and show you the best practices for brands. Please read on!
Create Your Instagram Strategy
First you want to figure out what your Instagram goals are. These goals should tie back to your business. These may include:
- Increase Product Sales
- Increase traffic to your website (This should definitely be a goal)
- Increase brand awareness
- Increase branded hashtags mentions
The best way to help guide your decisions of reaching your goals is to do your research. Use your own Instagram account to research other people who are in your field or has the same niche or product. Look at your competitors and use them for inspiration!
Here’s my Personal Experience
I just instantly gained followers and likes by looking at my competition on Instagram. I did a keyword search around how to “be your own boss” and “follow your dreams” on Instagram”. I put those words in the search bar and pictures that had hashtags of those words came up. I clicked on each picture and then I clicked on the person that posted it and I viewed their page. I saw the types of pictures they were posting. I posted pictures similar to theirs and I used hashtags that were similar to what they wrote under their post. I instantly got likes and I instantly gained followers.
When someone likes a photo of mines, that may lead them to my website, especially if I wrote a comment telling them to check out my bio and click on the link that I provide ;-).
What You Say in Your Bio is Important?
This is very important. This is where you can post your mission statement or a small synopsis of what your overall website business is about. This is your eye catching moment. It’s nothing that you have to think hard about because if someone click to check out your profile, they are already interested. Whatever it is, your bio should reflect your goals and the visuals you choose to post on there.
Another important strategy that you want to establish is a content strategy that is
- Choosing how often to post
- Choosing what time to post
You don’t want to bombard your audience with post every second and minute of the day. That’s not good for business and even though you may be desperate for followers, you don’t want them to know that! Choosing what time to post will require you to have “test post” at different intervals and times and see what works best. That is how you find out how engaged your audience is at the time you send your post. When you know this, it will become easier for you to gain recognition and get people to see your website!
What To Post?
Your visual content (post) is helping you build your brand. So with that in mind when you are posting your content you want think about the following:
- Think about your visual style. You want to stand out from your competitors. When you post something you want your audience to instantly recognized your particular post. You can do this by using one particular filter on all your post or choosing a border that goes around each of your images that is constant an all your images you post. You want people to stop scrolling when they see your image.
- Decide what you want to focus on when you post photos. For example, a make-up line will post images of make-up or make-up tools, or a website about camping tools will probably focus on outdoor activities photos or outdoor supplies. You can also find ways to incorporate lifestyle photos in your particular niche for example if you sold camping products, you can actually post photos of yourself out camping or pictures of your friends around a camp fire. This really connects well with your Instagram audience because you don’t come off too salesy.
- Hashtags are very important when you post an image. Find hashtags that relate to your business. If your business is about health and fitness, your hashtag can be #healthandfitness or #exercise. Hashtags help people gain access to your images when they search Instagram for that particular hashtag. I’ve used the search bar several times to find something I was interested in and I was able to see other users posts that related to the word I searched for and if I found their image to be helpful I would click on it and view their profile. This is what hashtags can do for you and your online business.
- Under your image, it is important to add a caption. Why? This is where you can be creative and actually show your followers and potential followers that you are human. You can write anything here that relates to your website and what you have to offer. It definitely has to relate to your post of course. This is also the place where you add your hashtags.
Let’s get started!
I know many of my fellow millennials have this app already uploaded on their smart phones but for those that do not please look below and add it on your phone ASAP!
- Download the app to your mobile device from the Apple Store or Google Play. It is free. If you have a Window’s phone it is also available but it may be from an unofficial source. The one that I know and used was called 6tag.
- Create your username and bio. Your Username can be your name if you are trying to build a brand around yourself. I think it’s easier to simply use your name. If you have a brand than that’s great to use as well. Your bio should describe who you are, what your business is about and what people can expect from your business. Keep is short, you only have 150 characters
- Your profile picture could be a nice picture of yourself that reflects who you are and how you want to be perceived. If you have a business logo, you could used that as your profile picture as well.
- Enable your push notification if you need to. If you don’t have a problem with staying engaged and checking on your Instragram account to see who followed or liked a page than you may not have to enable your push notifications. I would encouraged you to do it so that you won’t neglect your Instagram account.
- Don’t be afraid to hit that follow button. You want to search for people that is in your field and are top influencers. Search for hashtags that is related to your niche and engage in comments under post. This will increase your following count.
You make money using Instagram just by simply posting a photo, adding some relevant hashtags, and following people. It’s that simple. If you have a business that involves food, that post you thought was just something silly could lead you to gain your followers business.
I’d love to hear about what your thoughts on using Instagram to gain traffic to your website. Please leave comments below.