Instagram was developed by Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger and was launched on October 6, 2010. Systrom was the very first person to post the first photo on the app; the picture was taken in Mexico, and it was a picture of his girlfriend’s foot and a dog… the rest is history. Instagram went on to become the number one platform for sharing photos.
Over 25 million businesses use Instagram to grow their business.
According to Business Insider, brands across numerous industries are projected to spend as much as 15 billion dollars on influencer marketing.
If you’re unsure of what an influencer is, an influencer is an Instagram user who has established a large following of other Instagram users and has established credibility and trustworthiness to the point that any type of brand, product, or service they promote, they’re able to persuade their followers to support it. If you have the right type of business and marketing plan in place, you, too, can become one of Instagram’s biggest influencers for your brand and business as well.
How to Make Instagram Work For Your Business
Lots of people look at Instagram as simply a platform to post pictures and keep up with their favorite celebs. Well, it is the go-to for all of that, but from a business standpoint, there’s so much more to it than that. Instagram is a lucrative platform to drive more traffic to your website and grow your business.
Being that Instagram can drive tons of traffic to your site, can you believe that businesses don’t utilize the platform to their advantage? And the biggest way that they don’t take full advantage is by messing up in the very first stage… building their business website.
Just think about it… the whole point of an Instagram business page is to drive traffic to your website. If your followers are redirected to your website from Instagram, but your website is hard to navigate and looks sketchy, people won’t continue to visit your site. To your followers, your site is just not well put together.
Lots of business owners tend to go for the free website builders… And what they find out is that they get what they “didn’t pay for,” leaving them with sketchy looking sites.
There are tons of website builders to choose from, but if you’re going for quality, you’ll want to use Shopify’s website builder. Not only does it allow you to sell your products, but it also has a blogging platform that’s perfect for you to share content from your website directly to Instagram!
First Impressions of Your Site
If followers come to your website and they don’t like what they see, they will definitely leave. People are quick to judge others based on their first impressions of them, and the same goes for websites.
According to conversionxl.com, it takes one-tenth of a second for someone to form a first impression of you, and in the digital world, it takes 50 milliseconds for a visitor to your website to form an opinion and decide whether they want to stay or leave.
So make sure the content on your website is relevant to the content you post on Instagram. Not only that, but you also want to make sure the content you post resonates with your current followers as well as potentially new followers.
1. Create an Instagram Business Account
You can still have your personal Instagram page, but when it comes to promoting your business, you definitely need to have an Instagram business account; it’s just more professional and it will make you look more credible.
It’s actually quite simple to create a business page on Instagram. You just simply go to your profile and tap the settings icon in the top right corner (it looks like a clog or gear), tap “switch to business profile,” and then follow the prompts.
Once you’ve done that, you get to experience all the perks of your business page. Some of the biggest perks include:
- Your followers have the same type of instant access to contact you as they would if they went directly through your website.
- You can use Instagram’s free tools, Insights, that give you stats about your posts to help you track and better understand your audience.
2. Use the Free Tools That Instagram Provides
If you’ve had or still have a Facebook business page, then you’ll see that it’s not so different from an Instagram business page. Instagram’s free analytics tool is called Insights.
Through this tool, you’ll be able to view the most important statistics like impressions, a thorough breakdown of the demographics of your followers, and engagement data. The tools are so valuable and helpful to your business because they give you real-time insight into how followers are interacting with the content you post.
3. Post Products That Will Tempt Them to Buy
One of the best ways to tempt your followers is to post product teasers. Using the right tactics and verbiage, you can get people excited about your product without being too pushy or looking like you’re trying too hard.
You can post a picture of your product and offer a free app to your followers so that they can “shop the look” or “gain access” to the exclusive products… The goal is to make everything look effortless.
4. Partner With Industry Influencers
If you want your product to reach the masses, the quickest way to do it is by influencer marketing. This is where you would partner with influencers who have established a large following.
Influencer marketing is actually one of the best ways to increase your following on social media, regardless of which social media platform you choose…
The great thing about influencers is they’ve established a high level of trust, so anything they promote, their followers will more than likely buy because that influencer has given it their seal of approval.
The key is finding influencers that are in your industry. Once you find influencers in your industry, reach out to them and try to build a relationship with each one of them.
Making Instagram Part of Your Business
If you couldn’t already tell, Instagram is a vital part of millions of businesses’ success. You, too, can experience success with Instagram if used correctly. Everything from industry influencers to Instagram’s free tools, your success is at your fingertips.
Just remember that when using Instagram, you have to be consistent. People use social media every day, and for your brand to stay relevant in the minds of your audience, you have to be consistent with posts. So, if you haven’t already, go ahead and create a business page on Instagram and let Instagram start working for you!