Not sure how – or even why – you should be using Instagram to reach customers? Spend five minutes in the Twittering Bird pub, the ATTAIN social media headquarters, to find out more…
Instagram is just for selfies of celebs in swimwear.
WRONG! Someone’s been telling you stories – and not the good ones that get sales and boost brand awareness.
Instagram has more than 800 million monthly active users – second only to Facebook and Youtube, with the audience heavily skewed towards young people who have already abandoned Facebook.
The image-led site boasts the highest interaction rate of all the social media channels at 2.2 percent per follower. It dwarfs the other networks, including Facebook with its measly 0.22 rate.
As Hootsuite succinctly sums up: “If you have good-looking products, Instagram is a no brainer.”
So, here’s a low down of the social media channel and the do’s and don’t of getting started:
What’s the story?
It’s fair to say Stories – posts that run together in the much coveted top-of-feeds real estate and disappear after 24 hours – have been a fairytale success story for Instagram.
Over 300 million people now use the feature daily and Instagram claims it has helped increase the amount of time users spend on the network since its launch two years ago.
Brands have embraced the attention-grabbing exclusivity, and the rough-and-ready behind-the-scenes and authentic content that Stories promises consumers.
And just this month, Instagram has just begun to roll out its latest development, IGTV. With the ability to post video content of up to an hour in length, it is a clear bid to take on its closest rival Youtube. Remember to use Stories to point to your brand’s IGTV channel which will appear alongside it in apps.
Do: Use all the bells and whistles available – the fun features make posts look less corporate. Include special one-off promotions to get people looking forward to your next Story.
Don’t: Spend ages on the posts. They are meant to be done on the hoof. Anything too polished loses authenticity.
Instagram is often seen as a numbers game when it comes to followers. Social media managers will tell you different: it is always quality, not quantity.
The number one no-no in trying to grow an audience is buying followers. Growing numbers organically will take a lot longer but pays off in the end. In the first instance it is fraud. Businesses offer influencers deals and work based on their stats, if accepted they are doing so under false pretences, promising something that can’t be delivered. It will also affect the bottom line. If you are hoping to sell products or services, what is the point of marketing to thousands of bots?
Do: be active – comment, respond, follow, provide great content, top quality images, judicious and extensive use of hashtags in order to build your following. Get involved with like-minded accounts and find your tribe.
Don’t: see above – do NOT buy followers!
Paying your dues
Instagram influencers – ‘real’ people who have amassed a large and impressionable following by sharing content linked to their life and interests – are the new magazine editors and celebrities. They really can draw eyeballs to your brand.
Brands can work with Instagram influencers to create paid content – this has been a thorny area in the past and is now largely dealt with far more ethically with paid ads clearly marked as such under the user name and/or with the #ad hashtag.
Do: Use influencers but be upfront about it – everyone is pretty savvy about it these days and there is no shame in it.
Don’t: Chose influencers who are not relatable to your core demographic. You can be as creative as you like but if your customers aren’t following the Instagrammer you have chosen o work with, they won’t see your products.
If you are strictly old-school Facebook only, ATTAIN can put you in the picture with regards to Instagram and help you snap up success. Get in touch for a catch up at the Twittering Bird today.