Social media is an extremely powerful marketing tool and Instagram provides small business owners like yourself with the opportunity to get in front of the people that matter most in an exciting and engaging way.
This article will teach you how to set your profile up for success so you can begin to strengthen your online presence on Instagram. If you’re new to social media marketing and want to learn more about the basics before you dive into a specific platform, you can click here for expert social media tips that will help your small business thrive.
Set Your Account Up for Success
Step one is to set your profile up for success. If potential customers are finding your small business for the first time via Instagram, you will want to make sure your profile is ready to capture their attention. Choosing a distinct Instagram username and handle, crafting a stellar bio, and choosing a unique profile are all key elements that must be taken into consideration when setting your Instagram profile up for success.
1. Choose a Distinct Username and Handle
Choosing a distinct Instagram username and handle will help new and existing followers’ find and identify your account quickly and efficiently. Your username is the only searchable feature on your profile so it’s important that you use keywords that are easily identifiable with your brand.
2. Craft a Stellar Bio
Creating a strong, concise Instagram bio that lets your audience know what you’re all about is imperative. In 150 characters or less, you have to capture your audience’s attention, educate them on your business, and convert them into a potential lead.
3.Choose a Unique Profile Photo
When it comes to choosing a profile photo that represents your business, it’s important that you choose a photo that is instantly recognizable. You want consumers to be able to recognize your profile photo and immediately associate it with your brand.
4.Take Advantage of Functions and Features
When you sign up for an Instagram for Business account, you are given the ability to include a website link, a category or industry label, custom call to action buttons, and contact information in your profile. Each one of these elements helps you distinguish your profile from competing brands.
Switch to a Business profile
When you switch your account from a personal profile to a business profile, you are given the opportunity to take advantage of additional features that allow you to expand upon your Instagram marketing efforts. A business account allows you to track your progress and draw insights from your account that make it possible for you to pivot or adjust your strategy.
If you’re a product-based business as opposed to a service-based business, you can take advantage of Instagram’s shop feature and sell direct-to-consumer directly through your Instagram profile, eliminating the need for an external e-commerce platform and enabling you to convert your audience within the Instagram app.
Take Advantage of Hashtags
Similar to the way in which you would use keywords on your website, using hashtags in your Instagram captions helps people discover your content. People can search your specific hashtags or popular hashtags that you may have incorporated into your recent Instagram posts to discover your content. Incorporating hashtags in your Instagram marketing strategy will also help you increase your visibility and reach people who may not have already heard of your business.
It’s important to choose your hashtags methodically because no one will be able to find your content via a random hashtag that has no traction. In addition to carefully choosing your hashtags, you may also want to consider browsing popular or trending hashtags so you can take advantage of their popularity and hopefully show up in the Trending Tags section of Instagram.
Creating a branded hashtag that represents your small business is also a great way to distinguish your content. A unique branded hashtag may not result in additional exposure, but it will help your audience find your content across multiple social media channels.
Engage Your Audience
Having a business profile on Instagram doesn’t mean you can get away with disassociating from your audience. Social media is all about socializing and it's extremely important that you make an effort to engage with your audience on Instagram. You can do so by posing questions in your captions, using interactive stickers and polls in your Instagram stories, or even just by replying to messages and being active in the comments section of your posts. Engaging with your audience will help you create a loyal community.
Make Your Profile Pop
Instagram is all about creating an appealing visual aesthetic and nailing down your look on Instagram is a great way to make your profile pop. It’s important that your Instagram aesthetic accurately represents your brand. When creating posts for Instagram, you should take your brand guidelines into consideration. Utilizing your brand colours and fonts will not only aid in creating consistency throughout your online presence, but it will also help you create a distinct, yet recognizable profile.
Craft Compelling Copy
Instagram captions act as an additional tool that you can leverage to connect with your audience, tell a story, ask a question, encourage engagement, or even sell a product. When creating compelling captions, it’s important to take your brand's tone and voice into consideration. You will want to make sure that you’re enhancing your visual elements by creating content that resonates and adequately reflects your brand.
Don’t be Afraid to Experiment
Gone are the days of strictly posting images on Instagram. Images are now curated, edited, and chosen carefully to make sure they flow consistently with the entire Instagram feed. Not only that, but Instagram has also evolved to include additional features like stories, reels, IGTV, and video capabilities. Taking advantage of these new features is extremely important if you want to increase your reach and get your content in front of as many eyes as possible.
The Instagram algorithm favours profiles that provide the most value to users meaning you not only have to create consistent, quality content, but you also have to create a variety of content that appeals to different people for different reasons using different features. If a certain group of users engage more with Instagram reels as opposed to static content, reels will be the type of content that the Instagram algorithm displays in their feed. If you don’t post a variety of different content types, you may miss out on maximizing your reach and increasing your engagement.
Just Starting out on Instagram?
Aren’t sure where to start? Our social strategists and content specialists at The Co.Lab have Instagram marketing down to a science. Our stellar team of experts will collaborate to help you whip your Instagram profile into tip top shape so you can connect, convert, and delight your audience.
Are you interested in learning more about how we can support your small business on your social media marketing journey? Click here to fill out a contact form and we will be in touch within 24 business hours! Alternatively, you can check out our array of marketing services here. We look forward to chatting soon!