Instagram for business is one of the most important and beneficial marketing tools out there. With nearly 1 billion monthly active users on Instagram (dated June 2018) and an average of 23% more engagement than Facebook, now is the time to get your brand on board. Here are five tips on how to effectively use Instagram to grow and maintain interest in your business.

1. Be visually appealing

As Instagram is predominantly a photo/video sharing platform, your images need to be high-quality and visually pleasing. Use similar filters, colors, and styling to create and solidify your brand’s visual identity. Top tips include:

  • Take photos in natural light to avoid unwanted shadows and give a better overall look.
  • Don’t over-edit. Your images should still maintain realism.
  • Balance your photo using the rule of thirds, automatically drawing the eye to the subject.

2. Write strong captions

Support your images with relevant captions that provide value to your audience. This is a great way to encourage engagement by asking questions, stimulating conversations, and showing your human side. Users want to know the person behind the brand, so use this as an opportunity to build brand trust through meaningful connections. As with images, keep your brand’s tone of voice clear and consistent throughout.

3. Include hashtags

Include hashtags

Hashtags help users locate relevant content on Instagram. Using hashtags that are relevant to your brand can, therefore, drive new customers to your page. Here are some effective ways to use them:

  • Keep it niche. Avoid generic hashtags like #food or #boots to avoid competing with millions of other posts. Instead, be more specific, like #healthybreakfastmuffins or #suedeankleboots.
  • Don’t overload. Stay relevant to your brand with a select number of good hashtags rather than a long list of generic or spammy ones.
  • Create a custom tag. By sharing your unique hashtag, people can easily engage with your brand, giving you the opportunity to react positively and build strong relationships with loyal followers.

4. Share polls and ask questions

Using Instagram stories for polls and questions not only increases engagement but also gives you feedback on what your audience wants from your brand. It proves to them that their opinion matters. You are a brand who cares and this is something many users will see as a positive, stand-out trait.

Polls and questions are also a great tool for influencers. Find out more with tip number 5.

5. Influencer marketing

Introducing an influencer-brand partnership to your marketing strategy is a great way to increase brand awareness. Influencers who are passionate about your brand can promote it to their large following, which encourages audience engagement in a more natural and organic way. They can share your brand through their stories, utilizing polls to gather information on what their audience wants to see, and giving your brand a wider reach.

Instagram is an invaluable tool for business marketing. Follow these tips to improve and maintain relationships with followers and extend your reach to a whole new audience.

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