The goal of the Social Media Simplified podcast is to introduce entrepreneurs to online tools that can grow their business. This episode focuses on Instagram. Instagram is an online tool that most small businesses should be using, but aren’t – yet.
What is Instagram?
Instagram takes pictures and short 12-second videos and shares them on a variety of social networks including Tumblr, Flickr, Twitter, Facebook, and so on.
People can like or comment on a photo or video shared on Instagram.
What makes Instagram different?
Unlike Twitter and Facebook, you cannot share or re-post Instagram content without using a third party app or physically copying and reposting.
It’s a visual social network with its own unique following. It’s a tool where you share images and tell a story.
What businesses should use Instagram?
If your audience is younger than 30, then your business should be on Instagram. Younger people are spending less time on Facebook since their parents and grandparents started joining it.
To determine if your audience is on Instagram simply ask them. Casually connect with them via Facebook, in person, on the phone or through e-mail marketing.
Visual businesses, such as florists, restaurant owners and artists – if you sell or produce a product then you should be on Instagram taking incredible pictures of that product.
What do you share/post on Instagram?
Think about what you want your customers to know and then figure out how you can capture and share beautiful images that support that message i.e., what you sell, how you can help, how you can give value.
If you have a blog, such as I do, (my blog is Kids in the capital), share things that relate to that blog. We share things such as what we’re making for our kids to eat, silly things they did, and craft ideas.
You want people to know what kind of products you produce and how they can be helpful. Share images of finished products and explain how they’re used. Instagram has a lot of space for accompanying content; so don’t feel like you can only write one sentence.
Tell the story of your turn around times, exciting new launches, and include links to clients and celebrate their wins.
- Links in Instagram posts are not clickable, which is frustrating for business owners looking to link to a specific product or call-to-action.
- Instead of having the link in your Instagram bio directing to the homepage of your website, change it whenever you want to direct people to a specific product or page.
- Instagram isn’t about selling; it’s about sharing and building community.
- Use hashtags. Hastags are how people find new accounts and Instagram content to like and follow. Try at least 4-8 hashtags per post. Experiment and see what works best for your content.
- Tag other people you think would be interested in your post. This works well with contests, i.e. tag a friend who would like a specific product, etc.
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