Instagram is undeniably a super popular platform, with over 700 million active users to date, with 33% of all internet users aged 30-49 using the platform, so it’s not just for the younger kids. For a business Instagram can be a great platform but so many join without really taking the time to understand what makes Instagram unique and how to best use it for their business. Here are my top tips for mastering Instagram for business.
Your Username and Name Should Be Different
These are different fields. Your username is how you will be recognised on Instagram and has the @ before it. Your username is what shows when you comment, like or post. Your name is the bolded section in your bio and is great to put in a description of your business or your personal name if you are your brand.
This may seem to go against the norm but when you understand the Instagram algorithm you’ll see why. When you post a lot, it’s more difficult for that content to show up high in your followers’ Instagram feed and people are more likely to skip past posts. The Instagram algorithm is based on personal use, not public use and differs from Facebook. Instagram users don’t necessarily see someone’s content just because others engage with it.
Use A Business Profile
One of the best reasons to use a business profile is because there is a contact button, allowing people to email or call you right from Instagram. A business profile also has analytics/insights, where a personal profile doesn’t.
Quality Over Quantity
Don’t focus on the number of followers you have, this is purely a vanity metric. It’s better to have 500 real, quality followers that are your target audience and engage with your content than 10,000 followers that are made up of fake or dormant followers or ones that aren’t your target audience and don’t engage with your content.
Use Hashtags Correctly
Establish your hashtags before you start posting! Even though Instagram only allows you to post 30 tags per photo you don’t need to use that many. Aim for around 15 to 20 with a combination of popular, moderately popular, niche and branded.
Most importantly, every hashtag you use, should be related to your content, your business and/or your context.
Use Instagram Stories
Instagram stories are similar to Snapchat and live at the top of the feed. They are meant to be quick, unfiltered snapshots of your business. You can get creative with stories, try tips, a day in the life or behind the scenes. Don’t go overboard with them though, and try not do any more than 5-10 in a 24 hour period as users will lose interest and drop off.
To make Instagram work for your business and be effective, you need to work at it. You need to create valuable content and engage with the Instagram community and you’ll soon be on your way to mastering Instagram for business