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Here’s a confession I have to make: I’m seriously addicted to Instagram. I’ve tried not to fall in love with it because I usually get hooked on all social media sites. I knew it will do no good to my free time.
One day though I gave it a try, hoping I’ll be able to stop.
Instagram became my black coffee in the morning, espresso in the afternoon, macchiato in the evening and caffe latte just before going to bed. “That’s a hell lot of coffee!”, one would say and I’d respond: exactly.
But I'm not the only person that is addicted to this channel. Recently, Instagram announced that it now has 500 million active monthly users, more than 300 million of whom use Instagram every single day!
The recent change of their logo was also not the only Instagram's redesign. In the coming month, we’ll see a translation button on feed stories so we could understand texts written in different languages.
As Instagram is growing, it is clear now that not having a business profile on channel is a great mistake. But, although I’m an Instagram fanatic fan, I have to warn you: marketing on Instagram is not a piece of cake.
There are three signs that might mean that you don't know how to promote on Instagram. But before we get to that, let’s find out when Instagram is the right channel for your business.
You want to share your passion with your customers
The most fun way of using Instagram is to show people what you care about. It’s also the best way to show that your brand is not a soulless company and to find a common ground with your followers.
You can be passionate about everything: your product, practicing extreme sports, environment or fashion. Bottom line is to upload interesting, good quality pictures reflecting your interests, mindset and sense of humor.
A good example of such approach is The North Face. People follow (and love) their account not because they are their fans or because the company knows how to promote on Instagram. They follow them because the pictures are beautiful and don’t sell a product directly.
The North Face makes outerwear and gear for sport activities and although you can spot these products on their pictures, there is much more than that: praise of life, an active lifestyle and the beauty of Mother Nature.
OK, I can’t help it. Here’s the bat-dog once again:
You want to strengthen your relationship with customers
If people share your passion, you gain their loyalty. If you share their pictures, you gain their gratitude and bond them to your brand.
Here's a very simple example.
Ask your followers to take a picture with your product or while using your services and tag their pictures with your hashtags, e.g. #lovemybrand. These may be holiday photos, pictures of their families and friends, pets or food, they will have one thing in common: your company!
Every day you choose one funny, sweet, beautiful picture and share it on your account.
It's a win-win situation. Your followers feel appreciated because you have chosen their picture and shared it with your audience. Your account gains another great picture and you also can be sure that your followers will share a good word about you!
Let me show you another example of an awesome Instagram account: GoPro. They simply ask people to submit their pictures and videos made with GoPro camera. The result is stunning.
All I can say by looking at GoPro’s Instagram account is: living is art. I'm sure that's exactly what the company wants me to say!
You want to show your working culture
People are always intrigued by “behind the scenes” photos because that’s something you usually don’t see. You know the company from a great product but still have no idea who stands behind it? Instagram is the best way to show the world your product’s human face and increase your customer engagement!
And this is how we do it:
Do you like our Instagram fanpage? Test our LiveChat app, you might like it as well!
Signs that you don't know how to promote on Instagram
1. When you don't have a goal-driven strategy
Having an Instagram account "just to have it" can seriously hurt your business. Don’t believe me? Think about those people who talk random things just to talk. Do you think they’re intelligent, smart or witty? Same thing goes with the Instagram account: people who know this channel will immediately notice that your posts are not telling your story.
2. When you think Instagram is just another selling funnel
No, no, no, no, no! Eventually, Instagram will help you to sell your product, but this shouldn’t be your main thought when setting the account! You should be willing to be present on Instagram to be closer to your customers and followers. You can also share your product pictures (among others, more interesting for the wider public) but your main concern is to post interesting, creative content.
3. When you’re not into quality
Quality is essential on all social media channels but on Instagram in particular. It’s a channel designed to share visual art. If you’re not into creativity, aesthetics and image quality, you better stick to Twitter!
Instagram, with over 75 million daily and over 300 million monthly users, is something more than the platform with breakfast pictures and bathroom selfies. It’s a source of worldwide inspiration and knowledge. It connects people living in totally different cultures and speaking different languages.
What does that mean for you?
By posting the right pictures you can reach a wide public, speaking the universal language of photography. You can build your brand’s personality and a loyal community around it. If you make sure you share awesome pictures, people will talk about your brand and share your pictures.
And, honestly, there are no universal pieces of advice that will tell you how to promote on Instagram. But as long as you keep in mind above tips, you'll be able to attract new customers and bond them with your brand.