By now, you probably understand that it’s important (maybe even crucial) for your business to have a Facebook page, a Twitter account, or a LinkedIn profile. You’re probably actively posting videos to your YouTube channel. You may even be pinning content from friends’ boards on Pinterest. BUT have you ever considered…ahem…Instagram?
I know what you’re thinking, ‘You’ve got to be kidding me!’ or ‘That’s a big waste of time!’ or ‘How in the world do I utilize something like Instagram for my business?’
Look, I get it. These are honest and understandable concerns. Why should you have to worry about the strategy and use of another social asset? And what benefit will this asset serve your business?
The thing is, if strategically used, this asset can be a great platform to promote, share, and market your business or product.
I have compiled a list of Instagram Do’s and Don’ts that may help you see the benefit of this particular social medium, when used correctly. It’s possible that I may help you understand, and even (gulp!) sway you to the dark side.
Have a strategy behind your posting: As I briefly mentioned, the success of this asset is contingent upon a strategic plan. Merely throwing up random images with pretty filters may validate your concern that it is a waste of time. Instead, capitalize on the culture of your business. Show your audience the day-to-day happenings. Highlight special projects. Show us what you are—something your audience might not typically see.
Cultivate a two-way relationship: Who enjoys one-sided relationships? No one. They never seem to work out in real life, so why would they magically work out in the social sphere? Contribute posts (rather than only consuming), engage in liking, commenting, and following others when and where appropriate. The idea of “give and take” applies to more than just back scratching.
BE CREATIVE: There’s nothing worse than posting bland or uninteresting material—especially when it’s a photo. Think, what would you like to see? What would interest you about your company if you weren’t working there? Feed your audience something they can look forward to.
Hashtag, hashtag, hashtag: Hashtags provide an opportunity for you to reach or engage with an audience that you aren’t reaching otherwise. Take advantage of this simple social media tactic.
Maintain an Insta-brand. It’s not uncommon for many groups and businesses to stray from their particular brand elements when it comes to posting on social mediums. Stay in-line with company brand standards. Maintain Instagram as another well-aligned brand touch point.
Overpost: Sometimes there may be multiple post-worthy events or products to showcase in a day. While people may love following you, they may not appreciate your posts overtaking their feed. If possible, limit posting to twice a day.
Overdose on hashtags: It’s important to use hashtags, but please, make sure you use them in moderation. One or two will often suffice.
Focus on advertising: Remember, this is a “conversation level” asset. Typically, most social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Google +, and Instagram) are primarily for conversation level posting—meaning, they exist as a way to engage with your audience and consumer. They don’t want to be sold to—at least not yet. Migrate them to your website for that.
Abandon the Asset: If you plan on setting up a social media asset, ensure that you will be posting regularly with relevant and entertaining material. A dead asset is worse than not having one at all. An asset with frequent posting denotes that you care about your customers/clients—and that you care about engagement.