Originally published on Applesofgoldcommunications.com on May 12, 2016 By Joshua Joscelyn
Instagram is rapidly transitioning from being the up and comer in the world of social media to being one of the big dogs. Last year, people were talking about how Instagram was going to be huge. Well, this year, everyone knows they already are.
So how much of this pie are you getting for your business?
Not much? Well, maybe you just need a little inspiration, a few ideas, or a couple of secrets unveiled. If that’s what you’ve come here for, search no further. The following are NOT just a few random tips, but actually tried-and-tested techniques to achieve real results on what is now recognized as one of the most powerful social platforms for business.
10 Powerful Tips (Pay attention!)
1. Think Visual
This isn’t the place for lengthy prose or profound treatises. This is the place for catchy images that draw people in. So think in pictures. This is underscored by the new look Instagram just unveiled, reducing platform color and noise to draw more attention to the visuals users are sharing. So what does your target market want to SEE? What related topics translate well into visual content?
2. Create Niche Accounts
This little hack will blow your mind. Instead of sharing a variety of things on your one account, set up different accounts specifically related to razor-focused niches. Get inside the mind of your target audience or audiences – then create a few different accounts to engage them on each point. People follow Instagram accounts for very specific reasons. Don’t lose them!
3. Choose Your Link Wisely
You don’t get to share links in Instagram – except in your bio. So make sure you know exactly which one you want them to go to, and put that in your bio. Hint: it may not be your home page. It might be a landing page. Change it out as needed.
4. Hashtag Your Hashtags
Instagram is the home of hashtags. You cannot overdo hashtags on Instagram – it’s impossible. Compile a list of related hashtags, use them frequently, and find others using them to connect with. Observe other hashtags those people are using and add them to your growing list.
5. Use Analytics
It pays to know what’s working and what isn’t. Use a tool like IconoSquare to track your hashtags, clicks, shares, etc. Then refine your efforts accordingly. Leveraging Instagram for business needs to be a bit more intentional than for personal use.
6. If a Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words, Video is Worth a Million
Instagram finally rolled out extended video capability for videos of up to 60 seconds. Use every second to tell your brand’s story and participate in your tribe’s conversation.
7. Find Your Audience with Explore
Want to know a secret Instagram hack for syndicating relevant content to share AND for finding your audience? Click that little magnifying glass icon to open up the Explore feature. Type in some of your favorite hashtags to find people in your niche. Then like some of your favorite pieces of content – this is when the magic happens. Your Explore screen will now show you a feed of content and users just like what you’ve just liked! It’s like RSS or Friend Finder for Instagram!
8. Engage to Play
While ads have their place on Instagram, you don’t necessarily have to pay to play. But you do have to engage to play. Instagram rock star, Chalene Johnson, recommends this formula: like 5 photos from a niche user, comment on 3, and gain 1 new follower. Rinse and repeat.
9. Get Your Users to Help with Content
You don’t need to create all your content, yourself. Professional social media managers know that offering a freebie or some other incentive in exchange for user-generated content is always a win-win. Not only do you get virtually free content, you also get awesome engagement.
10. Find Your Filter
Believe it or not, the filter you choose for your image actually matters. For example, brands using Hefe or Lo-fi filters tend to receive better engagement. But experiment and find the best filters for your own brand. Not all filters are created equal.
Now get out there and get a powerful boost for your business on Instagram. These are the tips used by the professionals, and now they’re in your hands. Use wisely!
Keep the conversation going! Share these powerful Instagram tips by hitting one of the buttons below, and see what other Instagram hacks come up!