Instagram is a great asset to compliment your standard social media channels.
If your brand is aesthetic – like the sporting, fashion and photography industry, then having an Instagram account is a no brainer.
But how do you take advantage of this photo-friendly trait?
As with a lot of areas within marketing – the key is content.
1. Content Library
Having a lucrative gallery of photos and videos that are ready to use at a moments notice is invaluable. And constantly adding to that gallery is the secret. There’ll always be time where you hit a dry spell – you’ve stumbled out of sync with your inspirations and you’re struggling for content – and this is when that backlog of content is going to come into it’s own. Having good quality images in the bank makes life a lot easier when you do hit the dry patch – much easier than wandering round trying to take an effective photo when you are struggling.
We’re a generation of humans constantly living in the past. If you don’t believe me – then look at your Facebook notifications: Near enough once a day, you’ll recieve one from Facebook saying “You have memories with Spongebob Squarepants and 4 other friends to look back on…”.
And how many of your friends and followers are sharing these memories? At a guess I reckon a quarter of all the content I see on Facebook on a daily basis is my friends looking back at when they were kids, or their kids were babies, or their dogs were puppues.
So why not take advantage of that? “#Throwback to…” is one of my go-to favourite phrases on Instagram, and it appeals so much more to followers and followers-to-be because you’re not directly selling them something, and in todays day and age – if someone isn’t selling something to you then it’s a novelty. A throwback to most comes across as a flash of innocence and purity of a social media user – helping you spark a connection with your followers.
3. Follow People
In any other context – this sounds a bit creepy, but on social media – it’s just the done thing. On Instagram, filling your own newsfeed with users in a similar industry (even competitors) is a great way to follow and interact with their followers and help convert them into your followers.
Giraffe Social Media also highlight this – one of their top tips is to “get creepy”!
Just because you’re not physically talking to someone on social media, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be virtually talking to people. Comment on peoples photos that you enjoy, search the hashtags you use and enjoy and double-tap the photos that you like.
Make comments that might actually engage people with your brand. Ask questions – and not just if they’ll follow you back. It’s better to have 500 people who actually watch and interact with your brand, thant 5000 followers that ignore every piece of content you could ever post.
Personally, I’m a sucker for emoji’s – particularly in snowsports. It’s such an easy way to get across an emotion without having to struggle through dorky words. But if you’re commenting on peoples and brands photos that are in a similar (or the same) industry as you, then the people who follow them are more likely to subconsciously or consciously notice you brand.
5. Hide your Hashtags
My mum always told me presentation was everything. No truer is that than on Instagram – let your pictures do the talking: A photos is worth a thousand words.
Make sure your first 2 lines of caption for the photo get the message across, because Instagram cuts the comments down to a lowly “see more” button.
I hide my hashtags in the comments – after a couple of bullet points – and write them in advance on the notes of my phone, so i can easily copy and paste them across. I’ll have the staple ones that are used in every post, and then once I’ve pasted in the comments after publishing the photo, I’ll add the unique ones to whatever event I’m at or situation I’m involved in.
What tips do you have for Instagram? And what strategies have been useful to you in the past?