Cute photos, a cohesive combination of warm colors, hours and hours of scrolling through viral videos… Instead of a content marketing and social marketing platform, Instagram started as a social media platform where pictures had their own place, and now it has grown into a whole multimedia experience.
This social media platform started back in 2010 and it has grown its audience to 1 billion active users, which represents an insane amount of content and interaction. People all around the world choose this virtual space to hang out, talk about their breakfast, and, of course, what brings us here today – sell their products or services and build a profitable business.
Instagram puts a lot of money and selling potential on the table. Using Instagram for content marketing is a great way to market your business, a platform to share what you work on, and connect with your clients by using different types of content, strategies, and tricks.
Yes, we know there are a lot of things to ask about Instagram. Can I deal with the scary Instagram algorithm? Can I be hidden from my audience if I get too excited and start acting like a bot? How, when and what should I post to get in front of the eyes that want to buy from me?
Even when it’s an awesome tool that you can start using right away, dealing with all its features can be overwhelming. Creating a content strategy is not a kid’s game, and thinking about which filter looks nicer while also trying to analyze what is the winning hour that makes your posts shine can make you lose sleep.
This is why we’re here today to give you the basics about this photo-video-audio platform that keeps launching features, secrets, and tricks that catch even the savviest marketer off guard. Grab a pen and take those notes, juicy stuff is coming.
Wait, don’t press that “share post” button yet.
Before even sharing that photo of your cutest product that you have been editing for hours, there are a few things to cross off your list:
- Brand work done and ready to go.
- Short and long-term goals.
- A defined audience that chooses Instagram as their scrolling space.
- Content pillars.
- A clear idea of how you want to communicate your message.
Most of the work behind building an online presence on Instagram or any other social media platform starts even before you decide to create your account. 90% of content work is previous work that gives you the tools to build something memorable that can help you connect with your clients and sell your products.
To win the Instagram game you need strong foundations; there’s a lot of content around there and standing out requires knowing what you want to communicate and how to communicate effectively.
- Build your brand kit using all the tools that you can: colors that are aligned with your message, elements that you want people to associate with your brand image, specific words or structures that can be recognized across your different posts. A cohesive brand creates what is known as brand awareness, meaning that if you know how to reflect your brand, again and again, it will become recognizable and known in your industry.
- Where do you want to be in one week? Or even in one year? Set clear and realistic (special attention to this quality) goals that can help you measure what you are achieving.
- Are you sure that the people who will buy your product are not on other social media platforms waiting for you? If you are not, then it’s time to work on deep research and find that out. No matter how good your content is: if you are not where your clients can find you, all that work will be wasted.
- Create content pillars based on the topics that your audience can resonate with. Are you a beauty brand? Product reviews, before and after videos, skincare tips, motivational content; are some of the content pillars that you can use to make sure that your clients will stay in your account once they find it. This clarity will help you avoid unstrategic content created along the way.
- Last but not least, know how you will talk to your clients. Are you a relaxed consumer managing an honest conversation about your product? Or would you rather talk from a technical and professional point of view? Will you use jokes, memes, or maybe share some insights based on your own thoughts? Look what is working for other people in your industry and add your unique spicy touch to create a personality that breaks the screen every time you share a post.
7 quick hacks to level up your Instagram game.
Now you have what you need to be ready to start posting on Instagram, but how can you take your content marketing to a winning approach? Here you have some hacks that will change your game even before starting. Implement from day one and remember, being consistent is your first rule!
- Instagram names (no user) are SEO elements, which means that if you add a keyword to it you will help people find you with just some typing on the search bar. You can combine your business name and your industry to make it both specific and easy to find.
- Your bio needs a strong description of your business mission, the main qualities of your product, and a call to action that leads to your best promo. Hashtags won’t help you rank higher here, so avoid them.
- Use different locations to increase your visibility.
- Create a hashtag strategy, but don’t use big hashtags with thousands of posts. Rather than help you get noticed, you will get lost in the crowd.
- Talk about trends and include them in all the formats that can fit your content intentions. Trending audios, news, filters and even challenges are good ways to participate and stand out at the same time.
- Use all the Instagram features. Reels, videos, photos, stories, live videos. Instagram just loves when someone goes from start to finish trying its tools.
- Instagram isn’t, strictly speaking, a content marketing platform. It’s still a social media platform, which means that if you want to be noticed you need to be social. Create meaningful connections with clients, businesses that can complement what you are offering, and even influencers whose content is relevant to your industry. Make sure to avoid spammy comments and, instead of chasing quantity, make sure to leave quality and valuable comments that are based on what you actually want to communicate.
Reminder: good and strong strategies will take time to show their results, so don’t get frustrated if you can not see an insane growth from one day to the next one. If you’re stuck and need more inspiration take a look at Martha’s article over at wordstream, she shares new ways to repost on Instagram
Have you been selling your products on Instagram? Maybe this is a good time to start.