With over 800 million active users, Instagram has seen rapid growth in the last couple of years.
The visual social network has undergone some big changes as it competes with Snapchat for the millennial audience.
Instagram launched ‘Stories’ in August 2016 which significantly reduced Snapchat’s user growth. And in February 2017, they introduced multiple image posts, allowing us to publish up to 10 photos or videos in a single, swipeable* carousel.
*Swipeable may not be a actual word… but I feel it should be.
Top 10 Tips for Instagram
- Ensure your one URL available in your bio links to the most important page on your website – or update it from time to time to match campaigns. Alternatively, use a service like linktr.ee which allows you to link to several destinations or to your other social networks.
2. Be discoverable. Write your bio with keywords in mind. Consider including your Instagram feed on your website if you sell a product. Connect with like minded people and interact with their content, use an app like Repost to share others’ content and show support.
3. Develop some brand guidelines to keep your content consistently on brand. Take inspiration from how others use colour, tone and style to present their brand visually. Some brands like to stick to one filter – I tend to find just one filter limiting, personally, but find your own style or vibe and stick with it.
4. Research hashtags to see which will help your content be discovered by relevant people. Or use a service like Focalmark to help inspire you. People use hashtags on Instagram differently to other networks and they can really aid discovery.
5. Be creative! Practice your photography. Think about lighting and composition and make the most of your smartphone camera features to make great images. Try flat lay photos, experiment with depth of field and video.
6. Link your account to your Facebook page and include Instagram as a placement for your Facebook adverts to reach new people and increase your Instagram following.
7. Publish often and use many hashtags. There is no drop in engagement for using lots of hashtags on Instagram. You can publish them in a comment if you prefer not to fill the post with them.
8. Use Instagram Stories. Stories will not remain on your Instagram profile and can be useful for time sensitive campaigns or offers, to give your followers a glimpse behind the scenes and see what goes on in your business.
10. Don’t cross publish to Twitter as your followers on Twitter will just see a link to Instagram and less likely to click through without seeing the image. Use an IFTTT applet to show the photo in Twitter rather than a link and see an increase in engagement.
If you’d like some practical training on Instagram, enquire about our one-to-one training sessions where we’ll cover all the features and even more Instagram marketing tips.