So you’ve decided to take your business on Instagram. We applaud your decision. Instagram has an advertising reach of more than 1 billion people and the platform is continuously updating its platform to accommodate businesses. Even if you’re in an industry where social media doesn’t translate to direct sales– you’ll still benefit from growing your online presence. Most people visit a company’s social media during the decision-making process to ensure they’re reputable, and more than 36% of B2B decision-makers conduct research on Instagram. Needless to say, your business can only benefit from marketing on Instagram.
Research Your Competitors
You never want to launch a new social media marketing campaign or enter a new platform blind. Take your time and do some research first. Find a few competitors and document which of their posts performed the best. Then, figure out what those posts had in common. It could be the media type, the caption tone, the subject matter, or anything else.
Pay close attention and figure out how you can apply that information to your own Instagram business account. But don’t copy your competitors. You want to stand out. If you’re just generating the same content as everyone else, customers won’t take notice of you. It’s also important to note what purpose their content serves. Sometimes, it doesn’t make sense to drive sales on Instagram. Determine if instead, you should be building brand awareness, community engagement, or sharing your brand story and mission.
Once you have this initial information, it’s time to start planning your social media content buckets.
Social Media Content Buckets
Now that you know what posts perform well in your niche, you can start planning your content buckets and deciding how you want to fill them. A content bucket is essentially a subcategory that you post about on social media. For example, a restaurant’s primary content bucket would be food. However, other content buckets could be non-profits (posts about the food they donate to the local food bank), entertainment (musicians that perform at their venue), and educational (behind-the-scenes content). If you’re stuck on what to post, look up your niche on Instagram and Pinterest to find inspiration.
Develop a SMM Strategy
Once you decide what content to share, you’ll be cruising. But there’s one key component you can’t forget– marketing. If you put a lot of effort into creating great content, you want people to see it. You must be careful about how you do this though.
According to Sprout Social, one of the primary reasons people unfollow a brand is because they promote too much. To avoid this, use a healthy mix of high-volume hashtags and some low-volume hashtags too. This will help people discover your brand as soon as you post and months later too. You may also want to make your own hashtag. This is a great way to boost engagement with your followers and get more content. When people use your hashtag, you can highlight them– which is free content and something people really like to see on their Instagram feed.
Call to Action
You also want to include a call to action (CTA) in your posts. If you sell shoes, you could share a customer feature about a high schooler that won state track with your product. This is a narrative and a human interest story people can get behind. However, you can still leverage the goodwill from the story and capture your follower’s fickle attention. Consider sending them to your Instagram shop where they can buy the very same shoes.
Before you launch your business social media account, you should also determine how you’ll engage with customers. It’s a given that you need to reply to most or all of the comments on your posts. However, you should also link contact information so people can easily request more information. But don’t share your phone number or email if you never check those things. Think hard about how your customers would want to communicate with you and if you can feasibly accomplish that.
Plan Your Feed
Once again, you can draw from your competitors and other successful companies to figure out the overall aesthetic you hope to achieve on your Insta grid. However, the content you create needs to be consistent with your brand, whether it’s Instagram reels, photos, videos, or graphics. We recommend you develop a brand guide to help you navigate color choices, photography styles, and brand messaging. We also recommend that you spread out content types, especially if you use a lot of text-heavy graphics. Ideally, you’ll have the ability to show off how you work, where you work, and who you work with to really capture your follower’s attention. Graphics show what you say you can do, photos show what you actually do.
Make a Publishing Calendar
You should never just start posting photos and videos without having a strategy in place. Not only will the content you share be erratic, but you’ll likely run out of media to share quickly and start posting inconsistently. These are two of the fastest ways to lose followers that may have really enjoyed your page and content. To prevent this, make a content calendar outlining when you need to create posts and when they should be posted. Staying organized will be essential to the success of your Instagram account.
Dallas Social Media Marketing Agency
Want to start promoting your business on Instagram but don’t know where to start? Contact the social media management team to schedule your consultation today. Our staff has years of combined experience and are passionate about helping local businesses grow on various social media channels. Connect with us to learn more.