With over 300 million active users, 75 million daily users, and with a total of 13% of every human who uses the internet claiming an account, it’s safe to say that Instagram is one of the most important social mediums of today. If you haven’t stepped your IG game up by now, you’re falling behind.
Like most things in this life, a presence on Instagram will only give you as much as you put into it. Here’s how to get ahead.
1. Give photos a double-tap!
Cruise hashtags relevant to your industry. This is one of the sure fire ways to draw attention to your feed, and therefore, your brand. We’ve found that the most success in growing numbers comes by cruising hashtags, and liking at least 5-10 photos from individuals in a particular target market. For example, our friends over at BrewHeads increased their follower base to 6,000 in a short time frame, simply by liking and leaving genuine comments on photos from members of their target market, via #craftbeer related hashtags. So, share the love!
2. Be Presentable
By cruising hashtags you’ve drawn the attention of your target market, but now you have to get them to hit ‘Follow’. If you’re trying to attract a quality audience, you need a quality product. This means clear, hi-res images (branded where necessary), with a consistent theme and purpose. Don’t limit yourself to Instagram’s square. For example, if you have a vertical event flyer, use photo-editing apps like Squareready to give your audience the full picture. Got a photo that needs a bit of touch up? Use the in-built iOS 8 photo editing tools, or photo editing apps like VSCO Cam to pretty them up.
3. Be Consistent
Consistency in all areas is the key to Instagram success. You’ve drawn attention to your page, your images are on point, so now you need to stick to your theme. Your followers will follow you with an expectation of what they’re going to get. A beer lover follows a craft brewery’s feed knowing that they’ll be getting an insight into the craft beer industry. Self-interested photos (selfies without beer, pictures of you in the park without beer) will defer from your brand’s message. Find ways to incorporate your theme into each post.
4. Link your accounts
Capitalize on the followers and friends of your other social networks. Link every Instagram post to your brand’s other social feeds to spread awareness, along with adding an Instagram widget to your website. Consider it to be cross-pollination of your content. It will also help to extend the life of your posts as information is consumed at different rates on each social medium.
5. Time Everything!
Posting regularly keeps your brand “front of mind”. Know your target market and study them to find out what time of day they use Instagram the most. For example, if you’re trying to attract the 9-5 crowd, post at opportune times such as 8 a.m. (commute), 12 p.m. (lunch), and 6 p.m. (commute home). If your posts aren’t regular, and at the right times, you’ll lose eyeballs and thus momentum.
Still feel like Instagram is un-hackable? Give us a shout, we'll help you out.