Why Instagram is Important For your Brand
So many businesses fall into the trap of not committing to social media. In this day and age, to not have your business on one of the more prominent platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) is practically financial suicide. However, with all of these amazing social tools there for free, why wouldn’t you take advantage of all of them? This is doubly so for those who avoid using Instagram.
“Isn’t that just a place where online model wannabes congregate?”
Well, yeah. That is definitely a thing that happens but there is so much more to Instagram that you’re overlooking. Instagram provides a service that other social media platforms don’t, which is immediate social engagement. By posting videos and images of yourself, your brand, and your business, you are already putting a face to the company and product or service you wish to sell. That, in of itself, is a very powerful first impression. Unlike other social media platforms that offer you the ability to refrain from providing a visual aid, Instagram has you jump right into the fray.
Creating visibility for what your business and brand represent is a strong attractor for potential growth and revenue. If you’re wondering what the benefits of using Instagram are for your brand, this is a great place to start.
Add A Face and Increase Visibility
Instagram is the perfect social media platform to help you connect with your customers on a more personal level. The visual platform allows you to share pictures and videos of the team, hosted events, and the smiling faces of satisfied customers to further engage your audience.
Instagram’s primary benefit aside from millions of user accounts is that it remains a photo-centric platform. Unlike Facebook and Twitter, Instagram is comprised solely of visual imagery like photos and videos with an optional accompanying text. The use of a visual feed can allow your brand to shine, reflect its uniqueness, and differentiate itself from the competition.
This is particularly beneficial to you and your business as most people tend to remember more of what they see rather than what is read. Not to mention videos far outperform images when it comes to audience engagement but both steadily outperform social media that consists of neither. So, because posting either a video or image is a requirement when using Instagram, you’re automatically posting something far more engaging than you would on any other platform that only requires a basic post.
Having a photo or video of any products that you may be selling can allow followers to remember your brand and are more likely to engage with your content. Using Instagram to its fullest potential can only bring followers that much closer to making a purchase. However, don’t expect to corner the market with your brand overnight. You will need to maintain an active presence and a posting routine if you hope to see greater results.
An Increasingly Growing Platform
Instagram claims that their social media presence brings over 800 million active users. 500 million of those active users utilize the platform on a daily basis with 80% of them coming from outside of the United States. 38% just happens to be repeat viewers throughout the day providing your brand the potential of so many interested viewers. Those willing to dedicate themselves to a sound Instagram strategy will see no limit to the success a business can reach.
To go a step further, out of the 500 million users mentioned, almost 300 million of them actively purchase specifically through Instagram ads and profiles. Without an active Instagram account, you’re looking at losing millions of potential customers willing to feed your business revenue. Just a Twitter and Facebook account simply isn’t going to cut it anymore. The more presence you have on Instagram, the higher the potential of pulling in new customers.
The Future is Mobile
Unlike its competitors, Instagram was created from the jump to be a mobile-based app. 90% of the time spent on a mobile device is spent on using the apps. This is something that every business, beginning or established, should be taking advantage of and creating posts that are accessible to viewers on the go using Instagram.
Engagement on Instagram for smartphone users is 10x higher than that of Facebook. That’s some serious action that you could be missing out on. When you consider Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg bought Instagram a few years ago, it’s almost like they’re now working in tandem. Facebook on browser and Instagram for mobile.
Facebook’s advanced social media advertising has rapidly broadened Instagram’s capabilities. Where once it was exclusive to Facebook, you can now advertise to people by age, interests, behavior, and location on Instagram as well. This will allow you to pinpoint the interests and target audience out of the almost 300 million repeat Instagram viewers who are likely to make a purchase.
You can also retarget your actively engaged audience based on Instagram posts, created customer email lists, the views your Instagram videos receive and much more. Having options like these allows your Instagram marketing strategy to reach the next level. This can consist of implementing specific sales funnels with your Instagram ads leading to even more revenue.
Multiple Creative Outlets For Business Growth
Show potential customers that you’re more than just another faceless corporation by using one of Instagram’s many creative features. Make an impression with live posts and stories by providing insights into your company and the individuals who strive to push the brand further.
You can show the world how you make or procure your products, show off employee interaction within the workplace, or have Q&A sessions between yourself and your viewers. Build trust and rapport between your brand and your viewers while also showing that it has a human side and isn’t all business. Customers prefer to buy products from down to earth people who have their interests in mind over a corporate entity who is only in it for the money.
Instagram is a perfect place to get creative with marketing and customer interaction. Allow your marketing team to go wild when coming up with new ways to add followers. Create a personality to accompany your brand, develop new and exciting ways to draw the attention of potential customers, and mix it up with monthly contests, flash sales, interactive videos, and a whole lot more.
Don’t ignore the millions of potential customers that could be devoted to your brand over another. Boost audience engagement and keep your followers interested.
Engage, Relate, and Build Connections
Branching off of the previous point, customer engagement is key to repeat buyers and brand growth. Instagram offers you the opportunity to have customers know you exist and engage with them on a daily basis. Not only this, but it allows those very same customers to voice their opinions on your products and your brand through likes, comments, and shares. The more likes and comments received, the more visible your company becomes. Acquire more likes and positive comments by posting high-quality photos and videos, using brand defining hashtags, and even partnering up with other brands. The latter is something we’ll address further down.
Customers are more likely to look for you on Instagram than searching for you on a website. The current assumption for those looking for a brand is that a website is nothing more than a static advertisement. A shallow and soulless representation of what your company is all about. Customers are going to need more nowadays and that is exactly what they’re expecting. An Instagram profile shows and tells far more about your brand than a website does. Think of it as a stamp of authority or authenticity. In order to be perceived as trustworthy, it’s almost a necessity to have a presence on Instagram.
Once engagement and trust have been formed, the community will follow. Developing and maintaining a community is one of the best ways to market and grow your business. No matter the service being offered, you are considered an expert at it. This means that your customers have a lot to learn from you on a given subject while you too have plenty to learn from your customers. Instagram provides you and your community a way to connect and grow which can only lead to sales and company growth in return.
Networking and Competition
Networking is an amazing way to have your brand flourish and Instagram is a great place to find like-minded people who share similar interests. Expand your social network and collaborate with a brand or influencer to reach more people. On social media, you have your regular viewers who engage often but are not prominent members of the Instagram community. Then there are the influencers. Influencers are essentially online celebrities who will often promote a brand or product on their preferred platform and traffic your product into the mainstream.
A reliable influencer can take your brand to a whole new level, often by reaching demographics that you would never have thought to reach. The use of a well-known influencer can only elevate your company’s sales through a simple mention of your company or product to millions of followers with just a few posts.
Instagram is also a great way to watch your competition. Your company can keep an eye on how your competitors interact with their followers. You can use the information gathered to better hone your own brand’s strategy. Watch for what and how often they’re posting and how they choose to engage with their followers. Try to recognize new trends and capitalize on them to promote your company above the others. You can also choose to promote specific causes to pull in customers that may not have noticed you otherwise.
Sales & Metrics
Unless your brand is a non-profit, you’re likely looking at creating a company Instagram account to boost your sales. At the end of the day, sales are the focal point of most business owners and Instagram’s benefits compliment this quite well. Instagram continues to evolve, creating a greater emphasis on making money. Product placement is something you’ll want to get comfortable with in the long run. A shoppable post is the latest tool that allows businesses to add product tags to photos with links leading to your online store. This new service easily allows businesses to attract actual sales from their sites.
You may also be interested to know that sales and leads are trackable through Instagram ads allowing you to see clear ROI. As I’ve also stated previously, Instagram now uses the same tracking capabilities of Facebook. You can see everything from clicks on links, conversion leads, and the cost per result on any campaign you run. This allows you to see all results achieved and their costs no matter your goal or objective. You can also break down these results in smaller, sortable demographics such as gender, age range, regions, etc. This gives you the heads up on where your money is best invested.
The analytics and tracking capabilities of Instagram make A/B split testing efforts an effective way to gauge audience interests. A/B split testing is when you run two competing ad groups simultaneously to determine which is going to perform the best with audiences. It’s very important to know that the investments your banking on are actually worth it and the use of metrics should not be overlooked.
Sales guide the bottom line, and over 33% of all Instagram users have used Instagram to make an online product purchase at some point or another. This makes them 70% more likely to do so than people who don’t use Instagram. Not only that but 75% of Instagram users are more likely to take action, such as visiting a website and purchasing a product, just by looking at an Instagram advertising post.
So, if you still don’t have an Instagram account after reading this article, the real question is “Do you just not like making money?”