And there you have it! That’s everything you could possibly need to know about Instagram marketing in order to achieve true excellence.
At this point, you know what Instagram is, how it works and how to use the myriad features and options to your advantage. What’s more though, you also have some insight as to the psychology of Instagram and you know some of the advanced techniques you can use to hack your growth and explode onto the scene.
To round it all off then, let’s structure all that information into a plan that can really work for you and that you can adapt to suit your brand.
Your Instagram Marketing Plan
Step 1. Identify Your Market, Create Your Brand
To start with you need to find who it is that you’re marketing to and you need to know what your message is. This is important because it will tell you how you are going to go about creating your image on Instagram and it will tell you what kind of content you should be uploading.
Think about lifestyles and messages and try to evoke what your brand represents as well as what it produces. Likewise, ensure you have a strong identity with a recognizable logo and then use this across all your social media efforts. Research the competition too and survey your existing customers.
Step 2. Decide What Kind of Channel You Are, Begin Uploading Content
Decide if you’re interested in creating a personal brand, or if you’re about promoting specific artistic products. Likewise, choose whether you want to upload images that are abstract and that broadly paint a picture of a lifestyle, or whether you want to upload images that provide some kind of value or ‘tips’ for instance.
Try different hashtags and make sure you are posting with ones that will bring in new traffic.
Step 3. Be Consistent, Do Promotion, Synergize Across Social Media and Your Website
Keep your content coming and meanwhile make sure that you are sharing to other social media accounts, that you promote your Instagram on there and that you outright ask people to follow you.
Meanwhile, research people posting images in your niche and follow/like their work. Comment on other images and add a widget to your own site. All these activities will ensure a steady trickle of new users which will gain momentum over time.
Step 4. Run Contests, Use Local Marketing, Get People Involved
You should also work to try and motivate your existing followers to grow your audience further. Running contests, getting people to comment (using caption contests for instance) and sharing the images that other users have uploaded are all great ways to get people to add to your account and to stay lively and engaged.
You should also use local marketing by location tagging your images and by using local hashtags.
If you’re local then you should also get your customers involved as they come in – take photos of them and ask them to tag you in their pictures.
Influencer marketing can also help a great deal. Get people behind your message and leverage the groundwork that other individuals and brands have done before you.
Instagram Marketing Dos and Don’ts
Finally, consider these vital Instagram marketing ‘dos and don’ts’ to guide you as you head forward in your efforts.
DO engage with your audience, respond to comments and generally stay active.
DON’T let your account become a ghost town with no new photos and no new comments or likes.
DO use your real-world networking to help enhance your Instagram efforts.
DO put real thought into your images.
DO consider using stock images when you’re at a loss, such as those from Compfight.
DON’T upload content that doesn’t gel with your mission statement, your tone or your niche. A consistent and strong brand identity is key.
DO create a good logo to use across all your social media.
DON’T be too salesy or pushy. Instagram is not the place for that.
DON’T measure your success based on conversions – Instagram is about art, expression and the personal touch.
DO think about the lifestyle you want to portray and the emotion behind that.
DO look for the beauty and the artistic opportunity in everyday activities.
Hopefully, throughout the course of this book, you will have learned a great number of techniques you can use to grow your Instagram account and to find new followers and customers.
At the same time though, what’s actually more important than that is that you understand the feel of Instagram and the kind of user that it attracts.
Instagram is about finding the beauty in the mundane. From a business perspective then, that means showing what’s beautiful, sexy, inspirational or desirable about your business and what you offer.
So ask yourself: what do you offer?
Do you offer people fitness, health, confidence happiness? Do you offer them indulgence, travel, taste? Or do you provide opportunities, success and wealth? Tap into the emotion behind your own brand and expose that through Instagram – then use that platform to help other people get as excited about your message as you are. That’s how you do Instagram marketing right!