Friday, November 15, 2013

7 Tips for Using Instagram for Business

Instagram, the rapidly-growing photo sharing community, can boost your business’s exposure, increase brand recognition and build demand for your products and services. With over 100 million users, businesses are increasingly turning to Instagram to engage consumers and boost their brands.
The Instagram team started a Tumblr called Instagram for Business. In it you’ll find best-practices for enterprises, new service offerings of interest to brands (like the new photo maps), and a list of ways to make yourself an Insta-success.
1.       Show Your Products
Promote mobile window-shopping by using Instagram to show off a collection of your products. Snap photos of new products to build a buzz, or zoom in for a close shot on one product and ask your users to guess what it is. Photos attract users, but conversations engage them. If your small business is service-oriented, show off the supplies and equipment that are essential to the services you provide. For example, show off your favourite workout gear if fitness is your business, or reveal you’re most impressive lenses if you are a photographer.
2.       Introduce Your Employees
Introducing your followers to the people who keep your company going humanizes your brand. Cast the Instagram spotlight on special employees, and use the caption to share a bit about the employee. Make spotlighting an ongoing campaign that features staff from different departments within your company to put a human face on your brand.

3. Expand your audience.
Connect Instagram to your other social networks and use relevant hashtags (#yourbrandhere) to make it easier for people to find your account.
4. Show What Your Products Can Do
Use Instagram to increase demand by showing customers new or novel ways to use your products. Engage your followers by inviting user-generated content. Challenge them to post pics showing off creative uses of your products. If your business is service-oriented, show the impact of your work with before and after shots. These are especially effective for landscaping, interior design, fitness, makeup or auto-body
5. Engage directly with users.
Ask questions in your photo caption, and respond to comments. You can also organize local Instagram meetups!
 6. Build Anticipation
Keeping customer interest is an essential part of an effective marketing campaign. Reward your loyal followers by letting them be the first to know about new products, services or events. Snap teaser photos that satisfy curiosity but build anticipation for your new releases, office openings or stores. These exclusive previews make your Instagram followers feel special and keep them coming back for more insider information.
7. Show How It’s Made
Customers have a natural curiosity about where their products come from, and you can use Instagram to show the origins of all their favorite products. Snap photos throughout the manufacturing process, from planning to delivery.

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