Beginner’s Guide to Instagram Digital Marketing

Any eCommerce business worth its salt should be clued to the dominance of Instagram in today’s digital marketing space. Facebook’s image-sharing social network has over a billion users worldwide, and it has become essential to any business’s online presence. Consumers are using Instagram earlier in the buying cycle, with 81% using the social media platform to research products and services.

However, you may not know the array of features designed to maximise your business’ following, and sales, on the app. Facebook has been keen to push business features in their apps over the past few years, with Instagram being no different, and it’s looking to be a huge payoff for those who use them. Instagram Shopping is interacted with through interactive posts by over 130 million people every month, and research shows that around 62% of users say that they have actively become more intrigued by a brand or product after seeing it in an Instagram story.

If you’re stuck on how to make the most of your Instagram business account, here is Brave’s lowdown on how to become successful at Instagram digital marketing.

 

Optimising your Instagram profile

Setting up your account with all the relevant business information is the best way to let people know about your eCommerce company. It’s just like any digital space; if you fill the available fields with your details and links, people will be more interested as they have an easily-accessible place to go. Use your SEO knowledge to create a keyword-optimised description, and choose a profile picture that’s bold and simple, like your company logo or wordmark.

Don’t forget to use all the other available features for your profile such as hashtags, profile bio links, Instagram shop and story highlights. We’ll talk about those in-depth later on.

 

Creating your content strategy

The importance of planning goes without saying when it comes to almost every aspect of digital marketing, and that includes your Instagram content strategy. Gather research on what types of posts do the best on the app for your demographic and target market.

When it comes to the types of posts Instagram users want to see when they visit a profile, it very much is determined by your target market’s interests and your industry. To truly nail this, consumer insights are paramount. Ensure that you can answer the following questions before you begin posting:

  1.  Who is your target market? Is it B2B or B2C?
  2. What interests do your customers have?
  3. What is your brand personality? Is it playful? Informative? Outdoorsy? Etc.
  4. What content pillars can you build around your products or services?

There are a million and one ways to create content that interests your customers, utilise your knowledge of them to find the specific topics for them. From promotional posts, product reviews, how-to guides and user-generated content, the possibilities are endless.

Instagram is a visual platform. This means that aesthetics and design are everything. While there is no rule of what colour or style your posts should be, it is worth noting that lighter images often perform better than dark ones. Clear images – whether these are images of your team, products or your roast dinner – are proven to get more engagement and perform better.

 

Instagram growth agaency and digital marketing experts

 

Using Instagram Hashtags

Hashtags may have been born on Twitter, but on Instagram, they have become a tool for marketing like never before. By using the hashtag (#) symbol, you can transform any phrase or word into a clickable topic and find related posts. This means other people that don’t follow you have another avenue to find your business, through the stream of content in the hashtags you and others use.

But what hashtags should you use? For starters, brand hashtags are key to establishing your business’ identity on social media, and can often encourage others to create user-generated content and use the hashtag themselves, which only boosts your presence. Content hashtags are useful to link to other posts of this type, such as #contest or #question.

Creating content to fit in with timely hashtags can be a big boost to your engagement, as events such as Valentine’s Day or Father’s day can have their own unique set of hashtags for you to get involved in. And finally, recent trends have veered toward brands having a personality through entertaining, playful hashtags. Sometimes a sentence at the end of a set of hashtags such as #hereitisanyway on a product announcement can be a fun easter egg that users will remember.

Try to keep to around 5 – 10 hashtags for the best results, and don’t reuse the same ones too many times, or it’ll become very stale, very quickly.

 

Publishing Instagram stories

Instagram Stories are a way to have a daily stream of content that disappears after 24 hours, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t put effort into this content as on average, a brand’s Stories have an 86% completion rate, which is even higher than the completion rate for most people’s friends.

As an eCommerce business, what should you put on your Story? The first thing is any user-generated content. Customers can tag you in a story and can return the favour by resharing it to their Story. This creates a nice feedback loop where more people are encouraged to share your product so they can get on your Story. It’s a good trick to have!

Secondly is using some of Instagram’s fun features. Polls for feedback, links for calls to action and more can be a good way of getting people engaged with your brand, and you can turn these stories into highlights so they stay preserved on your profile for people to look back on.

 

Using Instagram Automation

Borrowing from Facebook’s Messenger API, it allows users to message brands and have brands be able to automatically message them back with any questions. Be it a direct message, a mention or a Story reply, interacting with brands is not only appealing to customers and an important part of the customer experience but is thankfully easier than ever using automation.

One of the best automation features is called a Story Mention Trigger. This is an automatic follow-up to a user whenever they tag them in a story, as though the business has seen the story themselves and reacted to it. Customers are now more connected and valued to the business, increasing their retention rate and the likelihood of them spending money on your store.

 

If you’re looking to boost your eCommerce business’ online presence further, Brave Agency are the experts. Our skilled team covers a range of marketing sectors – from Digital Marketing, Instagram growth and PPC – to increasing your customer base, digital brand and sales, and if you’re interested, speak to us today!

Written byJamie Flett

Google Partner
Facebook Marketing Partner
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