Instagram is my favorite! This Instagram Marketing Guide is from my pure heart. Personally and professionally, Instagram is gold for growth. Unless you royally screw it up.
As a marketer, it’s important to know the basics of Instagram, so you don’t fail. Things are changing daily, so you’ll need a plan of attack to stay on top of your digital game. Trust me, I have seen some pretty epic fails on Instagram that I wish I could help.
It’s time to tackle Instagram and the power it holds.
What’s all the Instagram fuss about? It’s simple.
Instagram is another one of those social media platforms where people post pictures and words. I try to separate it from Facebook, even though they own it, as much as I can.
Your mission is to post the best photos, with the best captions and be the best Grammer you can be. Easier said than done. Check out these #Instagram tips by @cbcinkedTweet
It’s your choice to be personal or business on Instagram, so choose wisely! As a business on Instagram you will get some perks, and it’s free. You also have choices like:
I am not going to teach you how to set up your profile for Instagram, but here is a great resource from HubSpot on The Anatomy of a Perfect Instagram Profile.
Here’s my CBCInked Instagram feed – please feel free to follow me! I love connecting with other people and would be happy to see what kind of adventures you’re having online. 🙂
Do’s and Don’ts of Instagram
I’ve been using Instagram for longer than I’d like to admit.
I’ve seen it grow, evolve and trend. It’s important to be sure who you want to be online (on any social platform). Your online identity is equally important as who you are in real life, so be sure you represent yourself correctly.
- Do: Represent your authentic self.
- Don’t: Create a fake life online that doesn’t represent the real you.
- Do: Take quality photos (background matters!)
- Don’t: Take out of focus, fuzzy photos (with a toilet in the background!)
- Do: Write a classy profile with correct information, grammar and punctuation.
- Don’t: Put together a half-ass profile that has spelling errors and bad spacing.
- Do: Post no more than three times a day. 1-2 posts are ideal.
- Don’t: Post a thousand times a day.
- Do: Post inspiring, helpful and educational content (young eyes are watching!)
- Don’t Post hateful, judgmental or cruel content.
- Do: Offer a reference to where they can find more information in the comments.
- Don’t: Put a link in the comments, it’s not hyperlinked!
- Do: Leave positive, uplifting and inspiring comments on other accounts.
- Don’t: Spam other people’s accounts with salesy type comments.
I could go on, but I think you get it. You need to be authentic, respectful and helpful. I can’t express this enough – BE NICE.
Interested in more Instagram knowledge bombs? Learn how to market your agency in one simple download. Download the free eBook for a sneak peek at what’s included in the exclusive Marketing in a Box course!
Stories are like those little images in a viewfinder – remember those?
Your Instagram Stories are another way to showcase your profile and brand with a little fun. They are short snippets of images and video that will last in an archived database outside of your feed. They are increasingly popular and should be used…properly!
When you create a story, it should be compelling, interesting and “on brand” as Alexis Rose would say.
Resist the urge to post whatever comes to mind first! Be sure to take some time to do a little research as your online identity is at stake.
Here are 21 Inspiring Brands Crushing it on Instagram Stories by Ampfluence to get some good ideas.
PRO TIP: Share highly personalized and professional snippets of short, sweet videos. Nobody likes a video that’s just too long.
How to Gain Followers and Influence People
Instagram is not easy to gain followers. You don’t automatically get people to follow you just because you post an image that you think is cool. Sorry to burst your Gram bubble, babe, but you are going to have to work for it!
So how do you gain followers? You put time and effort in, just like anything else.
Instagram is going to require daily activity, engagement and commentary. Other than posting 1-2 images a day along with your Stories, you are going to have to put time and love into other accounts as well. Here are few tips to gain followers and influencer people on Instagram:
- In your caption be sure to tag influencers, mentors, inspiration or brands that you are posting about. That involves doing some research to find out the appropriate handles for each brand.
- In your caption, be sure to hashtag the key categories you are posting about – the magic number is seven hashtags. Be sure you research each one to try and rank in search for the keyword or topic of the image posted.
- Follow trending hashtags in discover or in your feed. Comment (encouraging, uplifting and positive!) on posts that are relevant to what you’d like to rank for.
- Create a unique hashtag that is specific to you, that you can use and reference for brand awareness (I.E. #CBCInked)
- Follow people, brands and companies that you admire, like and want to reshare. Re-share their posts and stories, tagging them and their hashtag to show support.
- Comment, engage and re-share DAILY. There is no limit to the amount of comments you can share on other people’s accounts, so go nuts.
I put together 11 Instagram Influencers for a Healthy Mind if you’d like to start there – these are all great people to follow.
One of my favorite accounts to follow is NuLeaf Naturals:
If you’re looking for more marketing help, let’s chat! I have helped companies all over the world learn the ins and outs of digital, content and social media marketing. I am happy to chat with you about your goals for growth.
CBCInked Wrap Up: Instagram Guide for Growth
Instagram is an excellent avenue for growth in the digital marketing world. I encourage you to learn it, hone it and make it your own.
Be patient as you watch it grow. It takes time and dedication to successfully grow an Instagram feed. Don’t give up!
Again, I am here for you! Marketing is my life. If you are someone you know is interested in help with Instagram or social media marketing, please follow my blog, join my tribe, download my free eBook or reach out to me for a free consultation. We can grow together!
You got this.
If you’ve learned something from this post – I want to hear about it! If you are an artist looking to further your Instagram presence, branch out with communities like RedBubble. They helped me grow SO much.