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Cherry Kwan

How Businesses Can Benefit from Instagram

Cherry Kwan
How Businesses Can Benefit from Instagram

Since its launch in 2010, Instagram grew to 1 million users in just 3 months. Today, Instagram has over 300 million monthly users and 30 billion photos shared through their app. It’s become an extremely popular platform to allow users to share their stories through photos.

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Instagram allows anyone’s mobile photos to turn into a work of art. Their filters help to transform photos into professional looking images. Since their launch, Instagram has released new tools and integrations that is enhancing users’ experience with Instagram. In addition to web embeds and photo maps, Instagram is continuously creating new filters to add more taste in your photography.

Many people believe that Instagram is targeted towards millennials. Although a majority of the users are millennials, it’s not an app just for them. The social platform can be used by anyone. It’s extremely easy to use and you won’t even need an in-house millennial to manage it!

Do you have a camera? How about a camera phone? If you have a smartphone with a camera, then you can definitely start using Instagram!

Why Instagram?

Instagram is a creative platform that is very different from Facebook. It focuses on sharing photos and videos instantly with friends, families and the world. With seventy-five million people are using Instagram every day, it’s another great social media platform to connect with consumers.

For many brands, Instagram is a great way to engage with the audience through photo sharing. On a daily basis, 70 million photos are shared, which is a great reason for brands to be on Instagram.

Should I Instagram?

Clients often asks us whether or not they should be on Instagram. Their idea is that if they're already on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+, what’s wrong with being on Instagram, too?

Let’s imagine this scenario. If you’re looking for a plumber on social media, would you be searching on Facebook or Instagram? Most, if not all, will choose to find them through Facebook. This is because Facebook provides business pages that can give you the accurate information you need, including reviews, websites, hours, summary and location.

Instagram, on the other hand, is a photo-sharing platform and let’s be honest, plumbing photos are not the most appeasing and attractive photos. In fact, not many people would look to Instagram for a photos of plumbing or toilets.

However, this doesn’t mean you can’t be on Instagram. I believe that any brand can leverage Instagram and build a visual story for themselves on there. Instagram allows the community to understand the lifestyle, people, products or services of a business. It doesn’t have to be pictures of your plumbing business’ toilet; it can inspirational images on a washroom design and more.

What Can Instagram Do for my Business?

Announce Promotions and Sales

When it comes to promotions, Instagram is a great place to showcase your products. That’s because it allows you to visually capture everything. You can share photos of the products being on sale, new collections and products at your store or any upcoming events that is being held.

For example, a kitchen and home décor store in Canada posts top picks, new inventory and kitchen gadgets on their Instagram. They have pictures that will show you how you can use your products. In addition, you can post pictures that can relate to national events occurring, such as national holidays.

Instagram for business - kitchen plus

Hold Instagram Contests

Everyone likes giveaways and contests. Instagram is a great place to use contests to gain more followers and reach for your brand. You can offer gift cards and free gifts to those who repost your images and follow you on Instagram.

When users share your image, it will increase your brand’s reach and awareness. This will lead to more Instagram users following you on your account.

However, don’t forget to include the hashtag #contest or #giveaway. You want to reach everyone that is interested about giveaways on Instagram because who doesn’t love free gifts?

Share Company Events

Even if you’re in an industry that may not be the most appealing, you can still post photos that can relate to your brand or industry. One way is to promote events that you’ve held or attended with your business.

There are many businesses that are doing surprisingly well on Instagram, including Cisco, a tech company. They have posted photos and videos from their Cisco events, including those that Cisco executives have attended as speakers.

Instagram for business - cisco

Connect With the Right People

Hashtags are extremely important. They’re a great way to filter content and discover new content on Instagram. They allow you to categorize your posts and appear in different categories.

For example, if you’ve posted a photo of the latest baking tool, you can hashtag #baking #bakingtools #kitchengadgets and many more. The hashtag you want to tag for your photo and how many you want to use is all under your own control.

Each hashtag becomes a category that allow you to target individuals who would be interested in baking on Instagram. This way, when a user searches “#baking” on Instagram, your photo will also appear in the search.

Reach Millennials

According to study, 73% of Instagram users are between 15 and 35 years old. These young teenagers and adults, are known as the millennials. As a millennial myself, I love seeing products that are showcased on Instagram. It allows me to see how the product is used and see other individuals that have “hashtag” the product and what their thoughts are on the product.

Many businesses are hoping to capture them at this age and build a loyal customer relationship with them. In fact, millennials are a powerful group of individuals that may spend on specific products.

If you’re looking to target millennials for your business, then it’s extremely important for your business to be on Instagram.

Instagram for business sponsored

Instagram is currently expanding their advertising to suit businesses of all sizes. However, we are only seeing Instagram sponsored for large corporations for now.

Instagram sponsored posts appear in the feed of Instagram users and often have “Sponsored” on the corner, just like Facebook sponsored posts.

Instagram ads are targeted to individuals that may be interested in the business. They do that by analyzing the information about what Facebook and Instagram users do on their profile. This way, everyone on Instagram will see advertisements from time to time.

Whether or not you have a professional photographer working for your business, you can still use Instagram, because that’s exactly what it’s created for. It’s created for anyone and everyone to take pictures and share them with their friends, family, and people all over the world!

Are you using Instagram to market your business? What works and what doesn't? Let us know in the comments!

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Cherry is a digital marketer passionate about engaging and growing the online community through social, content, and all things digital. She loves the challenges that the ever-changing digital marketing world brings.

Comments

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David Markus
David Markus
Nice article Cherry Kwan,
There are three more things which is more beneficial in instagram business.
i.e
1: Personal touch
2: New demographic
3: Network
Pictures tell stories and if used properly, can drive engagement properly. So, put a informative pics and business related videos to engage traffic.
Cherry Kwan F
David Markus
Hi David! Thanks for your comment :)
For sure! I definitely agree that these stories are a great way to add a personal touch for businesses, especially when they can do "behind the scene" shots.
David Markus
David Markus
Cherry Kwan F
Yeah exactly.
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