Instagram is actually the second most populous social network on the web, unbeknownst to many. Not only that, but it is also unique in terms of its demographic and its features. This is one of the most important tools for marketers, as well as those trying to promote their personal brand. But only if you use it correctly.
Instagram is a social network that is built around the concept of sharing images. Unlike Facebook however, users do not create albums filled with pictures but will instead upload individual images in order to add to their profile. These will be chosen to represent the best few snaps from an activity or day and that way the user’s profile will look like a ‘greatest hits’.
To further this, Instagram also allows users to add filters which are essentially special effects that can enhance the appearance of the photo. They might make a picture look retro, or perhaps they will increase the saturation and give it a vivid and surreal look. Many people will use this in order to make their lives seem like works of art – and indeed Instagram has been accused of creating unrealistic expectations and even leading to Narcissism! Others praise the platform for helping users to see the ‘beauty in the everyday’.
Whatever your view, Instagram is undoubtedly a powerful platform for internet marketing when used correctly.
The great thing about Instagram from a business perspective is that it is visual. This firstly ensures that it has a highly emotive impact. In other words, people are more motivated by images and it is possible to convey more emotion and meaning through an image.
For instance, if you want to get someone to buy a piece of fitness equipment, then an image showing someone in great shape running on the beach looking happy is a great way to do it. This is called the value proposition – understanding the emotional ‘hook’ that motivates people to buy.
In the same way, Instagram can be used in order to build your brand’s image and your mission statement – to show your users what your business is all about and that way to make it into more than just a corporate logo. Ideally, you want to turn your brand into something that people believe in and want to get behind because they believe in the same values that you do.
Companies can create Instagram accounts then (there is the option to open a specifically a business account) and then they can build a following. Likewise, they can create adverts that will appear in users’ feeds.
Building a personal brand is also very effective on Instagram. That means turning yourself into the brand – embodying the image of your business and what it stands for. This way, you can live the lifestyle that you’re promoting and demonstrate that your concepts and your products work. This is something we see more and more of on Instagram.
And of course for some people, Instagram is the business model. This is true of Instagram influencers. These are people who build their prominence on the platform to the point where they have access to a huge audience, as well as having the respect and trust of that audience. Brands will then want to work with them in order to benefit from their testimony, as well as their reach. And by working with those brands, influencers can make a lot of money.
How to Grow Your Instagram Account
If you want to be successful on Instagram, there are a few important points to keep in mind:
These strategies can increase engagement and help people feel as though they know you. That of course builds trust and authority, increasing your promoter power!