In the week ahead I’m going to be starting the process of linking up the Instagram business account I’ve created from scratch so I can post some content to it. And this puts me in a bit of a quandry…

I get using Instagram for my personal life. But for business, and particularly a business that doesn’t have physical products, factories, showroom or retail space… I’m trying to figure what direction I can take… given that the core of Instagram is images, images plus some text or short videos. I’ll also need to figure out the benefits of Instagram Stories – where the content disappears after 24 hours.

Instagram is steadily turning out to be one of the most popular and engaging social media apps. With over 8 million registered business accounts, it has become a proven social media platform for marketing and brand building. About 80 million photos are uploaded to Instagram every day by its huge, active user base that you, as a business, can tap into.

Boasting hundreds of millions of daily active users, Instagram has huge potential for marketers. But the potential in Instagram lies more in the user behavior than the just the numbers. On Instagram, brands enjoy regular engagement with 4 percent of their total followers… whereas on networks like Facebook and Twitter, engagement really low. And Instagram is a more open marketing space – only a lesser percentage of marketers use Instagram, compared to marketers who use Facebook.

I’ve been reading up on Instagram marketing and most articles seem to point to four factors for success for businesses rather than simply relying on publishing a few nice-looking images. According to you need to also have these elements:

  • Clear vision and strategy
  • Consistent frequency
  • Familiarity with your audience
  • Clear visual style

This makes a lot of sense to me – as its exactly what makes all types of marketing work. And has for decades. Another tip is that you shouldn’t post each and everything, just for the sake of staying online. Content needs to be relevant to your product or brand. Frequent and irrelevant content tends to irritate users and they’ll run away.

Instagram has also rolled out its Call-to-Action button. Interested users can contact the business via email, SMS or phone. So that is definitely worth trying. I’ll also be looking at how to best use hashtags in your content too.

Another good start – which seems to be a common theme up for all social media marketing – is to start by looking at what you competitors or peers are already doing. My current thinking is that I’ll focus my Instagram presence on business life hacks…  short sharp ideas and tips for people who are looking to leverage digital marketing with simple ideas.

Once I get Instagram for business set up and running I’m looking forward to posting lots of practical advice on how to leverage it – whether you are offering a service, selling or manufacturing products.

In the meantime feel free to share any ideas or experiences that you have about using in to build a business. See you next time.