Did you know that Instagram currently has over 1 billion active monthly users?
Also, of all those users, 90% follow a business on the platform.
Thus, Instagram gives you a chance to market your brand and reach your target audience.
But how can you build your brand on Instagram?
To help us with this, I invited Jenn Herman to be on my podcast. She is a globally recognized Instagram expert and a cutting edge blogger on Instagram marketing. Read on to understand how you can do Instagram marketing effectively and build your brand on the platform.
Growing Your Brand on Instagram: A Marketing Guide
Instagram gives you the opportunity to create buzz about the products and services you provide. It helps you connect with people who are interested in such products and who may be interested in the content you share.
The following are some tips to help you build your brand on Instagram:
1. Create an Instagram Strategy
An Instagram strategy enables you to chart out your entire plan to build your brand on Instagram. It helps you identify who you are, your goals, audience, and how you can use Instagram to achieve your goals.
While it’s not essential for every business to have a presence on Instagram, it does help to have an Instagram strategy if you want to build your presence on the platform.
Without an Instagram strategy in place, you won’t know where to focus your efforts in order to achieve your goals. The strategy can help you prioritize your efforts so that you can reach your goals with ease.
So, let’s take a look at the major components of an Instagram marketing strategy:
What Should Your IG Strategy Include?
- Goals and objectives: What do you want to achieve with your Instagram account? Do you want to increase site visits, create awareness, increase sales, or grow your engagement? Knowing your goals will help you plan your strategy.
- Target audience: Figure out who might be likely to purchase from you. Identify your target audience based on demographic, geographic, and psychographic factors.
- Industry: What is your niche? What is your competition doing differently? What can you do to stand out? How can you become the go-to brand or thought leader in your industry?
- Content strategy: Do you have a schedule for posting your content? What do you plan to post? How many times a day or week will you post? When will you post? Which hashtags will you use?
- Tracking and Measuring: Track your account and posts for engagement. Have you noticed changes in your sales or conversions? Are you achieving your goals?
Once you’ve defined and outlined a strategy, it’s time to brand your business and boost engagement through your posts.
2. Brand Your Business
Who are you as a business?
Understanding your business gives you an idea of the best way to attract people to your products and services and keep them intrigued.
Your content should stand out in the feed, according to Jenn. People must literally stop to scroll, like, comment, click, and share.
To grow your brand on Instagram, you need to maintain consistency in your tone, theme, and style. Build a unique brand persona that can help your audience identify you and set you apart from other similar brands.
Choose a color palette that suits your brand and create a consistent theme that represents who you are as a brand. Using inconsistent styles and themes can confuse your audience.
Recess is a sparkling water brand that you may consider to be a boring product. But their Instagram presence is excellent. They use a consistent color palette of rosy pinks, lavenders, and light tangerines. They also share creative product shots, illustrations, and text posts while applying a humorous brand voice to make their Instagram account engaging.
Image via Instagram
3. Increase Engagement with Your Audience
You need to engage your audience through your posts if you want to grow your brand on Instagram. Create content that will motivate them to interact with your brand on the platform.
It’s also essential to track the engagement when you’re building your brand. When you’re doing so, you must also consider the Instagram algorithm. It determines what content your audience sees from you, which means it also contributes to the kind of engagement you get. The more people who see your content, and like, comment, or share it, the more will your engagement grow.
The Instagram algorithm works to ensure that the content your audience sees is timely and fresh so that they don’t miss moments they care about.
Image via Twitter
Your Instagram marketing strategy should, therefore, provide users with what they want to see more. Check out your analytics and find out what kind of content drives the most engagement. That’s the content you need to create.
Instagram will rank the content based on what matters to the user based on their past behavior. It also considers recency and how close the user is to the account that created the post.
So, how do you decode the Instagram algorithm?
According to Jenn, you have to be strategic with growing your Instagram account. You should have answers to the following:
- What is your end goal?
- How do you want to achieve it?
- How can you create content that serves this end goal for you?
She also reiterates that most of the time when people think the algorithm has changed or their engagement has decreased, they’ve been placed in Instagram jail. This affects your ranking and engagement.
Some of the factors that can reduce your engagement include:
- Getting flagged for spam or inappropriate content by users: It can happen when people tag your account as spam. It could also be because people think you have poor content, or that you spam them with inappropriate messages. Once flagged, you stop appearing in search results, so most people don’t see your content unless they are following you. They will also not engage with your content, which means you will have a massive drop in engagement.
- Content that may have been working well previously may stop working. It could be that your content is not what the AI is looking for or that you are no longer showing up in hashtag searches.
- Your posting frequency could also affect your ranking and engagement. If you post daily, you compete with your own content for placement. Casual followers and those who don’t log in often may not see all your posts. The algorithm will choose what to show them higher in the feed, and if your content falls lower in their feed, they may only see only a few of your posts. However, if you post once a week, all your followers might be able to see your posts leading to increased engagement.
- You could also be neglecting your feed and directing all of your efforts to Stories. Doing that means your feed content ranks lower as people are not engaging with it.
To ensure your engagement remains high, keep checking your brand mentions, and tagged content to ensure that it adheres to Instagram guidelines. Make sure you offer people content that adds value to their lives and do not neglect your Instagram feed.
Are You Ready to Grow Your Brand on Instagram?
It may take some time for you to grow your brand on Instagram, but you can do it. Remain consistent and actively engage with your audience.
Offer them content they want to see and provide value to them through it. Also, maintain consistency in your content, your theme, and colors. Doing this can help with your visibility and help you stay in front of your audience.
Do you have any questions about how to grow your Instagram account or any tips to share? Let us know in the comment section below.
Shane Barker is a digital marketing consultant who specializes in influencer marketing, product launches, sales funnels, targeted traffic, and website conversions. He has consulted with Fortune 500 companies, influencers with digital products, and a number of A-List celebrities.