Have you ever sat back and thought about why you are on Instagram specifically? As a visual content platform, Instagram should not be considered in the same way as Facebook or Twitter for example.
As much as we all love seeing our follower number grow, it is the engagement rate we should all really be looking at. The name we make for our brands is reflected in the number of followers we have, and a user can always tell how popular a brand is by looking at this figure. However, behind the scenes, if the engagement rate is low, the brand might not be actually doing its job properly on Instagram.
Why do we use Instagram for business?
Because Instagram is perfect for visuals, the number one reason you should be using Instagram for your brand is to share quality images and videos with your community. The media you post should engage your audience and get your followers excited. But why? In the long term, doing this will strengthen your brand identity and build trust among your customers. Now think – is this your strategy? Are your followers engaged?
It’s easy to get a rhythm going and forget why you were really on the platform in the first place.
Here are some of the mistakes you could be making:
#1 – Pushing products on Instagram
Take a look at your Instagram media. Are you constantly mentioning your products? Your followers may perceive this as product pushing, and you could lose out on engagement from your community if they’re feeling like you’re just advertising all the time. Try to get out of the habit of talking purely products. Try to stimulate your community in other ways.
#2 – Getting stuck in a corporate mindset
This can be a complicated one depending on the domain of your work. Some companies will have no trouble finding their fun side on social media, whilst others will struggle simply because of the kind of product they are selling. Instagram is young at heart, and so are its users, (you don’t get many users who don’t enjoy fantastic visual content) so it’s important to give them what they want. Do this by engaging with them and making their experience as one of your followers a fun one. If your product is dull, try to post visuals that show a different side of it. Alternatively, you can post team photos and office pictures which show the human side of your company, without insisting too much on the product itself.
#3 – Not involving your followers
This is a huge mistake to make on Instagram. Your followers are the reason you’re here, so take care of them! Involve them in your posts by asking them questions, answering them and replying to their comments on your posts. Make sure your followers feel implicated in your media, make the visuals about them so they feel like they want to react to them, rather than just scroll on down their feed.
#4 – Not repurposing user-generated content
User-generated content is the content that your Instagram community has posted featuring your brand’s products and including your brand hashtag in the caption. This stuff is like GOLD. You can repurpose this kind of content (with the author’s consent) on your websites, blog and other social media channels,and it works like a marketing tool, except that it is pure and organic. Authentic user content like this is the kind of media that can really convert your leads into customers, as it works like word-of-mouth (customers telling prospects to become customers). You can encourage your followers to supply you with UGC by hosting an Instagram contest, whereby you request a selfie of the user holding your product in exchange for a prize for the lucky winner.
We hope these tips have helped you to rethink your Instagram strategy, if it needed tweaking! Please let us know how you intend to improve your strategy in the comments!