Leveraging Instagram. Instagram has shown remarkable growth over the last year and a bit. It’s a fun, quirky platform accessible to everyone with a smartphone. With over 200 million users worldwide with over 1 million of those users in South Africa, Instagram is definitely the platform to be on if you have products and services that will photograph well.
We all have a story to tell and your brand has a unique perspective to share. Unlike other popular social media platforms, Instagram is a photo-sharing platform available only on your smartphone. Instagram allows for rich, vibrant visual story telling.
Let’s get you started. When launching your brand on Instagram, you will need to decide what your objectives for Instagram are, whether it is to increase brand awareness, shift perception around your brand or to reach a new audience. You will need to ensure that your objectives can be achieved by telling your story through this vibrant, visual medium.
Tell us a story. You’ll need a strategy to inform your content plan. Decide on themes and a story line that is authentic to your brand. With these in place, over time a consistent thread will share your brand’s story and personality. You will need to stick to a regular posting schedule. You don’t want to saturate your follower’s newsfeed by posting erratically and then all at once – that’s a recipe for alienating your precious followers.
Remember content is king. Instagram is a favourite for creatives and visually savvy users. So content needs to be created and curated carefully in order to best represent your brand. Your photos need to be high quality and edited where necessary. Instagram also allows for a caption which when well written, using relevant hashtags, will get your photos noticed.
Get social – start leveraging Instagram. It’s important to note that Instagram users are typically younger, between the ages of 18 – 35 years old with a skew towards women. You need to know who you are talking to and engage with them; follow back, and reach out and follow other users who might be interested in your brand. Be social and approachable, like and comment on other users’ photos.
Instagram have recently launched advertising, although not available in South Africa yet, it’s definitely something to look into in the future. Instagram recently launched carousel ads. It’s an innovative way for brands to share more than one image in a post for those interested in seeing more. The carousel ads are supposed to allow for more flexibility in storytelling. All you have to do is swipe left to see additional images and click the link to visit the website.