What is this new, photocentric social network that everyone is raving about? Instagram, which made news after its billion dollar purchase from Facebook last year, is a social network that lets you quickly and easily share photos that have been slightly edited, giving them a beautiful or retro look. You can caption those photos using hashtags, which makes people find your photos even easier.
If used effectively, your small business can actually flourish from the added traffic to your website and from added brand awareness. In fact, a recent report says even having a small number of followers on Instagram can have a huge impact on your small business.
The New York-based data analytics firm SumAll, found that Instagram actually added significant traffic to business’ other social networks and actually helped with sales.
From Business Insider: “Though they’ve only seen the data from a few pre-launch clients since the tool was launched Friday, the company’s CEO Dane Atkinson told us in an interview that “…when it comes to likes, comments, sharing and all of that, engagement from Instagram users is as much as 10 times greater than other platforms like Facebook and Twitter.”
Why is that? Facebook is huge, as well as Twitter. So why is engagement on Instagram so much stronger? Probably because the social network is extremely simple. People scroll through photos, double tap if they “like” it or type in a quick comment and hit send, then move on. There’s minimal distraction because it’s only accessible on a smartphone.
So how can your small business use Instagram?
1) Show off your products: If you’re a product-driven business, this is a no-brainer. Show off your latest products, your products in the real world — just show off your products.
2) Behind the scenes: It doesn’t matter what kind of business you run, people love seeing what the customer doesn’t always see. Show them what happens when no one is looking. They’ll love it.
3) Show the power of your business: Depending on what kind of small business you run, show your products or services in use. This can create an emotional connection with your followers and produce even more engagement.
4) Employees and office: In addition to showing what’s going on behind the scenes, also show your followers some of the employees that may not typically see. Also show off what your office looks like! If it’s a really fun office, people will love seeing it. Or maybe it’s a really tiny office that would have people scratching their head wondering how you deliver such a great business!
5) Promotions: Are you running a promotion for your business? Tease your followers throughout the week and then hit them with an awesome photo that will wow them.
Instagram is free advertising, but it does take some time. However you decide to use it, just make sure you’re being consistent. You don’t want to be all over the place and just post random photos — your followers will get lost. Instagram has the potential to be huge, so start harnessing its power today.