Using Instagram to share photos or videos with your friends and family is straightforward. You snap a picture when you’re out with your friends or find a sandwich so beautiful you feel the world needs to know. Learning how to market your business on Instagram is a little trickier. More thought should be given to what you’re posting, and more importantly, why. Let’s look what 5 brands taught us about Instagram marketing.
Letterfolk follows the 80/20 rule of content marketing. 80% of the time they post interesting content to engage their followers and 20% of the time they market their business in a more direct way. Many of the photos they share are from customers using their products in their everyday lives—another way to show off products without selling.
What this brand taught us about Instagram marketing: When you market your business on Instagram, you can do it without aggressively selling. Share relevant content and you will foster trust and confidence in your audience, which often leads driving customer action. Examples include real estate agents posting about how staging your home can help it sell or a mortgage officer sharing a to-do list for first-time homebuyers before they apply for a loan.
Many brands on Instagram have comment sections filled with questions from followers asking for names of items, where to find them, what they cost, etc. Desenio uses their photo captions to give the name and size of each print shown, making it super easy for followers to snag their favorite from the online store.
What this brand taught us about Instagram marketing: Regardless of whether you are selling a lamp or an insurance policy, you should make it easy for potential customers to get the information they need. People shouldn’t have to dig through their inbox to find your business address or phone number. Keep your social media profiles up-to-date and include links to your social media accounts in your email newsletters.
This decidedly low-tech product has been around for 60+ years and is still a favorite of kids. How has Play-Doh stayed relevant in a tech-driven world? One way is by leveraging the visual nature of Instagram. By posting how-to videos and creative ways to use their product, Play-Doh is reminding their nearly 100k followers not to forget the classics.
What this brand taught us about Instagram marketing: Being in business for decades doesn’t mean you should go on autopilot. As technology evolves, the way you market your business should as well. Embrace the many capabilities of social media to build relationships and keep your network engaged.
In mid-2015, Reynolds revamped their Instagram strategy. They ditched the ad hoc photos and turned their feed into one continuous table, seamlessly taking viewers from one dish to the next. For nearly three years they’ve kept their content consistent by adding dishes to this table and building their Instagram following.
What this brand taught us about Instagram marketing: Be consistent. Sure, this account takes it to a level we didn’t know was possible, but this is an important point. Consistency includes what you post and when to do it. Maintain a regular email and social media schedule to ensure you stay top of mind with your network. When you do communicate with your network, share content that is consistent with your business. (E.g., that cute puppy video is probably best to be shared on your personal page.)
The Stitch Fix feed is all about style. Using clothes available to customers, the looks they share get thousands of likes and tons of engagement from followers. Stitch Fix’s mission includes “combining technology with the personal touch of seasoned style experts” and their Instagram definitely delivers.
What this brand taught us about Instagram marketing: Stitch Fix stays focused on what they love and what they’re good at doing: helping customers find their unique style through clothes. They don’t also do makeup, fitness attire, etc. Similarly, your focus should be on doing what you do best instead of using energy on tasks that you don’t have time or expertise to master.
So what have we learned?
The most important thing these 5 brands taught us about Instagram marketing is that you should know what you want to communicate to your audience. It’s important your online presence reinforces that. Maybe your strategy needs to be focused, such as the case of Reynolds. Maybe your particular line of business means fielding a lot of questions. Perhaps if you got in front of the most common ones, like Desenio did, you’d save tons of time.
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