Is Instagram branding important for your business’ success? More and more brands seem to be flocking to this social media site, and the ability to quickly throw up a video or image and caption it is quite appealing to those with limited time to devote to social media posts.
Instagram now has 1 billion users, behind only Facebook and YouTube. It’s become a social media powerhouse in its own right. Instagram branding is vital if you want to reach some of those users. Move forward with a plan for how you’ll communicate with them on the platform, and you’ll have a lot more success than merely posting haphazardly.
Instagram is a different beast than other social media sites, so you’ll also want to keep a few fundamental truths in mind as you invest in Instagram branding.
1. Find Your Voice
If you want your Instagram strategy to be successful, you must find your voice as a brand. Take some time to study other brands on Instagram and see what they’re doing that you like. There are several examples scattered throughout this article to get you started, but you should take the time to follow a few brands, particularly those in the same industry as you, or at least those with a similar target audience.
Do you want to post things that are informative? Perhaps you want to entertain and take a light-hearted approached. Whatever voice you take on, make sure it matches your overall tone as a company.
2. Don’t Be Afraid to Look Like a Business
Remember how we talked about those 1 billion users over on Instagram? Don’t be afraid to look like a business to them. Out of the 1 billion users, about 80 percent of users follow at least one company on the social media platform. They aren’t opposed to you marketing to them. They just want you to be upfront about it.
Califia Farms, which sells dairy-free dressings, doesn’t shy away from the fact that they are a business. They display their logo clearly at the top of the page as their profile image, and they let you know where their products are available. Every picture features one of their dressings, showing you the various ways you can use the product. For those who love Califia Farms’ dressings, they post recipes in the comments below the photos.
3. Post Frequently
Studies show that the top brands on Instagram post an average of 4.9 times a week. If you want to gain followers and reach new leads on the social media platform, you must commit to posting at least once a day, if not more. Although not all scheduling software works with Instagram, you can utilize services such as Onlypult and schedule posts ahead of time.
4. Connect Via Your Website
Often times your target audience will find your Instagram account via your website or other social media channels. Be sure to link to your Instagram somewhere on your site. A great place to do this is in your nav bar and/or your footer. You could even write a blog post that tells your customers about your new Instagram account. Optimal exposure for your Instagram account is key.
Check out Dy Concrete Pumps and how they offer their social accounts in one place located in the footer. They’re simple icons everyone recognizes and the CTA encourages engagement.
5. Find a Cause
People are more likely to support a brand that believes in a cause in which they also believe. Take the time to figure out what you care about as a brand and put your company name behind that belief. Either start a charity or donate to one. Take a percentage from each sale and use it to improve the world in some way. Those who care will notice and appreciate your efforts.
Tentsile sells tents for those who want to get back to nature. In keeping with that theme, they also plant 18 trees every time they sell a tent, something they aren’t ashamed to point out on their Instagram page. They also share that they’ve already planted more than 350,000 trees.
6. Ramp Up Your Mobile Sales
Studies show that Instagram users are much more likely to make mobile purchases. In fact, they are about 70 percent more likely to do so than non-users. If you want to ramp up your mobile sales, then Instagram is a good marketing choice for you.
7. Offer Some Inspiration
Want people to share your posts with others? You need to offer something worth sharing. This might be a beautiful photograph or an inspirational saying, for example. Try including a human face in your posts. Photos with faces get about 38 percent more likes. Combining images and inspirational quotes is even more powerful.
Letterfolk creates felt message boards. Instead of just throwing up some images of their products, they create inspirational or humorous sayings on their message boards and share those images with followers. It’s a brilliant marketing strategy that ties perfectly into their overall brand.
8. Choose Brand Colors
Using the same colors across all the platforms on which you market allows you to maintain brand consistency. This is equally important on Instagram. No matter what visual editor you use to create memes or backgrounds for photos, make sure you use the same color scheme and that it ties into your brands overall color choices.
It takes many impressions before people begin to remember your brand. Anything you can do to enhance their recognition, including color choices, is in your favor.
9. Prepare to Engage
As with most types of social media, people on Instagram like to engage with those they follow. Either hire a full-time social media manager to handle responses or be prepared to devote a portion of your day to social media replies. Although it is time-consuming to stay on top of social media in this way, the payoff is loyal fans who will follow your brand for years.
Avoid bots as they may like a follower’s post but might not represent you well. You’re much better off manually interacting whenever possible.
Instagram Branding Works
Instagram is one of the fastest-growing social media players out there, so investing in a branding strategy for the site is a wise investment. I you remember these eight fundamental truths when formulating your plan and make sure your brand plays a role in everything you do, you’ll be well on your way to creating a following on this increasingly popular platform.