Over the last two blogs we have talked you through Instagram and helped you sign up and start taking beautiful photographs! Now, you need to start finding followers and build up your engagement. But how do you do this?
Like Twitter, followers will search for subject matter that they are interested in. That is why tagging photos is essential. It is not enough to post an image (however striking) without using text and hashtags too.
Use hashtags to reach those people who are searching for subjects related to your brand. Or to support campaigns, contests, or to classify the image you are posting. But like we have mentioned before, hashtags should always be used in moderation and when relevant.
You can also tag other accounts in your posts, which helps bring interaction to a wider audience, as the tagged account gets a notification that you have mentioned them in a post, whereas with hashtags you don’t get a notification. Again, only use this option if it is relevant to your post, for example, a client you are working with, or a building/city you have visited.
Another option is to add a specific location when posting which will then add your photo to your photo map. This is useful if you are at an event or show, for example. Your photo map can be accessed from your Instagram profile and gives your followers another way of exploring the images you have shared. When anyone views that location in the future (from other posts) they can also see your image as well as any others who have been tagged in that location.
Building awareness and getting engaged
Once you are signed up with Instagram, let your followers on your other social media channels such as Facebook and Twitter know, and encourage them to follow you with a link to your instagram account.
Add the Instagram icon to your website, and and communication such as emails, postcards and stationery. If you have an office or retail location include it on signs in-house.
Run contests on your page encouraging people to post content that relates to your brand, using relevant hashtags or tagging your account.
Encourage people to tag you when attending your events, again with any relevant hashtag.
Ask people to submit photos or videos about a relevant subject and display them on your page.
Keep posting high quality, relevant content that people want to see in their feed. It is very easy to follow and unfollow accounts on Instagram and if they don’t like what they see you could find yourself unfollowed!
Like all social media, keeping engaged with accounts is essential to your success on Instagram. Follow your brand’s partners, clients, customers, advocates and influential members of your community whose content may relate to your brand.
Keep an eye on the Instagram blog by following their page. There are themes where you can submit your images using a hashtag which then can be used within their blog. On the home page of Instagram there is an ‘explore’ tab which includes images that contain strong, interesting content and if yours fit that, it could be included.
Try to post and interact at least once a day and you should see your followers increase – as long as you are posting well! Don’t get too focused on those numbers though, Instagram is a fantastic marketing tool but it is also so much more, it is communication between you and your customers, clients and ambassadors and to build it you do need time and patience.
Good luck, and let us know who you are!!