Shored Up Digital


Tips and resources to help you grow your brand online

6 Tips for using Instagram for Business

If your brand is not yet on Instagram or if you're still using your personal account as your business account you're missing out. Use our helpful tips below to get started making the most of Instagram and capturing some of the highly engaged users that are there. Did you know?

6 Tips for using Instagram for Business

  1.  If you're using Instagram for business make sure to change your account from personal to business. This allows you not only to have better ways for your consumer to reach you but you’ll be able to see insights, analytics, and more on a business account. Whether it’s best times to post, gender and ages of your followers, as well as what images work best on your account, there's a ton of insightful data that you can use to better inform your content and posting strategy. The only way to do this if you have a business Facebook page to connect to - make sure to set one up! You can follow the helpful instructions from Social Media Examiner here

  2. Evaluate your bio on Instagram. Does it quickly state what it is you do and offer? Is it concise and to the point? Does it lure the consumer to follow you? If it doesn’t - let’s fix that. The most visual way to capture a user’s attention is to have emojis in your bio. How to do this? Head on over to the Notes app on your phone and use four lines to type out your bio, starting with a coordinating emoji. Examples: if you’re a dress shop, start with a 👗  emoji and write "Contemporary Dress Shop"; if you’re a pizza shop, start with 🍕 and write "Artisanal Pizza." Along with descriptive emojis, your bio needs to include your location, so users can connect with your local business. Another thing to look at is the photo in your bio - if you’re a brand, a highly suggest you use your company logo, but if not, a headshot of you will make the account more approachable.

  3. Use the link in your bio to your advantage. The link in your bio is the only place on the Instagram platform that a clickable link exists, so make sure you’re using it correctly to direct consumers to where you want them to go. Examples: link to your online shop, your 'about us' section, your menu or your email newsletter. If you’re looking to track links coming from your Instagram, create a link and track through the site. For those of you posting content that requires sending consumers to a variety of links throughout the week, open a Link Tree account (free for basic, or $6/month for professional).

  4. Creating the ideal Instagram post. Firstly you need a great edited photo - nothing blurry (be sure to clean your camera lens!), use natural light, and choose a vertical photo for more visible real estate. Write an engaging caption with a call to action, using descriptive words to engage. Add hashtags in caption - use as many as 8-10 hashtags in the caption, make sure they are relevant to the photo and your industry. Search online for a list of popular hashtags in your industry like this. Tag a location - always, to be more discoverable. If the exact location is unavailable use the Island town you are posting from or from where the photo was taken. Tag other users in photo that makes sense (if they are pictured or if it relates to their business). Do not randomly tag other users just to get views!

  5. Use Instagram stories to engage followers. Stories are a must now a days. What is an Instagram story? A short clip, whether a video or photo, behind the scenes of your business. Instagram is pushing these more, so to get in the forefront, use stories! You can create polls, highlight employees, and share quick tips and more. (In stories, you’ll see some brands saying “swipe up to shop or read” - to have this, you need over 10k followers). Instagram Story Highlights: like the name states, it’s your account's highlight reel, where you can save stories indefinitely instead of having them disappear after 24 hours. Ex: If you're a retail shop create a highlight for each type of product you sell - jewelry, t-shirts, home decor, etc.  

  6. ENGAGE! Instagram is a all about engaging and finding ways to connect with your audience and other potential followers, so the platform is giving extra gold stars to people that do so. It also puts a little pressure on us to reply quickly - basically, you need to be replying to comments on posts in the first hour, for Instagram to be nice to you (meaning they show your post to the rest of your followers). Engage by reply to comments, like photos in a hashtag (ex: search for #marthasvineyard and start liking), comment on other posts and ask meaningful questions (not just “so cute!” But “that blush shirt looks great on you, where did you buy it?” Instagram wants to see longer, more deliberate comments that facilitate user to user engagement. 

We hope this helps provide some helpful ways to get started building up your Instagram account for your business. For additional information on using Instagram stories. ads, carousels, and more check out this helpful resource from HubSpot Marketing.