Pt 2: How To Leverage Instagram: Tips and Tricks
Instagram is a tremendous platform for building your brand awareness and engaging your customers and loyal fans. But there is a craft to it.
In the last post, we covered some of the basics of setting up an Instagram account, and the ins and outs of etiquette on the platform. In this post, I’ll go over best practices for hashtag usage, photos, and making yourself more discoverable.
Put Your Best Image Forward
On Instagramall photos become square so keep that in mind when snapping photos, particularly if you are not taking a photo within the app. Some phones have a square photo setting, but if you need to do some post editing, there are free tools available for resizing the image. One great tool is Canva. You can also add text or your logo on the image using Canva.
Oftentimes the first shot may not be the best shot. Take multiple photos at various angles to see what looks best. A few other tips:
- Filters – unless picking one filter to become your company “style,” use filters only as needed to either help lighten/brighten/emphasize/colorize/stylize your photos.
- Captions – remember to use your company’s voice (not your own personal voice), unless you are a solo operation…then feel free to let your personality shine.
- Hashtags – using multiple hashtags allows you to reach a broader audience and gain new followers, however when used in excess they can make the post appear messy. Instead, post them as a separate comment. They are still searchable, but it will keep the original post clean. Note: only 30 hashtags are allowed per photo to avoid hashtag spamming.
Attracting More Viewers
As I noted, using the appropriate hashtags are a great way to be discovered. To reach a broader audience, keep hashtags simple and more general (i.e. #sunset #dog #food #beautiful). Other popular hashtags that are regularly searched include: #instagood #igdaily #ignation #photooftheday #picoftheday or #potd #instamood #latergram #nofilter
Geotagging, whether at your business, or an off-property event, is another great way for people to find your account. If you are offsite or the photo includes someone else, tag that place or location. Simply use the @handle to tag them in the post.
Share photos via your business’ twitter page by connecting with that account. Before you hit the share button, tap on Twitter to connect/highlight. Keep in mind, though Instagram allows Facebook sharing, currently it’s only to personal accounts. Sharing to a page is not yet enabled.
Searching for the Instagram Pot of Gold
Just as users can use hashtags and geotags to find you, you can do the same to connect with or find current and potential customers in your area. Start to build a relationship with them by liking their photos as a way to introduce your brand.
While you don’t have to follow everyone that follows your business, always take the time to interact via replies to comments, likes, etc.