Instagram launches Business Profiles

Instagram has launched the beginning of a series of new tools. This enables small to large businesses to create visual profiles in order for them to promote themselves to users.

The fastest growing photo sharing app to date, could be a totally new way to showcase business lifestyles and stories to engage with new business and build your brand. Much similar to Facebook or Twitter, everyone shall soon be able to create a business profile and showcase its newsfeed via images and short videos.

What is Instagram?

So what is Instagram and what are its connections with business? Instagram is all about visual sharing. Every user has a bank of ‘followers’ that commit and measure images posted by the number of users following their profiles and likes upon images/videos.

Every user has the ability to scroll through reams of content and can rank them at the tap of a button. However, some users that wish for their content to be kept from prying eyes, have the option to set their profile to private which requires a follow request approval.

For business users this means a profile to showcase content, share photos or videos, upload a pre-prepared image from a gallery, add a filter or #nofilter to promote their brand.

What are Instagram stories?

Similar to Snapchats brief stories, Instagram’s stories enable users to create short videos based on their daily activity; a newly introduced feature that enables video/imagery upload to be captioned and published into a show reel of events. This is usually limited to a period of 24hrs and is new to our eyes as of August 2016.

With these stories, it’s a case of forgetting the worries with over posting or being overly active. In fact, it is quite the opposite and you can post as much as you possibly wish. Great for those users that just want to unleash as much content as possbile!

Should I use my Instagram for Business?

So let’s address the facts…Instagram gets far more attention than most other social handles…posts reach x58 more engagement than Facebook’s do. However, let’s not dismiss that you can share between the two using Instagram’s share feature that links commonly known social handles. Using this, users can cross-promote social handles such as YouTube or Twitter.

As mentioned above, the new editions to Instagram; Instagram Stories, offers another means to businesses and their reach to connect with future clients for anyone using the app. This is a great way of bringing your business’ ‘story’ to life without ‘overdoing’ it. Simply post as much content as possible to strengthen your businesses brand.

So let’s acquaint ourselves with those well-known businesses already flocking to the new feature.

@Beardedvillains

One of our much loved former start-ups Bearded Villains uses Instagram to promote products and build its reputation. A great charity that allows customers to get a view behind the scenes; as well as sharing aspiring bearded champions!

mold_bearded_blog

If you are familiar with Instagram, you will be able to note the immediate change to the heading and additional ‘contact’ button in order to contact the business directly via email. A quick and easy way to be in touch.

There are also extra features that are utilized in making the convert to a business page…

  • Customers shall be able to approach companies via text, phone call and email
  • Businesses can track on their posts and how well they are performing.
  • Promote great performing posts and turn them into ads.

Instagram Advertising

So what is the best way to connect with your audience on Instagram? Users will look for elements to connect with via your ads. It is important that your branding is used effectively or naturally placed on something as simple as your branding collateral.

When constructing an advertisement, it is best to keep the messaging short and sweet. Users should be able to take in the message you wish them to at a quick glance and walk away understanding exactly what you need them to. Ideally, something they can relate to.

Advertisements should be engaging and inspiring.  The most successful ads, like the example below, tells consumers exactly what they wish to know.

mold_vogue

Who the advertiser is and addressing the way users can benefit using their services, stamped by the almighty ‘Vogue’. A relevant name drop doesn’t hurt!

How do I convert my personal Instagram profile to a Business Profile?

To convert to a Business Profile:

  1. Go to your profile and tap.
  2. Tap Switch to Business Profile.
  3. On the Connect Your Facebook Page screen, you’ll see all of the Facebook Pages you’re currently an admin on. Select the Page you’d like to associate with your Business Profile on Instagram. Learn more about Page roles.
  4. On the Set Up Your Business Profile page, review your business’s contact information, make any changes and tap Done.

Begin your Profile:

Start by doing the necessary research…If you aren’t familiar with Instagram before you approach, check out the latest and greatest profiles on the network or other brands within the industry. Create yourself a business guide or strategy that will enable you to engage with users to gain attention and achieve your own business’ goals. Some of these may reflect the below:

  • Increase Revenue
  • Increase attention to your brand and website
  • Increase in mentions digitally.

It is important to note that all of your goals should be measurable and more so achievable.

Following this…should be your content strategy. Perhaps a regular posting schedule of some kind that doesn’t bombard users with similar looking or boring posts.

Once this in place and your account is fully in swing, you shall be able to begin sharing and engaging. High quality posted images that tie in with your brand guidelines shall aid this approach. One key thing to remember is Instagram is primarily a mobile-first-platform, meaning that images are to be optimized with this in mind. See here.

See here for tips on how to begin a business profile – Tips

Post and enjoy:

Lastly to mention…posting and Hashtags. Use hashtags to create relationships between what you are posting and categorise your content by popularity and collectives of the same Hashtags. Another fine method you should not miss out on practicing!

Instagram’s business feature shall be available by the end of 2016 worldwide and has already been released in some areas to promote its release. Keep your eye out for this growing change!