WRITTEN BY SAIF - CO-FOUNDER OF MIN |
Thursday, March 22, 2018 ;
4 Minute Read
Instagram will represent 30%, yes nearly one third, of all social media network users by 2021.
That’s an increase of 6%, from an already impressive 24% this year.
Yet only 30% of businesses are active on the platform.
So why is Instagram so important for the growth of your brand?
The Importance of Instagram for Your Business Today
There are over 700 million users, and counting.
Brands are seeing 4 times the engagement compared to Facebook (according to Business Insider UK).
Over 250 million use the Instagram Story feature alone. That’s more than the whole Snapchat user base.
If the above doesn’t convince you to invest resources into joining the platform, this should:
60% of all Instagram followers heard about a product they purchased, through Instagram!
The Problems Most Businesses Have About Instagram
Before we get into the solutions, let’s dispel the thoughts you’re most likely having right now about the issues with Instagram.
Instagram is seen as a millennial-friendly platform – and you’re right to think that.
Over 59% of its user base was born post-1984.
A reasonable thought consequence of that may be that the platform better serves a B2C product.
It’s seen as the natural habitat for Fashion, Food and lifestyle brands or e-commerce companies who can show off their personality.
And that may be valid.
So if you’re selling an expensive B2B product, it wouldn’t necessarily make business sense to put the majority of your social media marketing budget behind Instagram growth.
But it doesn’t mean you should ignore it either.
Over 80 million photos are uploaded every day (Searchenginewatch).
Over 33% of adults use the platform (Techcrunch).
35% of Instagram users check Instagram multiple times a day and 51% open the app daily (Pewinternet.org).
“Sure, you may ultimately decide that your target audience isn’t particularly an Instagram crowd. But it would be incredibly shortsighted to not — at the very least — test the platform”. – Neil Patel
So how can you quickly propel your brand’s value using Instagram in 2018?
1. Use Influencers to Market Your Product.
An Influencer is seen as someone who can amplify the message of your brand.
They can impact the purchase decision and is in some way significant or authoritative.
It’s both efficient (as you can quickly leverage a huge audience base), and effective (the engagement rate of an Influencers content is typically much higher than that of a business).
But before you jump onto Instagram and start messaging all the Influencers that catch your eye, keep these three details in mind:
Macro Influencers (those with a following of over 100K) are the way forward if increased reach (a large audience base you can tap into) is your desired result.
Micro Influencers (those with a following of between 10K-100K) will deliver a better return on investment, and engagement.
If you don’t want to come across as being an obvious sell, find relevant Influencers in relation to your product.
The last thing you should do is pair up with an Influencer who is a swimwear model when you offer a product or service for the Halal Economy.
The content will look inauthentic, seem out of place on the Influencers feed and be disastrous for your brand.
So be sensible!
2. Share Videos
Videos are a great way to get an audience engaged.
It’s the quickest way to communicate the vision and values of your organisation to a new customer.
So why are videos so important?
Viewers retain 95% of a message when they watch it in a video compared to 10% when reading it in text (Invisia).
51% of marketing professionals worldwide also name video as the type of content with the best ROI.
And if that doesn’t convince you:
Cisco predicts that 80 percent of all Internet traffic will be streaming video content.
But if you’re a new business or simply don’t have the know-how or resources to create video content, how can you utilise videos to grow on Instagram?
Use Fiverr to create informational and educational videos.
If you’re an industry expert or your product is the leading product in your niche, teach an audience. It can drive up to twice the engagement as other video content.
Alternatively, if you do have the resources to produce regular videos, show-off the members of your team.
People buy into transparency and honesty. It communicates to audiences that you’re worthy of their trust. It will also result in increased conversions of sales too.
3. Utilise User Generated Content
One of the biggest issues any organisation has is the creation of content.
It can be incredibly time-consuming to produce photos or video content that will attract new audiences and still satisfy your existing following.
A simple way around this is to use the content produced by one of your customers or any of your followers.
Bufferapp used an Instagram UGC strategy to gain 60% more followers in less than three months.
How can you get people to participate?
Incentivise users to create better quality content. You can tie your campaign to a contest where the best content creators win something related to your brand.
Partner with bloggers in exchange for your product or service in order to use the content they create in relation to your organisation.
Request reviews from existing customers.
Approach current customers to create videos of themselves reviewing your product.
Or simply convert their written reviews into infographics. Did you know 88% of consumers trust online reviews before making a purchase?
Instagram still generates the highest user engagement for brands.
It is rich in building deep relationships with your customers and long-term and consistent engagement will generate sales.
If your organisation focuses on serving the millennial generation, in particular, the three simple solutions I shared should help you in ensuring your brand is Instagram ready in 2018.
But just in case you’re not happy with three, here’s a great infographic from Made Freshly that will provide you with further guidance on how to master Instagram.