Like so many other entrepreneurs, you may have heard about the massive success achieved by some brands with Instagram marketing, and be wondering how you can get the same results.
If your business doesn’t have some description of Instagram presence, then you’re basically waving away a massive opportunity for sales. Although this is one of the younger social networks, it now has more than 500 million active users, and has been an exceedingly useful tool for a lot of brands. Like so many other entrepreneurs, you may have heard about the massive success achieved by some brands on Instagram, and be wondering how you can get the same results. To set you off on the right track, here are some of the big “don’ts” you need to avoid.
First of all, don’t post any unoriginal photo content.
There are a lot of mistakes which business leaders make when it comes to Instagram marketing, but this one certainly ranks among the most damaging. If you only post “visuals” on your Instagram page, pasting images or graphics that haven’t been created, then your whole profile can come off as tacky and illegitimate. Aside from that, you may run into copyright issues if the image isn’t from some creative commons or belongs to someone else. I know they’re easy to source, but make sure you’re weaning yourself off of the visuals and trying to be original. If you don’t maintain a good variety, you’ll only be slowing yourself down.
Next, don’t avoid interacting with others.
Sure, you might be posting quality content at a consistent, regular rate. However, if you’re simply doing this and expecting your target market to flock to your page then you’re going to miss a huge chance for growth. Engaging with your audience through social media is important no matter what platform you’re using, but it’s more important on Instagram than anywhere else. By favoriting posts, commenting on them, tracking hashtags and keywords and so on, you’ll get a pretty significant edge on the competition in the same space. This, naturally, will give you more followers and engagement!
Another big “don’t” of Instagram marketing is trying to up engagement without a large, overarching strategy.
When you post on Instagram without a strategy or flow in mind, you’re basically setting yourself up to fail. Though they may not be consciously looking for it, consumers react better to Instagram feeds where they can pick up on a cohesive appearance and tone, and get a clear sense of the brand in question. The secret to achieving this is in the tone of your text, the filters you use, and the common threads running through the photos you post. If your target market see that things are becoming too predictable or monotonous, then they’re not going to be too inclined to follow your feed or buy your products. If your business sells multiple products, for example, it’s a big mistake to let multiple posts about the same product appear too close together. Even if you’re getting a good variety, don’t let the feed simply turn into a product showcase! Mix it up with posts on events, lifestyle, and user-generated content here and there. Anyone can create an Instagram ad and post it. It takes a real marketer to integrate that ad in a strategic and effective way.
The next Instagram no-no to be aware of is posting too often.
A lot of business owners unfortunately believe that it’s necessary to keep their pages brimming with content 24/7, and that any period of inactivity could end up chasing away your followers. This is wrong! If you flood your stream with mediocre content, rather than spreading out quality content a little more sparsely, all you’ll succeed in doing is chasing away your target market! Once a day is usually enough. Twice a day – morning and night, can also be okay, provided that the content actually has a chance to attract users. Of course, if you’re attending or hosting an event, then you can turn things up a bit. Just make sure you’re not flooding your stream all it once, and making your brand appear spammy.
Finally, don’t use the wrong hashtags.
Hijacking hashtags is just another way of shooting yourself in the foot, and crippling your Instagram presence. To the inexperienced social marketer, the whole concept of hashtags on Instagram can be a little hard to pin down. It’s unfortunately common for a new brand to start off on Instagram using 20 irrelevant hashtags on a single post, and neglecting the tactics that really work like influencer outreach. This will only serve to make users irritated, and hostile to your brand. Before you start throwing hashtags around, make sure you know what they mean!