Photographers, creative production companies, bloggers and any small business with strong visual brands should all know it by now, Instagram is a great marketing tool.
“More and more businesses are using Instagram in creative ways to promote their products and services while showing off a more personal side to their brands, says Kristina Colpitts, a Canadian social media consultant. Not all businesses can use Instagram in this way, but if you’re a lifestyle brand and not on IG you’re missing out!”
However, some businesses have a hard time understanding how to use the platform. Posting images is easy, but driving traffic back to a business’ website is another story. And frankly, until now, the platform wasn’t helpful for that matter.
Thankfully, using the photo-sharing network to market a business is about to get a whole lot easier.
“With so many companies using Instagram, and many people on the platform interacting with them, there was a desire from our business community to do more. So, we listened,” said a spokesperson for the social network in a press release.
After interviewing hundreds of businesses, the company came back with three tools that would improve the service for businesses. These tools are set to launch in the coming months in the US, Australia, and New Zealand, and will be available in all regions globally by the end of the year. We asked Kristina Colpitts to give us her honest opinion and tips.
Any Instagram accounts wanting to be recognized as a business can switch to a business profile for free. With this account comes the contact button, a long-awaited tool that will allow business to choose how they want their customers to get in touch with them, whether it be by email, text or phone.
How to use it: “Link it to a website, maybe a crowdfunding campaign or a landing page”, says Kristina Colpitts.
Following in the footsteps of Facebook and Twitter, Instagram, from now on, will offer business users analytical data that shows how their content is performing. Users will get information about who their followers are and which posts resonate better. This tool is imperative in creating engaging content.
How to use it: “I feel this might help bloggers the most,” says the expert. “Anyone who’s gotten a huge boost while using Instagram without really knowing why will now be able to better understand what content is hitting home and what reach they are getting.”
While the first two features are free, those who set a budget for Instagram could use this tool to boost top performing posts via paid ads. Users can select a target audience and for how long the ad will run.
How to use it: “Just like Facebook ads, this reminds you of which posts your fans love and how to reach even more fans, bringing you closer to making a sale!” Those already using paying third-party analytics tools need not get rid of these services, according to her. “I can’t have enough tools really myself. I recommend having an all-in-one dashboard for analytics so you can keep a ‘birds eye’ view of your insights and ad campaigns while testing the new IG insights.”