How to Create the PERFECT Instagram Profile for Your Small Business
Learn the skills you need to master social media marketing on the hottest platform — Instagram. By mastering the dos and don'ts of this hot platform, you'll learn everything you need to bring your business to the next level.
What Exactly is Instagram?
The social media platform known as Instagram is defined as a “free photo and video sharing app.” Anyone older than 13 years of age can create an account, thereby gaining the ability to view, comment, and like other posts. Groups of friends or acquaintances often follow each other to keep in touch.
While it’s great for people to stay connected via uploading photos or videos of their experiences, social media offers more than just interaction between followers. It’s an advertising tool. The Facebook-owned platform caters to advertising with its Ads Manager. This allows you to set parameters around your promotions or even entire ad campaigns.
Unlike the free access for general accounts, advertising naturally comes at a price. The average CPM (cost per thousand impressions) and CPC (cost per click) is higher than Twitter and Facebook ads, but you’ll likely get a higher CTR (click-through rate) when advertising on Instagram.
Instagram also facilitates direct messages and stories. Instagram Stories are images or brief videos that are available for followers to view for 24 hours. What’s more, you can drive engagement with your profile using polls and buttons in your story. When done right, your online account can garner the attention of some of the near billion users.
Why Should Small Businesses Use It?
So, if it costs more than other platforms and takes time and resources to maintain, why should your small business use Instagram?
Instagram offers a fresh and comprehensive view of your brand. You can curate images that, when viewed on your profile together, have a modern look and portray the feel of your brand. The best part is that you don’t have to rely on professional photography, graphic designers, or social media interns in order to have a successful profile, though they help. With smartphone cameras and free user-friendly graphic design websites, you can do it yourself!
You may even decide to team up with an influencer, an Instagram user with high credibility and a large audience. Influencers can take pictures of your products or use your brand hashtag to persuade their followers to follow you.
Things to Consider When Creating Your Profile
The first thing to do when making your profile is to generate your Instagram handle. This is essentially your username on Instagram and is signified with the @ symbol. While a play on words is fun, be sure to pick a name that clearly defines who you are to avoid confusion among consumers. It’s even better if it’s unique and somehow identifies what you do. Use the free Instagram Availability Checker to make sure your desired username isn’t already in use.
Building the rest of your profile isn’t quite as easy as 1, 2, 3, but it does help to think of your account in three segments:
Utilizing Your Bio
Brevity is key when it comes to your Instagram bio. You only have 150 characters to say a quick blurb about who you are and what you do. Be clear and concise, but don’t be afraid to show your personality with some emoticons. You can include hashtags that link to some of your favorite content.
Your bio can also be used for advertising purposes. It is the only place where Instagram allows clickable links, so take advantage of the function! Update your bio frequently to include links to special deals. When you post about the promotion, use the phrase “link in bio” in your copy.
Before you create any content, determine your KPIs, or key performance indicators. For Instagram, KPIs can include impressions, engagements, follower growth rate, and conversions. Monitor your profile’s performance, and adjust accordingly to meet your KPIs.
Invest in photography and influencers to further promote your brand. If your budget is tight, explore additional startup funding sources. You can also use hashtags efficiently to increase engagement by 12% per post. Hashtags are words or phrases denoted with a hash (#) that classifies messages as a certain topic.
Inclusion and features are big on social media. Involve your audience by tagging people or using crowd-sourced photos, comments, and reviews — with their permission, of course. The timing of your posts is also crucial to the success of your profile. You don’t want to post too often or too sparsely, and don’t forget to take advantage of key posting times.
Aesthetic consistency, giveaways, and location tags are additional ways to boost engagement. People are drawn to accounts that are skillfully blended in art style and offer chances to win free items. Posting your location adds a personal side to your brand. This helps users feel more connected to you.
Designing the perfect small business Instagram profile is simple in that you can do it yourself. However, a lot of thought and strategy goes on behind the scenes. For businesses and their marketing teams, social media is more than a way to post pictures of food and travel. It’s a platform that provides a seamless integration of various aspects to promote a brand.