9 Essential Instagram Marketing Hacks for Small Businesses
If you’re a small business or startup, you must know how it is difficult to operate and stand out. Apart from scrambling for customers, you must find means to enhance brand awareness, attract quality leads and remain ahead of the competition. Despite all that, the modern era presents a range of mediums to run a small business and grow exponentially and social media marketing is one of them.
Social media marketing happens on different platforms and Instagram is among the most preferred. It ranks fourth among the most popular social platforms globally. It currently has a total user base of over 2 billion monthly active users out of the 4.80 billion social media users globally as of April 2023. To substantiate, statistics show that about 16.5% of people worldwide use Instagram and the figures are expected to increase.
This presents an ideal opportunity for marketers and business owners to leverage the platform to promote and even sell their products. But before we go any further with Instagram marketing hacks, let’s explore what Instagram marketing is and its benefits.
It refers to the use of Instagram to promote a brand’s products or services. Over 200 million businesses are on Instagram since it presents numerous ways through which businesses can promote their brands, products, or services.
Through mediums like reels, stories, carousels, stickers, live sessions or streams, videos, and stories highlights businesses get in front of the right eye and become more discoverable by social media users. Above all, businesses can create Instagram shops to sell their products directly to customers.
Instagram is currently a top choice for all sizes and types of businesses globally and if you neglect it, you will only be missing out. But what Instagram marketing hacks must you abide by to promote your business?
The Top Instagram Marketing Hacks for Small Businesses
Taking your business to Instagram may appear simple, but you surely need a plan to attain goals and grow. The fact that many businesses are on the platform, you must create a roadmap to serve as a guide for your marketing efforts. Moreso, you must use tactics that will surely push your products, services, or brand to the target audience. So, here are some of the marketing hacks to leverage;
Create an Amazing Profile
A social media profile serves a crucial role in detailing who you are and what makes you unique. It is generally your brand identity and it’s how you want social media users to perceive you. If you choose to take your small business to the next level by using Instagram marketing, ensure to create an amazing profile.
An amazing social media profile can get good exposure and convince users to trust your brand. Instagram is also an excellent platform with various interesting features that allow business owners to create fabulous profiles and share any type of content.
When it comes to creating your Instagram profile, ensure to choose your social media username wisely, and consider an attractive profile picture, background, and cover image. Besides that, you need to create your social media profile bio and also remember to include your business link in the description.
When choosing a profile picture, ensure that it is consistent. You shouldn’t use a different profile picture from that of your official website or other marketing pamphlets. Similarly, keep the username the same across all platforms for easy identification. While creating your bio, consider using keywords specific to your target audience. Follow a few copywriting tips to help your copies stand out and be compelling. Also, update it where necessary to keep your audience informed.
Clarify Your Goals
Almost every business across sectors is on Instagram, but what is your goal for taking your venture to the platform? Before you even create a social media profile try to understand the reason for your Instagram marketing. Do you want to drive leads to your brick-and-mortar store? Do you want to increase online sales, boost brand awareness, or foster business-customer relationships?
Instagram marketing is associated with a pool of benefits attained with the right hacks only. By clarifying your Instagram marketing goals, it becomes easy for you to leverage the right tactics. For example, if you want to increase brand awareness, you can leverage Instagram reels. You can also actively engage with your followers to help them understand who you are.
When trying to drive website traffic, you can provide your website link in the bio and ensure that your website is optimized. In this way, you will get relevant traffic that will help you make more sales and improve your business revenue.
You must know that Instagram marketing can also help you build a stable instagram presence. A study indicated that over 44% of Gen Z use social media to discover new products. With that, set clear goals and choose the right marketing efforts to achieve them.
KPIs (key performance indicators) are measurable metrics that indicate the performance of your marketing efforts. Marketing KPIs can help you understand and effectively track the performance of your social media page. They can help you attain data and facts to drive your marketing campaigns and understand your target audience’s behavior.
Social media KPIs can help you understand your reach, conversions, engagement, and overall campaign performance. KPIs like total impressions, likes, comments, audience growth rate, social mentions, customer testimonials, click-through rate, and cost per click are essential in directing your marketing efforts.
Depending on your goal, try to set realistic KPIs. These numbers play a vital role in reflecting your efforts. They will also help you know the best-performing strategies on your page. They will also help you learn how to nurture your audience into a loyal customer base. Generally, avoid promoting your brand on Instagram with mere guesswork and unguided strategies.
Setting KPIs means that you are accountable for every strategy you take. It will also help you keep your marketing tactics in check.
Instagram presents an incredible opportunity for small businesses to grow, but that isn’t guaranteed with a mere social media profile. Geotagging is a way of assigning locations to Instagram posts. It also helps a brand be more specific about the type of people who view a post. Whether you have a physical store or not, you can leverage a geotag in your Instagram posts to extend your reach.
A geotag makes Instagram posts location-based and regardless of where you’re, you can be visible to others. The platform also organizes posts that use a specific geotag under one searchable tab for users to see all posts from that location. However, you must allow Instagram to publicize your location. Besides that, you can also see who is geotagging your business or brand.
There are different geotag features you can use and these include hashtag locations, stickers and you can also create a location. To create the location, you will have to go to your Facebook or Instagram account.
Geotags are a reliable way of engaging your audience. They can know what to expect from you for example if you run a clothing store. They can understand what you sell and where you’re located.
If you use Instagram to market your offerings, you can shake up your marketing strategies with live streams. Besides posting videos and images, you can tap into the power of live streams. Live streams are an incredible way to engage with your audience in real time. Whether you want to talk about your products, business offerings, or new arrivals, you can exhaust your promotional intentions in a live stream.
Modern customers are excited about innovative brands, but they are more likely to connect with the voice behind a brand. Therefore, no matter how much you may be promoting your small business online, let your audience understand the brains behind it.
Live streams or live videos are a great way to establish relationships with customers and prospects. It is a wonderful way of attaining insights into their pain points and how to improve service delivery.
Instagram live streams are recorded in real-time but appear in the stories feed of followers. You can see people as they join and also read their comments. Precisely, you have a lot to experiment with if you’re using Instagram. From reels, and carousels to videos, you can surely connect with your target audience in many ways. Additionally, you can also leverage IGTV to upload long videos of even up to ten minutes.
User-generated content (UGC) is a form of earned content, specifically made by customers. UGC can be any form of content for example videos, photos, reviews, and comments among others. Also, known as customer-generated content, this content is made by customers, brand followers, or UGC creators.
Leveraging UGC in marketing campaigns can help a business in many ways. For example, it can increase brand awareness, credibility, and authenticity. It can also help a small business establish a loyal customer base, influence purchase decisions, and increase conversions.
All you have to do is encourage your customers to create UGC and then post it on your Instagram business page. It will show potential buyers that your business is trusted by other customers. This will push them to try out your offerings or contact you.
On the other hand, try to personally engage with your UGC creators to appreciate them or request for permission before leveraging the content. You can also reward your UGC creators since many customers widely rely on user-generated content to make purchase decisions. This means that the more your audience makes it, the more likely people are to buy from you.
If you’re familiar with social media, you might already know about hashtags and how they work. In simple words, hashtags are phrases and have a pound sign (#) in front of them. They can be added to a caption or comment. Hashtags are specific to topics, trends, events, and conversions. They highlight a topic to the target audience.
These features are commonly used to push content reach. Using them in posts also helps people to discover content easily. Besides that, they increase content engagement and help small businesses to attract more customers.
No matter your content preference, you can leverage hashtags to improve campaign performance. The platform allows you to use any type of hashtags and you can use up to 30 tags on a post. You can use a text expander to easily build these hashtags out, and save time. However, remember that if you have a private profile, your posts won’t appear publicly.
Additionally, numbers aren’t allowed in hashtags plus special characters like % or $. Also, your content won’t be posted if you have more than 30 tags in it.
Partner with Influencers
Instagram marketing not only helps you find suitable influencers, but it also makes collaboration easy. Rather than relying on in-house marketing tactics, you can stretch beyond with Influencer marketing. Influencer marketing is a popular marketing trend today as influencers are associated with an impactful commanding voice.
The right influencer can help you attract new customers and tap into his or her audience. Good influencer efforts can also raise your brand above the average mark, helping you to earn 3X more revenue. Moreso, influencer efforts also have a better return on investment compared to other channels like word-of-mouth marketing. Top brands like Adidas are known to work with influencers and celebrities, mostly in the sports field.
Interestingly, you don’t need to invest in expensive influencers. You can collaborate with influencers with a stable audience and good reputation. Also, it isn’t a must to collaborate on a monetary basis. Your collaboration may be on a mutual basis or a reward system. Also, you can divide responsibilities depending on the type of campaign.
You can create written content, whereas the influencer can talk about your products in a video. For example, the influencer may share views bout the uniqueness and quality of your products and what the actual benefits were when he or she tried your products. Whether you sell cosmetics, apparel, footwear, or run a restaurant, you can surely collaborate with influencers.
Track Metrics & Leverage Instagram Analytics
It is important to keep track of the performance of your Instagram marketing campaigns and the best way to do it is by using tools. There is currently a range of social media management tools that can help you manage your business account professionally. Tools like Sprout Social and Hootsuite to Google Analytics in case you have a website can help you simplify your marketing efforts.
Besides that, you can leverage Instagram Analytics to understand the performance of your account. You can know your competitors, what your followers prefer on your page, and who else they follow. Additionally, they provide actionable data that helps improve conversions, likes, and content engagement.
Instead of manually analyzing your posts’ shares, likes, and reviews, leverage Instagram analytics for in-depth data. Similarly, if you invest in SEO, there are many tools like Google Analytics, Ahrefs, and Moz to help you enhance your marketing campaigns.
Instagram is among the most leveraged social media platforms by businesses and customers. The social site is used by millennials, Gen Z, among other age groups. With that, any business on Instagram can reach out to its target audience effectively and remain relevant, especially among young customers.
However, any business owner and marketer needs actionable Instagram marketing tactics to stand out. You must be mindful of your posts’ quality, whether videos, images, or text. Engage where necessary because your customers would love to hear from you on a personal level. Besides that, you can follow these Instagram marketing hacks to grow your business on the platform.