Improve your Instagram efforts: 5 tips

With over 400 million users and counting, Instagram is becoming an increasingly powerful social media channel for small businesses.

However, just having an Instagram presence is no longer enough to stand out.

In order to leverage Instagram as a tool for building brand awareness and creating connections, you have to implement a sound strategy.

Below are five ways you can start to grow your fanbase and engagement on Instagram:

  1. Color recipe: By using photo editing apps like VSCO, you can create a “color recipe” for your brand that details the specific improvements (such as tint, saturation, exposure and contrast) that you make to each photo before posting it to Instagram. Photos should be edited in a similar fashion to create a consistent look and feel for your feed; this will make your profile look more cohesive and impressive.
  2. Custom graphics: Create a few custom templates that you can use for weekly graphics to share on social media. Use your brand’s color scheme, and make text overlays to insert quotes or information as text overlays on graphics. These valuable, branded, eye-catching graphics will keep your audience coming back to your feed on a regular basis.
  3. Curate fan content: Include your fans in your Instagram strategy by asking them to share photos using a specific hashtag for your brand. This shows your brand in a positive light, engages your fans and gives them a reason to visit your feed to see if you re-posted their content. Incentivize sharing with a coupon code that rewards a random user for sharing.
  4. Use search and explore: Use the search and explore feature to see what hashtags are trending. You can use this feature to engage with customers on a relevant discussions and share your input on a trending topic to help build your influence.
  5. Test tools: There are tons of tools to help you automate your Instagram strategy. Planning your Instagram calendar ahead of time helps ensure you are being strategic and thoughtful with your imagery. One tool you can use to help assist you in scheduling is Latergram. Keep in mind, you need to approve posts before they’ll go out, so turn notifications on if you’re going to use a third-party scheduling tool. Iconosquare is a great tool to see your analytics and engagement on the platform.

In order to maximize the time and resources spent on Instagram, you need to be thoughtful and strategic.

The five tips above are tested tactics that, if implemented, will help you improve your Instagram marketing.

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