So you operate in an industry traditionally considered boring? Have you been wondering how you can get people interested?
What is Instagram and is it right for me?
Refer to this past blog post, where we talked about what kind of audience you can target with Instagram, and how to set up an account. Also, check this amazing Instagram for Business Guide.
I’ve decided Instagram is right for me, but my industry and business is not really photo-worthy. It’s “boring”!
It’s only as boring as you make it! The key is to be clever and different in the photos you post. Try to put yourself in your customer’s mindset: what would you find interesting? If you could see the people behind a business would it make it more personable? Would you ‘like’ that post? Could you post ‘a day in the life of’ one of your managers, or maybe ask your clients to take a picture with your product? If you offer a service rather than a product, you can still make an emotional connection to your service through photos.
For instance, tax services provider H&R Block is in the tax services industry. You’d think it couldn’t get more boring, but they manage to pique your curiosity:
Conveying a part of your corporate culture, such as behind the scenes shots, an employee of the month, an office pet, etc will also put your brand in context. Citrix shared a photo of their employees on Christmas:
Take advantage of Special Dates and Holidays to make them about your brand! Intel put some binary code on a heart shaped candy and encourage followers to comment.
Include quotes that convey the essence of your brand and corporate culture, like Intuit:
What general guidelines can I follow to get started on my Instagram plan?
- Answer every.single.comment.
- Remember that you may have many goals for your instagram account, but they should be aligned with your business objectives. To drive traffic back to your website, be sure to include the link to your site in the ‘location’ field when you post a picture, or in the caption say “please follow the link in our profile for more information”.
- Want to see how many website visitors you are getting from Instagram? Try to use a shortened link (bit.ly, or goo.gl are good), so when you check Google Analytics, you will know who decided to visit your website after seeing your IG profile.
- Include text in your pictures – to announce a sale, to send a message to your customers, to include a memorable quote. Use a free service like Canva to do a text overlay, or an app like Notegraphy to create beautiful notes. Check out how HubSpot uses a ‘text’ post to direct the audience to a blog post:
- Add Hashtags – use hashtags to classify your photos, and study your target audience- what hashtags do they often use? Keep tabs on which ones get you more engagement. You can use Iconosquare to see your profile statistics, as well as perform searches for different topics and hashtags to see how popular they are on Instagram.
- Always include a Call-to-Action – whether it is to visit your website, engage with the post, or perform some other actions, every post should have a purpose.
- Never forget to make yout posts it relatable and consistent with the essence of your brand!
January 2017 Update:
- Check out How to Build a Following on Instagram from ecommerce gurus at Shopify
- Seen Ads on Instagram and wondering if they work? See these examples of brands doing Instagram right.