If your business isn’t on Instagram yet, consider it. Instagram is the second largest social media platform with over 500 million active monthly users. It’s especially beneficial for businesses that are visual because it is a great platform to showcase your products.
If your business is just starting out on Instagram, or maybe you want to take your Instagram to the next level, here are five quick tips on how to succeed.
1. Post Quality Photos
Every time I scroll through my Instagram feed, it amazes me how many businesses still post pixelated or out-of-focus photos. It’s important to post clear photos with a high resolution. This sounds simple, but you’d be surprised how many people don’t follow this rule. Especially with the new zoom feature on Instagram, you want your followers to see high quality photos.
The highest resolution Instagram supports is 1080 pixels in width. Instagram suggests that if you want to make sure the photo is shared with a width of 1080 pixels.
- Download the most recent version of the Instagram app
- Upload a photo with a width of at least 1080 pixels with an aspect ratio between 1.91:1 and 4:5
- Make sure you’re using a phone with a high-quality camera as different phones have cameras of varying qualities
2. Don’t Limit Yourself to Photos
It’s no surprise that people like photos, but just because Instagram was originally intended for photos doesn’t mean you have to stick them.
Switch it up. Instagram allows 60 second videos, which is a great way to connect with your customers on a personal level. Show off your new product and take a video of a salesperson explaining it. Humanize the business and show some behind the scenes daily work life. Videos are a great option. Here’s a time lapse video we posted to our Instagram.
3. Use Hashtags
You can use up to 30 hashtags in each comment on Instagram. And if you aren’t using hashtags, you are missing out on connecting with new people. People can search hashtags on Instagram to look up content they are interested in.
Now, I’m not saying you have to fully utilize the 30 hashtag limit, but you should use hashtags on all your posts. Put the hashtags in the caption of your post, or comment on your post with your preferred hashtags. Comment later with the hashtags and the post will come up in recent hashtag searches to refresh the reach of your hashtags.
4. Use Apps
Now Instagram is an app, but if you really want to step up your Instagram game, get ready to download more apps. Boomerang, made by Instagram, creates captivating mini videos that loop back and forth. And when I say mini, I really mean mini. It acts like a GIF. The app takes 10 photos and stitches them together, speeds up the video and puts it on a loop. Below is a boomerang we posted on JP’s instagram during our ice cream social.
It might not seem like much, but it’s fun to experiment with Boomerang. In a sea of photos, a moving Boomerang can stand out in your consumer’s Instagram feed. Be creative and have fun with it.
There are many apps that you can use to perfect your photos. Here are a few photo editing apps that could help you take your photo to the next level.
- A Color Story: focuses on fresh photos, bright whites, and colors that pop
- Prisma: modern art filters and stunning photo effects
- Snapseed: professional photo editor developed by Google
- Pic Collage: creates amazing collages of your photos
Last but not least, you need to interact on Instagram with your followers and with your community. Find other Instagram accounts of local businesses and follow them; they might just follow you back! Take a few minutes a day to like or comment on their photos.
Comment on photos. Followers are more likely to read the comment than to see your like. If you want to gain more followers, start following people who are followers of other local businesses. You might just gain a new customer from doing so!
Don’t forget to have fun on Instagram! You can’t just be sale-sy in every post; switch it up with some interesting behind-the-scenes photos or videos. Make your Instagram posts so great that if you were a customer, you would want to follow your business’s Instagram.
–Alexa Ude, Account Assistant