With more than 500 million active users, which places it ahead of Twitter, Snapchat and Pinterest, Instagram is leading the way when it comes to social media channel engagement.
Its user base is growing faster than any other social network, and last year, 60% of its users logged on to the platform every day (HubSpot).
So, what’s so great about Instagram?
With 63% preferring video over blogging (social media examiner), mobile video usage increasing by 10 million daily viewing minutes in the last two years (Kleiner Perkins) and 51% of B2B marketers prioritising creating visual assets in strategies (CMI), it’s easy to see why Instagram has become so popular.
The social media channel that is owned by Facebook, has made it easy for users to share video and images on a smartphone. And, users can edit and filter visual content too, which has helped brands make their products and offerings more aesthetically-pleasing.
Everyone that creates an Instagram account will have a profile and a newsfeed, and when you post a photo or video it’ll become visible on your profile. It works in a similar way to Twitter in that you’re able to “follow” other accounts and gain followers. Those who follow you will see your posts in their feeds, and you’ll see posts from the accounts you follow.
But I operate in the B2B sector, so Instagram wouldn’t work for me…
Many B2B companies overlook the power of Instagram, but it can be a strong visual marketing channel for B2B brands. And, it can help you build a following and increase your awareness amongst your target audience (without advertising spend) when used correctly.
Don’t believe us? Check out these statistics…
- Instagram generates 20x more engagement than LinkedIn for B2B brands (TrackMaven)
- There are 25 million business profiles on Instagram (Hootsuite)
- 80% of users follow at least one business (Instagram)
Instagram’s algorithm favours unique content – which hasn’t been seen online in other places – and when you use the right hashtags and keywords in posts, you’ll increase your post reach and it’ll stand more of a chance of being seen by your desired audience.
So, how should you be using it in your B2B marketing?
Instagram’s focus on visual content allows businesses to showcase their story in a compelling way. And, it can be used as a “window” to your business to give your prospects a behind-the-scenes look at what’s going on in your company.
Here are three top tips to make Instagram work for your business marketing…
When you set up an account for your company it’s essential that you create a “business” profile. This will enable you to gain detailed information about your followers and posts and promote your best performing content.
2. Share your brand personality
Marketing heavyweight, Seth Godin, once said: “Marketing is no longer about the stuff you make, but about the stories you tell.”
Storytelling is powerful in marketing, and it enables businesses to develop a deeper connection with audiences. In addition, humans love a good story, and it helps you communicate key information and transmit knowledge.
On Instagram, you can share imagery to tell your story. This can be through snackable, micro-stories that relate back to your brand’s values, objectives and purpose.
Other ways you can tell your story…
- Your company’s history – whether that’s images of your building, the people in your company, or how your products and services have developed over time.
- Your charitable values – if you participate in charity work you can share images in relation to this. Maybe you’re holding a team event to raise money? It’d be great to document your progress of organising the event and sharing updates on the day of it.
- Your team leadership – Showcase your leadership team and share pictures of meetings, brainstorming sessions and team activities.
- Your company culture – People buy people, and by sharing images of your happy employees you’ll position your business as a nice place to work, and give your brand a face.
- Inspiring quotes – Instagram is a visual inspiration platform, so it’s ideal for well-chosen, inspirational quotes. Think back to your brand values and select quotes that match.
- Newsjacking – Take advantage of trending hashtags on Instagram to help catapult your brand. Add your opinion and advice on trends and join in the conversation to show that your company keeps up to date with what is happening in the industry and position your brand as a figure of authority.
3. Showcase your work
Alongside brand awareness, your ultimate end goal when using any social media channel is to generate more website traffic and leads, so our final recommendation for Instagram is to showcase your work in the most aesthetically pleasing way.
How? Well, for product-led businesses, be sure to take lots of images of your products being used, being made, in your offices/warehouse etc. so your Instagram audiences will really be able to experience the products before they buy them.
For service-led business, take images of your services happening, and showcase the end results.
Take our Instagram channel for example, we share images of our team at work, and images that show the outcome of our efforts.
Other things to incorporate could be testimonials from your case studies as text-based images – or social media “postcards” as we like to call them.
For more advice on Instagram marketing, drop us an email firstname.lastname@example.org, or give us a call on 01926 422002.