Are you looking for more ways to market your business? Instagram is a great tool many advertisers use to promote their business because of its great features offered to businesses. They provide detailed metrics on your posts, allow scheduled posting, targeted ads, and more. Auburn Advertising has prepared a complete guide to Instagram advertising with tips, tools, and more.

What is Instagram Marketing?

Instagram advertising is a way to pay for sponsored posts on Instagram’s platform to reach your target audience. There are many reasons a business may decide to advertise, but Instagram advertising is often used to increase brand exposure, get more website traffic, get new leads, and move current leads onward.

Instagram is a very visual platform, so text ads do not work here. You must use an image or set of images–aka carousel ads–, or a video. This can be accompanied by text in your caption or on the post, but catching the most eyes is best done on this platform with visuals.

Instagram ads are similar to Facebook ads, so if you have used those before you know it will lead to more brand exposure and control over your posts and their audience.

But, there are ways you can promote your business without paying for ads. This is known as organic work.

Why Market On Instagram?

Today, Instagram has over 800 million active users. Instagram’s primary advantage over other social media sites is that it is primarily centered around visuals. If you have a business that benefits from product design or any visually appealing products, this platform is a great way to showcase that and potentially gain new customers.

Your marketing strategy will determine what type of ad you want to publish, what type of content for regular posts, and timing. Having your marketing plan established before using a new social media platform is the best way to start. You need to establish your goals and audience before you begin posting.

A lot of brands feel the need to be posting on every social media platform and forget about their strategy or variety between platforms. This is an easy mistake to make, so be careful as you are diving into social media marketing and advertising.

How To Build An Instagram Marketing Strategy

Instagram is a unique platform that requires a unique plan. Make sure you establish what you wish to accomplish from using this platform before getting logged in. Here are some steps to take to establish this.

Set Goals For Instagram Use

Ask yourself and your team, “what do we wish to accomplish by using Instagram?” These goals can be long or short-term, depending on the type of business and what you are choosing to promote. Some example strategies businesses use are:

  • Clothing stores showing how to style their looks, hoping to generate sales
  • Services such as hairstylists showcasing their process, hoping to bring more customers in

These are just 2 examples, but if you go on Instagram and find your favorite brand account, you can figure out what they are trying to accomplish with their pages.

Determine Your Target Audience

You should determine the audience you wish to reach before you begin any marketing on your page. Remember to use factors such as age, location, gender, income, interests, and motivations when picking your audience.

Your target audience for Instagram may be different from your overall target audience. You can check out popular hashtags from similar businesses and see who is posting under them. You can also look at competitors’ followers and following. Instagram's built-in tools make it simple and easy to determine your audience.

Carry Out A Competitive Analysis

The next step after establishing your Instagram audience is to do a competitive analysis to see what other advertisers in your industry are posting and how they are interacting with their followers.

If you know who your top competitors are, they are a good start. You can review their profiles and see what type of posts get the most engagement, popular hashtags, caption style, how frequently they are posting, and how they are growing on the platform.

Make sure to also take note of any opportunities they may have missed. You can take these missed opportunities and use them for your business and make it stand out from competitors.

Make A Content Calendar

Creating a content calendar will help you save time in the future of posting. You can fill it with when you are going to post, the captions, and images/videos you wish to post. This is also a great place to record any important events your business might accomplish through the platform.

Make Your Brand Consistent

You need to establish your brand, and be consistent with your posting. Random and unrelated content can cause people to unfollow you. Your brand should have a consistent aesthetic, especially because Instagram is a very aesthetically based platform.

Determine the traits of your brand and its personality. Think of what your values are, how your customers and employees help establish your brand and personality traits for the brand. Your brand’s aesthetic helps distinguish and differentiate it from other brands, creating recognizable aspects without your brand being affiliated.

Grow Your Followers

This takes a lot of energy and time. The easiest route is to simply buy followers, but this is an ineffective method. Buying followers will not increase engagement, which will be obvious for other followers, brands, and mess up your statistics on engagement. Here are some tips to build your following the correct way:

  • Unique and recognizable username. If people can’t find you, they can’t follow you.
  • Fill out your bio so followers know who you are and increase your odds of coming up as recommended or in searches
  • Start posting once everything is set up. It is smart to only post high-quality content before you start engaging with people. If your profile is empty, you won’t gain followers
  • Follow related businesses. This will help people find your business if they go through following or likes of related businesses
  • Interact with related businesses’ content to bring more people to your page
  • Make your content shareable and something worthy of sharing

How We Can Help

Auburn Advertising is a service of Inner Spark Creative. Inner Spark Creative is a full-service marketing firm in Auburn, Alabama. We are ready to help you come up with a marketing plan to help you establish your business’s social presence. Contact us today to hear our services and how we can help you!

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