3 ways to get your brand "Insta" ready!
1 Create the best visual experience
Think of your Instagram page as a beautiful magazine. You should post your best images and consider consistency of color, tone, angles, cropping, etc. to best represent your brand. High quality content on Instagram is important to stay relevant.
Key things to consider:
Establish a consistent style and theme.
Apply filters to your images before publishing. Filtered images are 21% more likely to be viewed and 45% more likely to be shared or commented on than unfiltered images.
If you’re a restaurant, don’t post ONLY food and drink photos, and when you do, they should be SPOT ON. It’s wise to invest in a food photographer. You can also post your local farm or market, your best customers, ingredients for a top cocktail, people celebrating at your venue, your staff, etc. Show UNIQUE experiences.
Try using video and LIVE stories. This is a great way to share stories.
Mix it up between still photos and video.
2 Plan your posts
When you post and how often is just as important as what you post. Planning and timing is key to increasing your brand's reputation and the amount of followers.
Key things to consider:
Post when a majority of your followers on online. The best times to post are between 8:00 am – 9:00 am and at 2:00 am. You can also use app analytics to see the highest traffic times for your account.
Don’t over post! According to a study from CoSchedule, the optimal amount of times for a business to post on Instagram per day is 1-2, but no more or less.
Use Instagram schedulers like Hootsuite, HopperHQ and ScheduGram.
Learn the art of hashtags. Hashtags are essentially the way of tagging your pictures on Instagram and thereby connecting it to the pool of other photos already existing under that Tag. Develop an original Instagram hashtag that includes your brand name (like #yourbrandnamelove), encourage patrons to use it, then repost quality user photos with credit.
Make your customers the hero! Share other people’s photos, invite people to like your posts, and incentivize people to visit your page with promotions or a “free” gift.
Plan your posts in advance. Organize the messages and media that you want to share according to the story and key selling points that you want to convey.
3 Raise awareness
Advertising on Instagram is a great way to dramatically raise your brand's awareness. According to Instagram, 60% of people say they discover new products on the platform, and 20% of users visit a business profile every single day.
Advertisers now have 5 ad options:
Photo ads – your standard Instagram post format.
Video ads – the same as above, but with a video in place of a photo.
Carousel ads – a slideshow ad, which allows for multiple images.
Stories ads – these are Instagram’s version of Snapchat ads seen at the top of the feed.
Collection ads – a catalog ad that takes users through your product offerings.
Similar to Facebook ads, throwing some money behind a post will lead to more exposure for your brand, as well as more control over who can see your post.
Cost of Instagram Advertising
While Instagram ads on average receive much higher engagement then Facebook ads, it does come at a price. The average Instagram CPC is $0.70 (compared to an average of $0.35 on Facebook). That figure tends to be higher for Instagram users between the ages of 18 and 44, for women, and for Apple device users.
On the bright side, advertisers have control over how their budgets are allocated. For instance, you can choose between a daily budget to limit the amount spend per day or a lifetime budget where you would set up your ads to run for a length of time until the budget is depleted.
Other ways to control your Instagram ad spend include setting your ad schedule (for instance, you can specify certain hours of the day you want your ads to run), setting your ad delivery method, as well as setting your bid amount (manual vs. automatic).