As long as you haven’t been living in a cave for the past couple years, you’ll hopefully know by now that Instagram has to be a key component to your online marketing strategy, especially if you’re a service-based business, where the competition foolishly believes Instagram will not work for them. Newsflash: it can and it will. Your people are on Instagram. So let’s not get left behind…..
Hopefully, you already have a presence on Instagram. If you’re anything like I was when I first started using the platform, your growth has been slow going and your reach not quite multiplying the way you see it happening for other businesses. And I understand it can frustrating to be in this space. In fact, I know that feeling well.
It took me one full year to grow my following on Instagram to 1000. But I was determined and focused. I observed and took action. I put in place some key strategies that took my Instagram account from 1000 to 17,000 the following year.
But there are ways to add 100’s of followers a month (if not thousands) with the right strategies, and hugely increase your website traffic and conversions from Instagram. I’m selling four-figures month after month, and my Instagram strategy is a large part of that. I have no special photography or tech training under my belt. Just sheer will and a Smartphone. There are some key things you can do to make sure your efforts on Instagram are giving you a solid ROI for your time– no matter your business.
Here are four things you can start doing today to give you the foundation to start actually making money on Instagram:
- Show up consistently. – It is essential that if you have an Instagram account, you are posting at least once a day to maintain a part of the interaction process. Posting consistently will help keep you stay ahead of the game and in your customer’s subconscious thoughts. Did you know that studies show that a potential customer has to interact with a brand a minimum of 6 or 7 times before taking action? The more you post, the quicker this will happen. However, I do suggest posting no more than 3 times per day, with your posts at least 2-3 hours between posts. Anything more frequent will just clog your followers’ feeds and get annoying.
- Time to get social. – Interact with the people who comment on your photos. i.e. @Mention them back. Ask them questions. Share your gratitude. And don’t be afraid to leave comments on other people’s pictures as well. Be generous with your likes. Follow back people who are consistently interacting with you. This all helps build your network of friends and followers, but always remember it’s a two-way street, after all, it’s called social networking for a reason! Let other users get to know you, and then find ways to get to know your followers, maybe some common interests or hobbies is always a good place to start.
- Post with your ideal customer in mind. – Build a picture in your mind of your perfect or ideal customer or follower. What does he or she like about your brand? What is on his/her mind at the time of the day you’re posting? What does he/she talk about with her friends? Where is he/she when she buys from you? What are his/her dreams or aspirations? What are his/her problems and how does your product solve them? When you write the captions of your photos, keep him or her in mind. Write directly to them in a positive manner. You’ll find that your engagement will grow authentically with people who are excited about what you’re putting out into the world.
4. Understand that your numbers are less important than engagement. – The number of followers you have is definitely important. Followers act like little votes of confidence and give you and your brand credibility. And because people like to follow the crowd, be part of the popular groups, obviously the more followers you have, the more followers you will get.
But, what good is a bunch of followers who don’t ever buy your stuff? (I’ll give you a hint: Er, No Use At All….) because numbers aren’t everything, engagement is what matters most. And most importantly, you will build your engagement by building relationships.
So by putting some key strategies into place (like the ones I have listed above) you can ensure that you are building trust and turning those followers you do have into raging fans and eventual customers.