Growing your brand through Instagram wasn’t a thing ten years ago. Today, it is the thing.
With hundreds of millions of active daily users, Instagram is a potential goldmine to drive sales for your business. As you map out your 2020 marketing strategy to increase digital engagement and brand sales, Instagram should be at the center of those plans. It’s a proven growth machine for big and small businesses alike.
But you won’t drive Instagram sales simply by creating an account and flying by the seat of your pants. Strategy is the name of the game, and the only real way to tap into Instagram to grow your business.
Today, we’re offering eight tips to help drive Instagram sales for your business:
Drive Instagram Sales Tip #1: Create a Business Profile and Optimize It
If you’re a brand on Instagram, make sure you create a business profile separate from your personal account. The next thing you’ll want to do is choose a profile name that makes sense for your brand. It should be relatively straightforward and use your brand name if possible.
Next, choose a high-resolution photo (110 x 110 pixels) of your brand logo for your profile picture. This is your brand’s true first impression from a visual standpoint.
Your business profile is also prime real estate to provide a link to your webpage or webstore. But maybe even more important than any of the above is your actual bio.
Before anyone clicks that follow button, they need to believe in your brand. Write a bio that intrigues and captivates your audience. Make sure you outline what problem your brand aims to solve, who it will help, and what purpose your product serves. You’ll also want to leverage keywords and hashtags specific to your industry. This will make it easier for potential clients to find your page.
Drive Instagram Sales Tip #2: Define What Success Means for Your Brand
A recent report suggests that 62% of Instagram users are more likely to interested in a brand after seeing it on their feed or in IG Stories. Social media marketing is the forum to grow your business. That said, it’s never been more critical to define what success means for your brand.
Who do you want to help? How will helping that segment of people grow your brand? What are your growth goals, and how will Instagram sales help you reach those goals?
Although it may not seem like a lot, 11% of US consumers shop on Instagram. And with more than 1 billion monthly users, that 11% equates to hundreds of thousands of potential customers.
Measuring success can come in many forms. It’s always good practice to place CTAs in your bio, feed, and Stories, calling viewers to action with buy links, branded hashtags, and other methods of engagement.
Here’s where PLANOLY’s advanced analytics and insights feature – and the Hashtag Manager – can help you break down your engagement for posts and Stories, track your growth goals, and amplify your reach with hashtag optimization.
Drive Instagram Sales Tip #3: Get to Know Your Audience
Market research is the key to driving Instagram sales for your business. Yet, unlike more traditional avenues where you’d perform market research, now you can do yours right on Instagram.
By using interactive stickers, polls, and questionaries, you can determine what your audience wants within the same forum where your marketing outreach will take place.
More than 130 million Instagram users engage with shopping posts every month. Knowing your audience is key to tapping into the millions of IG users that have moved from shopping at brick and mortars to individuals and small businesses operating on social media platforms.
It’s very widely known that one-third of the most viewed Stories on Instagram are from businesses. We’ll talk much more in-depth about Stories later, but this stat is an indicator that consumers of all sorts are looking to Instagram to buy the things they want and need. Find out who your audience is, and you’ll create an online community that serves both parties.
Knowing your audience also helps you understand the best way to present a call to action (CTA). Be it something as simple as “click the link in our bio” or “swipe-up to purchase,” having a better understanding of how your community reacts to CTAs will make you better at tailoring them to generate engagement.
Drive Instagram Sales Tip #4: Use Instagram’s Shopping Feature
Instagram has made it seamless for brands to market and sell their products. Making your IG account shoppable has never been easier with the ability to tag products directly in your feed and Stories.
Through the IG shopping feature, customers will have the ability to checkout on Instagram or be directed to your website. You’ll need to have an Instagram Business Account connected to a Facebook catalog to access this feature.
For an even more seamless experience, PLANOLY's sellit anyone can build a digital storefront and open for business without the hassle of designing or building a website. sellit is a link in bio solution that allows you to create buttons to your sites, recreate a shoppable version of your Instagram grid, and upload a product gallery for your followers to check out with one-click.
Drive Instagram Sales Tip #5: Restrategize Your Grid
Images remain at the heart of Instagram. Although Stories and IG Live have a massive draw, making sure your grid does some of the heavy-lifting balances the marketing impact of your Instagram presence. Besides, research shows that 90% of the information our brain consumes is visual.
When starting a business account and creating your first nine grid posts, keeping your market research in mind, create compelling images and assets that speak to the needs of your audience.
Pick a theme for your feed stick to it. Be consistent and frequently post to make sure your grid is engaging and up-to-date.
A color scheme is also essential to ensure that your grid is aesthetically pleasing. Your first nine posts should highlight a color theme intertwined with creative images and thoughtful captions.
Drive Instagram Sales Tip #6: Focus Your Hashtag Strategy
The importance of hashtags hasn’t faded in 2020. Consistently a useful tool that allows viewers to seek out and find your content, hashtags are always working even when you aren’t.
Now, you never want to put too many hashtags in a post because it looks a bit, shall we say, unsophisticated, but they are extremely valuable when used correctly. Instead, do your research and stick with highly trafficked hashtags that are proven search terms on Instagram.
Be very specific with your hashtags. Don’t gamble on very broad hashtags. Get niche! Choose hashtags that target your audience and your audience only. You don’t need the billions of Instagram users. You need the hundreds of thousands that are looking for someone like you to support.
One trick to find trending hashtags in your industry is by checking out what competitors and influencers are doing in the space. But don’t choose the hashtag linked to 200 million posts. Your content will get buried. Now, the hashtag linked to 20 million posts is a much better play.
With PLANOLY’s Hashtag Manager, you can create and save hashtags groups to use in each of your posts. Moreover, you can automatically produce “first comments” so that your hashtags don’t show when viewers are scrolling your feed.
Drive Instagram Sales Tip #7: Create Thoughtful Stories
Newsflash – Stories are critical for driving Instagram sales! Using Stories to grow your brand is the most effective way to generate sales. With more than 500 million people using Stories daily, everyone you’re trying to reach, all those with purchasing power, are on Instagram Stories.
You’ll want to make sure you use the shoppable Stickers feature. This fun and intuitive approach to shopping is one of the most popular ways users interact with brands on Stories.
If your follower count quickly reaches 10K, the extremely powerful Swipe-Up feature will be your best friend. With it, you can showcase products in your Stories and simply have users swipe-up to a buy page that you can track with PLANOLY.
Stories are also optimal for Instagram ads. Brand Stories have an 85% completion rate, which means users are very engaged in Stories marketing. These traditional, full-page Stories ads are more impactful than you think. Instagram reports than one in every five viewers DM a brand after viewing an ad.
You’ll also want to consider using Stories to run Instagram-exclusive contests, allow brand partners and influencers to do Instagram takeovers, use multiple clips to showcase product reviews, and then create Highlights so customers can go back and review them at a later date.
The StoriesEdit design template app is great for creating custom marketing assets to promote products and events through Stories. You can use these templates to reveal a new collection, showcase existing products, and even create brand-specific imagery for seasonal marketing initiatives.
Drive Instagram Sales Tip #8: Leverage User-Generated Content (UGC)
User-Generated Content (UGC) isn’t a new form of social media marketing, but it’s still an effective one. This organic approach to driving Instagram sales starts and ends with showcasing our brand community.
Typically UGC is free and organic with no money exchanged. Although, sometimes larger brands will create a UGC marketing campaign, which is still a relatively inexpensive approach to marketing that yields a high return.
UGC can be seen through shoppable Stickers on your Stories or within your grid feed. To find community members you’d like to feature in UGC campaigns, search the brand hashtags you’ve created to see who’s tagging you.
Ultimately, UGC shows that you care about your online community. It also promotes your brand by allowing the people who love it to do so for you.
Driving Instagram sales by way of these social media marketing best practices will undeniably boost your digital footprint. The brand growth you’ve been looking for is on Instagram. Get to know all the PLANOLY tools and features mentioned above to grow your traffic and convert viewers to buyers!