Oh, well hey there! Welcome back for part 2 of launching your business on Instagram. We hope you enjoyed part 1 – 10 Steps to Launch Your Business on Instagram and have already gotten started with establishing your brand on the platform and putting your best foot forward in the community. So let’s recap on where you’re at right now: you’ve set your objectives and researched your audience, figured out what kind of representation you want for your brand, planned the most consistent feed possible and developed a hashtag strategy. If you’ve completed all these steps, then you’re all set to get started with our last 5 steps!
6. Engage With The Community
While the previous steps were mainly focused on preparation, these last ones are all action based. And the first action that you need to make sure to do is to engage. It’s the action you want from your followers, and when you’re just starting out, this action needs to start with you.
Engagement with your posts is the key to being successful on Instagram and getting more and more people to see your posts. Just like on Facebook, you can have tons of followers, but only a fraction of them will actually see your posts. To ensure that your posts actually get noticed, people need to indicate to the algorithm that they’re interested in your profile. And one of the main ways this is calculated is through engagement with an account’s content.
This engagement just doesn’t appear out of thin air, unfortunately. It’s something you’ve got to work for! When someone leaves a comment under your post, try to leave a genuine response for them in return. This will encourage them to continue to leave comments and engage with your content in the future. This is also a point of opportunity where you can learn from them. Whether in the comments section or even in the direct messaging, you can get to know your followers more closely and get informed on what they like and what they’re not so fond of when it comes to your brand.
Also, don’t limit your engagement activity to just your posts alone. Comment on the posts of other people’s accounts as well. If you actually comment something personal and real, it’s more likely to be well received and they’ll check out your account in return. This way, you’ll improve the visibility of your profile to those users (and their followers). All this pays off in generating more followers for your new account as well.
7. Redirect your Traffic to your Instagram
If you’re a brand, there’s a good chance that you have a lot of existent traffic that you can lead to your Instagram account. Create a press release type of blog just about the launch of your Instagram account detailing why you’re on the platform, why you’re so excited to start off there and all the reasons why your readers should connect with you there as well. To make it even easier for people to follow you as soon as they read the blog, you should and embed your Instagram photos directly into it. You’ll also immediately share the vibe of your account with them!
Got an email list? Inform all your subscribers that you’ve made it to the Instagram world! Basically, scream it out everywhere you can. Gaining followers is a tough job, so your starting point should be with the people who are somehow connected to your brand in the first place. These will be your easiest follows to gain or ‘low-hanging fruit’, since they’re already a fan of yours! Other channels to redirect from include your email signature, social buttons on your site, your Facebook page etc.
8. Start an Influencer Program
While you’re busy promoting your page yourself and on your channels, don’t forget about the power of good old-fashioned word-of-mouth. One way to go about this is to get influencers within your niche to spread awareness for you. Now before you go “We don’t have a budget for that” and dismiss this tip, rest assured that you don’t need to set aside that much (or anything) to make this happen.
These days, larger accounts will not participate in your program unless there is some monetary compensation in it for them. But, these are not your only options if you want to launch an influencer program! Reach out to microbloggers who align well with your brand. These are often happy to post in exchange for a product/service or for a smaller fee. What you need to pay attention to is your selection: go for users with high engagement rates and who your product/service can actually appeal to. If they’re actually enthusiastic about your offer, they will be genuine about it when sharing information on it with their followers. Having actual ambassadors for your brand will go a long way in generating more followers for you and helping to get traffic to your account!
9. Stay on Top of Your Analytics
After implementing some (or all) of these steps, do pay attention to your metrics. If you want to be ‘successful’ on Instagram, you need to monitor your account closely to see how it’s going. With a business account, you will gain access to Instagram Insights where you can see the number of impressions of each post, your reach, number of likes and comments among other relevant KPIs. Taking note of these metrics will help you out in knowing what’s working and what’s not.
Using Instagram Insights is a great start, but you can also track your growth externally in a spreadsheet or any preferred format. Pay attention to how many followers you gain per week and also how much referral traffic Instagram is generating for you. Google Analytics tracks all your traffic sources to your site, so you can easily see how Instagram is contributing to your visits. Once you know this, you’re able to start tracking your social ROI. We encourage you to use Google’s UTM parameters builder to create trackable links that will show up in your Google Analytics account. These links are pretty long, so convert them to a short URL (we use Bitly) before putting it into your bio!
10. Boost your Best Posts to your Target Audience
With your account up and running, one final step is to accelerate your growth process a bit. If you are able to allocate some budget to advertising on Instagram, we recommend you go for it. Look into your analytics and comments to identify what posts got the most appreciation from your followers in terms of reach, likes, and comments. Besides using this information to adjust your content strategy accordingly, you should note these down and promote them to your relevant target audience. This will get you right in front of their faces, and if your content is engaging and your feed attractive, you’ll be sure to get yourself some new followers. 😉
11. BONUS: Solve the Instagram Algorithm
The Instagram algorithm is really just a big Rubiks cube. SocialPros researched the algorithm and wrote an article which explains how exactly the Instagram algorithm works in 2019 and how to work with it for the best possible results.
If you’re completely new to Instagram advertising, no worries. Feel free to check out our breakdown of how to get it started with the platform.
Above all, make sure your feed has something to keep people coming back to you. Getting traffic to your account and engaging them is something gradual that occurs at a more natural pace. What you need is to ensure that you have something to grab the users in and make them stay!
We hope our tips will help your business get started on Instagram like the Pro’s! Now it’s time to put it into practice and schedule and auto-post your Instagrams with Preppr 😉