Instagram for Business: Social Media Marketing for Entrepreneurs

Video transcript: You already know Instagram is huge for ecommerce, but you might be asking yourself, “How can I use Instagram for business?”

Hey, guys. I’m Jessica with Oberlo. And today, I’ve got 10 tips that will get you views, likes, shares, and sales with Instagram. Alright, let’s get gramin’.

1. Instagram for Business: Use the Correct Profile

Hack number one: Switch to an Instagram business profile. If you use Instagram for business, consider switching to a business account. With an Instagram business account, you can monitor real-time metrics on the performance of your posts. You can also add additional content to your profile, like a customer support number, to make it easier for customers to contact you.

With a Instagram business account, you also have access to more data. You can find out which posts perform the best and see what times your followers are online. With this information, you can start optimising each and every post. The only downside to creating an Instagram business profile is that everything you post will be public and accessible. But then again, if you’re using Instagram for business, you probably don’t want to be private.

2. Post Multiple Photos

A hand holding an iphone with the Instagram login page displayed

Hack number two: Use Instagram carousels. Instagram carousel posts let you upload 10 images in one post. Carousels are perfect for when you want to post several items from the same collection. For example, if you just launched a collection of embroidered apparel, you might choose to make one post about that collection, and then feature several product photos in that one post. Carousels are also great for launching a promotion. For example, if you have a buy two, get one free promotion, the first image in your carousel can let users know about the sale and the other images in the carousel can showcase the products. Finally, if you host an event, you can use Instagram carousels to let people browse event pictures. People who are interested in the event pictures can flip through the carousel and everyone else can skip it without seeing multiple posts about the same event.

3. Boost Sales with Influencers

Hack number three: Find Instagram influencers. Influencer marketing can boost your Instagram following count and boost your sales. But you might wonder, “Are influencers expensive?” They can be, but there are a few tricks to finding accounts that are both affordable and profitable.

  1. If you’re starting a brand new store, reach out to influencers with small audiences, let’s say, under 10,000 followers, and ask if they’d be willing to do a post for a free product, an affiliate commission. Sure, you’ll get a lot of rejections, but some influencers will be open to your idea. 2.
  2. If the goal is to get sales, reach out to influencers within your niche, who actively post sponsored posts. You can browse sponsored posts using keywords like #ad or #sponsored. Just be careful about paying influencers who have big followings, but aren’t niche-specific. There is a risk that that investment won’t pay off.

4. Takeover Accounts

Hack number four: Instagram takeovers. Instagram takeovers are when someone else takes over your Instagram account for the day, typically to post Instagram stories on your behalf. This strategy is awesome for gaining followers and generating buzz for your store. Instagram influencers are great for takeovers, but if you’re tight on budget, you can ask employees or fans of your page to take over your account instead. After any takeover, make sure to analyse the data because not all takeovers are made equal. For example, one influencer might bring in thousands of new followers for your brand, while another influencer doesn’t bring in any. You’ll want to know what works and what doesn’t before you decide to invest in this strategy again.

5. Instagram for Business: Go Live

Instagram Shop

Hack number five: Take advantage of Instagram Live. Instagram Live is a great feature to use for Q&As, launches, and big announcements. Done well, Instagram Live can humanise your brand voice. Let’s take an example. Say you run a meditation store. You can do daily live meditation sessions on Instagram at the same time each day, and that’s going to build your audience. Or maybe you run a children’s toy or clothing store, you might do a Q&A with parents to answer questions about what toys are popular right now. Or general topics, like how parents can spend more quality time with their children.

One of the cool things about Instagram Live is that you can go live with a guest who’s in a different location. This works great if you want to have an expert join in on your live session without being physically there. Your audience will still see both of you in the session. You can bring in guests each week to offer your audience a unique look into your niche from top experts. This keeps guests watching your account, visiting your store, and hopefully buying your products.

6. Un-Tag Yourself if Necessary

Hack number six: Remove business tags for negative customer photos. As your business grows, you’re bound to have negative customer photos pop up on Instagram. And that could be for any number of reasons. See, you can’t stop people from posting negative comments, but you can take the right steps to solve the issue. First, you’ll want to un-tag yourself from negative photos before addressing the customer. Fans of your page can access tagged photos, which can lower your sales. Next, make sure to apologise on the Instagram post itself. Try to resolve the issue with the customer by offering a refund or a replacement. Once the customer is satisfied, then you can ask them to delete the photo. Some customers may not delete the photo, but many will consider your request. One thing to note: If you notice you receive a high volume of negative reviews on a specific product, say, more than the standard 1%-2%, then it’s time to consider removing that product from your store.

7. Try Shoppable Features

Hack number seven: Shoppable Instagram galleries. A shoppable Instagram gallery is a page that you can add to your website that includes all of your Instagram posts. The main difference is that there are clickable links that customers can use to buy products. Shopify has lots of good apps in their app store that lets you easily install shoppable Instagram galleries. SNPT, Covet.pics and SocialShopWave are some of the most popular. Keep in mind that the goal with an Instagram gallery isn’t to feature every product on your store. Instead, focus on finding and selling your best sellers.

8. Create and Share Video

filming a product video to use on instagram for business

Hack number eight: Share video content. Creating your own original video content is a great way to stand out in your customers’ Instagram feeds. And you know what? It’s fine to record on your phone. If you can’t invest in special lighting, just make sure to stand close to a window with transparent blinds. And bam, you have nice, pleasant, soft lighting for your videos. In your videos, you can give tips about your niche, or create short how-to videos. Say you’re in the yoga niche, you could create videos of you mastering poses. If you sell yoga pants, wear them during your video. Or you can create content where you talk about body awareness, posture, and other topics that are near and dear to your yogis’ heart centers.

9. Use Photos Shared by Customers

Hack number nine: Show off your customer photos. Customer photos are the social proof that every business needs. If a customer posts a picture of your product, their followers see your brand. And that means a whole new audience for you and your products. Keep your own photography for the featured images on your website and your Instagram account. But when customers post pics of your products, let the world know. Just make sure that before you use their photo in something like a Facebook ad or email campaign, you ask permission from whoever took the picture. Customers’ photos help give your brand credibility, and they’re really effective at showing your customers what your delivered products look like.

10. Make Your Product Stand Out

Hack number 10: Add your product photos on unique backgrounds. Sometimes, especially when you dropship, suppliers provide product photos on plain white backgrounds. Posting these pictures on Instagram probably won’t move the needle. Sure, you might get a couple likes, and a comment or two. But if you want to stand out, you need to make your pictures appealing. If you wanna do more than just change the color, you can even add backgrounds to your images. Look for wood backgrounds, patterns, brick walls, and more on stock image websites to give your product photos a unique look.

Alright, so there we have it, 10 tips for how to grow your business using Instagram for business. We’ve got lots more over at the Oberlo blog, so stop by for more on Instagram marketing, and everything dropshipping. We’re putting up videos every week, so if you like what you saw, go ahead and subscribe for more. Thanks so much for watching, I’ll see you next week. And in the meantime, learn often, market better, and sell more.

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