Brand’s relationship with Instagram goes further than announcing that you had avocado on toast for your breakfast.
After all, with over 800 million users on this app, Instagram has become the unofficial launching pad for many marketing campaigns. Ranging from small startups to independent retail shops to billion dollar chain companies; the idea of reaching thousands and thousands of people within a short amount of time is a PR dream come true. So, it’s extremely important that your account shows off a sense of identity your company encompasses.
In another sense, your businesses’ Instagram account needs to be an unofficial branding tool.
People are drawn to pretty things so it should be no surprise that Instagram is all about how good your grid looks. No one likes looking at a jumbled collection of mess with no clear direction on colour scheme or quality of photos. Depending on your business, whether it is a brand seeking to build greater recognition, or a small private college seeking to enhance student enrolment, or an upcoming local rugby event wanting to boost ticket sales: your aesthetic needs to reflect your identity.
If you’re an upscale minimalist furniture shop that specialises in avant-garde designs, your photos should reflect that: no bubble gum filters and no oversaturated photos.
If you’re managing a local primary school, don’t be hesitant to post ecstatically happy children hopping around in a playground (with their parent’s permission of course).
If you’re still a bit lost, I suggest that after every photo, you should always ask yourself one question: does it encapsulate my brand? Any doubt should lead your finger to the delete button.
Behind the Scenes
It might be weird, thinking that brands would need to show their working process. I bet you’re thinking: But why would people care?
If that’s your line of thinking then you haven’t really encapsulated a true marketing mindset. Your job isn’t only to cater to the interest of your customers, you need to learn to cultivate their attention.
As businesses, whether large or small, private or public, corporate, people are interested in the behind the scenes operations because business accounts are so obviously perfectly fabricated PR and marketing efforts; that by allowing your customers a glimpse into something as mundane as a behind the scene photoshoot, or a business meeting, or a team meeting within an office: it humanises your organisation. It peels away the smokescreen of manufactured targeted advertisement and instead, creates a sense of trust.
People trust what they can understand and by allowing them a glimpse into the inner workings creates a feeling of greater transparency and a more positive brand opinion. But of course, these behind the scenes shots are fabricated in a sense as well: so realism is key.
The famous #hashtag trend is also extremely useful for trying to garner attention to the right group of people. Anyone from models to photographers to an everyday uni student uses it, and so should you.
Creating your own hashtag only works if you have a huge following that is also deep in the hashtag game, so if you’re keen on having your own brand identity being explored and tagged as an individual. Utilize it on almost any post you have- from your Instagram stories to your promotions to your comments. Once it gains traction from other people, you’d be surprised how many visits you can get from the Instagram community.
If that sounds too complicated: fear not. Instagram has a trove of existing trending hashtags, just choose the ones that fit well and chuck it here and there.
Remember: the key is to place it in the comment and not as a caption: it gets extremely annoying and might even turn audiences away because of how many words they have to scroll through.