Image by: Esther Vargas
By Michael Sterling
Instagram is skyrocketing like you can’t imagine. In 2014, revenues are expected to go through the roof which is a major reason why Facebook and Twitter should be trembling in their sleeves. As a business owner, not only is it crucial to understand exactly how Instagram can affect your business, but how you can join in on the game. Here are a few tips:
#1) Click-To-Buy Options
Certain platforms like Pinterest have been becoming much more popular in the last two years. In fact it’s been cited as the third most popular way to share content, according to studies. It’s users represent a wealthier shopper – one who’s actually able to afford the items they “pin.”
Instagram is much larger than Pinterest, yet it doesn’t offer users a way to click-to-buy from its photos. A major mistake which you should help to hide. In this category, Pinterest becomes more convenient for its consumers. Even though it takes a couple clicks, at least there’s a way.
Consider apps like LiketoKnow:It. By implementing them with your Instagram pages, you can give customers a link they can click to take them straight to purchase. It’s quick, easy, and spares them wasted time of clicking through unnecessary pages.
#2) Implement Special Interests
Instagram users are drawn to content that appeal to their special interests. Things like tattoos, mechanics, exercise, art, books, and music are easily searchable under hashtags #tattoos, #mechanics, #art, #books, etc. These are what people are searching for, so implement it into your content to wiggle your way into the hashtag continuum.
There’s a reason why people are connecting across oceans. One great example of this strategy is the NikeiD campaign. By offering its followers a chance to become a designer and customizer of their own shoes using Instagram photos, fans were encouraged to share, hashtag, and expand the companies traffic and engagement.
Special interests will unite your customers and when Nike gave free reign to its followers, they were able to put their own stamp on the brand which ultimately increased sales and developed a newfound respect.
#3) Master Engagement
Did you know that Instagram engagement is 15 times that of Facebook’s? In fact, according to L2 Think Tank, 35% of users visit Instagram more than once per day, 16% of online adults have annual household income greater than $75K and in 2014, Instagram’s revenues are forecast at $250 – $400 million.
It took Instagram half the time of Twitter and 2 years less than Facebook to reach 150 million monthly active users – and it’s still growing. Right now, your primary focus needs to be on engaging your consumers like never before. One “like” does wonders nowadays.
One great way is to turn your pictures into lessons. When the customers learn something, it will inspire them to share it on their pages. Ask questions (and answer them as well). Bring them in the boardroom with you by creating a collage of 3 to 4 new product ideas and asking your audience to vote on the best one. Jumpstart the interaction and engagement will follow.
#4) Create International Appeal
It might surprise you to know that 60% of Instagram users are outside of the United States. This has been part of its charm for sometime now. Users are liking pics and video of people they’ve never met from a country they’ve never been. And the one thing that drew them together in the first place, above all, was appeal.
Customers are interested in other cultures, so why not give them what they want? It’s a win-win. Not only will domestic users be interested, but foreign users will feel more connected to you when they see something familiar. Too many marketing campaigns are centered around the “big cities” like New York and LA. Why not take it overseas?
Why not create a collage of loyal international customers to speak about the product through an interactive campaign? An idea like this welcomes a plethora of ideas. It appeals to a wider audience, brings international interest, and multiplies your chances of social connection.