Branding on Instagram
When casual users think of Instagram, they may conjure an image of hip millennial influencers. But Instagram’s potential for eye-catching content means that it offers endless opportunities for engaging creative content. Correctly used, Instagram offers you the opportunity to invite your customer to understand your brand in ways that no other platform can match. All you have to do is find the right Instagram target audience for you!
The Whole World Uses Instagram
Instagram is among the world’s most popular social media platforms. Since its launch in 2010, over 2 billion active Instagram users have shared images, videos and stories for their followers.
As the world of social media has grown, its significance to businesses has only increased. Today, Instagram is a platform that allows brands to relate meaningfully with current and prospective clients, adding brand personality and direct interaction to their marketing toolkit.
Without a doubt, there is an audience for any brand striving to grow on Instagram. Finding your target audience can be made easy by these simple steps.
Here’s what to know about building your Instagram brand:
1. Define Your Brand Personality
While your design elements like logo and motto matter, social media allows you to form a more defined personality for your brand. Giving your brand specific traits and characteristics allows viewers to establish an emotional connection and facilitates effective messaging. Consider how your brand would explain itself if it was a person. Is it funny and quippy? Sentimental and soft? Bold and direct? This will help frame the language you use in your posts and attract the right Instagram target audience for you.
What’s Your Passion?
If you’re starting from the beginning, determine five to ten things you and your brand are passionate about. It can literally be anything. For example:
2. Consider Your Account Type
Instagram offers three account types, personal, business and creator. What’s the difference you ask? Let’s take a look.
There are many reasons to use Instagram. If you are using it to mainly interact with friends, post cute animal photos, or follow A-list celebrities, you may only need a personal profile.
You have all of the posting abilities with a personal account. You even have the choice to make your account private. If you choose to make your account private, only the followers you accept will be able to see your content.
Now it’s time to talk business. An Instagram business account offers many features that may be beneficial to building your brand and growing your target audience.
The first, and maybe one of the most important features is Instagram insights. This is an analytical tool measuring trends throughout your audience. It allows you to look deeper into each post, story, video, reel, and overall profile. How did each perform? How did followers engage with it? Instagram insights tell you all of that! It also details the demographics of your followers such as gender, age, and location. Knowing this information will allow you to gain a greater understanding of who you are posting for.
A business profile also allows you to select a business category. Similar to hashtags, the business category helps reach accounts that have similar interests.
Determining the right business category will help find that Instagram target audience your brand needs. Similar to the list you have created previously, consider what your brand has to offer. Is it clothing? Blogs? Entertainment? A nonprofit organization? There are so many different choices so make sure to find one that best fits your brand!
A business account also allows customers to easily contact or locate your brand by visiting its Instagram profile. You are easily able to display the address, website, and contact information so that customers are easily able to find everything they need.
Similar to a business profile, Instagram also features a creator account. This account type is best for public figures, influencers, and those involved within the arts community.
Insights are available, but you only have the ability to view account interactions for the previous seven days. Using this tool, you can see actions taken to your account, demographics on your followers, and overall account growth or decline.
A creator account provides the ability to share contact information. Unlike a business account, you are able to decide whether to share this information or not. It also allows you to create a separate direct message inbox for personal messages.
3. Find What Makes You Stand Out
It can be difficult for an audience to connect with a brand that only promotes its products and sales. Find something that makes your brand unique. Why should users choose your brand over another?
Even though organizing your brand on a social media platform may seem overbearing, it is important to have fun with your brand. It is easier for an audience to connect with a brand that stands out to them.
Your Bio is Important!
This is where users will get their first impression of your brand. This is where you have the potential to turn a curious user into a follower! Make sure you really sell it. Consider what your brand has to offer, why it is important and any other information a potential customer may need to know.
4. Figure Out Who You Are Talking To
Looks like you’re ready for the fourth step. Now that you’ve established a list of terms and your profile type, you can now begin to find users who share your interest. These accounts are much more likely to interact, support, and discuss your brand with others.
This is your Instagram Target Audience
Use your list as a guide for search terms that will help you build relationships that benefit both you and your potential clients.
While it may seem crucial to have a high following in a short period of time, it is more important to gain valuable customers and brand advocates. Engaging with accounts that have similar interests will likely grow a supportive, and interactive follower base.
A great tool to interact with your followers and to share your brand’s personality is to post interactive stories. These stories encourage users to interact with your account while giving you more information on who you are talking to.
Utilizing the poll and quiz feature on Instagram is a great way to understand your Instagram target audience better!
5. Get Posting, Baby!
Any good conversationalist knows that an engaging story is important, and listening is even more important.
A good post allows the viewer to gain a better understanding of the product or brand that you offer. Use language and graphics that relate to your target audience, as those are the individuals who will likely engage with your account.
Make Sure To Listen
You have another important job as a brand on Instagram. Listening. By paying attention to comments, messages and other account interactions, you will learn how to tweak your messaging to be more effective for your perspective clients. Engage with users in a positive, upbeat way–each account has its followers and all of them mean more potential exposure for you!
Engaging vs. Spamming
It’s important to recognize the difference between engaging with your audience and spamming. No one likes a spammer. Make sure your content is relevant and welcomed.
Unfortunately, a frequent way many users attempt to grow their following is by leaving spam comments on random accounts. Begging for likes, a follow-for-follow, or leaving promotional comments are NOT engaging, they’re spam. You want to follow users who will bring value to your brand.
Effective community management encourages other users to also engage on your account! Ask them questions or opinions, leave relevant comments that stand out, and respond to their comments. Get your brand’s personality across and form relationships with other users.
Posting relevant stories and utilizing Instagram’s interactive stickers encourages followers to engage with your account and is a great way to learn more about your audience. Instagram’s stickers give you the ability to create a unique poll or quiz, or a response question so that users can share their thoughts with you.
It’s important to remember that not every account you engage with will be interested in following you back. As long as you continue to share the authentic personality of your brand, the right followers will be sure to find you!
6. Master Your Toolkit
There are many platforms to assist in content creation available online.
You may find a professional designer to help create beautiful design elements for building graphic content. But, if you’re just getting started or on a limited budget, you can use Adobe or Canva to try it yourself.
Try programs like Hootsuite or Buffer to help you schedule your posts across multiple platforms, and look to Mailchimp to help you build user lists for cross-platform communications.
By identifying and utilizing the tools available to you, the potential your Instagram has is limitless!
Feel Like It’s A Lot To Take In?
We’re Here To Help
There’s lots to know and do as you grow your Instagram presence, and there’s no substitute for experience. You can build your platform on your own, but if you want to fast-track your brand into expert-level marketing, the innovative and adaptable team here at Sh1ft is passionate about building brands at every stage of growth. Reach out to us here.