Instagram Business: Guide & Tips to Thrive in 2021 (with Examples)
⏱ Reading Time: 15 minutes
Instagram is celebrating its 10th birthday with over 1 billion monthly users! So you probably wonder, how to stand out in such a massive community? In this article, we will present you two ways.
The first one is creating an Instagram business profile. Lately, Instagram started focusing more on business-specific features, so it’s the right time to start building a presence for your business or brand. Just creating an Instagram account is not enough for you to maximize your growth potential. You’ll want to hop right into creating an Instagram Business Profile. These profiles let you access great analytic tools and additional features that help people to get in touch with you.
And according to Instagram, its platform already has over 25 million business profiles from all around the world. Moreover, there are 200 million daily visits to at least one business profile. This motivated advertisers to start spending their valuable resources on Instagram ads and campaigns. Introducing new and exciting features all the time, advertisers saw a great opportunity to share their content and connect directly with their users.
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Besides creating an Instagram business profile, there is another way to stand out from the crowd. You might often read about behind-the-scenes content followed by fixed rules: Leave at least three comments, post at least once a day, use at least 11 hashtags on each post and so on. But what if there is another, more authentic and progressive way to Instagram growth?
In this article, we’re taking the rule-breaking around Instagram advertising to a new level. Free your creative hiccups with some of the best recommendations, and you will surely profit out of it! We’ve researched the Instagram and came together with the list of Instagram growth rule breakers who have been bold and got rewarded for it.
Tune in for more!
Set Up Your Instagram Business Profile
A personal account on Instagram will only get you access to a limited number of features. In order to unlock its full potential, you’ll want access to switch to a business profile.
This simple switch gives you to access bonus features, among other things. In addition, they allow you to gain valuable information about your users, their preferences and age.
Here’s how to switch to Instagram business profile:
- Log in to your Instagram account and go to settings.
- Tap “Switch to Business Profile”.
- Tap Create New Account or Convert Existing Account. Select the Best & Coolest Instagram Username!
- Step 4 is optional if you want to connect your account to an existing Facebook Page, but it’s not required.
- Choose a category for your profile/business.
- Fill out your contact details (email address, phone number, and address).
- Make any other changes and tap „Done“.
You’re now ready to start using your new and improved Instagram profile. Let’s further explore tools and functionalities now available.
Instagram Business Tools
Instagram business profile lets you access a variety of metrics. This includes information on how your stories and posts perform, as well as insights about your followers. In addition, it provides a simple way to provide extra information about your business.
You can add the location of your business, email address, phone number and working hours. If we take a deeper look, you’ll find two other features available: Instagram Insights and Instagram Ads.
Above all, this must be the main reason brands create an Instagram business profile. Instagram Insights provides you with valuable insights on how your posts perform. This allows you to better focus and target your efforts towards users that matter to your business. Take a look at how Insights displays your statistics, offering demographic and location data.
Picture 1. Instagram Business Profile overview
If you are just starting your way through the Instagram market, an Instagram business will serve you great. However, when you start developing your strategy, goals and standard audience, you’ll probably look for more data. In order to take your Instagram game to the next level, tools like Instagram Ads will get you the specific information you need.
Advertising on Instagram is growing each year. So you want your brand to be more recognized, to reach a much wider audience? To reach Instagram growth? That’s where Instagram Ads come into play. Don’t just run into creating an ad without a good and defined advertising campaign, come up with a plan and manage your time efficiently. In order to avoid steep advertising expenses, it’s important to carefully choose which one is best for your business goals.
Picture 2. Instagram Ad revenue
After you defined your audience, it’s time to choose the perfect way you reach them. There are several types of Instagram ads you can choose from, each one with a specific goal.
Types of Instagram Ads
- Picture Ads. This is the most widespread way to advertise on Instagram. It offers you to create sponsored post with options to link your product page, install your application or have you sign up for a service.
- Multi-Photo Carousel Ads. Last year Instagram introduced this feature both for regular and Business profiles. With this, you can display multiple photos, one after the other. This brings to customers a different aspect of your service or product because you can create a short story around it.
Picture 3. Instagram Ad preview
- Video Ads. A big trend in the video industry is to make videos more “cinematic”. Cinematic videos bring inspiration in people and make them feel to take action, so it’s a great way to engage the audience. Instagram is now letting you make 60-second video ad, prior to past releases when it was limited to 15-seconds and 30-seconds.
- Stories Ads. Instagram claims that 50% of business account create their stories on a monthly basis and that one in five stories gets a direct message from its viewers. They can be quite fun to use, as they bring creative ways to make your content with face filters, GIF pictures, emojis, Boomerang, and Super-zoom! Not to forget to mention that they are discoverable, which means that people who don’t follow you can see them too.
This opens you new ways to reach your audience, offering a fantastic opportunity to stand out from the crowd.
6 Ways to Stand Out on Instagram
Use relevant (niche) hashtags
Instagrammers use hashtags as a way of searching for their interests, gaining new followers and connecting with people who share similar interests. The best way to use hashtags is not to overuse them while posting. Don’t spam a post description with 20-30 hashtags, that are generic and hardly visible in a large pile of posts.
Let’s take Paldesk as an example. Instead of using a bunch of generic hashtags like #livechat or #helpdesk, we decided to take a different approach. Instead, we included our own and unique brand hashtags: #palchat and #brighterinteractions. Together with a few others, they make the core of any good Instagram hashtag strategy. Remember, try using fewer hashtags and be sure to make them count.
This one is probably the most important one. Don’t be that brand that has poor communication with their fans and clients. Try to respond to their comments, answer their questions and like their content. Make sure they feel your intent is genuine.
One of the best ways to engage with your followers is to shout out to them in your posts. Giveaways are an equally good way to make them feel more special, even if you’re asking them to do something for you. Whatever you end up doing, make sure your brand comes off as understanding and compassionate when dealing with users.
Collaborations with other brands is a great way to bring in more followers. Even more, they’re beneficial to both sides, as connecting businesses can open new opportunities. If you’re working with influencers, you’ll have the potential to increase your brand awareness and exposure exponentially. A great example is an H&M collaboration with influencers Julie Sariñana and model Ela Velden in 2017. They both loved their clothing so they decided to promote it on Instagram.
Picture 4. Sincerely Jules Instagram Business
This is a great example that shows you that using influencers can benefit you because the audience trusts them when it comes to choosing with style in mind. Both influencers inspired their fans to try out some clothing from H&M, increasing their sales and audience! Let’s just say the campaign was an unqualified success. Stories They are a great way to experiment and try out a bundle of features.
This includes filming short videos, behind the scenes photos, trying out new face filters or tagging your associates. You can even include your brand hashtag while making them, as stories can be filtered by tags. If you have your own page, you can use a “swipe up” option that creates an outbound link. It’s a great way to get your audience straight to your site! There’s also no “best time” to post a story, as you can use it more than a few times a day.
Above all, you can give your clients a live look of interesting aspects in your everyday business, show products or answer live questions from the comments. Live videos give your audience something to focus on and comment on in real-time. Time-specific, it’s a good idea to try it out for some podcasts, making sure there’s time for customer questions. Once you’re comfortable with how your live videos are performing, you can later edit them and make a compilation of the most important moments.
Instagram TV is a great platform to reach new audiences, run your advertising campaigns or start your video program! You can download it separately from the Instagram application, but there is no need to sign up if you already have an Instagram account. IGTV offers you to upload much longer videos than Instagram (up to one hour) and to search different channels. A great way to engage possible customers here is to start making tutorials, unboxings or product demos.
Picture 5. IGTV for running advertising campaigns
Share high-quality content
What’s the point of having Instagram or Instagram Business if you don’t share your content with your followers? Its primary purpose is to share photos, so you’ll have to take your time and make great content. It will take some time to develop your skills of taking photos and editing in such a way to look professional and making them harmonious, so they complement each other. You can try to get some help and advice from more experienced Instagrammers or simply pay a professional to do the job for you. Outsourcing is always a good idea when it comes to making sure your campaigns have the best possible impact.
Instagram Growth Rule Breakers – Examples in Businesses
Instagram is a great place to show how something very specific to your company is made. Even some of the typically boring brands are able to entice excitement or wonder by showing off some of the daily operations.
Here’s a good example!
1. Tito’s vodka
We all know vodka’s fun, but it can be even more fun on Instagram. For example, they started Vodka for Dog People to rescue and protect the animals that have serendipitously come into their lives.
Picture 6. #vodkafordogpeople
2. Googly Eyes Foundation
Likewise, this non-profitable organization has a goal to spread googly eyes around the world. Googly eyes are a customer favorite in every crafts store, and for a good reason.
They instantly improve everything, and the following photo confirms this:
Picture 7. Order your FREE googly eyes at our website and be part of it
3. McDonald’s Singapore
They used illustrations to add an interesting twist to their product photos. They added a swiping in the photo to promote their Chicken McNuggets.
Picture 8. Looks like you’ve hit on something in the sand. What will you uncover? Swipe to feed your curiosity.
4. Forever 21
When making your brand unique, you inspire curiosity. There is a higher chance that your audience will follow you and/or become your customers if they feel entertained with your content and brand’s image.
For example, Forever 21 is showing users how their product is used by different people in the industry.
Picture 9. Show a truly unique angle of your product
Also, more likely than not, people are interested in how your company works on a daily basis. Try to highlight quirks or unique happenings that occur with your business. Is there a company event or something silly your team does occasionally? Tell your audience about it!
Picture 10. Post-it even in rainy and windy conditions.
Obviously, when done correctly, being different on Instagram can take your brand a long way. Be more pirate and break the conventional rules.
Hence natural mineral water brand Jana launched a new campaign called Deep, which functionally delivers a message that is rooted in undisputed truth – DEPTH.
Picture 11. Witness The Deepest Instagram Profile, Created By Saatchi & Saatchi
Oreo’s Instagram account is not only very easy on the eyes, but also is very up-to-date with the latest trends. To make their efforts more shareable on social media, they re-created the iconic Game of Thrones opening title sequence with Oreo Cookies.
Picture 12. The most epic cookies of all time are here
Also, if you’re a fan of Game of Thrones, take a look at some of the great marketing campaigns inspired by this fantasy series, and what lessons can marketers learn from it in our other article – Game of Thrones Marketing – Advertising Perspective.
Instagram Growth Rule Breakers Individual Examples
For highly visual and engaging content, you have to entice the viewer and ultimately create a sense of pleasure or intrigue.
This doesn’t only mean you have to use stock photos of products in good lighting. It’s not even about the rules of colors and textures anymore. It’s about not sticking to them, but creating new, preferably interactive content.
Check out videos and photos from these artists and you’re immediately ahead of the game:
1. Kirby Jenner
Kirby Jenner has 1.2M followers. He photoshops himself in Kendall Jenner pics.
Picture 13. Kirby Jenner and Kendall Jenner
You probably never heard of him, but he can be found anywhere where Kendall is. Kirby Jenner except for only being “Kendall Jenner’s twin”, is also a model and a lover. One is for sure, he definitely masters in photoshop!
2. Eggcelent Instagram Account
One of the never-ending Instagram trends is definitely taking pictures of the food. However, The Eggshibit upgraded it to delicious artworks out of a fried egg!
Picture 14. IG: the_eggshibit
3. Mixing dogs with food
Instagram is overflowed with accounts that are either all about food, or all about dogs. It was a matter of time for these two categories to get together! Dogs In Food does this beautifully and it is one of the most exciting Instagram growth formulas.
Picture 15. IG: dogs_infood
4. Digital marionettes for our celebrity-obsessed age
Joel Strong cuts out pictures of famous people’s heads and photographs them, dangling from his fingers, atop a real, live person’s body.
Sounds simple? Perhaps.
And yet, there’s actually something wonderfully surreal in the contrast between a 2D Beyoncé head and a 3D Any Dude standing in the park.
Picture 16. IG: mydaywithleo
5. Playing with emojis
Some people are so good at Instagram that it’s almost unfair. An artist Pablo Rochat is one of those people. His posts are very creative and will often make you laugh. He also has the strongest and most inventive Story game on Instagram.
Picture 17. IG: pablo.rochat
6. Creativity at its best
Josh Hara is an illustrator who has chosen a rather interesting canvas for his self-expression – coffee cups. He created #100coffeecups, a series in which he created cartoons and illustrations on a 100 Starbucks cups. And that was just the start.
Picture 18. IG: yoyoha
7. Making fan of Instagram ready photos makes great Instagram content, too
New Zealand teenager Liam Martin (@waverider_) has gained Instagram fame by posting recreations of celebrity glamour shots!
Picture 19. Who is better?
The Abuse is Rife
What was the first social network you fired up this morning?
If it was Instagram, then chances are you were duped!
As you scrolled through dozens of photos and status updates on Instagram, it is likely that many of them were not spur-of-the-moment missives sent by their account-holders but, rather, marketing messages sponsored by other brands.
Lift the curtain on your daily operations
Solberg Audunsson, co-founder & head of Takumi, offers brands an 8-point code of conduct on how to achieve a campaign that creates successful outcomes, whilst erring on the right side of transparency.
Instagram offers a variety of ways to share your content and its feed forms your brand’s story. As people scroll down, they form their impression of a brand based on the feed itself.
Content is king in the modern era of social media marketing. Instagram is the best proof of phenomena, as a visual platform that allows you to reach your users directly. It also helps out your businesses by introducing an Instagram business profile. It offers tools like Insights and Ads that allows to measure your posts’ performance and advertise on the platform. Both of these give your brand a specific edge, targeting audiences and increasing awareness.
So put all these Instagram growth ideas into action, think creatively, outside-of-the-box, break the conventional rules, create something unseen and engaging that will drive attention and action.
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