So, you’ve put your offer out to the world on Facebook, Pinterest, LinkedIn even… what about Instagram?
Maybe you’ve already tried but you just aren’t seeing the results you’d like. A platform that just hit one billion monthly users, you’d expect to make some sales, right?
Well, you’re half-right.
The thing about Instagram is you have to know how to work it so that it, in turn, works for you. Instagram’s algorithms change every day, so while it can be difficult keeping up with all of the newest updates, there are still some tried-and-true steps you can take the next time you’re ready to put your offer on Instagram.
Using these selling methods paired with your newly optimized business account will allow you to k-i-l-l it so that you can finally start seeing the results you want.
SWITCH YOUR ACCOUNT TO A BUSINESS PROFILE
Do this now if you haven’t yet. Converting your Instagram account to a business profile will unlock all the insights you need to guide your posts. You’ll be able to know your audience’s demographics– what age and gender they are, where they live, when they’re online– as well as how often your profile is visited, how many link and button clicks you get, and how many interactions you get on your posts on what days. We can’t stress enough how key all of this, especially when you’re ready to start paying for ads.
All you have to do is go to Settings > Account > Switch to Personal Account, and all you’re all set! Your insights will appear once you make your first post upon switching.
HASHTAG, HASHTAG, HASHTAG!
Hashtags are the biggest way to start seeing organic leads on Instagram. We know the term “hashtag research” may seem daunting, but it’s super valuable and not as hard as it seems. Browse around on other pages in the same or similar industry as you and make a list of hashtags you see them using. Add to that list some keywords that relate to your industry, and put yourself in your customers’ shoes to add some things they would also search. Then, search your hashtags and throw out any that have more than 500k or less than 100k posts using them. When you search your keywords, hashtags that include that word will start to pop up. Filter through those just the same as the others. You want to make sure you’re choosing hashtags that aren’t oversaturated with posts but that are still being used enough that you’re likely to be seen.
Not only do you get overall page insights, but you also get insights for each individual post. Part of that includes showing you where your followers who viewed the post are coming from. (I think you know where we’re going with this.) How many views are coming via hashtags is also included in that list, which is perfect for getting an idea of how your hashtags are performing so that you can start testing which ones are doing the trick.
Get Intentional with Ads
That pretty “Promote This Post” button sure does look tempting, but we beg you to resist the urge. The options are very limited, and you won’t able to target a specific audience. Linking your Instagram account with your Facebook business page will allow you to use their Ads Manager and give you tons of different options. You can choose to only run your ads on Instagram, or you can have them run on both platforms. This is where your profile insights will come into play. Instagram basically already tells you who you should be targeting, and you can play around with the other options to target those users with certain interests as well.
THEN, TEST THEM!
Don’t feel like you need a humongous budget for this. A small budget can work, as long as you’re intentional with your targeting and testing your ads. You can do this by setting up 3 campaigns that are all pretty much the same, but just tweak a few things between them. So, the second ad may have a different picture but the same copy, and the third may have the same picture but different copy. Once you see which one performed the best over a period of time– say, 3-5 days– you can then go on to use that ad, but switch up the targeting and so forth.
Use the Shopping Feature
If you sell physical products, Instagram’s shopping feature is a must. You know how when you tag a friend in a post and when you tap on the post, their username pops up? Think of your products as that friend. When users tap on your post, the product name and price will pop up. Once clicking on that, they’re taken to product details page, which has the description, a button to view the item on your website, and more products that you’ve added. You can even add other items to the page that might go with that product. It’s a win-win and such a huge opportunity for physical product-based businesses to see some sales increases.
Don’t Be Afraid to Reach Out
Physical product sellers can, of course, reach out to influencers or celebrities to pay for product promotion or send free products in exchange, but service-based businesses can do something like this as well.
Remember your free work stage when you just wanted to gather a few testimonials to help get your feet off the ground? It’s time to use them, babe. Post them everywhere. Have a dedicated Story Highlight on your profile just for testimonials, post about them in your feed, remind everyone that not only do you think you’re the shit, but others do, too.
If you haven’t already, get a testimonial from past clients as well as your current ones. It can also be worth it to ask if they could even make a post promoting you and your services. The worst they could say is no, and if they say yes, that’s even more exposure you’d be getting.
Showcase Your Offer in Stories
Last but not least, post to your Stories regularly about your offer– every day, at least. Once that 24-hour timeframe has passed, up goes another one! Add CTAs and engagement stickers (we went over those in this blog post, too!) to encourage your followers to engage, click, swipe, etc. Create a sequence with your Stories. One to show the offer, one to tell what it’s about, another for testimonials, etc. You want it to flow seamlessly so your followers can easily tap and read.