If your business hasn’t jumped on the Instagram bandwagon yet, I’m going to take a few guesses as to why: you can’t imagine adding one more thing to your list, you feel like you have no idea what you’re doing, and in the end, it doesn’t really pay off anyway.
Am I close?
Instagram has been, and will more than likely continue to be, one of my biggest lead sources when it comes to my business. Sure, it took time to learn the ropes, and it most certainly costs a small chunk of time during my week, but it is one hundred percent worth it in my business – and it could be in yours, too!
According to Instagram’s 2018 analytics, the quickly growing visual social platform has over 800 million active users. As a small business owner, I think the opportunity to have a slice of that pie is worth a little effort. After all, Instagram is now considered one of the top marketing tools with the highest user engagement rate and everything you need to access it, fits right in the palm of your hand.
Reason #1: No Matter What Size Your Business Is, It Can Thrive
Gone are the days where the mega-corporations like Coca-Cola and Amazon are the only brands able to access the top advertising tools. No matter the size of your company, Instagram is a tool that can help you connect with new audiences, showcase your product and service, and provide direct sales opportunities. Taking a few simple steps such as optimizing your profile and your feed of images to speak directly to your ideal customer can be a game changer for your business. Even small Etsy shops or local brick-and-mortars create incredibly successful businesses through utilizing Instagram and growing their social media presence.
Reason #2: Meet Your Customers Where They Are Without Spending a Dime
When compared to other social media platforms, Instagram ranks towards the top for audience engagement and user-generated content. This means that Instagram users aren’t just scrolling the app, but actually interacting with the accounts and brands that they follow. When it comes to user-generated content, the more, the better for your business, especially when the account is leading people back to your brand. Encouraging customers and clients to share photos of themselves using your product and tagging your account on Instagram is a simple way to gain traffic and often followers. This type of content is also a great way to get to know your ideal audience and help tailor your own content to meet them where they are. One of the best things about all of this? Until you are opting to create paid ads on Instagram, all of the other marketing and content creation for your business is totally free!
Reason #3: You Can Create Real Relationships That Translate Into Loyal Customers
Social media can often feel like a one way mirror, especially if you’re just starting out. With a little time and consistency posting on Instagram, the quality of customer interactions is unlike other platforms. Instagram truly allows you to connect with your audience in a variety of different ways that help you feel like you’re building a community. Your profile and your posts help remind customers that you are there when they need you. This platform encourages business owners to think of each post as a conversation, not a sales pitch. Instagram is known for being the platform that truly grows connection from brands to their audiences. Allow your brand to show your audience what it can do for them and how it can make them feel, rather than constantly asking them to purchase something. This is how both new and repeat customers organically form. It’s because they feel connected to you and the value you offer.
Next time you’re brainstorming new ideas for how to get your business in front of the kinds of customers you are on fire to work with, grab your smart phone and head to Instagram and give it a chance. It’s going to be worth it.