By Kaia Pankhurst,
According to Instagram’s data, over 200 billion users on the platform view at least one business Instagram a day.
Of the social media platforms, Instagram really dominates digestible visual media. It gives us quick snapshots into daily life, which is perfect for the modern consumer who prefers image-based content over longer-form content.
Instagram is an excellent way to boost brand awareness for your practice or optical store. But it’s not enough to simply have an Instagram account— you need to know how to use it.
Here are four tips to keep your Instagram relevant and on-trend.
Tips for Your Timeline
The Instagram timeline is where your posts appear. These posts are permanent (unless you delete them) and can be viewed again in the future.
Don’t Overdo It
Some platforms really reward creators who post unique content every day. Luckily, Instagram is not one of them.
Think about business posts from a consumer’s point of view. You might be interested in a product, but that’s not why you use the platform. You browse through Instagram to catch up with friends, family and celebrities. Inundating your followers with endless promotional posts, product photos and memes will cause your follower count to crash.
Keep your timeline posts to two to three times a week. Your followers are far more likely to notice your content when they don’t see it every day.
Time your posts
Digital content creation never stops— there’s always more coming. Your post needs to be near the top of the feed if you want to gain your followers’ notice. That’s why timing really matters when it comes to Instagram.
Later, an agency specializing in marketing for Instagram, has compiled some data to highlight peak posting hours.
Ideal posting hours, interestingly, vary from day-to-day:
Monday: 6 a.m., 10 a.m., & 10 p.m. EST
Tuesday: 2 a.m., 4 a.m., & 9 a.m. EST
Wednesday: 7 a.m., 8 a.m., & 11 p.m. EST
Thursday: 9 a.m., 12 p.m., & 7 p.m. EST
Friday: 5 a.m., 1 p.m., & 3 p.m. EST
Saturday: 11 a.m., 7 p.m. & 8 p.m. EST
Sunday: 7 a.m., 8 a.m., & 4 p.m. EST
Tips for Your Story
Instagram stories is a video or image that will vanish after 24 hours (unless you save it to a collection).
Instagram says that 62 per cent of users say their interest in a product has increased after seeing it in an Instagram story.
Interact with followers
Instagram stories are more interactive than the average timeline post. You can post polls, answer user-submitted questions, include filters for users to download and lots more.
These features encourage your followers to engage with your brand, which builds trust and buy-in. It also allows you to literally ask your followers what they want from you.
Social media users know they’re being marketed to. When a business takes the time to ask consumers what they actually want, users are more receptive to that business’s message. Establishing trust and creating what feels like a two-way conversation helps your followers feel like you’re on their team.
Cross-promote other platforms
Some content pieces, like long-form written blogs, longer videos or large infographics don’t work on every platform. Still, you should cross-promote these pieces, so your audience can find them from any social media outlet.
Your story is an excellent place to promote content from other social media platforms. Even a screenshot with a quick caption explaining the piece could be enough.
For example, you could post one frame of a video about cleaning your glasses. Then post it to your story with the caption, “Have you been cleaning your glasses wrong? Check out our video & find out how to clean your glasses the right way!”
You can also link directly to that piece using the “swipe up” feature for a seamless user experience.
Overall, Stay Authentic
Remember, no one wants to be sold to, but everyone wants to buy.
Instagram users are hypersensitive to pandering or contrived content. Keep your posts grounded in reality. Stay true to your brand. And most of all, use Instagram as an opportunity to connect with your users. Speak to them, not at them. Making connections is what social media is all about.
Kaia is a senior content strategist with Marketing4ecps, a digital marketing agency dedicated to eye care professionals in Canada. Kaia can be reached at www.marketing4ecps.com or email@example.com.