Your brand should be investing a significant amount of its time and financial resources into Instagram marketing. There is a huge opportunity right now to grow a larger audience for your digital content. This will be true for most of 2019, but in the coming years the competition will grow and the window for success will end.
This guide will explain to you how to thrive on Instagram and it will motivate you to start trying as soon as possible. Most brands are missing this opportunity because they lack information and urgency. You can be the exception.
Pillars of Instagram Success
There are four main aspects of a great Instagram strategy. If you master each pillar of the process, you will have all of the tools for success.
- Hashtags. These will help you to reach a larger audience every day without spending a dime. Every page on Instagram should rely on hashtags for its first year or two.
- Content strategy. This is all about how you schedule and plan your posts. What niche should you target and how frequently should you post content on your page? Having a solid plan here is crucial.
- Collaborating. Work with other pages to help you to reach more people. If you build the habit of partnering up with other brands, you’ll access more marketing opportunities than you can by working alone.
- Cross-promotion. Using other platforms like Facebook and Twitter will help you to broaden your reach beyond the Instagram bubble.
Each section of this guide will cover one of these four pillars. After reading it all you will have full knowledge of how to build your Instagram page in 2018.
How to Use Hashtags on Instagram
Hashtags are a simple and effective way to reach more people on Instagram. It isn’t too hard to figure out how they work. Each hashtag starts with the tag symbol “#” followed by a series of letters and numbers. Using comedy as an example, #sitcom or #standup would be two relevant hashtags.
You can make up any hashtag you want, however, the best results come from using hashtags that other pages are already using. This way you reach an audience of new people who are either directly following that hashtag or who are seeing its content due to the Instagram algorithm.
Use 8-15 hashtags in every post you make. Don’t be shy with it! This is enough to reach a broad audience early on and it only takes an extra 30 seconds per post.
Effective Social Media Content Strategy
Your content strategy refers to how often you post on your Instagram page as well as what kind of content you share. Most successful brands on Instagram post at least once per day. You should try to post 2-3 times per day for the fastest page growth.
Break down your content into multiple categories. For example, if you are promoting a craft beer bar, you could have one photo per day that features a new beer. Then you could have a separate category of content that happens twice per week and shows a video of a local musician performing at the bar.
If you come up with 5-7 different categories for your content like this and you post a few photos or videos for each category per week, you will have a focused and exciting stream of content.
Work your way up to this point. Start at one post per day and try to get up to three posts per day over time. Consistency is the most important part so don’t burn yourself out early.
Collaborate to Reach New Fans
Your brand’s fans also like a lot of other stuff besides you. If you are a streetwear sneaker company, a lot of your fans also love skateboarding, fashion, and hip-hop. You could collaborate with brands in those markets to reach new people right in your target niche.
Imagine a sneaker brand sharing a musician’s song on their Instagram feed, while the musician shares a photo of themselves wearing a pair of sneakers. That kind of collaborative “promo trade” is easy and affordable, and it packs as much punch as paid advertisements do.
Seek opportunities to collaborate early and often. Even if your page is just starting out, find other beginners and work with them. This is a key component of Instagram success.
Cross-Platform Promotion Can Help
Don’t limit your content to Instagram. It takes almost no additional work to share this content on Facebook and Twitter as well.
It’s best to natively upload each post on each service. This means you have to actually open the Twitter app and upload it there, then open the Facebook app and upload it there too. This is slower than automatically syncing your posts, but it greatly improves your organic reach on each platform.
Cross-platform promotion is simple. It speeds up your brand growth so you should take the extra time to do it.
Give it Three Months to Kick In
A little bit of patience and hard work goes a long way on Instagram. While other brands will seek immediate gains, you can relax and know that your well-rounded strategy is creating huge momentum for the long-term.
Even if the first week or two are slow, keep at it. Never miss a day and post even more than once per day when possible.
If you apply the strategy from this guide with honesty and dedication, you will grow your Instagram page. This is a simple and foolproof method to reach a larger audience on social media.