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Instagram Marketing 101: Is Your Picture Worth 1,000 Likes?

Instagram

Posting pictures of your product or service is easy, right? Nothing could be farther from the reality content marketers face when disseminating compelling, engaging, authentic visual media. Especially since being acquired by Facebook in 2012, Instagram seems to have grown in popularity among marketers, and has maintained a strong hold within the top five most popular social networking sites.

So, what does it take to curate a strong Instagram account with images that truly reflect a company or brand? It takes insight, decisiveness, and a clear message.

Optimize Bio Content

A successful Instagram page requires more than beautiful images. The platform allows 150 characters for profile bio content. Overlooking this element mean missed connections with potential followers who misunderstand your brand.  As a matter of fact, after registering your account/username and selecting a profile image, your next step should be crafting a direct, concise bio. Consider encouraging engagement with a branded hashtag or including a CTA to your website. Bonus pro-tip: Use a link shortener such as Goo.gl to save valuable content space.

Know Your Audience

This should go without saying, but it is worth repeating as you embark on your visual media journey. Understanding your audience when communicating predominantly through images is perhaps more important than ever. Your subject matter, composition, color choices, filters, and accompanying text must all speak to audience expectations and needs. Your images should not simply mirror your product or service. Instead, aim to tell a story, showcasing your brand in action, in a way that reflects your audience’s lifestyle.

High-Quality Images

Image quality considers a variety of elements, including camera capability, image clarity, composition, gradation, and light/color balance. In a sea of images, your photos need to exhibit pristine attention to detail in order to stand out. Arrange your products artfully with bold contrast, demonstrate action in professional service images. Familiarize yourself with Instagram image resolution settings, and don’t be afraid to explore filters and editing tools.

Contests

Instagram recommends photo contests as “a great way to increase visibility of your brand” on the platform. Contests are an engaging strategy to disseminate brand awareness and acquire audience loyalty—especially when prizes are involved.

Engage

Do not simply post your image and step back from the community. Be a part of the community. Engage with a respond to your audience. Ask questions to learn more about your followers and keep discussions growing. Use relevant hashtags to encourage further connectivity and conversation. Make your audience feel appreciated, and they will keep coming back to see more.