Instagram is fast becoming the social media platform of choice for many and when it comes to your business, Instagram can be a very lucrative means to sell your product. Like many social media platforms, Instagram is free, of course, easy to learn and use, plus you can use it to post to all your social media accounts like Twitter and Facebook.
We will get into how to use Instagram and some business tips when using Instagram but first an example of what Instagram can do for small businesses.
I was reading in my local Sunday paper “The Daily News” about a salon that put a picture on Instagram of new hair extension product they are selling. It was such a hit for co-owner Miranda Plater of Limelight Extensions, that she said this one photo generated about $10,000 in new sales for her business.
Instagram can help drive your sales and develop your brand. Currently Instagram has over 200 million users worldwide.
So, lets get started with setting up an account. Follow these simple steps to start:
1. open up the Instagram app
2. click on the sign up button on the bottom of the page to create your account using your email address.
3. Next choose to import friends from your other social media accounts like Facebook, Twitter or your contact list.
4. Now choose your method of sharing – do you want to share with everyone or just a few selected people ?
5. Learn about the Tabs -
Feed Tab – Use this tab to scroll through posts by the users you are following.
Popular Tab – learn what is gaining the attention of others on Instagram.
News Tab – when your photo gets a comment, liked or you gain a new follower, your News Tab will show you this data.
Profile Tab – use this to see all of your uploaded photos, a list of your followers and who you are following, edit your profile and add or delete your social networks under the “Edit sharing settings”.
If you like a photo on Instagram you can show your interest by pressing the heart shaped button under a photo or double tap on the image.
Now a few tips for using Instagram to sell your product:
1. If you are just starting out, try to balance photos with fun photos mixed in with your product photos to gain followers. Using just your product photos may not attract many but a picture of a cute animal may.
2. Follow your followers back. This may seem like simple advice. You follow your Twitter followers so don’t ignore your Instagram followers !
3. Use filters to change the look of your photos. Try out different filters for different effects.
4. Develop a plan to post on a regular basis so you get into the ‘feed’.
5. Engage with other by commenting on photos you like and use hashtags.
6. Know the facts! You need to know how you are doing so use a analytic tool to track your progress. Curalate is one tool which can track Instagram post’s likes, comments and see how it has added followers for you.
How do you actually post a photo to Instagram ?
When you open the Instagram app, down at the bottom in the center is a square with a blue circle inside it. Press this and you will see your camera and your camera roll. Take a photo or choose your photo from your camera roll. Next you see the Tools section. Here is where you can put a filter on the photo and make alterations. All the tools are in this section. You can do just as much photo alteration in this tool section as you can in a IPhoto app. When you are done, press next at top right hand side of screen. This will bring you to the Followers Share page. This is where you title your photo, decide who you are going to share it with, add a map location if you would like and tag people. When you are done press the share button and your photo has been posted on Instagram. It’s that easy.
Instagram can be your next best social media selling tool if you use it the right way. Your business will benefit, your brand will benefit and you will be successfully using social media to increase sales. Try it out !
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