Complete Guide to Growing Your Business on Instagram
Complete Guide to Growing Your Business on Instagram
Are you a business owner looking forward to growing your business using Instagram? Then this guide is entirely for you!
This is the most comprehensive guide to growing your business on Instagram. Expect that every detail that you need to know about using Instagram to promote your business will be tackled here.
Don’t worry if you don’t have experience using the Instagram platform, or this is your first time creating an account. This guide will tackle all the basics of Instagram that you need to know. You are starting from how you will build your profile up to the things you need to know to get ahead of your competitors and get more customers.
Does your business own an existing Instagram account? Keep reading! This guide will also tackle advanced marketing tips and strategies you can optimize to generate more leads and reach out to more clients. New strategies just mean more engagements and more sales!
It is virtually guaranteed that after you finish learning this guide, you can take your business to the next level and expect more potential clients. (DISCLAIMER: this guide is provided for free but it is up to the reader to continue to learn and work hard at implementing the tactics in this guide to help you grow your business! We make no guarantees to results you may obtain, and you should always do your own research and dedicate yourself to always growing and learning. Your results will be determined by your actions!)
Let’s look at the contents of this guide.
Table of Contents
To start this guide, it is essential to know first about Instagram. Even if it is a popular social networking platform, you might want to know first what is so good about this.
Instagram is a social networking and online platform launched in 2010, particularly intended for the sharing of photos and videos. It became a massive hit until today. People use it to post pictures and videos of themselves, their family, pets, travels, food, and others. They also use it to follow posts from their favorite actors, actresses, directors, singers, bands, athletes, and other personalities.
Through the years, Instagram had undergone many updates, which made the platform better than before. It has become so exciting that it gained so many active users.
Not only Instagram was used as a personal profile for sharing photos and videos, several businesses, big or small, had started using Instagram to promote their brand.
As business owners, we like to have the facts straight. The next part of this introduction about Instagram is about its figures. This will give you insights on how this platform works and how you can start planning to develop strategies.
Now let’s look at Instagram by the numbers.
Instagram by the Numbers
In a recent statistic made by Hootsuite, We Are Social, and other various sources, Instagram ranks as the 6th most popular social networking platform. Further in this statistic showed that Instagram has a whopping 1 billion active users worldwide as of April 2020.
Let’s look further into the numbers. The following are statistics about Instagram users and usage.
● About half of the global users are younger than 34 years old.
● 72% of teens use Instagram.
● 56.3% of users are females, and 43.7% are males.
● The top five countries with most active users were in the US at 120 million, India at 88 million, Brazil at 82 million, Indonesia at 64 million, and Russia at 46 million.
● 6 in 10 users log-in daily. Instagram is the next most-logged social networking site after Facebook.
● Users spend as much the same time as Facebook users. The browsing average for Instagram is 53 minutes per day, while Facebook is 58 minutes per day.
These are significant figures to remember so that you will have an idea about your potential clients. This will also give you the insights that Instagram can be a platform to promote your brand or business.
Let’s make things more interesting. There are still figures that you should know. The following are statistics that relate Instagram in dealing with brands and businesses.
● An estimated 75.3% of businesses in the United States are on Instagram.
● There are 25 million business accounts on Instagram.
● Almost all accounts, about 90%, follow at least one brand or business.
● As stated in the results of a survey from Facebook IQ, users perceive brands on Instagram as accessible- 78%, creative- 77%, entertaining- 76%, relevant- 74%, and committed to building community- 72%.
● 83% of users say that they discover new products and services through Instagram.
● 81% of users use Instagram to research products and services.
● Brands and businesses also work with influencers to promote and market their products and services. The top 3 brands that influencer marketing are Luxury brands at 91% sports clothing at 84%, and beauty brands at 83%.
● According to surveyed marketers, Instagram tops the list of social networking platforms used in influencer marketing. Instagram is 89%, followed by YouTube at 70% and Facebook at 45%.
● On a monthly basis, there are 2 million advertisers on Instagram.
● When it comes to ad spending, Instagram has a 23% higher ad spending than Facebook.
● A whopping 849.3 million users are potentially reached in Instagram’s advertising.
These figures may have provided you with more insights about putting your brand or business on Instagram. Take note of them as they will be useful throughout this guide.
Well, let’s start building your business’ Instagram profile!
The Basics of Instagram
There was a word created because of this platform. It is the word Instagram-worthy, instagrammable, or grammable, which means that a picture is visually appealing and worthy of being photographed and uploaded to Instagram. It was mainly used for scenery and food. Now, why are we talking about this?
Believe it or not, this can help in growing your business. It includes everything you need to know about Instagram. Instagram is a social media platform for photo and video sharing. The visual appeal matters the most. The photos you will upload should be of the highest quality and not just some randomly taken photos.
You should carefully plan and choose photos that will catch the attention of many users to gain more views, leads, and likes. The use of the right hashtags can also help, but it is on the main content, which are the photos and videos that matter the most.
We will discuss some tips and strategies for this matter later on in this guide. Let us first discuss how to effectively use Instagram. Let’s use the Instagram profile of Dunkin’ (@dunkin).
The parts of an Instagram profile are as follows:
1. Display Picture. Businesses use their logo as their display picture. Using photo editing tools, you can edit your logo to make it timely and in-line with current events.
2. Username. Verified businesses have a blue check sign after their username. This establishes the fact that they are an official page. For starting businesses, it is essential to have a username that is easy to remember by your targeted audiences. Avoid creating a username that gives them a hard time to remember.
3. Statistics. This gives you an insight into the number of posts you have made and the number of your followers and your following.
4. Company Name and Bio. Under the username, you can put the full name of your business or brand, and under it, you can place its bio. If you are still establishing your brand, you may put what your brand is all about and the services you offer. After some time, when your business gets bigger, you can just put catchphrases that our brand is known about.
5. Highlight Stories. These are a compilation of photos and videos that you can use to showcase your brand. It is best to add highlight stories on your Instagram because they are located at the center of your profile above your posts. Even if you posted them a long time ago, your targeted audience could easily view your content.
6. Panels. There are three objects found on the board. First are the Posts, which are the actual content, which are photos and videos that you post on your profile. Second is IGTV, which allows posting of videos more than those for Instagram feeds. The third is the Tagged wherein you can view posts in which your brand or business is tagged with.
Now that you have known the parts of an Instagram profile, you may now have an idea of how you will build your own. However, to make your business profile eye-catchy and gain followers, there are things that you must consider.
The next part of this guide tackles about tips and strategies you can follow to make your profile and content appealing and reach your targeted audience.
On Instagram, people market themselves through sharing captivating photos. This will attract users to click the heart button to drop on their feed, and if they become more attracted to it, they will click the follow button. So, to establish more followers, you must have your style, and the photos on your feed must blend each other when viewed together.
The key to blending your photos on your feed is choosing your brand color or palette. People are more attracted to the accounts who use color palettes on their pictures. One example is from the Instagram feed of Etude (@etudeofficial), a Korean beauty product brand.
As seen in the picture above, Etude uses shades of pink and neutral colors for their photos, which are their brand colors. They manage to blend it well on every product and photo on their feed, which is pleasant to the eyes. It’s a very young and feminine style that suits their market.
That is how the color palette works for your branding. All you have to do is to familiarize yourself with color palettes or color wheels and choose an appropriate brand color for your product and shared photos, and then you can now attract people to follow and buy your products.
Here are some tips for you to follow if you are unsure where to start.
1. Go for a grid layout. This is how all your posts will appear and be positioned on your profile. It helps you to decide what photo you should upload the next time. This will give an appeal to a consistent Instagram theme.
2. Choose a theme. This will serve as your guide for the overall look and feel of your feed. As seen in the example, they used shades of pink and neutral colors since their brand is for makeup products marketed to the young and feminine.
3. Select the photo or video that you want to post. Stick to your products and services of the niche of your brand. You want your brand to be known for what it offers. Avoid posting too much content from different niches, and this will just confuse your audience.
4. Choose only one filter. Use a cleaner that fits the image of your brand. Avoid using too many screens as it can make your feed unappealing. Later on this guide, you will be introduced to tools that you can use in search of the perfect display for your brand.
5. Arrange your feed flow. Rearrange photos to make your feed more appealing. You should not thoughtlessly post anything. You have to determine what picture should be displayed after your recent post. This will give balance and harmony to your feed, making it pleasant to the eyes.
6. Maintain a clean background. Even if you have taken a fantastic shot at your product, it will affect your post’s overall appeal if the history is messy.
7. Use natural light. It is best to take photos in the morning or at the end of the afternoon since it gives a vibe that makes your photos have higher quality and be more detailed. Photos taken with natural light also blend well with filters.
8. Ensure high quality of photos. It is not enough that the picture you have taken is right. It should be the best one that you can do. Always keep in mind that Instagram is a platform for sharing photos and videos. People put high regard to the quality of the photos and videos in your profile. If you post pictures with lesser quality, your competitors will be a step ahead of you. High-quality images are also eye-catchy and will surely land you to have more followers.
9. Have fun. Don’t stress yourself about this. Unleash your creative mind, then ask feedback about your work. There is always room for improvement.
The style of your business’ Instagram profile must blend well with the products or services your business is offering. By following the listed tips on how you should style your profile can attract visitors that could turn into potential customers.
Now, this is just the beginning of how you will build your business profile and some tips on how your content should look. Let’s dig deeper into the features of Instagram. First is the Instagram stories.
Instagram Stories or IG stories are moments you share, which can be seen by your followers and will disappear after 24 hours. On Instagram Stories, you can add text, stickers, hashtags, designs, location, date, poll, countdown, etc. on your photos or videos.
To use Instagram Stories for your marketing strategies, you can share updates or snippets of your latest or upcoming products, feedback from your customers when they tagged you, and most importantly, you must aim to be featured on Instagram Explore tab. It is like a digital billboard where many Instagram users can see your post, and through it, there is a big chance to expand your potential market.
There are things to remember on Instagram Stories, so here’s the list:
1. Your stories will last for 24 hours but will only run for 15 seconds for videos and five seconds for photos.
2. Make your stories effective, deliver your message in the first three seconds of your account, and make it enjoyable and transparent.
3. Instagram has two types of stories, stories-first and stories-optimized. Stories-first are
4. The sound on stories can be turned off, but having an appropriate sound on your accounts can attract more people.
5. Storytelling is one of the most effective ways to catch the audience’s attention and keep them focused.
6. To earn swipe-ups or meaningful clicks, think about your brand’s job to help your audience on every occasion or what they need.
7. Be creative but consistent with your stories.
8. You can collaborate with other brands and mention each other in your stories. Both of you will gain something thus, it is a win-win situation.
9. When your story expires, it will stay in the story archives where you can compile it on the highlight section of your Instagram feed.
On the other hand, you can apply for Instagram Stories Ads, where your stories will appear like a commercial break between your audience video content. You have to pay when using Instagram Stories Ad, but this will help you promote your brand and engage and gain more audience.
Steps in Creating an Instagram Story Ad
1. Look for Ads Manager then choose + Creator
2. Think of an objective that is aligned with your marketing goals.
3. Fill out the necessary details for your engagement, and at the Placement level, choose Automatic Placement. If you opt to select Manual Placement, check the box indicated for Stories under Instagram.
4. Enter a schedule and budget for your ad.
5. Include elements that will enhance the overall look of your ad.
6. Pick a format for your ad whether it be Single Image, Single Video, or Carousel.
7. Select the most suitable photos or videos for your ad and add finishing details.
8. Then select Confirm to complete your ad.
That is how you create your Instagram Stories and use them as ads for your business.
Instagram stories are a great way to market your products and share updates about your brand. Now that you know how this works and how you can use it for advertisements let’s look further on how to market your products. Next on this guide is about the Instagram Shop.
The Instagram shop helps you to feature your brand or products via organic posts, stories, and the explore tab. One feature of it is product tagging, where it not only allows you to tag products but also leads the audience to the site where they purchase the product.
Before landing on the product tagging feature, you must first set up your Instagram Shop.
Here’s the list in setting it up.
Know if you are qualified for an Instagram shop. You have to make sure that your business is located at a support market, sells physical goods, complies with commerce policy, and has an Instagram business account connected to the Facebook business page.
Connect your Instagram business account to a Facebook Catalogue. You have two options to choose from, first is to use a catalog manager to create your catalog or connect it to an existing one. Second is by using Facebook Partner, where certified Facebook partners can help you. If you choose the first option and want to have product tagging, make sure to select an e-commerce catalog.
Sign Up for Shopping. Visit your Instagram business account, go to settings, tap Business, and then tap Sign Up for Shopping. Follow the steps and submit your report for review. It takes a few days or longer to complete the process.
Share your first-ever post. Once you are approved, you can now publish posts or stories with product tagging. You can only tag five products per photo or video posts and twenty products per multiple photos posts.
How Product Tagging Works? Your audience who tap a post or story from you which have Product Tagging feature will experience to view these things:
1. The detailed photo of the product you post. When there are multiple product tags on the post, when the audience taps the specific card, it will lead them to a particular photo of the product.
2. Product description. The audience will see the specifications of a particular product.
3. The designated amount for the product. Product tagging also shows the price or the cost of that product.
4. The link that leads to where they can access the product. When the audience taps or clicks the “view on a website,” it will lead them to the site where they can buy it.
This is how an Instagram shop operates.
If you want to expand your potential market, use this platform to feature your products. Product tagging is an excellent way to do it. Expanding your potential market also means higher chances of getting more sales.
Now let’s move on to the last Instagram feature, the Instagram TV.
Instagram TV, or IGTV, is where you can watch long-form videos from different Instagram users. You will also find this on the Instagram application. Instagram TV is different in other ways. First, it is built on how you use your phone in the Instagram app, where videos are shot full screen and vertically. You can upload long duration videos.
How to Use Instagram TV for your Business
Share your previously published video content to reach a new audience. You can reuse your accessible video content from other platforms such as Facebook and YouTube. Optimize horizontally shot videos and give new life to them. Observe and analyze how your audience reacts to this long-form video content and, based on your observations, share more relevant stories about your brand.
Share some exclusive clips only for your audience. One way for the viewers to develop emotional connections to your business or brand is to appeal to insider content like behind-the-scenes of how you build your brand or product, the distribution process, gatherings, or other exclusive materials.
Tutorial Video Content. Having your product or brand tutorial video content can also attract an audience. In this way, you can share them using the product you are selling or how to take care of them. This makes your video content more engaging.
Build Community. Instagram TV is like a channel where you can post videos regularly to engage more on your audience. The more you give them interesting content about your brand, the more they will wait for your update. So, you need to post regularly, it can be weekly, or whatever day you want to share them episodes of your video. Through this, you are able to build a community.
Conduct Q & A Sessions with Your Audience. When you make this as one of your Instagram TV video content, you open yourself and your brand to your audience. In this way, you help them to put trust not only on your brand but also on yourself. So, collect questions from your audience, create a video answering them all, and share it with your next Instagram TV episode.
Share the Feedbacks from Your Loyal Audience. Your loyal audience who bought your product or brand may share feedback about your product or brand. With this, it is very important that you exert an effort to interact and connect with them. Interview them about what they experience when they use your product or brand. Compile them and make it an episode to your Instagram TV.
These are the ways you can use Instagram TV for your business or brand. So better start uploading videos on Instagram TV to get more engagements to your audience.
Steps in Uploading Videos on your Instagram TV
1. Tap the + button to add a post.
2. Select the video you are going to upload. It must run for 60 seconds or longer and then tap next.
3. An options box will appear, choose Long Video, tap Continue, and tap Next.
4. Choose a cover for your video from the frames or select an image from your gallery that is related to your content.
5. You can now fill-up other information or descriptions of video and tap Post. Your video is now uploaded on Instagram TV.
After learning these steps, you can now use Instagram TV for your new business advertisement. You can also gain more profound engagement with your audience by following the tips on how you can build a community with this feature.
Getting to know how to utilize all of Instagram’s features is a great way to get your brand or business promoted and reach more audience as soon as possible.
We have tackled how you will build your profile and style, as well as the Instagram features, which are Instagram stories, Instagram Shop, and Instagram TV. Are we done yet? No, there is still much to learn that this Instagram guide can give you.
Let’s now look at what tools to use to use Instagram for your business efficiently and effectively.
The Right Tools to Use
You now know how Instagram’s features work. So, what’s next? Will you now grab your camera and start taking photos and videos? Or are you going to use other tools in order to create one?
There are more things you need to know to ensure that you are producing quality content. The following are tools that can help you create appealing content and manage your business profile.
The goal is to make your content, which are photos and videos appealing. This is the key to promoting your brand and getting a lot of engagements. No one would spend their time on a lousy profile. You have to be creative and make your content eye-catching.
How will you do it? If you have the knowledge and experience using top-notch tools, especially those by Adobe, you will go. However, if you have a little knowledge about editing, then these tools can help you create appealing content.
1. Instasize Photo Editor. This is a must-have tool for those who don’t have the time to manually create their filter by adjusting the contrast, exposure, brightness, saturation, sharpness, and others. This tool allows for easy photo editing by providing over a hundred professional-grade filters. All you have to do is to choose one that fits your brand.
2. VSCO. It is a top-notch tool for taking and editing photos. It has gained popularity for Instagram users, and it is obvious why. It is easy to use, it is available on iOS and Android, and it can provide an appealing filter and customization to your products and scenery. It is also perfect for setting up a theme that suits your brand.
3. Boomerang. A great video tool that is guaranteed to produce appealing content. It is handy for filming videos that are one-second-long. Every second counts here, and it makes a difference. It is easy to make an exciting video to promote your brand using this tool.
4. Kapwing. Don’t have experience in video editing? Having a hard time to understand how video editing works? This tool is the perfect start-up video editor. It is free to use, and no software downloads needed.
5. Adobe Lightroom. For more sophisticated photo editing, try Adobe Lightroom. It has a variety of tools geared to provide professional results.
6. Canva. A great tool that has a vast library of templates and layouts. With Canva, you can optimize your visual content and enhance your photos with top-notch appliances. Some also use this tool to design infographics.
Are these tools enough? The answer is no. There are other tools that you need to learn to use. This will step up your game and get ahead of your competitors. There are tools you can integrate into your Instagram to manage your business efficiently and effectively. These tools include management, analytics, growth, and other devices that can help you develop your business or brand.
1. Hootsuite. Worry no more about scheduling and forgetting to post your content. This management tool helps you prepare your content by scheduling your posts in advance. With a notification feature, Hootsuite will update you when it is time to publish your content.
2. Buffer. A management tool used for scheduling your Instagram posts. It further allows for automatic posting. All you have to do is add the content to the queue.
3. Foursixty. This tool enables you to sell your products on Instagram by linking them to its product page. There is also an add-to-cart option for your customers.
4. Repost. This is a functionality tool used for sharing content created by other users. This tool gives an impression to your audience that you appreciate their opinion by acknowledging them. This can establish a stronger relationship between you and your audience.
5. AdEspresso. A well-equipped tool for creating Instagram ads. You can run and track split tests on multiple channels. You can also create ads in bulk.
6. Hashtagify. A tool that can help you increase your audience reach through hashtags. It will help you find the appropriate hashtags and lets you explore the popular ones.
7. TopTager. A tool used for getting hashtag ideas. It helps you discover popular hashtags, trending searches, and appropriate keywords.
8. All-Hashtag. A simple generating tool that produces appropriate hashtags with just using a keyword search. It is an excellent tool for delivering relevant content.
9. Photerloo. It has a hashtag app that is AI-operated. All you have to do is upload your photo and this will generate a list of hashtags appropriate to your content.
10. Keyhole. A hashtag analytics tool that allows you to track hashtags in real-time, not just on Instagram but also on other platforms. It also provides social monitoring tools to gain insights about your targeted audience.
11. Instagram Feed WD. This plugin allows you to bring Instagram quickly feeds to your website. You can display these feeds with customized styling and beautiful image layouts.
12. Iconosquare. A tool that allows you to monitor hashtags, activities, competitors, growth, engagement, and more.
13. Crowdfire. This tool manages your following. It identifies those who don’t follow you and also those inactive followers. Furthermore, it enables you to track users that may be interested in your brand.
14. Social Insight. A promising tool used by business owners. This tool runs an in-depth analysis of your account to follow your engagements, growth, and interactions. You can quickly identify the best time to post, depending on the data coming from your followers.
15. SocialRank. This management tool allows you to gain insights about your followers by managing and arranging their demographics. In this way, you can easily categorize your followers to specific criteria.
16. Combin. This a growth tool that is aimed to attract a live audience. Its amazing search feature lets you quickly find posts and accounts of your targeted audience. Furthermore, you can perform mass actions, such as leaving multiple comments for various reports.
17. Kicksta. A growth tool that is focused on the growth of organic followers. All you have to do is provide a list of competitors and brands whose followers are your targeted audience. Kicksta automatically engages in these profiles and outcomes to organic growth.
18. Linktree. An optimization tool for your Instagram traffic. It also helps your targeted audience to discover your recent content.
19. Social Insider. An analytics tool that lets you gain insights not just on your profile but also on your competitor’s profile. This includes a comparison of hashtags that generates the engagement between you and your competitor, monitoring growth and engagement, comparing profiles and posts.
20. Awario. A listening tool that allows you to monitor mentions, competitors, and growth options. It gives you alerts about hashtags and keywords you want to track. You can further discover sales opportunities with this tool.
21. Panoramiq. A management tool that takes care of your logistics. It is easy to navigate and allows you to compare hashtags and competitors.
There are several tools that you could choose from. Choose one that satisfies what you wanted to do and what is more user-friendly for you.
You don’t need to be an expert on photo and video editing. You can try experimenting with the photo and video editing tools in the list. Ask opinions for your works before posting them online.
Some tools could help you manage your Instagram business profile. These tools can make the work easier for you. Don’t worry about scheduling, getting insights and analytics, monitoring your competitors, and other things that can be tedious.
Now let’s focus on why you would want these tools. On Instagram, these tools are handy for the next topics for this guide. Let’s start with competitive monitoring.
How to Monitor your Competitors
You might be wondering why there are tools used for monitoring your competitors. Let’s start by discussing its importance.
Competitor monitoring is part of a business strategy. It gives you insights on how well you promote your business or brand efficiently and effectively and get ahead of your competitors. Through research and investigations, you will know the brands you are up against.
Don’t be discouraged if you think that a brand is performing better than you do. There are inputs that you can gain, which can help you perform better than before
1. Figure out their marketing strategy. Through monitoring your competitor’s profile, you will gain insights into how they get things done. You will know when the best times they post content, what part of their content appeals to the audience most, how they engage, how they work up their content, and many more. You can also have an idea of what kind of material doesn’t appeal to the viewers so you can avoid that. You can also keep your business in the trend by analyzing their keywords and hashtags. These insights can fuel up your marketing strategy.
2. Discover backlink opportunities. Backlinks are links from other websites that come to a webpage. The higher the number of backlinks a website has, the higher its rank on search engines. By discovering your competitors’ backlinks, you will have an idea of content that earns through backlinks and integrates them into your marketing strategy. If your competitor is ranking high on the search engines, you can find out the keywords they use and analyze the SEO structure that you can incorporate into your brand.
3. Generate leads from unsatisfied customers. Through competitive monitoring, you will also gain insights about the reviews of your competitor’s customers. Both good and bad reviews are useful to you. The good ones can give you ideas on how well your competitor markets their brand. Simultaneously, the bad ones can be used as a stepping stone of what you should avoid. You will also know the problems with your competitor’s customers. And if you have a solution for this, you can provide your services for that customer.
4. Collect product feedback. Leads from customers can also let you discover holes in your competitor’s products. You can work on it and make your product better than your competitors.
5. Assess new threats. Not only will you analyze your current competitors, but also you will have an idea about potential risks that can take a step ahead of your business. Create strategies beforehand to ensure that your business stays on top of its game.
You may think that this can be difficult and you might consider hiring more personnel for this task but don’t worry. As mentioned, some tools can help you monitor your competitors.
The tools you will be using must be useful. Not all devices have the features you are looking for, so you may opt to use various mechanisms depending on your needs. What you will need are tools used for:
● Keyword and hashtag targeting
● Monitoring social media performance
● Comparing profiles
● Generating leads
● Monitoring engagements
● Other analytics tools
Competitive monitoring is about learning from your enemies. You can learn from both what they excel in and to those things they fail. Check their profiles, read their blogs, read the comment sections, discover the keywords and hashtags they use, and many more.
Explore the Right Hashtags
Using the right hashtags is an effective way to get more engagement and spread your content to your targeted audience. Let’s go back to Instagram’s figures. A whopping 83% says that they discovered new products and services through Instagram. Another 81% say they use Instagram to research products and services.
Judging by these numbers, we can say that it can be easy to promote your brand on Instagram, but how? Hashtags can help. Exploring the right hashtags can help to promote your brand quickly and is the best way to get your business discovered. You can get more followers, improve your engagements, and build a community for your business.
Let’s have this post from Funko as an example. Funko is a leading manufacturer of vinyl figures from pop culture, including movies, comics, series, anime, animation, and the likes. As you can see, even if they are a famous brand, they still integrate the right hashtags to their posts.
Based on the example, they marketed their new release of a figure of Ironman from the movie Avengers: Endgame. You can see in their description that they included the #Ironman hashtag since the character is Ironman. They also included the hashtags of the company #Marvel and #Disney. They also added the hashtags #Funko, #Pop, and #FunkoPop to promote their brand.
Now, this is a big brand, so how will you do it to your brand? Many starting businesses just put whatever hashtag is appropriate for their content to the point that they used the maximum of 30 hashtags per post.
Several social media experts and business owners say that the more hashtags, the better. It may look spammy, but it is proven to gain more engagements and interactions for your post.
Let’s first look into the types of hashtags. Understanding each type can give you insights into developing a hashtag strategy.
1. Community hashtags. These are hashtags that connect users with a common interest. Using these hashtags can improve your post searchability and build a community for your business. The following are kinds of community hashtags:
● Hashtags indicating your product or service like #sportswear or #bread
● Hashtags indicating your brand’s niche like #healthylifestyle or #graphicdesigner
● The hashtag for special events like #graduationday or #mentalhealthmonth
● Hashtags using locations like #discoverphilippines or #tokyofood
● Daily hashtags like #Mondaymood or #fridayfeeling
● Hashtags with relevant phrases like #beinnovative or #coffetime
● Hashtags with acronyms like #ootd (outfit of the day) or #B2B (business to business)
2. Branded hashtags. This is a hashtag that is distinct to your brand or business. Let’s get back to the example. As mentioned, they have included the hashtag #FunkoPop since it is the name of their product. Other hashtags can be catchphrases of your brand, like if you are marketing footwear, you can go by the hashtag #RunWith[insert your brand name here].
3. Campaign hashtags. These are short-term hashtags depending on the season or event of the year. It is used if you are launching new products or celebrating a special occasion. The following is an example: If you are having a Christmas sale for your brand, it can go like this: #5DayChristmasSaleat[insert brand name here].
Now that you know the different kinds of hashtags, let’s move on to finding the right hashtag for your brand or business.
You have to be strategic. It is just like SEO. You want to hit the top; you must choose the right keywords and apply them to your content. You may think that you may just use the popular hashtags, but there is an excellent chance that your content will be overlooked since many other uses that particular hashtag.
If you own a bakery, don’t just use #bread. You may put it as one of the 30 hashtags if you plan to use all, but it is more effective to find smaller hashtags. It is also essential that it is as accurate to your niche as possible to ensure that you have engaged audiences relevant to your industry.
It will be hard work. You must do research on your audience, competitors, industry leaders and influencers to find the appropriate hashtags. But don’t you worry. As mentioned, some tools can help you find the relevant hashtag for your brand or business.
So, what’s next? The tools may give you the hashtags you are looking for, but you need to optimize it. Here are some tips you can do to optimize hashtags.
1. Check your hashtag analytics. This can give you insights if your hashtag reaches your targeted audience and if you will still use it in the future. With tools, you can easily track engagements and discoveries of your hashtags.
2. Exert effort to be able to reach the top results of hashtags. Getting to the top can make your brand easily discoverable. There are two factors on how you can do this. First is determining how much engagement your posts get and second how quickly it gets the meeting. This means that you need to gather likes and comments after you post your content. If you can do so, this indicates that you are posting top-notch quality content.
3. Add branded hashtags to your instagram profile. This can make your bio more functional by promoting a hashtag unique to your brand. This will be the first thing noticeable once a user visits your profile.
4. Place hashtags on the first comments. Not only will you put the hashtags on your caption, but also do it with the first comment to make it the star of the show.
5. Add hashtags to stories. Stories only allow ten hashtags. You have to be mindful of the hashtags you will use. Start with your branded hashtags and the most relevant hashtags for your story. Be sure to make it readable.
6. Attract your followers to follow your hashtag. This Instagram feature lets brands and businesses have an excellent opportunity to reach up to their audience. It doubles the chances of engagement since the content will appear twice on your follower’s feed. One is from following your profile, and the other is from following the hashtag.
7. Hashtag-based campaigns. An excellent example of this is creating a contest for your followers by tagging your brand and using your branded hashtags on their posts. This can give the impression that you are generous to your followers and makes their time following you to be fun. With these campaigns, it will surely provide more engagements to your hashtag and your content.
8. Avoid banned hashtags. Of course, they are forbidden, so why will you use them? Have a quick check to see if the hashtag you will be using is prohibited.
It is best to use hashtags as often as possible since it is one way to achieve more engagements and reach your targeted audience. Make use of what your target audience is constantly searching for. It may be complicated at first, but once you get the hang of it, you can quickly promote and build your business on Instagram.
Best Times to Post
You have already planned out everything you need to make your business profile appealing. You also now know how to create engaging content, so what’s next? You might say that you are ready to post your content on your Instagram.
However, here’s the thing, you can’t just post your content just because you wanted to or you need to.
Time is an important consideration when posting your content on social media. The time when you post your content is a crucial factor in ensuring that many users can see your content. Here’s an example.
Based on the given statistics earlier, we can conclude that most users of Instagram are teens and young adults. So, what do these people do at this time of their lives? Either they are currently studying at college, taking graduate studies, or at work.
Think of it, if you will post your content on a Monday morning. Let’s say at 6 AM. Do you think your content can get much engagement? The answer is clear. No. The people you expect to view your content may not open their Instagram during these times. They may still be sleeping, preparing to go to work, doing morning exercises, and others.
Here’s another example. If your business is located somewhere in Asia and it is aimed to provide services to Americans and Canadians, what will you do? The answer is you have to adapt to their time zone. You have to make sure that you will post content that your targeted audience can see.
If your business aims to target a local audience, you might not need to worry about it. If you target a wider audience, you must put the time zone into consideration. A rule of the thumb is to follow the Eastern Time Zone.
Why is that? Let’s look back to the given statistics earlier. It says that the country with the most considerable number of active users is in the US. In the Eastern Time Zone, it is where almost half of the American population is located.
Another advantage of using the Eastern Time Zone is that the Central Time Zone is only an hour off. When you combine the population, these two time zones can cover, it amounts to about 80% of the American time zone.
So, when is the perfect time to post? According to SproutSocial, social media management, and optimization platform, the following are the best times to post on Instagram. Take note that the gathered data of time frames are recorded in the Central Time Zone.
Let’s start with global engagement. As mentioned, Instagram ranks as the second most logged-in social networking platform, and users browse Instagram on an average of 53 minutes per day. But when does the peak engagement occur?
Data reveals that there is a consistent engagement on weekdays from 9 AM to 4 PM. Meanwhile, the lowest global meeting is reported on before 6 AM and after 9 PM daily. It is not surprising, why? Many may have just woken up, still sleeping, or have gone to bed during these times. So why would you post content when people are resting? Furthermore, it is revealed that Wednesday and Friday are the best days while the worst days are on the weekends, especially on Sundays.
This data is about Instagram’s global engagement, but there is still more for you to know. There are varying times wherein a particular audience views a specific niche or industry. The data is shown in the table below.
Peak times of Engagement
Best Day and Time
Consumer Goods / Selling products (all types)
Tuesday to Friday from 11 AM to 3 PM
Every day before 5 AM and after 9 PM
Wednesday at 3 PM
Monday to Friday from 8 AM to 10 AM or 2 PM to 4 PM
Every day before 5 AM and after 9 PM
Friday at 9 AM
Saturday and Sunday
Wednesday, Friday, or Saturday from 9 AM to 9 PM
Every day before 8 AM and after 11 PM
Friday at 10 AM
Monday to Friday from 10 AM to 4 PM
Every day before 8 AM and after 10 PM
Tuesday from 1 PM to 3 PM and Wednesday at 2 PM
Tech / B2B
Tuesday evening to Wednesday afternoon and Friday from midnight to 10 PM
Saturday afternoon to most of Sunday
Wednesday at 6 AM and 9 AM to 10 AM and Friday from 7 AM to 10 AM
Tuesday from 8 AM to 4 PM
Every day before 6 AM and after 6 PM
Tuesday at 8 AM
Saturday and Sunday
Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday from 11 AM to 2 PM
Every day before 8 AM and after 7 PM
Friday at 11 AM
Recreational / Travel
Monday to Thursday from 8 AM to 8 PM
Every day before 6 AM and after 10 PM
Wednesday and Thursday at 1 PM
These are findings from a single source only. Some may say that 2 PM to 3 PM and 8 PM to 9 PM are the best time to post content. It can be another assurance for you since some of the peak times published have these on their time range. Here is one thing for sure. Sunday is agreed by various sources to be the worst day to post content.
Remember, your brand is not like those famous brands that users will check into from time to time. You have to establish your brand or business in any way possible; this includes timely and scheduled postings of your content to ensure comprehensive coverage of engagement.
We want to try anything that can be best for our brand or business. Using Instagram is a good idea to showcase your brand or business using photos and videos. But to make your content appealing, there are tools and strategies that you must utilize. Try them. Apply everything you have gained from this guide to make your business step up on the game. It doesn’t matter if you have only a few followers.
Remember, every business starts small. The goal is to get ahead in the competition but the actions and decisions will remain in your hands!
And as always, if you need assistance with social media marketing, web development, or digital marketing ten we invite you to connect with us now. With decades in business 10Tier.com has the team and experience to help you grow your business online.