While it may appear simple and straightforward at first, Instagram isn’t something you should be taking for granted. This photo and video sharing platform has become one of the biggest, most popular, and most influential in the world. As smartphones with cameras that rival even those of professional photographers become standard, and as wireless internet connections become stronger than ever, people all over the world have increasingly continued to engage and interact with photos shared online – advertising in Instagram becomes very important.
By now, chances are you’ve already set-up a profile on Instagram for your business. If you’re merely posting images to keep your customers updated, you’re doing fine. However, using this platform to advertise can open a much bigger opportunity that your business shouldn’t miss out. With Instagram ads, you will be able to tap into new audiences that are new to your business. With this, you can significantly increase people’s awareness about your brand and eventually attract new customers.
If you’re still unfamiliar with Instagram advertising, here seven key benefits that your business can achieve that will help your business grow and succeed.
1. It is a visual platform
The most critical characteristic of Instagram is also the same characteristic that sets it apart from other social media platforms: it’s photo-centric. Instagram’s interface is an infinite stream of photos and videos that easily engage your audience’s interests and catches their attention.
While adding text along your photos is a good practice to tell a story, it is not mandatory, so you’re giving your audiences the liberty to give meaning to what they see. Not to mention that because humans are naturally inclined to use vision as a primary sensory organ, images tend to be easier to remember. This eventually helps your brand to stay on top of your audience’s minds and encourages them to engage with your company – factors that bring them closer to converting into a sale.
2. It’s the millennial’s social channel
Tapping into the most lucrative market is a goal every business aspires to achieve. And if you haven’t heard already, millennials are becoming a significant market lately. With Instagram, this could be a lot easier because millennials seem to have an affinity to this platform.
Millennials are loosely defined as those who were born from the early ’80s to the late ’90s. At this point, people who belong to this generation are already in their mid 20’s to early ’30s and have been working for a few years already, giving them a stable purchasing power. Together with their desire to validate their success by buying everything from quirky fashion finds to the latest gadgets. This generation has also sparked tourism at a pace never seen before.
Currently, about 70% of Instagram’s more than 800 million active accounts worldwide are aged under 35. Thus, if you want your business to have a good chance of growing, appealing to millennials is a vital step you shouldn’t brush aside – and what better way to do this but by using their favorite social media platform.
3. It can help you build your brand
Building a brand is a delicate and lengthy process. You can’t just release marketing materials without a plan. Building a brand requires a relatable and robust story that your audiences can affiliate their experiences with together with strategic posting.
By using high-quality photos that resonate a particular theme and by carefully curating your Instagram feed to evoke the intended look and feel for your brand, you can tell a story about your business and establish a brand.
For example, if you claim your products to be nature-friendly, you can use photos of where you source your products, show how you process and manufacture your products, and even share some stories behind the people making your products. On the other hand, if your business is into the marketing or tech industries, you can use a healthy mix of employee photos to communicate your workplace culture and graphics that show your prowess in your industry.
4. It has high engagement rates
While gaining many followers is an important performance indicator, marketers nowadays are giving more weight to engagement. And Instagram continues to be the best social media platform to keep your audience engaged. Instagram, with a median organic engagement rate of 1.60%, is still ahead of Facebook’s 0.09%. This should be enough reason for you to consider Instagram as an advertising platform seriously.
As Facebook continues to give more weight to boosted content and paid advertisements, organic reach within Facebook is becoming worse, sometimes dropping to as low as 2-3%. It’s unsurprising that more and more marketers are growing disappointed with their business engagement rates within Facebook.
5. You can upload live posts
Authenticity in marketing is now regarded by people as a crucial factor before considering a purchase from a company. This is hard to establish without showing a face that represents your brand.
Thankfully, Instagram released a new set of features in the latter part of 2016. Though it is not the first platform to support real-time updates that expire within 24 hours, Instagram Stories has added a layer of authenticity to brands that use them. Live streaming is also possible through Instagram, allowing marketers and business owners to interact with their audiences face-to-face.
This is an excellent way to spark interest and build rapport with potential customers, as well as instill trust and credibility on your brand.
6. Instagram is absolutely free
Luckily, using Instagram is totally free of charge. Even without spending money on Instagram advertisements, you can already “advertise” your business with just the built-in, free-to-use functions of the app alone.
Instagram posts can be captioned with plenty of hashtags that help people see your content easily. This allows your business to get the word out about your product without shelling out money through ads. Moreover, tapping “influencers” in Instagram has become a vital advertising technique – so much so that “influencer marketing” has become a discipline all on its own, with thousands of influencers ready to support businesses in their marketing and reach their desired audience with just products as compensation.
7. It has a great and useful list of insights
To ensure success on any social media platform, having a good view of your performance metrics is essential. Although Instagram’s insights function isn’t as in-depth as that of Facebook, it still provides useful data that will help you understand your audience and optimize your content accordingly. With Instagram, you’ll have visibility on your profile’s Demographics, Impressions, Post Reach, as well as Popular Posts which you can sort on a weekly, monthly, quarterly, bi-yearly, or yearly time frames. Instagram Insights can actually be considered as a pretty straightforward way to look at your performance on Instagram.
Don’t miss out
As technologies continue to evolve with each passing day, missing out on vital tools and platforms for advertising your business – especially if it’s very effective – isn’t something you should let happen. If you’re serious about getting your small business off the ground and in expanding your bottom line, there are Instagram advertising agencies that could help your business grow.