Instagram Marketing - Overview
Instagram is one of the fastest growing social platforms and it has gained immense popularity over the years. It has become one of the most essential social networks amongst people, and continues to develop in popularity with over 400+ million dynamic users a month. It’s no wonder then that businesses of all shapes and sizes are seizing the opportunity to use Instagram as one of their main marketing channels for brand awareness. If used properly, Instagram can be a great marketing tool for all sorts of businesses, whether you are selling a product or a service.
What is Instagram?
Instagram is an online photo sharing social Web service that lets you share your life and experiences with friends and others through a series of pictures captured with a mobile device or any other camera. Instagram also supports video uploads and lets the users instantly share photos on several social sites.
Instagram was founded by Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger in October, 2010. Its success caught the eye of the most valuable social network in the world. In April, 2012, Facebook acquired Instagram for $300 million in cash and 23 million shares of stock, a total purchase value of nearly $1 billion.
Instagram’s social intrigue was not simply to influence the existing social networks for sharing, but to build its own, supplemental network. This was a vital choice. The value of a network is fundamentally in its connections. Through Instagram you can not only connect and share with your friends, but you can also increase your professional network.
Instagram can be used as a marketing strategy to market your brand.
Basics of Instagram
Instagram is available for free on iOS, Android and Windows Phone devices. Instagram can also be accessed on the web from a computer, but the users can only upload and share photos or videos from their devices. Users can post pictures and videos using their smartphones, apply diverse manipulation tools, 16 filters, in order to change the appearance of an image, and share them directly on various platforms in addition to the user’s Instagram page.
Instagram also permits the users to add some captions, hashtags using the # symbol to describe the pictures and videos, and tag or mention other users by using the @ symbol before posting them.
In addition to photograph capturing and other functions, Instagram also provides a similar platform for social connectivity as other social networking sites. Users of Instagram can follow any number of other users. However in Instagram, the users following another Instagram user are called as followers.
Instagram’s social network is asymmetric, implying that if a user X follows Y, then Y need not follow X. Also, users can choose their privacy settings according to their own preferences such that their posted photos and videos are available only to the user’s followers that need approval from the user to be his/her follower. By default, their images and videos are public which implies that they are visible to anyone using Instagram app or Instagram website.
The users can consume photos and videos, mostly by viewing a core page showing a stream of the latest photos and videos from all their friends, listed in a reverse chronological order. They can also like or comment on these posts. Such actions will appear in referenced user’s Updates page so that the user can keep track of likes and comments about their posts. Therefore, Instagram can likewise be regarded as a social awareness tool similar to other social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter.
Advantages of Using Instagram
Some of the advantages of using Instagram that adds to business opportunities are discussed below.
You can invite more users to window shop
With this social media app, you can provide window-shopping experience for your followers, giving them an essence of your products and services. Share relevant and valuable information in the caption, like location details, sales, and something else to get the interest of your followers. Ensure you explain all relevant product information, in case your followers wish to purchase the product you feature in the photo.
You can promote your brand
One can use Instagram to post marvelous photographs about your firm's services and products. On the other hand, maintain a strategic distance from any sort of exhausting, content heavy images, or any other infographics. Take and post pictures of you and your workers at work or at any company event. Utilize the captions to share correlated and interesting information about the workers and what’s happening in the picture.
When you attend a special event, begin work on a new project, or do anything energizing and photo-worthy, ensure you capture the event. Knowing what is going on in your world keeps your organization on the mind of your customers. Integrating Instagram into your social media marketing campaign can be a great tool to promote your business while being imaginative at the same time.
You can attract fans and boost sales
Instagram can be a staggering way to draw in more followers to your organization by promoting coupon codes and selective discounts. You can do this with any of your services and items. Creating exclusivity and favored status for particular audiences is a proven technique for driving engagement.