Getting started on Instagram for small businesses

Starting Instagram for small businesses:

Are you having trouble getting started on Instagram?

Getting started on Instagram can seem like a daunting task. We get lots of questions regarding Instagram. The biggest question is: how do small businesses get started on Instagram? Therefore we decided to finally answer this right here. This blog is for newbies to the platform or anyone who wants to improve their Instagram knowledge. Overall we’d like everyone to use it to its full potential. As with all social media platforms and digital marketing, Instagram requires a lot of trial and error. It will take a while for you to perfect your content and attract potential clients. It can be a time consuming and touchy process, but we’re here to help make it as easy as possible for you.

How to make your Instagram account look appealing

Before starting Instagram and uploading any photos to your account, decide what you want your page to look like aesthetically. This will include designing your profile picture and description. This is important as these will be the first things people see when they visit your account. Make sure your images are eye-catching and interesting. However, don’t forget they will still need to fit in with your company’s niche. Avoid dull, cliché stock photos that you’ve probably seen hundreds of times before. Imagine your page as if it’s telling a visual story with its own feel and focus. Take a look at how to edit your photos on Instagram here.

Design is an extremely important factor when you are getting started on Instagram

Therefore, to choose an aesthetic, scroll through other social media platforms, see which pages catch your attention the most and take some inspiration. This could be colourful, dull, retro, dark, moody, etc. If you’re going to use a filter on your photos, make sure you use the same or similar ones on all of your images. This will help to make your feed layout look consistent. If you’re having trouble trying to picture how all your images will fit together and look good as one, Later’s Visual Instagram Planner is the easiest way to preview your feed and re-arrange it as you wish. Think about possibly hiring a designer to create personalised and original content for you and your company. Here’s some considerations you should take into account while searching for the perfect designer

How to get followers on a new account

Before you even think about getting starting on Instagram, you need to know your customers/target audience and what they want in your content.  Take this into account while creating any kind of content. It might be photo, video, text posts, etc. Make your caption interesting and punchy. A massive block of text is just going to make people scroll straight past it. Maybe even use emojis as bullet points to list what your business is and what you do. If you want people to find you easily, make sure you link up your contact details to your account. Instagram has a pretty useful feature where you can click on a page’s

  • phone number
  • email
  • address
  • website

Then you’ll automatically be directed to where you reach them. Use this to your advantage by including links to your other social media platforms, helpful video links, articles, etc. Think about following other accounts similar to your company to look for inspiration, this may even end with you gaining a new client or a long-term business partner! Take a look at @amavicreative’s account for example, who seem to be nailing Instagram with their aesthetically gorgeous design and creative content.

Research into local businesses near you when you’re getting started on Instagram

They may be potential clients and other companies like yours that you could possibly follow while starting Instagram to gain people’s interest and curiosity. No matter how many followers they have or if they’re also only just starting an Instagram account, interact with top influencers of your industry. Try to become one of their favourite brands. When uploading a photo to Instagram, tag the location in which your business is located. This will  attract local people’s attention and put the location as a hashtag. Post stories to your profile, tag influencers and locations for locals to see through trending hashtags and stories.

Hashtags are not a mystery

Hashtags are getting used more and more across social media platforms, so use them to your advantage. For example, the most commonly used hashtags are #me, #follow, #work, and #happy. Try to avoid using hashtags that don’t relate to your company. Use ones that also relate to the image that you’re posting. For example, you may have a photo that contains a camera. Then use camera, so use hashtags such as #photography, #cameralens, #reflection, etc. Promote your dedicated and most commonly used hashtags on your other social profiles and be sure to use the same hashtags on all of your posts. This should help create a brand across your profile and regular themes that you cover. It might seem hard as you are getting started on Instagram but soon it will become second nature.

One thing that hashtags should definitely not be is boring, so have fun with them

Be creative, funny, ironic, sarcastic, whatever you think will bring an audience to you and your content. Make sure to use no more than 5 – 9 hashtags per post, as the site’s algorithm will class this as spam if there is too many. This also goes for using the same hashtags over and over again: try to keep them original and unique for each post to avoid this. As you’re only just starting on Instagram so won’t have many followers, you’re more likely to get into the top posts list for a smaller, more focused hashtag than a large, commonly used one.

When to post on Instagram

If you’re wanting to be successful by starting Instagram and keep your audience interested, you’ll have to post consistently and frequently. This is hard when you are just getting started on Instagram. People will learn when they can expect new and fresh content from you. This is also helps you make sure that you maximise engagement with each post. Try to post at the same time each day so that you create a timeline of sorts. If you struggle to keep up with posting, use a platform such as Buffer to help you. This enables you to schedule and edit multiple posts for any time of the day.

How to improve and be successful on Instagram

Once your account starts to be seen more and gather a wider audience, you’ll have to keep an eye on what is and isn’t working with your page/content and how you can fix this. The simplest way to do this would be to look into your Instagram analytics, which shows you things such as:

  • Follower demographics according to age, gender, language and location
  • Engagement numbers (likes, comments, mentions)
  • How the number of posts you share influence engagement

Even the simplest things such as where your logo is located on your image or the amount of text in your feed description can impact whether or not people will follow you while starting Instagram, as first impressions mean everything. Maybe even create an editorial calendar to help you schedule regular posts and plan your content. Read how to make a successful editorial calendar here.

Get help when you get stuck

It may take some time and a lot of effort for you to perfect  branding strategy when you are getting started on Instagram. You can’t expect to hit the nail on the head as soon as you start. However, it’ll be worth it in the end! Finally, if you’re struggling to come up with the ideal plan for your profile or don’t have the time to, contact us and we’ll take care of all your digital needs. We specialise in social media management, graphic design and content writing. And if you have the time, why not check out our Instagram page for inspirational and creative quotes, strategy tips, original photography, and more! We’d love to connect with you on another platform.

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