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Instagram. What started as an inane site where bored teenagers shared less than perfectly edited photos of their everyday life has become one of the most influential and powerful tools available on the internet.
One viral post or video of a company’s product can make (or break) their quotas for the year. Almost half of American citizens use Instagram, and the majority of these people follow some businesses on their feeds. People spend hours and hours on social media, and its growing popularity has made it the perfect PR tool for the 21st century. Instagram is interactive, personalized, and involved.
Getting the hang of Instagram and the tools it offers for businesses is not too difficult thankfully, which makes it a great tool to have on your company’s marketing belt. Here are six ways you can use it to boost PR success:
1. Specialize Your Profile & Make it Stand Out
One of the hardest things about social media marketing is the need to capture your audience instantly. Because if someone looks at your page and is not drawn in in the first 5 seconds, it is unlikely they will stick around to find out more. The Instagram bio length is capped at 150 characters; so it needs to be catchy, clear, and targeted, able to capture your target audience within a few glances. Instagram also enables each bio to have one obvious and clickable link, which is the perfect place to pop your business’ website in. If viewers like what they see on Instagram, they might continue to your site.
2. Use Influencers (if they work for your business)
Whether you love them or hate them, the ‘influencer effect’ is impossible to deny. For many clothing companies, beauty based business, and other product-based companies, influencers are crucial. Having an influencer with 100k followers advertise and link a company can open up a massive customer base. However, it must be assessed if this kind of advertising works for your business. Even if it does, it is crucial to be discerning when conducting this kind of advertising, as it is prone to fakes, scams, and other potential risks and harms.
3. Create a Lifestyle, Brand, or Culture
Instagram influence is largely reliant on the attractiveness of a product due to the lifestyle it represents or ‘look’ it gives off. Jessica Terry, a communication manager at State of writing and UK Writings, said, “It is crucial that your Instagram page and the content that you post reflects the lifestyle that you want to promote, the image that you want to project, and your overall company culture. When crafting this image, consider your target market and what is important to them.” On social media, you attract what you project.
4. Feed & Brand Consistency
It is important to curate a ‘feed’ that is streamlined, connected by common colours, themes, designs, and overall hallmarks. George Henry, a business writer at Revieweal and Elite Assignment help, commented that, “When browsers and potential customers are looking through your feed, they will be attracted to a feed which looks well put together and streamlined. Subconsciously, a well-developed feed will project organization, strong culture, and overall attractiveness to potential clients.” Fonts, colours, themes, brand logos and images, and even caption tone should be streamlined to maximize feed impact.
5. Utilize Instagram Analytics Tools
Instagram business accounts have special ‘analytics tools’ which allow specialized insight into the interactions which occur on your posts. Stories, reels, and timeline posts can be drilled into with incredible detail. On stories, it is possible to see how many people repeat watched your content, viewed your profile from the story, or clicked on your bio links from it. On timeline photos, it is possible to see who has saved your posts and what actions were taken from them. It is important to utilize these (free) insight tools available and provided by Instagram in order to see which content is working and what is not. Any social media strategy or PR campaign works best when it can be adjusted over time. Likes, reach, engagement, and popularity trends should all be analyzed for the best outcomes of this app.
6. Foster Social Media Interactions with Customers
Although social media is ‘new school’, old school customer interaction is still effective, even on this platform. Responding to customer comments on your posts, replying to direct messages, and even following back you most interactive customers can all build customer relationships and consumer trust. This type of interaction is free other than taking up a little bit of time. Customers often say they are more likely to trust a business which they have had direct interaction with.
Looking to learn more about how to stay on top of digital media trends and their effects on the PR industry? We broke down the 10 ways digital media has changed PR and how to adapt to current trends. From more effective communication to around the clock engagement, this blog breaks down what’s happened since the rise of digital media and how to use it to your advantage.
Don’t forget to listen to Coffee with a Journalist for more tips as told directly by journalists. Each week, we interview a new editor, reporter, or freelancer to hear what they have to say about pitches, sources, and more. For a TLDR version, download The State of Pitching to learn tangible tips from the show that you can use in your next pitch.