With more than 200 million monthly users, Instagram can be an invaluable tool for your business to reach current and future customers — that is, if you’re using it right. Unfortunately, an Instagram account doesn’t come with a business owner’s users manual, and it can be tricky to navigate the do’s and don’ts of the platform. To save you some grief, here’s a list of common mistakes to avoid and how you can counteract them.
1. Posting inconsistently
Posting consistently, and often, is crucial if you want to retain your current followers and gain new ones. It’s easy to get caught up in your day to day and realize that you haven’t posted anything in a month. To prevent this, set a posting schedule for yourself — whatever you think is feasible for you and your team. If you want to get an idea of what your ballpark number of posts a week or month should be, try testing out different amounts each week and check out your analytics to see what’s performing the best. Pay attention to what times perform best, what days perform best and the frequency that seems to be right for your audience. Your ultimate posting schedule doesn’t need to be rigid, but taking the time to find the right system will go a long way in breaking the process into small, easy-to-tackle steps.
2. Going heavy on the promo
You can absolutely use your Instagram page to promote and share about the products you carry, but don’t go overboard. An Instagram profile of product images and the occasional holiday message doesn’t tell much of a story about your business. Use your Instagram less to just push product — this can seem forced and spammy — but rather to give your audience a window into who you are as a business and what makes you unique. Your products and services are a part of your story, but make sure your Instagram is painting the full picture. Offer insight into your staff and behind-the-scenes looks at your showroom and how you operate.
3. Forgetting to have a link in your bio
A simple, but often overlooked part of Instagram is including a link in your bio. It may not drive a huge amount of conversions, but it can only make it more likely people end up on your website. The link can either be your general website, or you can swap it out with more specific product or blog links. Since Instagram prevents links in the captions of your individual posts, you can include the phrase “link in bio” and put whatever link you want your post to direct them to in the bio.
4. Neglecting to put a location on your post
While adding a location to your post takes just a couple of seconds, it can work wonders for your engagement and exposure. According to a study from Simply Measured, posts with locations get 79 percent more engagement. If you’re at market, tag the market location. If you’re in your showroom, tag your business name or the city it’s in. Adding your location is a pretty straightforward step — the key is to remember to do it!
What mistakes have you learned to avoid when using Instagram? Let us know in the comments!
Photo: Unsplash user Ian Dooley