The popularity of Instagram is second only to Facebook. The photo-sharing social network has long surpassed Twitter in terms of marketing value. If you run a B2C company, you should seriously consider creating your brand an Instagram page. Instagram is relatively easy to use, but some brands do end up making rookie mistakes that hurt otherwise effective campaigns. Here are several common Instagram mistakes new brand accounts should avoid making at all costs:
Some businesses, the moment they set up a new social media account, goes on to buy followers. It’s a common enough practice that seems innocuous. It’s not. On the long run, buying followers would only hurt your efforts. The number of followers on your Instagram profile doesn’t really matter. What really matters is how engaged these users are? It’s better to have 100 followers who routinely like, share and comment on your Instagram posts than to have 10,000 followers with zero engagement. There’s also another major disadvantage. If the followers you have bought are bots, these profiles could post inappropriate or spam-y content that reflect badly on your brand. If your brand’s Instagram page is truly struggling to attract new users, consult with a reputable digital marketing agency to find new users. Don’t spend money buying users.
Using Stock Photographs
This is the first big “no” rule of Instagram. Do not use stock photographs in your account that users can easily recognize as stock photographs. Your brand’s Instagram profile will be built entirely on the quality of the photos. Therefore, make sure you use high-quality photos only. It’s best if your business has its own repository of great pictures to use on Instagram. If not, you may have to buy one or two stock photographs. When buying, make sure you buy unique photos. Do not use free stock photos ever. Users will instantly recognize free stock photos for what they are. Also, you do not want to risk using the same photograph as a competitor. So, try to use original photographs as much as possible.
Posting Promotional Posts
Your Instagram posts are, of course, promotional. However, it should not be obvious. Don’t publish posts that directly urge users to buy something, click on a link, or like a page. Posts should drive user engagement. On social media sites like Instagram, what drives user engagement is simplicity and authenticity. Engage with your audience as you would engage with a friend on your personal Instagram account. Be informal without being offensive, and post pictures that everyday users can readily like. It’s better to post pictures of your employees going on about every work and engaging with thecommunity, than to post a highly stylized picture of a product.
Don’t stuff your post’s caption with all the hashtags that come to mind. To keep the post easy to engage with for users, only use hashtags that are directly relevant to the post. Also, only use one or two hashtags. Don’t use trending hashtags just because. Carefully pick the hashtags for each post and make sure they go with the caption and what’s in the picture.
If your brand is new to Instagram, it can be difficult at first to figure out the things that work. While the new Instagram page takes it times to gain a following, do avoid making the above mistakes. It will only make running a successful Instagram campaign even harder.