Blog | Marketing Madness

How to Analyse Your Instagram Business Account

12/12/2014

If you are a business looking to add Instagram to your arsenal of social media tools, or you already have an account but the channel just isn’t gaining the traction it should, then this guide is for you.

Instagram has a special area set aside for business users and this makes it a useful tool when it comes to engaging your customers. You can tailor your Instagram account to your business needs but it can only take you so far. Like any tool, you need to know what you are doing with it in order to get the best results.

Are you posting the right content to Instagram?

If you already have an Instagram account but are finding it difficult to engage your customers, then take a closer look at what you are posting.

Instagram is an instant social channel where people post images as and when they see them. Typically these images include funny, cute, strange, scary or important things – anything that is new or of interest to their followers.

Your account should be a balance between your business function or products and images that show your human side. Don’t just post images of your products or offices – profile your staff and show pictures of group outings, or do a weekly feature of your favourite products rather than just post them at random.

It is important to keep in mind that your Instagram account should always reflect your brand – both visually and in terms of content. Match any graphics or logos on your account to the style on your website and other channels. This will tie in your Instagram account to the rest of your online network.

In regards to content, your Instagram images should always link back to your business in some way. Whether you are posting pictures of your staff, office or activities outside of the daily routine, there should always be a common thread linking them all together.

For example, if you are a gardening business, posting images of your staff in the garden, gardening products or famous gardens as inspiration are perfectly acceptable. Images of ice skating or mountain climbing have no relevance to your business and should be left out.

Is your Instagram everywhere it should be?

Virtually every business that uses social media also has a website so you should imbed your Instagram account somewhere on your site. Building Instagram into your website will keep your content fresh and regularly updated as long as you keep it relevant to your business. Tools such as SnapWidget will take you through the process of imbedding Instagram on your website.

You should also use your current social media channels such as Twitter and Facebook in order to direct your current followers to your new Instagram account. Instagram is also in ideal tool for following your customers back. Because of its personal, direct style of engagement, following your customers back makes them feel more connected to your business.

Are you engaging with your followers?

Getting people to follow you is the biggest challenge of Instagram but there are things you can do to speed the process up.

Get your users to engage with you via competitions and polls, or look to reward followers as you would with other social channels. You can do this by treating loyal followers to sneak peaks, giveaways or offers that they wouldn’t find elsewhere.

Because of the instant nature of Instagram, you can post as you go which means it is important to stay on top of any important trends making the rounds. If you can start your own trend then great, but if not, be careful about which trends you choose to latch on to. Only go for subjects that are relevant for your business – no one likes it when a company tries to awkwardly attach itself to a trend just because it is popular.

Are you using hashtags correctly?

Hashtags should be carefully thought about, don’t just cram twenty onto your post to try and capture the attention of more people. Hashtags should be used like a scalpel, not a club.

That being said, you don’t need to limit the amount of hashtags you use – just make sure that any that you do use are relevant to your post.

You can use hashtags to direct followers to certain posts or images, such as competitions or events that you are hosting. Anyone looking for a specific post will find that your hashtag gets them there faster and they are more likely to follow you as a result.

Are you posting original content or just re-posting the work of others?

The whole point of Instagram is that you can post directly to your followers. If you are simply re-posting the images of other users, you aren’t creating anything new or unique that will draw more followers to you. Try to think about what you can show to our audience that they haven’t seen before.

Examples could include:

  • New products
  • Moving to a new office
  • New staff members
  • Team outings or parties
  • Award ceremonies
  • Images from your business travels
  • Events and conferences

Do you have control over what is being posted?

As with all aspects of your business, you need to be involved in your Instagram account from day one. Whatever is posted on your account will reflect back onto your business so it is worth coming up with a content strategy plan before you even create the account. Plan out your upcoming events, rules for posting for all employees and decide how often you are going to post.

Whether you choose to run it yourself or hand it over to a member of staff, you need to be aware of what is being shown to your customers. Be sensible with what you share and who is allowed to post – it can go very wrong very quickly, as this collection from Econsultancy shows.