It’s free, it’s easy to use and it reaches millions of people: Instagram!
Instagram is the golden-child of social media. Yes, it’s been around for a while, but that doesn’t make it any less of the effective business platform that it is.
Why else do you think the app has 25M business profiles?
Plus, approximately 71% of small businesses use Instagram to promote their products and services.
You too can expand your reach on the platform and rake in millions in sales.
But alas, that’s easier said than done.
The Instagram algorithm changes everyday, making it harder for businesses to keep up. On top of that, the competition is so intense that only the strong and clever can thrive.
So how exactly can you boost your brand’s reach on Instagram?
You came here for answers. So, in this post, we dive into examples of successful accounts, and widdle down this popular Instagram inquiry to 10 tangible, useful action steps.
Step #1: Build Your community Leveraging Actionable Hashtags
If you’re searching for a quick approach to capture people’s attention, interactive hashtags are a terrific way to do it.
This method has the added benefit of being adaptable to other social media platforms such as Twitter and Pinterest. However, it is an especially excellent approach to attract your audience to your brand on Instagram.
When you think about it, hashtags are free and effective advertisements. Users can easily search for them when trying to reach your content.
Also, when someone uses the tag in a photo, they are presenting your brand to their audience.
Brands like Red Bull and Coca-Cola use this technique effectively. Red Bull’s hashtag #itgivesyouwings has been used in over 14,000 posts. Meanwhile, Coca-Cola’s #shareacoke campaign has garnered over 600,000 posts.
Even if you’re a small brand, you can do the same. Make your branded hashtag a popular brand slogan or a phrase that aligns with your brand values.
Step #2: Use Strategic Keywords
So you want to reach more people? The trick is to be findable. And guess what? Your Instagram business name and username affect how you appear in Instagram search results.
One of the best tricks that’ll help you show up more in search results is to use the same username across all your social media handles.
Another trick is to include a relevant keyword in your name. Instagram allows you to use up to 30 characters in your business name field.
For most brands, that’s more than enough to write their names and sneak in a keyword or two.
@burgerking for example, uses the keyword “burger” in their name, boosting the likelihood that they’ll be discovered by those seeking burger related content.
Image by burgerking|Instagram
Step #3: Include Reels in Your Content Mix
Perhaps the best thing about Instagram reels is that they put you right in the face of prospective followers. People find videos more engaging. As such, they tend to watch reels more.
If you create entertaining reels that your audience engages with, your reel will become popular on the explore page where other users can find it.
Image from explorerfevor|Instagram
We understand that Reels are unexplored territory for brands. They’re still a relatively new method of distributing content, and it can be hard to get the hang of it at first.
However, the following are some ideas for getting traction with reels:
- Keep your reels fresh and relevant by following the latest trends on TikTok and Instagram. But make sure to introduce your own uniqueness to them. This improves the likelihood that your Reels will go viral and be seen by a larger audience.
- Make your reels simple and relatable. Every Reel does not have to be a production. Videos of lower quality can perform as well. How? Your video will come across as authentic and relatable, unlike immaculate videos, which appear artificial.
- Give value in your reels. You want to entertain them. But if you educate them in the process, you win more points in their hearts.
Note: it’s not a good idea to promote your products through Reels. Instead, share facts, entertain your viewers or provide tips about the niche you’re in.
Step #4: Create an Impressive Profile Feed
When people come to your profile, they look for a reason to stick around. And those that do stick around do so because of what your feed promises to deliver in the future.
A consistent theme and publishing schedule can help you create more following. Even a basic theme can entice new followers if it’s communicated to anybody who lands on your page at first sight.
Your Instagram bio and last nine posts are the first things a visitor will see on your profile.
As such, your bio should be succinct but comprehensive. Because Instagram only allows only 150 characters for the bio, you need to provide the most important information about your brand there.
In as few words as possible, describe what you do. Also, consider including a “store” button on your profile so that customers may shop directly from it.
If you’re trying for likes and followership, you should also ensure that your profile portrays personality. Use consistent filters, colors, or layouts to effectively show your unique branding.
Take a look at the example below
Image from Maybelline|Instagram
Maybelline has explained what it does and provided a link to the company’s website so that users may readily access their products.
Step #5: Encourage Partners and Brand Ambassadors to Share Your Content.
To bring your business in front of customers’ feeds, consider sponsoring user-generated content. This effort will increase your social proof by demonstrating that your supporters care enough to create and share your content about your brand.
Another option is to promote your handle through partnerships with other brands. Work with larger Instagram accounts in your niche, such as well-known influencers.
They will promote your brand to their followers and thus help you get more exposure.
Just make sure you’re giving something worthwhile in return. You don’t want to come across as too pushy.
Also, feel free to form marketing alliances and co-marketing arrangements with other businesses.
Step #6: Host Exclusive Contests
Contests are a great way to keep your current followers engaged and increase brand loyalty.
According to statistics, Instagram accounts that host frequent contests gain 70 percent more followers than those who do not.
In addition, these posts receive more comments and likes than the average post. Research says 91 percent of Instagram posts with over 1,000 comments are contest posts.
So how do you organize a contest for your brand?
- Choose an item or service that you’d like to giveaway
- Decide on how many people will emerge winners.
- Post a photo of the item. Or design a graphic describing the gift with a description that explains the regulations of the contest.
- Encourage your followers to like your post and tag a friend in the comments. Another approach is to urge followers to publish something and tag your brand in it.
Step #7: Cross Promote Content
The idea behind cross-promotion is posting the same content across various social media channels. While this tactic helps you save both time and resources, it also helps you boost your reach.
Cross-posting is a highly efficient method for social media marketing. It streamlines your posting strategy, allows you to repurpose content across various platforms, and ensures that your social channels are always up to date.
Cross-posting is particularly advantageous if you want to raise brand awareness. Why?
It allows you to get your message published across several channels. As such, it increases the chances of your target audience seeing your message.
Most people tend to think of posting from Instagram to TikTok when cross-posting is mentioned. However, cross-posting on TikTok isn’t the only option. YouTube Shorts and Pinterest Stories both work well with the Instagram Reels format.
It’s worth noting that: Reels with a TikTok watermark will not be promoted by Instagram’s algorithm. If you’re going to cross content from Instagram to other platforms, make sure it’s of good quality and doesn’t use watermarks to promote a competing platform.
Step #8: Share Your Instagram Link Everywhere
Image by Priscilla Du Preez|Unsplash
If you don’t share your Instagram account, how will people find it? For maximum exposure, ensure that your Instagram account is linked to your blog and other social media platforms. This will encourage people to follow you or share your content
Remember: you shouldn’t merely be requesting a follow. You also want to make it easy for people to accept your request.
No matter what, only promote original and superior content on Instagram. This way, people will naturally want to follow you after you’ve asked.
Fortunately, Instagram keeps adding useful updates and video features to their app. With features like Stories, IGTV, and Reels, you now have a wonderful opportunity to grow your following through original materials.
Step #9: Post at The Right Time
Image by amandagraphc|Unsplash
When creating your Instagram strategy for massive reach, the posting time is one important thing to consider.
For example, you should post when most of your followers are active.
When your followers are active and see your posts, they’ll be more prone to engage with it. And remember, the more engagement a post gets, especially during the first few hours of publication, the more viral the post will go.
Also, if your Instagram audience is more active on weekends, schedule your posts for weekends.
Note: Posting on a regular basis has been demonstrated to increase reach and engagement over time. However, avoid posting at the same time every day because predictability might harm engagement.
Step #10: Invest in Instagram ads
Instagram advertising can help you to meet a new and specific audience. It’s a smart investment, especially if you’re just starting a new business
You may strategically design your Instagram ads to target people who are most probably interested in your products.
The takeaway here is that developing a strong Instagram strategy that allows you to run ads can be a game-changer for your organization.
For a long time, the problem with Instagram marketing was that you couldn’t place clickable links in your posts. So, brands had to send their fans to their bio link instead.
However, now, if you advertise on Instagram, you can include links to your website directly on the ad post.
In a Nutshell
You don’t need a lot of experience with social media management to be a good Instagram creator for your business.
You’ll be well on your way to increasing reach, engagement and even sales when you leverage analytics and other Instagram capabilities.
But most importantly, if you follow the easy steps we’ve provided, you will see impressive changes after some time.