Instagram for B2B – Is It Worth Your time?
Instagram is no longer just for teenagers looking to share pictures of their dinners. With over 800 million users, Instagram is an excellent platform for any growing business, but only if you approach it correctly.
One of the best aspects of Instagram is that you can do a lot to promote your company and products without spending much money or time. Still, there is a method to the madness, so here is a quick breakdown of how a B2B company can benefit from Instagram.
Your Company Must Be Social to Survive
The fact is that your company should take advantage of social media platforms that dominate the lives of your consumers, especially Instagram.
Studies show that 40 percent of the workforce in many companies is made up of millennials and a good percentage of them use Instagram. Additionally, 90 percent of Instagram users are under the age of 35, making them the next generation of buyers.
It is critical to take advantage of these users now because the spending habits of these young people will only increase as the years go by. You don’t want to be late to the party.
The trick is using Instagram correctly with creative content and thoughtful posts. B2B companies such as Adobe and Cisco have caught on to this cheap and clever marketing strategy, and they have grown to over 640 and 145 thousand followers, respectively. That equals a lot of eyeballs on your company and its services.
How Can You Market Your Products on Instagram?
A B2B new to Instagram might believe that all they have to do is make a few posts that feature their products, and they are good to go, but people don’t want products shoved in their faces, so a touch of finesse is needed.
You need to create a good content strategy. What is the message that you want to get out there? How do you want viewers to feel when they see your pictures and videos?
An effective approach is to create a feature page that focuses on a specific niche of your business. See the feature page of the company Tribe Influencer. The pictures on this page give a sense of relaxation and adventure. They get a user thinking about vacation and the feelings that these trips emulate instead of looking at a boring corporate logo.
Many other companies have also made a lasting impression on Instagram without featuring their products. General Electric does it by showcasing behind-the-scenes videos of how its products are designed. IBM shares pictures that show the fun side of their corporate culture.
These page types work to pull the viewer in to explore what the company has to offer. Once they are hooked, then you can bring your product into the picture. The aim is to avoid being desperate because visitors can smell that desperation from a mile away. Apply this type of strategy to your business or product and see what develops.
It Is All About Hashtags and Usernames
A lot of what makes a business successful on Instagram is the ability to catch a viewer’s interest in a short amount of time. Start with a quick but catchy username with three words or less. Avoid dots or underscores if possible as this can look unprofessional.
While the look of your page is important, hashtags are really the driving force behind Instagram. The trick is to research and find hashtags that use keywords related to your niche and what you think your customers will search for. Start by making your own hashtags but also find similar hashtags for similar businesses that have had some activity but have not been used to death and apply them to your business.
The ability to network is also a big part of Instagram. Once you have your page set up, contact other similar businesses in your niche and agree to work together to endorse each other’s work. Make rules that everyone should comment on each other’s pictures throughout the day at certain times. Doing so will improve your engagement and get more followers, impressions, and exposure.
Utilize Some of the Newest Instagram Features
The great part about using Instagram for your B2B is the fact that the platform is always evolving.
For instance, the network now offers a scheduling feature that not only streamlines your posts but also saves on these often expensive third-party apps which means more money for your business.
Many businesses are also using the Shopify program that is built into Instagram. This component allows you to find shoppable images without having to leave the platform.
How Much Time and Money Do You Need to Focus on Instagram?
Merely existing is not enough for a business to thrive on Instagram. While you won’t have to dedicate a full staff to your Instagram presence, companies would be wise to have at least one associate devote an hour per day to the platform.
It is all about consistency. Each day, use the hour to post 2-4 pictures, make some comments on the pages of other companies within your network, and make sure that all links are active and thriving. These little daily tasks might not seem like much, but in the end, they will do wonders for your businesses visibility on Instagram.
The other great thing about Instagram is that it is free to set up an account so you won’t spend much money up front. Businesses can decide to spend some cash on PR services and personnel to manage social media accounts as well as creative consultants, but really, the average B2B company shouldn’t pay more than $3,000 per month.
Instagram is a thriving institution just begging for companies to enlarge their digital footprint. Take advantage of what the platform has to offer and watch your business grow.