How to Create Instagram Business Profiles
Instagram is powerful. It is visual, it allows you to have direct contact with your audience, and when used alongside a strong strategy, it converts. But Instagram success starts off with first appearances. That’s why it is so important for businesses to be smart about how they format their Instagram business profiles.
How to Create Instagram Business Profiles
If you are a business that has not yet created an Instagram profile, stop procrastinating. You’re leaving money on the table. Today, we’ll discuss the best practices to follow when creating your Instagram Business Profile. It’s not complicated and taking the time to create it properly (or update it) will make a world of difference.
1. Be Consistent with Your Username
Brand recognition is key, so keep your username consistent with your business and all your other social profiles. If your business is Joe’s Car Repair, your username should be as close to that as possible. If you can’t get JoesCarRepair, try to stick to it as close as possible or use modifiers like geolocation. The example above shows a good example. @Luxury.Car.Repair on Instagram vs Luxury Car Repair on Facebook.
2. Keep the Description Simple & Use Keywords
Keywords can only help you. Make sure your profile description is so simple a five-year-old can understand it. This profile is perfectly simple. I knew in seconds that this was a car repair shop that specialized in luxury cars.
3. Include your GeoLocation in Your Bio
If you are a local business, it makes sense to include your location in your Instagram Bio, not just because people will know where you are at when they land on your profile, but also because it gives you more chances to be discovered on search. Say you went to Carmine’s in NYC and you decided to check out their Instagram, you’d learn in seconds that they have multiple locations.
4. Include a Call-To-Action on your Bio
If you don’t tell people to do things, they won’t do them. You increase your chances of conversion by including a call-to-action on your profile’s bio. They are great ways to communicate the things your business does.
5. Include Emojis in Your Bio
Emojis are powerful and fun. Don’t be afraid to use them in your bio. They will draw eyes to your profile and increase clicks to it on search. Just make sure they are relevant emojis and that you use them sparingly.
6. Make Sure You Have a Business Profile
You can have two types of profiles on Instagram: personal or business. Create a business account, you’ll be able to get analytics and track performance – two critical items to follow your growth and ROI. You’ll also be able to link to your website, add a contact button and run ads.
7. Keep Things About The Business
One of the biggest mistakes we see is business owners sharing items from their personal life to their business accounts. This only works in rare cases. While you can share “personal” things, they should always be business related. If you are planning to share personal items, always ask yourself – how does this reflect on my business and does it have value to my audience. For example, if you’re a chef don’t post about taking your kid to school…but give your audience a look at your personal life, such as doing an Instagram live about your morning at the farmer’s market.
8. Nourish Your Audience
While having 100,000 followers is great, this number means nothing unless your audience engages you and converts. The best way to do this is to engage your target audience by following them, liking their images, and leaving genuine comments that encourage them to chat back.
9. Use Videos
Videos are powerful, both live and regular. Use videos to tell your business’ story. If someone sticks around to watch a video, it tells you they are truly vested in your brand and will be easier to convert.
10: Follow Your Followers Back
Instagram is NOT a popularity contest. It is a party where you go to engage your fans and audience. Don’t be stingy about following people back. It’s polite and will make your customers feel loved.
11. Post Consistently
This does not mean you should post 5 times per day. Try to post daily. Use an Instagram scheduling tool like Socialdraft to keep you consistent. If you can’t post daily, post every other day. This will keep you fresh, in the feed and in people’s minds. We’ve done in-house tests and posting on a daily basis has significant effects on your engagement and organic reach.
12. Aim to Inspire
Instagram is highly aspirational, so cater to this audience. Sell a lifestyle, not a product. Instagram is about subtlety in selling, so keep this in mind when you schedule posts. Notice that the Intercontinental hotel is not pushing deals, their images sell the lifestyles of those who frequent their hotels.
13. Be Consistent with your Feed’s Theme
Having a clean, consistent theme will help you with branding on Instagram. When your followers see your images, they need to immediately understand that these images were created by you. Tiffany’s has a great theme that is dominated by their signature blue. Yours can be more simple; use the same filter or add your logo or choose a subject.
14. Make Things Interesting
You don’t want to share images that look like everyone else’s. If you’re a travel blogger, don’t copy those cheesy “boyfriend holding my hand” images. Instagram is about showing the world what makes your business special. You can do this by giving them your view of the world through your business. Your images need to appeal to the interest of your target audience and customers.
15. Run Photo Contests
And get content at the same time. Instruct your audience to post pictures about your business with a particular hashtag for a chance to get reposted. The one that gets the most likes wins a prize. It’s a great way to connect with and reward those who are doing business with you AND to fill up your content calendar. You can easily run this contest with Socialdraft’s repost tool.
16. Be Smart About Hashtag Use
Take a few to read our in-depth article on Instagram hashtag use. The whole idea is to earn true followers and eyes that convert. This is not going to happen with those #f4f hashtags. Instead, use relevant hashtags that will put you in front of your target audience.
17. But Keep An Eye on Trending Tags
Is the chef at your restaurant a total hunk? Is #ManCrushMonday trending? Snap a pic (with his permission, of course) and add that tag. Using trending, yet relevant hashtags is a great way to earn new eyeballs and to increase your chances of beating Instagram’s algorithm.
Instagram will not yield you an ROI if you just post pictures. You need to get out there and pull people in. How do you do this?
- Engage those you want to reach
- Follow those who already follow you on other networks
- Cross promote your handle on other social sites, newsletters and your website
- Include your branded hashtags
19. Optimize Your Profile
We touched on this earlier in the article, but on Instagram, there are things you can do to optimize your profile. Above all, make sure you include a simple bio on what your business does and how people can do business with you.
20: Cross-Promote Your Instagram Profile on All Social Media
If you have a solid audience on other social networks, it makes sense to invite them to engage you on Instagram, especially on Facebook which is Instagram’s parent company.
Great things can happen when a platform is purchased by an entity such as Facebook. Instagram and Facebook as a duo offer brands a unique opportunity for promotion.
21. Analyze & React
Look at analytics, compare your performance and make adjustments to make sure you’re improving on a daily basis.
22. Reward Followers
And let the world know. Amex does this incredibly well. You can follow suit easily. Offer discount codes and promos that are exclusive to your Instagram followers. Incorporate coupon codes into your stories.
23. Spotlight Your Team
Why? First, it is a way to show them you think they are special. It is also a way to get them involved AND to get their fans involved in your social media. It’s also a fantastic way to humanize your brand. Share their skills, their passions, and milestones that are related to their career.
24: Use Relevant & Related Hashtags
If you’re at an event or location that’s designated by a hashtag, use the hashtag. If you’re pushing your business, use industry-related hashtags. It makes sense and helps you with being found on search.
RELATED POST: Tools to help you find Instagram hashtags
25: Share Important Brand Moments with Videos and Lives
Special events should be highlighted. This is the time for you to showcase your brand advocates, your principals, and your audiences.
26: Reach Related Brand’s Audiences
We are not talking about using hashtags for your competitor, but for those brands and businesses you do business with that can be beneficial on both ends. For example, if you’re a hairdresser that uses Paul Mitchell products, tag their account and use their branded hashtag. This way they will be notified that you gave them love (and most likely engage you) AND so that you have a chance to come up on search when people search for their tag.
27. Have Fun with Your Account
Humor is a fantastic way to reach your audience. Don’t be afraid to lighten things up from time to time. It will earn you engagement.
28. Use Instagram Tools To Manage Your Accounts
Use a tool like Socialdraft to help you stay consistent, manage your following and to engage your audience. Instagram is very much a hands-on social network, so using tools will help you to stay organized and see an ROI from your efforts. With Socialdraft, you can:
- Schedule posts to multiple Instagram accounts
- Schedule reposts from Instagram to Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest…and…of course, Instagram
- Search for content by hashtag and get inspiration
- Manage your Facebook pages, Twitter accounts, and LinkedIn business pages