With over 800 million monthly users, Instagram is a force to be reckoned with. You might not think this frenzy is relevant to you if you’re a B2B brand — but it’s certainly true in 2018. There are thousands of brands and a number of high-profile B2B organizations that use Instagram to raise brand awareness, engage their audiences, and ultimately attract new customers.
To inspire you to take your Instagram game to the next level this year, these are some actionable tips that you can put into practice right away.
- Use authentic, user-generated content in real time
Forget about stock photography and staged promotional photos—-it’s time to go in real time. On Instagram, your prospects and leaders want authentic content that offers a personal insight into your company’s culture and product offerings.
Real-time content, such as live video / live streaming, is unfiltered and 100% of you. It adds a much-needed human element to B2B businesses and helps you build a genuine relationship with your audience and potential customers. Extremely professional-looking content can often feel cold and dispassionate — your customers want to know that there are real people and real stories behind branding.
- Go fast, and get it mixed up
Instagram makes it incredibly easy for you to post photos or videos directly on your phone through your application. Just fire up the app, press the Add button, and select the photo or video you want to upload — it’s that simple.
The advantage of this is that you don’t have to spend time creating content. You can upload a range of content anywhere, anytime you need to, without much pre-planning or editing. Different types of content will not only attract and appeal to different members of your audience, but will also show different sides to your business. No one wants to look at images or just quotes on Instagram all day, right?
- Get involved with your niche
Stop looking at what’s going on inside the window. Come on, join the party.
Just like any other social media channel, it’s important that you not only post content to your feed, but also engage in a broader conversation. Don’t just post images and videos, answer your community when they leave a response. Take the time to check out other Instagram profiles, have a browsing experience, like some content, and maybe leave a friendly comment here and there.
If you take the time to engage with others, they are more likely to take the time to engage with you.
- Get the most out of the link in your bio
While Instagram doesn’t allow you to link to websites under the post caption, you can include one in your bio. You can include up to 150 characters in your Instagram bio — including a link. Your bio is the perfect real estate to link to your latest blog post or offer. You can also use tools like Linktree to create a custom link that includes a page with more links, allowing you to share up to five links and get the most out of your bio link!
Alternatively, Instagram Stories are a great way to include links to your content. However, stories only last 24 hours — this is a limitation, but it’s also a fantastic tool for you to deliver real-time offers and value.
- Tell a story about every single post
On Instagram, the companies that tell the most interesting stories are building the largest audience. To attract people to your business, you need to get them to engage with you, that is through a consistent visual storytelling that cuts through all of Instagram’s noise.
Don’t set your focus to photo and video feeds only. The Instagram Stories feature allows you to create a photo or video montage. When you’re tied together, tell a story and give your audience a more personal experience.
- Stay out of the vanity metrics
Vanity metrics are not telling the whole story. While an increase in clicks and likes is beneficial, they don’t tell you if the right people are actually interested in your content. Instead, look for real engagement indicators, such as people commenting on your posts and new followers in your niche. These two metrics give a better indication of how well you’re doing and how much exposure your business is actually getting.
Take your time to consider Instagram.
While it has been mainly used by B2C brands up to this point, it holds great potential for B2B companies when used correctly — and with the above points in mind!