Today brands need to tell stories, and what’s any good story without pictures?
With Instagram’s acquisition by Facebook, as well as its video component addition, this is one rising star in the social media sphere. Although the platform is widely used by hipsters, foodies and fashionistas it’s a valuable platform that businesses can start incorporating into their social media mix.
If the shoe fits wear it…
…Or take an artsy picture of it and post it on Instagram. But if it doesn’t, no amount of ugly step-sister-type-pushing is going to make your foot go in.
Use visual platforms like Instagram only if your brand, business or company has visual content to share. If you don’t have anything visual to share then this platform is not for you. Unless you get creative.
No one really wants to engage with images of insurance for instance, but perhaps there are ways you can bring a human element through pictures (and now video) to make your brand relevant in this space. Unlike other platforms where words are used to update your status, here you need to think in pictures and use your pictures to tell your brand story.
Storytelling is key
Use Instagram to post images of your brand, products and services that allow your customers to enter deeper into your world. Or even better, allow them to share their own stories (through imagery) and make them feel a part of your world.
Post pictures during events or product launches, provide sneak peeks or behind the scenes exclusive footage to allow your followers to get a glimpse of your exclusive brand world. Bring your customers into your space by using pictures to tell your story.
Sometimes less isn’t more
Sometimes one picture isn’t a lot, especially if you’re trying to convey a certain message. Instagram allows you to upload multiple photos — even photos that were taken, edited or made with another app.
There are a number of apps that you can use bring your images together to tell your story, or show how something is made. Pulling a number of photos together into one collage can really help when you’re trying to convey a certain message.
Like Twitter, people assign hashtags to certain pictures, places, products and services. Know what hashtags people are using to talk about your brand and you’re the fly on the wall amongst thousands of conversations.
Hashtags are a really great way to not only find people who are talking about your brand but to follow these conversations and people, and find unique ways of engaging with them.
As a brand you can also start to use certain hashtags when talking about certain products, services or elements of your business – another way to contribute to and continue your story.
Geo-tagging lets people know where you are
It’s as if Instagram took Facebook photo-sharing, Twitter’s hashtags and Foursquare location tags and meshed them all into one. Any great story has a great location and Instagram’s geo-tags allow you to share yours.
Just like regular hashtags are great for building a theme for your brand, Instagram’s geo-tagging feature can help link specific campaigns to certain locations, and allow people to post, view and share images linked to or at these locations.
Geo-tagging is a great way to advertise your brand’s presence at a particular conference or event as well as a valuable way to market an event that you plan on hosting. With the recent upgrades, geo-tags are also able to transfer location information to Facebook, Flickr, Foursquare or Twitter. Think cross-platform campaigns!