Making Instagram Effective for Local Business

fullsizeoutput_643.jpeg

Instagram has become a powerful marketing tool for many local businesses. But how can you use it effectively to market to your audience? 

We've gathered 5 helpful hints and lessons from The Art & Strategy Behind Effective Instagram Marketing, a recent webinar conducted by Quinn Tempest. Find her on Instagram @quinn.tempest 

1. Working Within the Algorithm

Instagram's algorithm determines what followers see which pieces of content posted to Instagram. It's impossible to know exactly how the algorithm will serve your content to your audience, but mastering Instagrams complicated algorithm requires three things:

  1. Engagement
  2. Timeliness
  3. Relevancy

Keeping these three things in mind with each Instagram post will help you see the most reach the most people. Understanding Instagram's algorithm allows businesses to reach potential customers more effectively while growing their following and consumer base. 

2. Engagement is Key

Reach out to your followers. Make the extra effort to spend time on Instagram interacting with YOUR followers. Comment on posts from other accounts, reply to comments left by your followers, and don't let questions go unanswered. Thinking of social media as 2-way communication rather than 1-way will help boost your engagement. Use helpful tools such as peoplemap.co to help maximize your time.

3. Best Time to Post

I am sure you've heard people talk about the best time to post on Instagram. The truth of the matter is there's no set time that works best 100 percent of the time. Experiment with your posting times (use Instagram's analytic tools) and determine what works best for your Instagram page. And remember:

  1. Times will vary
  2. Time zones matter 
  3. Weekdays are generally better for engagement (Besides maybe Sunday Night)

4. Hashtags

Research the popularity and audience of the hashtags you use. Steer clear of mainstream hashtags, instead focus on unique phrases that speak to your brand. Hashtags help increase traffic to your account, making it one of the most important aspects of becoming relevant on Instagram. And if you're posting about your localness, you can always use #LocalFirstAZ! Use displaypurposes.com for hashtag research to help expose your posts to more people. 

5. Use Instagram Stories

Instagram Stories bring your Instagram page to life! They can provide a behind-the-scenes look into your business, helping you connect with followers and potential customer base. While the Instagram algorithm might not serve your latest post to your entire audience, your followers might see you posting on Instagram stories and get to your content there. 

Watch the Full Webinar:

Presenter & Digital Marketing Specialist, Quinn Tempest teaches local businesses how to utilize this powerful social media tool to communicate with your customers, gain new customers, and how to create a sleek look in every picture to reflect your business brand on Instagram.

Blog contributed by Local First Communications intern Peter Venman