A guest post by Jeremy Page
So, you’ve probably heard of Instagram: the techy hipster photo sharing-app that made Flickr extinct. The photo-taking and sharing application that allows users to add digital filters and share them on Instagram and other social networks is a big deal these days.
At first glance, you wouldn’t think a B2B company could use the app to build a marketing strategy. After all, the app is synonymous with hipsters and affluent consumers that popularized its use. But, there is a way to do Instagram marketing the right way.
Instagram can be used in many ways to generate clients, traffic and sales. It’s all about using the right strategy for your B2B company.
Step One: Setup
The first step is to do what you would when starting out in any social network: choose a name and picture that best represents what your company is about. You want to create a presence that is easily identifiable by your market.
In your profile, you can also link to your other social media accounts, so you may want to provide a link to your Twitter or LinkedIn account to funnel in users to your other social media platforms.
Step Two: Engagement
The second step is to start building followers. Building followers is all about interacting with users that are likely to become your customers. The quick way to find these users is to search using a hashtag followed by a keyword related to your industry or business.
For example, an online marketing firm may search for #socialmedia or #PPC to return photo results related to those keywords.
In addition, you want to follow the users that posted the images in the first place. You also want to interact with them by posting relevant, interesting or helpful comments. Make sure that you do not make a commercial post that promotes your company.
Then, go through these pictures and start following the users that have “liked” it. The reason why you want to do this is because users that have liked or commented on the picture are very likely to do the same for your photos and follow you in return.
After following a thousand followers, you want to start using the same hashtag search to look for relevant images related to your business. This time, your goal is to leave comments that add value. The goal here is to generate follows from other users that are browsing through the same image. The difference now is that you are not depending on reciprocal following.
Remember, the more valuable your comments are, the more likely people will follow you.
Step Three: Hypnotic Selling
The third and final step is to start publishing your own content. Now that you’ve build up a respectable amount of followers, you want to start populating your account with your own original pictures.
The big takeaway here is to sell the lifestyle or the main idea of your brand; not the brand or the product itself (I like to call this hypnotic selling, because they don’t know that they are being sold). This should be reflected in both your photos as well as the description in your photos.
One particular thing that can work well for B2B companies is to post short infographics or viral memes. You can even take a few minutes and find content to post by conducting a search on Instagram – just make sure that you correctly cite the source.
Instagram can be an effective way to market your business. If you have any doubts, all you need to do is to look at the success that the B2B industry is having on Pinterest. The social network is also a photo sharing site and works similarly to Instagram.
So, do you want a long-term solution to more customers, traffic and sales? Start building your Instagram community. Today.
Jeremy Page is a tech blogger and marketing specialist at TopTenReviews.com.