A successful social media marketing strategy includes several platforms, so that you may reach as many potential customers as possible. Of course, it would be too expensive and time consuming to include all the social media networks in your online marketing plan. However, you should focus at least on three of them. One of them is, of course, Facebook™, the platform with most users. Our next recommendation is a network that belongs to Facebook™ and offers lots of integration options with it: Instagram.
Instagram Is Not Just for Photographers and Restaurants
The first thought for many businesses is that they cannot compete with lavish images of fine dishes or with artistic photos, so Instagram marketing is not really for them. But take the time to browse the timeline and search for various brands and products. You will see lots of small businesses that manage to attract lots of followers and promote their products using a clever combination of filters and hashtags.
Instagram is the place to showcase your products and make people lust for them. The focus is on the image on this social media platform, and the text plays a secondary role. However, you should not leave your copywriting for Instagram to chance or a moment’s inspiration.
The analysis of the most common Instagram mistakes we identified will show you why. Thus, without further delay, let us get started.
1. You Write Whatever as Captions for Your Instagram Photos
Everyone is here to look at the pictures, so we’ll just say a few things to fill the space. That is one of the mistakes we see in many Instagram accounts – even from some major brands. Everyone has a lazy day when they literally embrace the concept that the picture tells the story.
In reality, Instagram users are looking at everything and expect a cohesive approach – quality in everything, from the crisp photos to the clever captions. Take the time and be just as witty and inspirational as you are in your blog posts and on Facebook™.
2. You Make Promises You Can’t Keep
“One free product for everyone sharing/commenting/tagging this photo”. This is the surest way to make a hole in your budget (if you keep the promise) or to antagonise your followers (if you don’t keep it).
Many major brands took the brunt of angry Instagrammers after they attempted this kind of marketing stunt. Paradoxically, the success of such campaigns is their undoing. A large number of people are ready to participate (even if they do not really need a free product). As a result, the brand ends up changing the rules of the game (putting a cap on the number of free items) and those left out will make their displeasure known on several social media platforms.
3. Hashtag Indiscriminately
Hashtags are very effective on Instagram. Stories and conversations are built around a hashtag and brands manage to gather a lot of momentum and user-generated content by using them cleverly. Note the specification: cleverly. It means that you need to analyse your content, the trending hashtags of the day and make a perfect match between them.
The simplest approach seems to be using a hashtag for almost every word in your caption. One of them has got to work, right? Wrong! Meaningless hashtags are very annoying and they look like a desperate attempt to promote your content. Don’t do it.
4. No Consistent Content Strategy
What shall you share on Instagram today? Oh, that’s a nice photo! It may be nice, but does it help you create a brand story and make users relate to it? Do you know why you post the photo, what you want to communicate through it?
Your Instagram marketing strategy must not look like an afterthought. You must plan it and execute it as professionally as you do with the rest of your online marketing strategy.
5. Starting Instagram Fights with Followers
Instagram users are generally more critical to content than on any other social media platform. You will see negative comments on your photos or videos. Some people will criticise your filters. Others will question the entire idea behind the image.
Whatever you do, do not start a fight. Major brand owners and managers did that (most famous example: Steffano Gabbana of Dolce&Gabbana fashion brand) and the brand suffered the negative reflection of those exchanges. Defend your choices and your brand strategy, by all means, but do it in a civil and polite manner.