If you have a business, you need to be using Instagram for marketing. If you aren’t, then you are behind the times.
Facebook is certainly still necessary and still the largest platform in existence with 2.32 billion monthly active users as of the end of 2018. However, with the changes in Facebook’s algorithms, the constant marketing and privacy changes, and with fewer people seeing each post, many businesses are looking for a better alternative.
Instagram is quickly growing and surpassed 1 billion active monthly users back in June 2018, and has been growing at a faster rate than Facebook, Twitter, and Snapchat.
Here’s the thing. When I first started using Instagram for my business, I was not that big of a fan. It’s just pictures, right? No one reads the captions, no one cares about my “brand.”
But the interesting thing about Instagram is it really does not discriminate. No matter how many followers you have, your post will be seen by people who follow the hashtags you use, not just your followers.
It’s free for both you AND the other users, and you now have a potential audience of 1 billion people you can reach — for free.
Now, I actively use Instagram weekly to post pictures of my life and my business (and my cat), to stay connected with people and market my growing business. I use the messaging feature to market myself and even follow other writers to see what they are up to and see any trends or changes happening.
Basically, if you want to grow your business and your brand, you need to be using Instagram.
Top 5 Reasons a Small Business Should Be On Instagram
- You can be a one-man show and still utilize it and gain followers and sales. The fact that you don’t have to be a huge brand or have a ton of followers to get seen is important to me. It also allows me to be exposed to new brands I’ve never heard of.
- Using Instagram Stories or going Live can make you more accessible, creative, and allow more interaction with your followers and target market.
- It’s 100% mobile. The mobile app is better and easier to navigate than the browser version and it is easy to use from anywhere. Therefore you can market yourself from anywhere in the world while doing anything.
- Anyone can connect with you. Anyone can send you a message or comment on a photo. You can interact directly with customers on a level that feels more like a casual conversation than a sales pitch. This feels like a more organic way to talk to customers.
- You can definitely generate sales from Instagram. You can run ads on your page, do giveaways, throw up discounts, and more so people can directly purchase from you — 72 percent of Instagram users have said they purchase products through the platform. The “shop now” and “learn more” swipes are used actively.
So, it’s free (unless you’re paying to run an ad), it’s creative, visual, and can expose you to a whole new audience.
I personally have gotten clients simply by messaging them through the app and engaging with them. I’ll follow their account, check out their company, get a feel for their brand, then message them directly talking about how I can help them and benefit their business!
In case you’re wondering, no, this is not a sponsored post or an ad of any sort. I actively use Instagram (@Jyssrocks) and have written before about using it to find clients from the beginning of my freelancing business.
Here is a post I wrote about finding clients through social media in October 2017.
I still struggle sometimes, as I do not enjoy posting photos of myself constantly and needing to take pictures of everything in order to have something to share, but I do enjoy the practicality and usability of Instagram. I may never be a top user (I have never once done an Instagram Story), but I have still found it to be useful.
And maybe you will, too!