Instagram first popped onto the scene in 2010. At the time, it was nothing more than a photo-sharing app with a few basic filters.
Like any other social media app at the time, it was filled with selfies, food pictures, and pet videos.
Fast-forward a few years, and Instagram has grown into a bonafide marketing powerhouse.
There’re over one billion monthly active users on the platform, and 90% say they follow at least one business.
With such a large and engaged audience, it’s no wonder that businesses are flocking to Instagram.
But just because you have an account doesn’t mean you’re going to be successful.
To truly take advantage of all that Instagram offers, you need to put in the work.
Here are 57 tips to help you get the most out of your Instagram marketing:
Tip #1 Leverage Sponsored Ads
7 out of 10 of the hashtags on Instagram are branded.
That means that people are actively searching for and interacting with brands on the platform.
Advertising your products on this social platform allows you to meet your audience where they already are.
Sponsored ads on Instagram look just like regular posts, except they have a “Sponsored” label in the top-left corner.
They can be either photo, video, or carousel ads.
Tip #2 Partner with Influencers
Instagram is home to some of the most influential voices on social media.
These people have a large following on Instagram and can shape public opinion and drive product sales.
Partnering with an influencer can help you reach a larger audience and boost your brand awareness.
When choosing an influencer to partner with, make sure they align with your brand values and that their audience is engaged with their content.
Tip #3 Create a Brand Hashtag
A branded hashtag is a great way to get people talking about your brand on Instagram.
Encourage your customers and followers to use your branded hashtag when posting your product photos or videos.
That will help you create a community around your brand, allowing you to feature customer-generated content (CGC) on your feed.
Tip #4 Edit Your Content Before Posting
You don’t want to post anything on Instagram that you wouldn’t want your boss or grandmother to see.
Before you hit the post button, take a look at your content and make sure it’s something you would be proud of.
If not, don’t be afraid to delete it and start over.
It’s better to post one high-quality photo or video than a dozen just so-so.
Tip #5 Track Metrics and Analyse Your Data
If you’re not tracking your Instagram activity, you’re missing out on valuable data that could help you improve your results.
You can track many metrics, such as engagement rate, reach, hashtag interaction, hashtag growth, impressions, and click-through rate.
Analysing this data will give you insights into what’s working and what’s not.
You can then use these insights to adjust your strategy and improve your results.
Tip #6 Run Contests, Giveaways, and Promotions
Running a contest, giveaway, or promotion is a great way to get people talking about your brand on Instagram.
They’re a great way to increase product awareness and grow your hashtags on Instagram.
Common Instagram contests include:
The most common type of Instagram contest is the like contest.
To enter, participants must like a photo and follow the brand.
Participants must leave a comment on the photo to enter a comment contest.
That’s a great way to get people talking about your product.
In a hashtag contest, participants must use a specific hashtag to enter.
That is a great way to grow your branded hashtags and increase brand awareness.
Participants must post a photo with your product to enter a photo contest.
That is a great way to get your brand’s user-generated content (UGC).
A video contest is similar to a photo contest, but participants must post videos instead of photos.
That’s a great way to increase engagement and get people talking about your brand.
Tip #7 Know the Best Content to Post on Instagram
Not all content is created equal.
Some types of content perform better on Instagram than others.
Here are some of the best types of content to post on Instagram:
Images are the most popular type of content on Instagram.
They’re easy to consume and very effective at getting your message across.
Videos are also popular on Instagram.
They’re a great way to show your products in action or give your followers a behind-the-scenes look at your brand.
Stories are a relatively new feature on Instagram, but they’re already trendy.
They’re a great way to share quick, behind-the-scenes snippets of your life or business.
Live videos are a great way to connect with your followers in real-time.
They’re also a great way to show off your products or give your followers a behind-the-scenes look at your brand.
Tip #8 Create a Content Calendar
Creating a content calendar is a great way to plan and organize your Instagram content.
A content calendar will help you track what you need to post when you need to post it, and how often you need to post it.
It will also help you stay on track and avoid missing important dates or deadlines.
Tip #9 Cross-platform Your Instagram Content
Don’t just post your content on Instagram and call it a day.
Share your content on other platforms, such as Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.
That will help you reach a wider audience and grow your brand.
Tip #10 Advertise on Instagram
With the paid post feature, you can easily add external ad links to your content and drive traffic to your website.
Focus on building your brand on Instagram and use paid posts to drive traffic to your website or online store.
Some tips on how to use paid posts:
Include a Call-to-Action:
- Make sure your call to action is clear and easy to understand.
- Don’t make it too long or complicated.
Use Eye-Catching visuals:
- Your visuals should be eye-catching and relevant to your brand.
- Use an attractive image or video that will capture people’s attention.
Include a Link:
- Include a link to your website or online store in your paid post.
- That will make it easy for people to find and purchase your products.
Tip #11 Set Up a Professional Business Profile
If you want to be taken seriously as a business on Instagram, you need to set up a professional business profile.
A professional business profile will give you access to features not available to personal accounts, such as insights, call-to-action buttons, and contact information.
It will also make your brand look more credible and trustworthy.
To set up a professional business profile, you’ll need to:
- Verify your email address and phone number
- Have a profile picture and cover photo that represents your brand
- Fill out your bio with relevant keywords
- Include a link to your website or online store
Tip #12 Use Instagram Stories
Be creative with your content and take advantage of all the features that Instagram offers.
Instagram Stories is a great way to share quick, behind-the-scenes snippets of your life or business.
You can also use it to run quick polls or surveys, give your followers a sneak peek of new products, or announce special promotions.
Although the snippets disappear after 24 hours, you can save them and create a highlight reel of your best stories that will be permanent on your profile.
Tip #13 Migrate to Instagram Business Profile
If you’re not already using a professional business profile, it’s time you migrated to one.
If you plan to start promoting your products or services on Instagram, you’ll need a professional business profile.
Benefits of using a professional business profile:
- Access to insights
- The ability to run ads
- Unlimited access to Instagram analytics
- You can create, design, and post unique Instagram ads without relying on Facebook business ads tools.
- Increase the possibility of your account getting noticed
Tip #14 Determine the Right Time to Post
The best time to post on Instagram is during the week and off-peak hours. Posts published during the week tend to perform better than those published on weekends.
And posts published during off-peak hours (early morning or late at night) tend to get more engagement than those posted during peak hours.
To find the best time to post on Instagram, experiment with different days and times to see when your posts get the most engagement.
You can also use an app like Iconosquare to help you track and analyze your posts.
Tip #15 Use Relevant Hashtags
Use hashtags to make your posts more discoverable.
When people search for a particular hashtag, your post should be among the first to appear in the results.
Use relevant, popular hashtags specific to your niche or industry.
And don’t forget to mix things up and use a combination of popular, less popular, branded, and niche-specific hashtags.
Tip #16 Know When Not to Post
There will be times when it’s better not to post on Instagram.
If you’re feeling uninspired or don’t have anything relevant or interesting to share, it’s better to take a break than to post something just for the sake of posting.
You also want to make sure your post reaches most of your followers.
Learn to time your posts well so that they don’t get buried in the Instagram algorithm.
A good rule of thumb is to post when your followers are most active. Try experimenting with different days and times to see when your post gets the most engagement.
Tip #17 Seek out User-Generated Content
Encourage your followers to share photos and videos of themselves using your product or service.
When you feature user-generated content (UGC) on your feed, it helps promote your brand and build trust and credibility.
People are more likely to believe reviews and recommendations from people they know and trust.
When you feature UGC on your feed, be sure to:
- Give credit to the original creator
- Ask for permission before reposting
- Check for the quality and brand fit
Tip #18 Consistency is Key
You can win your audience’s trust by being consistent with your posts.
When people know what to expect from you, they are more likely to stick around and engage with your content.
Don’t let a day go by without logging into your Instagram account to see what’s trending or engage with your followers in the comment section.
Create a content calendar to help you plan and schedule your posts in advance.
Avoid sporadic bursts of activity followed by long periods of inactivity.
Tip #19 Have a Strategy in Place
What’s the goal of creating an Instagram business profile?
Are you trying to increase brand awareness, drive traffic to your website, or generate leads?
Your answer will determine the content you post and the hashtags you use.
Before you start posting on Instagram, have a clear strategy in place.
Tip #20 Use Your Bio to Create an Email List
Instagram doesn’t allow links in posts.
A simple workaround would be to add the link to your profile instead.
Add a call-to-action (CTA) in your bio that encourages people to click on the link.
You can use a tool like LeadPages or Instapage to create a landing page where people can sign up for your email list.
When you have an email list, you can stay in touch with your followers and keep them updated on your latest products, services, and promotions until they’re warm enough to go through h with a purchase.
Tip #21 Discover all Hashtags Related to Your Brand
Did you know that there are over 1 billion monthly active users on Instagram?
That’s a lot of people to reach with your content.
When you use hashtags, your content becomes discoverable to people interested in what you have to say but who don’t necessarily follow you.
You can use Instagram’s web interface to discover all hashtags related to your brand.
Compile a list of all the relevant hashtags and use them in your posts.
Tip #22 Apply Daily Hashtags
Use daily hashtags to get in front of a larger audience.
There are many popular daily hashtags that you can use to increase your reach.
Here are some examples:
Tip #23 Use Trending Hashtags
Keep an eye on trending hashtags and jump on the bandwagon when it makes sense.
For example, when the World Cup is happening, you can use hashtags like #worldcup or #fifaworldcup.
When a popular movie is released, you can use hashtags like #movie or #movienight.
Tip #24 Create a Hashtag for Your Brand
A branded hashtag is a great way to increase brand awareness and build customer loyalty.
For example, if your business is called “The Coffee House,” you can use the hashtag #thecoffeehouse.
Encourage your customers to use the branded hashtag in their posts.
Tip #25 Experiment with Different Hashtags and Choose the Ones that Have Worked for You in the Past
Don’t be afraid to experiment with different hashtags.
Try out different combinations and see which ones position your posts before your target audience.
Make good use of evergreen, branded, daily, and location-based hashtags.
Over time, you’ll be able to identify the hashtags that have worked well for you in the past and those that haven’t.
Stick with the ones that have yielded the best results in the past.
Tip #26 Think Before Post
Don’t be in a rush to post.
Take the time to think about the message you’re trying to communicate and ensure that your post aligns with your brand identity.
Is the post right for your target audience?
Will it resonate with them?
Does it serve the intended purpose?
These are all important questions to ask yourself before hitting the “publish” button.
Tip #27 Engage with Your Audience
Don’t just post and forget.
Engage with your audience by liking and commenting on their posts.
Show them that you’re interested in what they have to say.
When you engage with your audience, you build relationships and create a sense of community.
And when people feel like they’re part of a community, they’re more likely to also warm up to you and do business with you.
Tip #28 Post a Picture of Your Product While in Use
Use contextual images to show your product in use.
You especially want to focus on those that show your audience how to use your product in their everyday lives.
That is a great way to increase brand awareness and build customer loyalty.
Tip #29 Highlight Your Customers in Your Posts
Your customers are your best asset.
Don’t be afraid to highlight them in some of your posts.
For example, you can post a picture of a customer using your product and include a testimonial from them.
This is an excellent way to show potential customers that your product or service is the real deal.
Tip #30 Post Teasers for Upcoming Products or Services
You can post teasers for upcoming products or services to generate buzz and create a sense of anticipation.
Let your audience know what’s coming and when they can expect it.
Be sure to include a call-to-action (CTA) in the post so people will know what to do next.
Tip #31 Keep Your Fingers on the Pulse of Your Industry
Stay up-to-date with what’s happening in your industry.
Post about the latest news, trends, and developments.
Your goal is to position yourself as a thought leader in your industry.
When people see that you’re always one step ahead of the game and that you understand what’s new and what’s next, they’re more likely to do business with you.
Tip #32 Share Infographics
People love infographics because they’re easy to digest and usually packed with a ton of valuable information.
If you have an infographic that you think would be helpful for your audience, share it.
Just be sure to include a brief description of the infographic and why your audience should care.
Tip #33 Add Filters to All Your Photos
Make sure you’re using filters on all your photos.
This will give them a consistent look and feel and make your feed more visually appealing.
If you want, you can even create your own custom filters.
You have several apps to help you with this, including VSCO, Afterlight, and Snapseed.
Tip #34 Post a Quote
People love to read quotes, especially if they’re inspiring or motivating.
If you have a quote that you think your target audience would appreciate, post it.
You can even embed them in your product images to make them more eye-catching.
Just be sure to attribute the quote to the author.
Tip #35 Use Emojis in Your Posts
Emojis are a great way to add personality to your posts.
They can also help you communicate your message more effectively.
For example, if you’re sharing a post about a sale, you could use the “sale” emoji to drive home the point.
Or, if you’re sharing a post about being thankful, you could use the “thankful” emoji.
Tip #36 Collaborate with Other Brands
Collaborating with other brands is a great way to reach a new audience and build relationships with other businesses in your industry.
There are a few ways you can go about collaborating with other brands.
You can guest blog for each other, do a joint giveaway, or even share each other’s content.
No matter what you do, make sure it’s something that will be beneficial for both parties.
Emojis are a fun and easy way to add some personality to your posts.
Tip #37 Include Statistics in Your Posts
Statistics are a great way to add weight to your argument and make your posts more credible.
If you’re sharing a post about the benefits of your product or service, be sure to include some statistics to back up your claims.
You can even pull some statistical figures from recent studies or surveys.
A simple trick would be to include an interesting fact or data point in your photo’s caption.
That’s a great way to add an extra flair to your posts and make them more engaging.
Tip #38 Put Your Logo on All Your Photos
Make sure your logo is on all of your photos.
That is a simple way to increase brand awareness and get your name out there.
If the photo goes viral, you want people to know where it came from.
The best way to do this is to watermark your photos with your logo.
Several apps allow you to do just that, such as Watermark for Instagram and iWatermark.
Tip #39 Mix Old Content with New
When putting together your feed, don’t just post new content.
Instead, try to mix in some old content as well.
That will help keep your feed fresh and ensure that your followers see a variety of your content.
Plus, it can be a great way to re-promote some of your older content that might have gotten buried in the feed.
Tip #40 Post a Collage
Collages are the perfect way to showcase multiple photos in one post.
They’re also a great way to tell a story or show a before and after.
Examples of apps to help you out with this include PicStitch and Layout.
Tip #41 Try Different Types of Content
Don’t just stick to one type of content.
Try mixing things up and experimenting with different types of content.
That could include everything from photos and videos to infographics and quotes.
Eventually, you’ll find what works best for your brand.
But in the meantime, don’t be afraid to experiment.
Tip #42 Hide Something on Your Photos
Hiding something in your photos is a great way to add an element of mystery and get people to interact with your content.
You have to hide something in the photo and ask people to find it.
This is a great way to engage your followers and get them talking.
For example, in the following photo, Gareth Pon hides a gp rocket in the picture.
Tip #43 Use the Rule of Thirds
The rule of thirds is a composition technique that can help you take better photos.
It’s simple to do and only requires you to divide your photo into thirds, both horizontally and vertically.
Then, place your subject where the lines intersect.
That will help create a more balanced and eye-catching photo.
Tip #44 Use Natural Light
Whenever possible, try to use natural light when taking photos.
Natural light gives photos a softer and more flattering look.
If you’re taking a photo indoors, find a spot near a window where the light is coming in.
And if you’re taking a photo outside, try to avoid direct sunlight, as it can be harsh and unflattering.
Tip #45 Tell a Story and be Consistent with the Storyline
Your Instagram feed should tell a story.
Each post should contribute to the overall story you’re trying to tell.
For example, if you’re a travel blogger, your feed should be filled with your travel photos detailing your adventures.
And if you’re a fashion brand, your feed should be filled with photos of your clothes and style.
The idea is to capture a chapter of your story with each post.
Tip #46 Instagram Carousels
Instagram carousels are a great way to tell a story or showcase multiple products.
They allow you to include up to 10 photos or videos in a single post.
To create a carousel, select the multiple photos option when creating a new post.
Instagram carousel allows you to create a photo album telling a story within a post or simply showcase a few products from your inventory.
That’s one of the most popular features on Instagram for marketing purposes since it allows you to pack a lot of information into a single post.
Tip #47 Create an Instagram Theme
An Instagram theme is a consistent look and feels that you carry throughout your feed.
That could be anything from a specific colour scheme to a particular style of photography.
Having a consistent theme will make your feed more visually appealing and easier for people to follow.
Tip #48 Tag Influential People in Your Photos
Tagging influential people in your photos is a great way to get more exposure for your brand.
When you tag someone, their followers will see the photo and might start following you.
Of course, you should only tag people relevant to your photo.
For example, if you’re a fashion brand and you post a photo of one of your dresses, you could tag the designer in the photo.
Tip #49 Repost Old Photos
Reposting old photos is a great way to draw eyeballs to your older content.
Everybody loves being reminded of good times, so this is a great way to engage people with your brand.
Plus, it’s a great way to fill up your feed if you’re running out of new content.
Throwback Thursday is a popular hashtag that you can use to promote your old photos.
Tip #50 Make an Announcement
Instagram is a great platform for making announcements.
Whether you’re announcing a new product or sale, Instagram is a great place to do it.
People are always checking Instagram for the latest news, so this is a great way to get your message out there.
Tip #51 Involve Your Target Audience By Asking Questions
Asking questions is a great way to involve your target audience and get them engaged with your brand.
Simply post a photo and ask people to answer a question in the comments.
That is a great way to start a conversation and get people talking about your brand.
Tip #52 Invite Your Facebook Friends to Follow You on Instagram
If you have a large Facebook following, you can invite them to follow you on Instagram.
People who interact with you on Facebook are more likely to follow you on Instagram.
You can also import your Facebook contacts into Instagram and invite them to follow you.
Tip #54 Use Memes
People love memes.
Memes are a great way to make people laugh and engage with your content.
Plus, they’re easy to create and can be very viral.
Tip #56 Recognize Positive Customer Feedback
Customers rely on reviews and feedback to make purchasing decisions.
If you receive positive feedback, don’t hesitate to share it on your feed.
That will show your potential customers that you’re a reliable brand.
Tip #57 Make it Fun
People love to have fun, so make sure your content is fun and interesting.
No one wants to follow a boring brand, so take some time to add some excitement to your feed.