7 ways brands should use Instagram

Heed these simple tips to start building an active community.

Are you one of Instagram’s 30 million users? Maybe you’re just curious to know what all the fuss is about.

Either way, Instagram is a fast-growing, photo-sharing app that is changing the way we share visual content. Users take photos, apply effects, and upload them for others to see. It’s a quick and easy way to share your great photos instantly.

Here are our top seven tips for businesses who want to get the most out of Instagram.

1. Post photos regularly.

Consistency is important when you use any social network. Followers come to expect the same amount of content from you on a daily/weekly basis. Upload photos as often as possible, but make sure you can maintain that level of activity.

2. Post high-quality photos.

People will be more interested in following you if your content is worth seeing. It might be simple to put your photos on Instagram, but that’s no reason to limit the quality.

3. Integrate with your social media strategy.

Instagram allows you to share your photos on Twitter, Facebook and Foursquare. It’s a simple way to spread the impact of your visual content. Plan how you will use your Instagram photos on other social networks and make them part of your overall strategy.

4. Set goals.

Before your business launches into Instagram, know what you want to get out of it. Are you trying to build reach? Start a conversation? Decide now. As with any social media platform, you’re more likely to benefit if you have clear goals.

5. Engage with your community.

Just because Instagram is visual doesn’t mean there aren’t opportunities to get involved and have conversations. Try liking photos and commenting. This will get you involved in conversations, which is what social media is all about.

6. Follow key industry influencers.

Start building a community around your industry and key industry interests. Make sure you engage! You’ll cement your place as a go-to resource.

7. Add keywords to your photo captions.

Keep your keyword strategy in mind when you upload pictures to Instagram. Make sure you include them in photo captions; it will help people find you. Think about long tail keywords, as these make it even easier for people to find you.

Do you already use Instagram for business?

Emma Rudeck is an inbound marketing executive at Strange IM. A version of this article originally appeared on the Inbound Marketing blog.

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