Despite the fact that Instagram is now being used by 48.8% of brands (and that number is expected to rise to 70.7% by 2017), many businesses have yet to implement an Instagram marketing strategy. Unfortunately, there are still many myths that have created hesitation among businesses when it comes to using Instagram for marketing purposes.
These common myths include sentiments that Instagram takes too much time, or that a company’s offerings are too boring to share in this social platform. But many of these myths have been proven false by not only Instagram but also by big brands which have developed successful Instagram marketing campaigns.
Here are seven of the most common Instagram myths debunked once and for all.
Myth #1- “My product or service is too boring for Instagram”
Sure, visually-stunning lifestyle, food, and fashion brands thrive on Instagram, but you don’t have to be in one of these glamorous industries to find success marketing on the network and engaging your target audience. There are plenty of ways you can share your brand’s story beyond posting product images. For example, you can take your audience behind-the-scenes and show off any brand’s greatest assets – the people who are making it happen.
A good example is Wells Fargo, who makes banking seem way less boring by posting an interesting mix of Instagram videos and images that cover a wide variety of topics such as fun facts, quotes, and current events.
Myth #2 – “It’s too difficult to monitor my Instagram analytics”
It used to be tough to analyze your Instagram activity and followers, so many brands had to rely on third-party analytics tools. Thankfully, Instagram launched Instagram Analytics earlier this year and revealed Instagram Business Profiles, which now show businesses the most popular times and days that followers are browsing Instagram, insights on post impressions, and detailed stats on demographics.
Instagram’s follower demographic analytics now include information on your followers’ ages, genders, and locations. Post analytics, called “Insights,” allow your brand to view impressions, reach, website clicks, and additional follower activity. It’s no longer a challenge to identify who is interested in your content, which means it’s now easier than ever to create better content and market your brand more effectively on the network.
Myth #3: “It’s impossible to get referral traffic from Instagram back to my website”
This is only partially true. Currently, the only place where your brand can share your website link (without purchasing ads) is in your profile bio. However, it’s not uncommon to state in your post captions that the link you wish to share is located in your profile bio. You can change this link at any time to reflect a current promotion or to promote any other marketing campaign you may be running.
Tip: It can be difficult to get people to leave Instagram, so make sure you’re giving your audience a really good reason to link on your link. A clear call-to-action in your Instagram profile bio is a good way to explain the value of clicking as well.
Myth #4: “My customers aren’t on Instagram”
The first question you might ask yourself before starting to post on Instagram might be: “Is my audience actually using it?” The answer to that question is a resounding yes.
- There are now more than 500 million active users on Instagram.
- Users have shared over 40 billion photos to date.
- They share an average of 95 million photos and videos per day.
- Instagram is used by 31% of American women and 24% of men, so there’s a good chance that your target audience is spending at least some time on the network.
However, that doesn’t necessarily mean they are actively looking for your brand on Instagram, so you may need to spend some time tracking them down. It’s important to do your research and figure out which related accounts they might be following, which blogs they like to read, and which hashtags are most relevant to them.
Myth #5: “Adding too many hashtags makes me look spammy”
Using hashtags can drastically increase your reach on Instagram. Instagram allows up to 30 hashtags per post, don’t pass up this opportunity to get your post in front of a larger audience by adding hashtags related to your brand.
If you’re worried about your post caption looking messy, add a few rows of space before listing your hashtags so they are hidden, and viewers will have to tap “more” to see them. Alternatively, you can write your hashtags in the first comment of the post to hide them as well.
Myth #6: “Instagram is for spontaneous posts only”
Instagram is a great way to share spontaneous and behind-the-scenes moments, but it also requires careful planning and a well-thought out strategy for success. There are many parts to a high-quality Instagram feed. For example, it often requires more than one shot to select an Instagram-worthy photo worthy of posting.
Selecting high-quality images, the perfect times to post, as well as making sure images fit with your branding and message, are critical for success, which means many of the branded Instagram feeds you see aren’t so spontaneous as they may seem.
Myth #7: “Posting on Instagram takes too much time”
For now, most brands can post on Instagram less often than on other social networks, such as Twitter or Pinterest, and still see significant levels of engagement. However, as with any social network, a strategy is needed to ensure you’re organizing and sharing great content on a consistent basis.
The best way to do this is to organize your Instagram marketing campaign using an all-in-one tool like GAIN. With GAIN, you can create and view pixel-perfect previews of all image and video posts, for all social media channels, including the captions and relevant hashtags. GAIN allows you to send any social media posts to any team member, client, or content approver for feedback, and then schedule your posts to Instagram using the GAIN Notify app.
Additionally, you can quickly view all of your draft, scheduled, and published Instagram posts in the GAIN content calendar. Need to change a post date? GAIN also features the ability to drag-and-drop your posts to a new time slot.
So if your brand needs to create multiple Instagram posts in advance, you can write and organize all of your content using GAIN in minutes. You’ll not only save yourself a ton of time and effort creating and publishing content for this increasingly popular social network, but you’ll also free up more time to focus on engaging with your audience. Try a free demo of GAIN for all of your Instagram needs today.