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Using Instagram to Drive Site Traffic, Promote Your Brand

A brief How-To guide on using Instagram to promote your brand and drive more traffic to your website.

Instagram is a social media platform, which began as a mobile app, that has grown an extremely large following in a short amount of time. Whether your business hopped on the bandwagon early or chose to sit back and watch, Instagram has a number of features that can help drive traffic to your site and promote your brand.

A recent web presentation by SEO moz discussed Instagram basics, as well as covering more in depth methods to drive more brand engagement. Despite many misconceptions, even if you don’t manage a large brand with an extremely visual product offering, Instagram can still work for you.

How to develop an Instagram content strategy: tips to getting starting started with what and when to post.

  1. Use your images to tell a story, but makes sure it matches the general theme of your main website.
  2. Pick a general category for you photos that show a clear purpose/intent. The category could be humor, sentimental, company culture, artsy, etc.
  3. Rule of thumb: Do not post more than once every three hours.
  4. Don’t always post to every social profile you have. Instagram allows you to synchronize other social profiles, such as Facebook and Twitter, but you don’t need to post every picture to every profile… it will annoy your followers.
  5. Start a photo series. This could be something like #ThrowbackThursdays or a weekly theme you start on your own.

Now that you have developed a content strategy, here are additional items to keep in mind when building your Instagram following:

  • Use branded hashtags with your company name or products, such as #Risdall or #RisdallPR. Include these in your bio, too – but make sure they aren’t too long and are creative enough to be remembered.
  • Manage key metrics using Statigram.
  • Use the geolocation feature when posting pictures. This will let users find your locations easier.
  • Engage your followers with contests, giveaways, prizes, etc – engage with your followers more than simply uploading pictures.

In addition, Instagram can be a useful means in driving traffic back to your main website. First, make sure you add your URL in your bio. You can also add a shortened version when you leave comments on other users’ pictures.

Next, use your profile as a mobile store-front window by posting photos of your products. Or even better, get your customers to post pictures of your products/services/locations. How do you get customers to do that? Just ask your consumers. A great way to encourage engagement is by running a contest or sponsoring a giveaway.

Now you need to measure the results.

a)      Used tagged URLs and track them in Google Analytics

b)      Track engagement with Statigram – very user friendly and easy to understand

c)      Nitrogram is another program that offers Instagram metrics

Statigram dashboard

So, after all that information, what are the main takeaways?

1)      Develop a content strategy: Have your photos tell a story that all relate to a general category. And don’t post too often on too many profiles!

2)      Use branded hashtags.

3)      Create a mobile storefront and ask your customers to upload photos of them interacting with your brand.

4)      Track all your hard work and effort.

By Danielle Norgren, Online Marketing Specialist

Credit: SEO Mozinar

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