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June 2016

Instagram Business

Instagram for Business… coming soon

By | Social Media | No Comments

New Instagram for Business tools are on the way

We were lucky enough to attend the Facebook“Boost Your Business”,event in London last week, where amongst other things they alluded to the introduction of Instagram for Business tools.

The event was a mixture of Facebook business success stories, networking and learning zones, and a series of workshops around setting up your business on Facebook, understanding Facebook ads manager and getting to know advertising on Instagram.

While a lot of what we heard was validating a lot of what we do on a day to day basis with many of our clients, we were particularly interested in the Instagram session.

Of all the social media platforms, Instagram is the one which until recently you couldn’t advertise very easily (although Facebook insights has made this a lot easier); and without spending lots of cash on so called “tools”, understanding who your audience is on Instagram, where they are based and what their interests are, has been a thankless and sometimes almost impossible task.

To hear in our session that Instagram for business tools were on the way, and then to get the official announcement yesterday via the Instagram blog was hugely encouraging.

So what are these “tools” and what can we expect?

Well, to start with, Instagram for Business tools are being rolled out gradually, with them becoming available only in the US, Australia and New Zealand in the coming months, with promises of all regions globally by the end of 2016.

Instagram has noticed the vast number of businesses using the platform to bring their products and services to life, and listened to its customers pinpointing three key areas that needed to be addressed to help business owners; (1) stand out from the crowd, (2) understand your audience ( with insights and analytics), and (3) finding new customers.

Every business wants to achieve the afore mentioned areas and its great to see that Instagram are attempting to meet these needs head on. However, only time and testing will tell how successful this will be!

Instagram for Business accounts

 

Instagram for Business profile

source: Instagram for business blog

On every social platform the panacea for any brand is to get the blue tick, or verified account status, something which used to be used only for celebrities or big businesses. Earlier this year, Facebook began allowing small businesses to become verified (using a black tick) based on proving who you are as a business, with promises that this would push your business higher up relevant searches etc.

With the initial success of this it was highly likely they would follow suit with the ability for a business to be recognised as one on the platform.

In addition to the business profile, businesses will be able to choose how they want potential customers to connect with them via the contact button (this can be set to call, text, email or get directions). Other functions of business accounts that aren’t available to personal accounts are the ability to gain insights into your posts and also to advertise.

Analytics

instagram for business insights

source: Instagram for business blog

Many a digital marketer and social media marketer has banged their head against a wall trying to get great analytics and insights into when to post (without breaking the bank), which hashtags have the biggest impact on a particular post or most importantly where your audience is located.

Insights for Instagram promises to alleviate this pain by providing businesses with actionable data about who their audience is and which posts are really hitting home more than others (all from your mobile).

Understanding your audience and learning their behaviours can only prove beneficial to businesses and marketers because an informed marketer can create relevant, timely and impactful content.

Insights for Facebook, however questionable at times, have proved to be a huge aid to businesses of all shapes and sizes and we firmly believe that the Instagram equivalent will have a similar impact and cannot wait for this to be launched on a wider scale.

Advertising

Instagram for business advertising

source: Instagram for business blog

Advertising on Instagram is still something of a new phenomenon, particularly for smaller businesses getting to grips with pushing the advert through Facebook’s business manager and ads manager platforms.

The introduction of advertising and promotion directly via the app is a welcomed one, particularly if you can use data to dictate how best to promote the content.

It all sounds very straightforward, with businesses able to log in and select content they have previously posted to add a Call to Action button.

Businesses will be able to use manual audience targeting or let Instagram suggest targeting (much like Facebook) and the post will then run for as long as you wish at a price you determine (using the same methods as Facebook).

Should we care?

In a word, YES! If you are a business that uses Instagram (we know that many businesses do) to tell their story, promote their services and share their customer experiences then understanding more about who your Instagram audience is can only be of benefit.

A business or marketer is only as good as the data they have in terms of understanding how to better serve their clients!