Last time I gave you five reasons it was time to up your instagram game, now we glide through all the gears and into cruise control towards greater brand awareness and audience engagement.
- Branding – Use your logo as your profile image, to gain the credibility benefits of any previous awareness of your business achieved from other marketing activities
- Bio – Try to avoid an overly corporate approach, encourage people to follow by adapting your company details to suit an audience seeking entertainment and enjoyment
- Descriptions – For each photo/content you share you will also need to add a description. The trick to getting likes is to tell a story rather than state the obvious, don’t let your great content go to waste
- Location – Match the location settings to your photo, to gain additional visibility from audiences searching specific locations or landmarks. Essential for sharing projects, or specific locations.
- Home of the hashtag – hashtags (#) are a big deal on instagram. The search tool in instagram thrives off these hashtags and users will find your content by using them. Appear in construction searches by using “#construction” for example
- Hashtag Tricks
- Don’t overuse hashtags in your description, keep to 2 or 3 that are specific to the content to keep your content readable and less spammy
- Pre-prepare a note on your phone of other hashtags you also want your content to be found for. For example #future #construction #architecture. Paste these immediately into the comment box below to appear in more instagram searches
Initial Instagram Growth
Unlike your website and Linkedin, instagram is a platform your audience is likely to use more for pleasure than business. You will need to be open to adopting outside of the box marketing tactics to get them to follow and like your content. Here’s some ideas:
- Influencers – Your best bet to begin with may be to get your colleagues to mention your account on their own instagram accounts. Maybe they are working on a project and well placed to snap a good photo of your product being installed, get them to mention you account in the description using @yourcompanyname to point their audience towards your account.
- Motivation – Motivational quotes and images are always well received on instagram as audiences seek inspiration throughout the day. To keep on brand you might want to include an influential or inspiring caption or comment a colleague mentioned about the company, or go for a more traditional big name (Steve Jobs/Einstein/Sports Star) approach.
- Memes – Be wary of the damage a meme may have on your brand. You might get away with the odd meme on Twitter, but on instagram your post has a far more permanent presence.
Content Remains King
Content is king when it comes to growing your instagram following and achieving the audience interaction to justify time investment the platform demands.
Let’s look at some of the resources you should look to utilise or produce:
- Case Study Photos – Landmark locations, or eye catching architecture are great for catching the audiences eye.
- Personal Touches – Showing the inside of your business operation is an approach that is highly valued by instagram users
- Premises – Showcasing your factory, office or depot can give a personal touch to your instagram feed.
- Staff – Spotlight the team that makes your business a success. Share there comments and daily activities
- Products, Brochures & Promotional Material – Give them a personal touch by showing products being installed or brochures being read by colleagues, customers and influencers
- Company Profile Video – Provide small snippets of your company profile video and enhance relationships with your audience
- Instagram stories – In the responsible hands of your staff out on the road, on site or in your factory there is a never ending source of valuable content you can capture to achieve sustained communication with your audience. Include appropriate location and product information, maybe even the weather.
Go the Extra Mile
- Drone Footage – This type of premium content is ideal for social media engagement. If you have drone video content of your headquarters or a project make the most of it here.
- Personal hashtag – Create a breadcrumb trail for your instagram posts by starting your own company hashtag. Be imaginative and unique, but remain on brand. #loveconstruction for example. Here’s why:
- When people search a unique hashtag in instagram or a major search engine like Google they will see all YOUR content associated with the hashtag first
- When they click the hashtag in post they will see all your other content
- The hashtag can be used across all your social media feeds
- You can use it via other marketing channels to give your audience another way to find you
- Give your brand greater personality
- Watermarking – If people steal or re-share your content you can still get additional exposure by displaying a faded logo in the corner of each post
- Re-squeezing – Don’t miss an opportunity to re-tell a great story from existing content in a different way through instagram.
- Build Awareness – Your existing audience may not expect to find you on instagram, make sure they are aware through you website, email and offiline collateral
Strategy Advice: A Consistent Mixture
The final hurdle is to provide your audience with a well co-ordinated mixture of content consistently.
Avoid throwing out all of your great content in a single day, the rewards come from dripping fresh content over days, weeks and months.
Early on gather followers and traction, consider sharing a new piece of content every day, but mix up the type of content you share each day to catch the eye.
As you audience grows you may reduce frequency and increase quality even further.
Over time you will be have an audience that is eagerly awaiting your next post.
These content sources will really bring your instagram feed to life, but make sure the quality standards remain consistently high.
Your audience will accept and potentially value amateur footage from your team, but don’t lose control of your business and risk massive repercussions.
Lay down guidelines to people with access to the account, and moderate where possible.
The live aspect of instagram stories is not suited to moderation, but to avoid issues gather and moderate content first and re-issue once approved.
As with all social media channels a lot of work is required to establish yourself on instagram.
However, given the potential to sew the seeds of your business amongst a new and existing audience, it remains an effective way to leap to the front of the line in a competitive industry.
What are your thoughts on using instagram for your construction marketing activities, has this post inspired you to take the leap or do you feel that the effort that instagram demands will go unrewarded? Let me know in the comments below.