Instagram for Business: 10 Tips for Business Instagram Accounts

Did you know that there are over 300 million Instagram users, and over 75 million are using Instagram daily? That amounts to over 20% of the internet population, or about 1/3 of the US population. Looking at these figures, the business-minded individual would see a huge social media marketing opportunity. After all, Instagram is the new golden child of social media. With so many people using Instagram from all different demographics, it would be crazy not to be taking advantage of this huge and diverse platform to promote your brand. Are you using Instagram for business purposes? Instagram for business is a great channel for many industries. Here, the social media marketing team shares 10 tips for business Instagram accounts that gives the advice on Instagram for businesses of any kind and all stages of Instagram use!

Instagram for business tip #1: Put yourself in the customer’s shoes

The first of our tips for Instagram accounts is to think like the customer. Look at your fans and followers on Instagram, who are typically also your target audience, and browse their profiles to see how they typically style their profiles. Mimic this style from some of your own posts, and take note of what their interests are to make them more receptive and interested in what you post. Business Instagram accounts may wish to use similar photography style, language for captions, or even objects of interest. This will relate your company to your fan base and make them want to keep following you, keeping them eager to see your next post.

 

Instagram for business tip #2: Use Hashtags                                                                      

The best part of using Instagram for business is the ability to be creative with using hashtags. A cool photo will make your brand and a boring or low quality photo can break it. Pair that cool photo with 5-10 hashtags and you can begin to grow your following. Start your own hashtag and use other hashtags that your target audience might use to find you.

Did you know that you can hashtag with emoji? For donut day brands and fans used the donut emoji in place of the “o” in “donut”. Pretty clever right!?

business Instagram management

Instagram for business tip #3: Visual consistency for consistent branding

In our top tips for business Instagram accounts, visual consistency is key. When someone looks at your brand’s profile, you want to make sure that it looks appealing and cohesive. Choose a set of filters and rotate through them as you upload photos, rather than going through all kinds of filters every time you post a photo. This will keep your theme consistent. And, remember the rule of thirds, even when in a square frame like on Instagram. A picture should either be centered or have the focus of the photo on the left or right third of the photo. Luckily, Instagram provides a handy grid for laying out your photo perfectly. Business Instagram accounts should show the best version of their company when posting photos.

 

Instagram for business tip #4: Don’t over post on business Instagram accounts

Once you understand how to use Instagram for business, you need to make sure you know when to use it. Being active on Instagram is the goal, but don’t over post or you will not only seem overbearing to your fan base, but your profile will lose the essential message and impression it is trying to get across. Stick to one message and post things that relate to it. For instance, if you are having an event, focus on that. The day of the event, you should not post anything that isn’t related to the event. You can easily share 3- 5 posts related to that event as it is, and will have no trouble continuing to post after the event. Even before the event, you want to focus on posts related to the upcoming event for some time; the size and industry of your company along with the timing of the event will determine just how long you want to focus exclusively on the specific event.

Instagram for business tip #5: Swap out the link in your profile              

It is not possible to include links in an Instagram post. So, if you would like to link to a specific webpage, it must be done through your profile. Edit the link on your profile page in the description section and swap your main link out for the page-specific one. This is the perfect trick for business Instagram accounts that have a new program, event, or other special something that you would like to promote. Just change your usual website link for the program or event page. However, since homepage links are one of the best ways for how to use Instagram for business, use the special links sparingly and only for important new pages that you wish to promote.

For instance, for Christmas our team created a 12 Days of SEO and Social Media Holiday infographic. Then we told people that they could download the infographic easily by clicking the link in our profile.

using instagram for business

Instagram for business tip #6: Take advantage of Instagram tools

The best help business Instagram accounts can get is by using what is already available to them. Instagram offers tools to help business make the most of Instagram. For example, Latergram is a time-management system for Instagram that allows users to schedule their posts, so that they don’t have to worry about getting it out at the right time. The Repost app for Iphone and Repost app for Android allow you to repost a photo and caption from another user, giving them credit and facilitating your company’s sociability.

Instagram for business tip #7: Utilize the video function

This app is about more than pictures- it is for sharing videos as well! One of the top tips for business Instagram accounts is to diversify what you share. Mix it up with videos- these can offer more than photos in advertising terms because it keeps the audience’s attention focused on you for a longer period of time. Instagram videos can be between 3 to 15 seconds long. In this time, you have the chance to provide not only visual but also audio messages, and it gives you the potential to get a certain message across more easily.

Instagram for business tip #8: Stay tuned for Instagram ads

Instagram for business accounts is only getting better. Instagram is releasing an ads function that allows companies to inject photo and video ads into other users’ feeds. Currently, Instagram has only rolled this feature out as beta testing, and has invited big brands to join in the experiment. Look out and expect this feature soon- it is predicted to be a very profitable form of advertising.

Instagram for business tip #9: Give shouts to sponsors and partners

Another of our tips for business Instagram accounts is to always include your partners. If you have a sponsor or partner that is relevant in a certain post, make sure to tag their profile in the description. This will keep them happy and uphold your commitment to work with them. Best of all, it will encourage them to do the same in their posts, allowing more Instagrammers to find your business thanks to the increased exposure!

Instagram for business tip #10: Embed your Instagram on your website

The last of our tips for business Instagram accounts is to integrate your Instagram directly on your website. So often, businesses looking to improve their Instagram accounts focus on what they can do inside of Instagram. What they don’t realize is that they can make a huge difference on their website by simply embedding Instagram. Gain followers and get more views of your social media activity by placing the links for this directly in your site so that website visitors can continue to discover your company through social media. This is a chance for exposure and to get your potential customers to learn more about you. In WordPress, you can go beyond embedding by adding an Instagram feed plugin, present in many plugins. This is a sure way to drive engagement through your website, not to mention it makes building your online presence a lot more fun.

Final Tips for Business Instagram Accounts

As you explore these tips for business Instagram accounts, you will discover that Instagram can do a lot more for your business than simply providing you with a space to share pictures. Take advantage of the social power Instagram holds and start building up your account sooner rather than later on this ever-growing social media app. Don’t be afraid to test Instagram out! You can’t just DO social, you have to BE social. Sometimes Instagram can be used to show the lighter side of your team. We celebrated Take Your Dog To Work Day where employees were welcome to bring their dogs to work. Decide what your goal for your Instagram account is and do things that align with that goal.

 

 

tips for businesses using instagram

To learn more about using Instagram and other social media, view our presentations on slide share: http://www.slideshare.net/designandpromote 

social media marketing chicagoBusinesses are challenged not only to attract new customers but also to keep the ones they have. This retention is referred to as brand loyalty and ties directly to a brand’s identity. A brand’s identity, or reputation, is often the first thing a customer knows about a product. It’s what draws them in to try the product or service for the first time. Brand loyalty, on the other hand, refers to not only repeat business, but also recommendations from your customers to others. Building brand loyalty is the ultimate goal of any business and social media marketing in Chicago can aid these efforts.

 

Social Media Marketing Chicago Businesses Influence Brand Loyalty

Building brand awareness is the key to developing brand loyalty. After all, consumers can’t be loyal to a brand they’ve never heard of! That said, not all branding efforts are successful and you can lose customers with a misstep, just as easily as you can earn them.

 

Social media marketing plays a big role in building brand awareness these days. Social media is a form of word-of-mouth advertising – some of the most effective advertising you can ask for. If you’re online and, in particular, on social sites, you’ve made it very, very easy for consumers to share information about your business, products, or services….for good or bad. One click and you’re “liked”, your product or content is shared with the consumers’ friends and family, and suddenly your sphere of influence just got a whole lot bigger. On the flip side, one negative experience or comment from one customer has the potential to reach all of your followers and seriously hurt your business.

 

Active Management Of Social Sites Is Key

 

With so many people connected to social sites and using them several times a day, businesses absolutely must be marketing on these sites to remain competitive. A business’ presence on social media will generate more sales and more potential customers by building brand awareness. Your participation can’t be static though. The whole point of social media is to interact and connect with your customers, so make sure you have someone available to monitor your sites, posts, and the comments received. Respond to comments on your page – the good and the bad. The person who posted it will be impressed that they were noticed and everyone else who is a fan of the page will see the interaction, which will hopefully boost their opinion of you and your dedication to customer service.

 

Don’t Forget About Your Loyal Fans

It’s not all about attracting new customers though. Social media gives you the chance to develop a stronger connection with existing customers and there are actions you can take to further bolster that relationship. Keep in mind that once someone becomes a fan or a follower, they will often share about your brand. You can capitalize on that relationship by offering them some value in return. You can give them a “thank-you” Starbucks gift card or a product discount for every referral; these are just two examples. Giveaways and discount codes are commonly used on social sites to encourage followers to share social media content within their own groups. The important thing to remember is to keep your fans happy. Nurture them by showing your appreciation.

For help developing or improving social media marketing in Chicago or to learn more about how social media can help your business, contact Design & Promote at 630-995-7109.

social media marketing company in chicagoIf social media isn’t officially part of your marketing campaign, you’re probably missing opportunities. According to any social media company in Chicago, these are opportunities that you cannot afford to miss. Tweets, posts, shares, likes, recommendations – they are all ways to promote your business.

Our social media company in Chicago has been integrating social media into our clients’ marketing efforts from the very beginning. We keep abreast of the latest developments, additions, and changes in social media marketing. In this post the strategists at our social media company in Chicago will introduce a few of the newer changes and explain how they can help boost your social media presence.

A Social Media Company in Chicago on Tools You Can Use

• Facebook Native Ads.

Facebook’s native ad tools have been around since 2014. During that time, Facebook Ads have proven to be effective at reaching target audiences and yielding results for publishers. Facebook has recently added new tools to help publishers more easily create, post, and manage native ads. Tools include: native ad templates, native ad management tools and horizontal scrolling for native ads. Used correctly, the tools should help publishers create ads that fit more naturally into the way an app is used and still target the right audience.

• LinkedIn Analytics For Publishing.

LinkedIn is the place to share your expertise and many people use the site for publishing content. Up until now it’s been difficult to know how effective that publishing has been or who is picking up on it. LinkedIn’s new Analytics for Publishing tool changes that. Using the tool, you can select any of your posts to get feedback on the post’s performance. Find out how many comments, shares, views, and likes it achieved. Armed with this data, you’ll have a better idea of what your readers want from you and for which topics they visit you.

• LinkedIn Blogging A.K.A Publishing Long Form Posts.

Benefit number #1 as said on LinkedIn, “Your long-form post is searchable both on and off of LinkedIn.” Publishing on LinkedIn is smart SEO and social media. Publishing is free to do, all you need is to sit down and write or get help from someone to write it for you. This feature is only available for individual profiles not company pages.

What else does LinkedIn publishing offer? Free publicity. Ever notice those emails from LinkedIn with network updates? Your post is shared with your network via email too!

• Google+ Collections.

Google+ Collections helps you organize your Google+ content by topic. This makes it very easy for a viewer to scan your page, find the topic they are looking for, and delve into your posts for more detailed information.

• Google Search Analytics.

Google’s new Search Analytics tool provides in-depth web and mobile site traffic analysis. You’ll be able to break down and filter the data in many new ways, even allowing you to view searches by country. Search Analytics will eventually replace Google’s Search Queries tool. For now, both can be found in Google Webmaster Tools. How does this help? It allows you to see which social sites are bring in more traffic to your website. It’s okay to cut out social media sites that aren’t working. Google analytics is loved by every social media company in Chicago because it helps bench mark social traffic.

Create a Targeted Social Media Campaign with Help From Our Social Media Company In Chicago

Social media is just as integral to your marketing campaign as your website. It’s a much more effective way to reach a wider audience and it’s been proven to influence consumer purchasing decisions. Simply having an account is not enough. To make the most of your social media presence, contact social media company in Chicago Design & Promote. Our social media company in Chicago helps businesses and organizations of all sizes build up their social sites to connect and build strong relationships with their customers. The strategists at our social media company in Chicago can help you start from scratch or tweak what you’ve already started by developing a strategy for your social media efforts, creating content, and analyzing results.

Learn more about social media marketing by calling us at 630-995-7109 or visit www.designandpromote.com.

chicago internet marketing covers seo vs social mediaAt Design & Promote, as a Chicago Internet marketing firm, we get asked the following question a lot: Should I do SEO or Social Media to promote my business? The answer is: Both. In this post, we’ll cover some key differences. No matter what size and scope of your business, working with a Chicago Internet marketing firm can instantly help your company generate consumer buzz as well as effectively drive traffic to your business site. Before working with us, many of our partners initially struggled with identifying the advantages and limitations of both search and social media.

Many entrepreneurs find themselves struggling to decide which one makes the most sense for their business. We don’t recommend only choosing one of these strategies. Having a comprehensive range of resources can help companies employ both SEO and social media to yield results.

Know The Benefits That Both Search And Social Strategies Can Offer Your Business

There are distinctive differences between search (SEO) and social media.  SEO is a form of inbound marketing. Social media is a way to gain deeper connections with your customers. And together, they make the perfect blend.

 

How Search Engine Optimization Is Different

Search engine optimization (SEO) focuses on getting your business links at the top of browser searches organically. SEO is like inbound marketing. Why is this important? Because using search engines to find services/products is the most popular way for consumers to find products and services.

Tweet: If Google can’t find you, your customers won’t find you.  http://bit.ly/1zTaHDY @designpromote If Google can’t find you, your customers won’t find you. (Tweet)

No matter what your offerings, chances are, potential clients will find you through keyword searches on Google, Yahoo, Bing and/or other search engines. Raking well in those browsers requires an SEO strategy for your business that is based on researched, validated keyword phrases to help your links rise organically to the top of search results.

Of course, sometimes organic (aka free) strategies aren’t enough to catapult a business ahead of the competition. There are also various paid search strategies that can be included to give your business the extra promotional boost. Pay-Per-Click is an example of a paid search listing.

How Social Media Is Different

SEO can certainly result in impressive results, but it’s critical not to discount the value of including social media methods as well.   What’s one of the biggest perks that social media offers business owners? Opportunities for closer connections. It offers your network ways to discover and build more connections.  For instance, LinkedIn offers businesses the chance to pull recommendations from followers in their own personal network. These “warm referrals” have proven an invaluable way to steadily expand the reach of a brand and increases the likelihood of followers converting to buyers.

Another advantage of getting social with your online marketing strategies is that you’ll have virtually real-time access to what consumers are saying about your brand. Embrace the positive feedback, but more importantly, respond promptly to negative commentary to establish your business as a brand that cares. Just like SEO, social media also offers its own set of paid advertising options. For instance on Facebook, creating highly targeted ads, if crafted smartly, can yield some nice results. Smart advertising on social media can go way beyond hitting “boost this post” on Facebook.

Want to hear more about how Design & Promote can customize an online marketing solution for your business using both search and social media strategies? Visit our website today!

The old expression “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know” still rings true in an Internet marketing! The “who” in “who you know” applies to social media connections. On February 17, 2015, we hosted a seminar on how to leverage the potential of social media  to expand your network, and get hired. Design & Promote’s photography team even took professional head shots free of charge for attendees who were currently unemployed. Design & Promote is not hiring, but  there are tons of other companies that would love to fill their open positions.

Assuming you already have the skills you need to land a job, the barrier might be that you don’t have a strong LinkedIn profile.  Let’s get started on improving your LinkedIn Profile!

Internet Marketing Tips: How LinkedIn Helps With Recruiting Candidates

Adweek recently reported that 92% of companies use platforms such as LinkedIn (93%), Facebook (66%) and Twitter (54%), for recruitment. Over 73% of recruiters said they have hired from social media, while 1/3 rejected applicants because of social media profiles. Only 36% admitted that they don’t use social media to recruit or hire at all. Since LinkedIn is the most popular site used by businesses, we will discuss some ways you can use LinkedIn to your advantage.

When companies find candidates, they will often view each candidates’ LinkedIn profile.  LinkedIn is a massive database that can give insights about companies and employees. Also, companies post jobs on LinkedIn. Why not start your job search there?

Maximize Connections on Social Media

Social media network building is important, but career connections on LinkedIn are even more important.  When you view a corporate page, look to see if you know an employee or someone on the management team. They may be in your circle of friends or acquaintances,  a college alumni. They also might have other connections that they could introduce you to.

If you know this person, give them a LinkedIn endorsement or even write up a nice recommendation. You want to give them a genuine complement. They may look at your profile further and refer you to their colleagues in recruiting. Be careful, don’t just give anyone a LinkedIn recommendation, it’s best if you know them.

Add Keywords to Your LinkedIn Profile

A strong, successful profile helps you to stand out as a candidate is when you use the keywords recruiters are looking for. Include keywords in the headline below your name, in the experience sections, and skills section. This way potential employers will know your exact title and skillet. Examples:  “Financial Advisor – Public Retirement Plans” or “Manager, Casting Division, Cleveland, OH.”

Description example:
“As a financial adviser at this company, I helped create and plan public retirement plans. With my expertise, I helped my department increase output of public retirement plans by 20x.”

Sell The Real You With Your Profile

Make your LinkedIn biography more engaging by mentioning passions, special skills, and  accomplishments. The “Other” section is a great place for keyword-rich descriptions of awards and certifications. When describing yourself or former companies, stay away from passive voice and negative language. After you list your skills, aim to get “social proof”, or endorsements from former bosses and coworkers. This will boost your credibility with potential employers. Don’t forget to list your social media links and links to your blog or website. This is where interested employers might look for more information.

Aside from enhancing your profile with keyword-infused descriptions, some of LinkedIn’s other features can help you, too. You can join groups and take part in discussions or comment on blogs posted on LinkedIn. This can be a perfect place to describe work challenges and how you meet them or discuss how you give back to the community. LinkedIn can also lead you to local networking events.

Your LinkedIn profile should make employers think “I want this person on my team!”

To view the slides from our presentation go here: http://www.designandpromote.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Social-Media-For-Job-Hunters-Presentation.pdf

new social media for real estate tipsSocial media for real estate is a crucial component in becoming an industry leader in today’s market. People are turning to social media for everything from keeping in touch with friends and family to promoting businesses to deciding where to shop and eat- so why not where to live as well? Real estate social media marketing is a powerful way to spread information about properties. In fact, a recent study from Mashable states that 73% of homeowners say they are more likely to hire an agent to list their home if they are willing to make a video of it. These statistics are only going to rise in the future.

Here is a guide on social media for realtors, for any real estate agent interested in making their presence known in the digital marketplace.

Facebook for Realtors

Facebook for realtors is extremely important, acting as social media for real estate listings and promotions as well as growing your personal business. Create a professional page for you as a realtor as well as for your agency or branch. Here are some ideas on Facebook for realtors:

  • Share listings via photos, videos, and written information about your listings. Make sure to have links in every post to direct viewers to your website for more information.
  • Create events for your open houses. Invite friends and people who might be interested in the open house. You never know, even uninterested connections may end up inviting someone who is in search of a house and provide you with a lead.
  • Interact with others. Facebook is great for commenting, messaging, and sharing content. Be sure to check Facebook daily for private messages, respond to comments, and encouraging sharing your information. An easy way to keep up with multiple pages at once is setting them up to be managed by your personal account, so that you can easily switch back and forth between administrators and never miss a notification.

Pinterest for Realtors

For something fresh and innovative, Pinterest for realtors is a great social media medium to get new leads and increase business. Take a look at these tips:

  • Pinterest is all about pictures, so use this as an opportunity to showcase the homes you are selling. Pinning these photos is a chance to showcase small style features of the home, like landscaping, staircases, floors, etc. Make specific boards for specific style houses and elements, like “modern homes” or “beautiful kitchens”.
  •  Arrange online tours of real estate through Pinterest’s Places Map feature. Create a map of your listings and popular attractions in the surrounding areas. You can pin photos of events in the neighborhood, show off nearby activities and attractions, and more with Pinterest’s Places Pins.
  • As with other forms of social media, Pinterest as a chance to add tips for buyers and sellers about the process and common questions. Another great idea for this site is to make boards that give ideas for interior decorating, to get prospective buyers thinking of new homes and to help other home owners learn how to stage homes they would like to sell.

Twitter for Realtors

Twitter allows real estate agents to engage over the Internet on a local, national, and international level. It also gives you, as the realtor, the benefit of expanding promotions to a wider range of people. Use Twitter with the following tips in mind:

  • Dedicate enough time to Twitter to know what is being talked about in your field or community. Make sure to re-tweet and start up conversations through tweets on relevant matters.
  • To add, follow other people involved in the industry to create your own niche in real estate twitter. This may lead to other connections, grow your own following, and expose you to more business.
  • Add hashtags to your tweets so that people can easily find you when looking for a property. For example, if you are in Chicago, some useful hashtags would be #chicagorealestate, #realestate, #homesforsale, and #chicago.

Youtube for Realtors

With the increased interest in videos to sell products, it is no wonder that people are looking for properties and real estate agents through video mediums like Youtube. Effectively use Youtube like so:

  •  Make good quality, in depth video tours of properties for sale. It is best to include video footage of the neighborhood and surrounding parks, schools, and other points of interest. You may wish to work with a professional videographer.
  • Tag videos with keywords that are heavily used, so that the videos will show up in search results. Do not forget to share videos with connections through other social media channels.
  • Create educational videos addressing real estate tips, common questions, and industry problems to show yourself as an expert in the field and also get viewers interested in your services.

Blogs for realtors

While blogging may not totally be part of social media, it is part of your website and a great way to be interesting on social media. You can integrate blogging into the rest of your social media strategy. Blogging is an opportunity to develop content, educate, and gain a professional reputation while picking up clients along the way. Here is how to make the best use of your blog:

  • Use blogs as another way to showcase your listing.
  • Make readers feel you are really part of their community by describing the communities you serve and your involvement with them- this may be involvement both in and out of the workplace.
  • Use blogging as an educational opportunity to discuss market trends and provide insight on the real estate experience for buyers and sellers.

Real Estate Websites for Realtors

Various real estate sites like Trulia, Zillow, and Realtor.com feature up-to-date listings with great photos and listing information. Use these sites as additional places to put up listings, as well as build your realtor profile with information and links:

  • Create a presence with a strong profile of who you are as a realtor. Make sure you have experience listed.
  • Keep information current and linked to everywhere else you have a presence online- your company, website, social media profiles, and more.
  • Add references from buyers and sellers you have worked with in the past; they can write recommendations and reviews directly on the website, with Realtor.com being the best for this.

Take these tips on real estate social media marketing and gain exposure for your listings and professional standing as a realtor! If you would like to hear more about social media for real estate, contact Design & Promote’s social media strategist for a custom analysis of your social media strategy.

Social Media

tips on managing instagram for business

Instagram for Business: 10 Tips for Business Instagram Accounts

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Influencing Brand Loyalty Through Social Media Marketing In Chicago

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Search Engine Optimization

seo-company-chicago-ilAt Design & Promote, we are SEO experts. We have the skills, the expertise and the resources to create a customized SEO campaign for your website that will allow you to dominate the search engines, draw more visitors to your website, and convert those visitors into sales.

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Web Design & Development

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Branding & Graphic Design

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Custom Photography

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Internet Marketing

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