Businesses use social media as their main marketing tool to attract customers, with the purpose of increasing their revenues.
Facebook and Twitter are the two main social media platforms that we’ve been very familiar with throughout the years. However, there’s a powerful social media platform that works differently than the two I have mentioned, which is Instagram.
With over 800 million active users, Instagram is a strictly visual mobile app, which allows users to communicate through pictures and videos only. Moreover, it’s a platform that if businesses know how to utilize it effectively, it could be a great tool to have. For all of you that are familiar with Instagram, but don’t know yet about the business standpoint. How to set up an Instagram Business Account
- Download the App
You can download Instagram app through smart phones only since it was created as a mobile only app. You can grab your smartphone and start downloading the app as easy as pie. Here is the screenshot of the App, and the layout looks the same whether on apple or android devices
- Create an account using an Email Adress
Don’t ever use your personal facebook or twitter accounts to create a business Instagram account. Remember, you want your instagram to become a business account, so keep your personal life out of it. It’s best using your business email adress to sign up so when you use the “find friends” feature, your account will be on that list. It is very ESSENTIAL for your account to be found as easy as possible.
- Choose a Recognizable Username
The next step is to create your own username and password as you can see in the next pop-up screen. Also, you will be asked to upload a profile picture. These are the two most important steps to kick start your Instagram business account, and secure your brand name.
- Picking the right Profile Picture
There’s a plus button on that same screen, which allows you to upload your profile picture. Making sure you treat your profile picture as your brand’s logo, because it what makes your Instagram account stands out from others. Be unique so it catches attention quickly.
More on how to set up an Instagram Business Account:
Once you click on the plus button, there will be 4 options for you to choose from. Do not click on “import pictures from Facebook”, because it will import pictures from your personal page and you don’t want that. You can ignore “import pictures from Twitter” as well, but you are welcome to click on it if it’s your business page. Best two options you can choose are “Take Photo”, and “Choose From Library”. I believe “Choose from Library” is easier for you to do it this way since you probably store hundreds of pictures on your phone’s photos library so you can pick and choose what fits best for your brands image. Moreover, you can crop and scale your profile picture before you upload it.
- Profile Basis
After you’re done with picking the right profile picture, you will be asked to enter your full name and phone number. Even though this step is optional, but you can’t skip it if you’re using Instagram as a business tool. Remember your goal here is to allow people to access your account as easy as possible, and gain as many followers as possible. You can enter your real name if you’re the face of the business, and enter your phone number so people can reach you.
Press skip on “Find Facebook Friends to Follow”, and “Find Contacts to Follow” step. You can worry about it after you have posted several photos on your account.
- Get your Bearings
Now you’re almost halfway done being an advanced Instagram business’s users. This next step is getting you to be familiar with all the shortcuts at the bottom from left to right:
- Home: first thing you see on the left, where you can see activities from your followers
- Search: allows you to look up people, things, hashtags, or explore what people are up to
- Camera: where you upload your photos
- Notifications: allows you to see who follows, likes and comments on your posts
- Profile: allows accessing your profile. Everything you’ve posted and access to the settings menu
- Complete your Profile
Taps on the person icon on the last right of the screen, then click on “edit profile” to complete your profile. Since this is your business account, it is essential to include your website links. This is where you can only post an url link that people are able to click on it. So take advantage of it!! As for your bio, you need to make it interesting, funny, catchy in ways that you can catch the customers attention right away. Since your bio limits character counts, you have to write it wisely. However, you can always come back and edit it.
- Set up your Social Sharing
This is the last step to finish setting up your instagram account. You can go ahead and click on the “linked account” under settings section. It allows you link your business facebook and twitter accounts, and makes your photos appear on these two social media platforms. After logging to your Facebook, or Twitter accounts. Making sure again that you link your business accounts not your personal pages. People often make mistakes during this process, so I have to emphasize it again and again.
- Post something
Now you have reached the fun part. You can FINALLY post some pictures. YAYYYY!! The wait is over. You can be creative on posting your photos, but again you have to be selective. If your business is about fitness, then you cannot post photos about landscapes. See my point here? You can be creative, but you have to post contents that are related to your brand. Tap on the “camera” icon in the middle of the screen to post.
- What’s with all the filters
Instagram allows you to filter your pictures before you post it on your account. Doesn’t it sound fun? Filters can make your picture look very professional, and enhance the quality of your contents. This is what i believe instagram is very smart, because you don’t have to download another app to edit your pictures. Instagram offers you everything in just one app, saves you a lot of time.Therefore, you can play around with it until you pick the filter you like the most, and fit your brand’s style the best.
- Caption, and always use hashtags
Same with your bio, keeps your caption interesting, fun, and more importantly related to the picture you post. One thing you don’t want is to confuse your audience. They have to understand what they’re getting out of the content. Another important thing you can’t overlook is take adavantage of “hashtags”. Especially for Instagram, hashtags can take your account really far. Hashtags is a really great way to get your accounts discovered by other instagram users. Moreover, you can look up popular hashtags and use them, but the downside is there would be too many posts that include these hashtags so your post could be lost. Another way you could do is to create your own hashtags, or follow niche hashtags where there’s not as many posts.
- Use those Social Share Features
Again, Now is the perfect time to share your posts on your business social pages (Facebook, Twitter). There are two Ways you could do it. First you can post pictures, and share them right after you finish writting your captions. Second way you could do is to share your photo after you finish posting.
Click on the three dots at the bottom right corner. This screen will pop up, and then press “share”
Before you are able to share, Instagram will ask you to edit your caption one more time.
It allows you to edit your caption, therefore, you can choose whether to delete your hashtags or not. As i said above, hashtags are most effective when using on Instagram only. On the other social media pages, they might not be as effective. So it’s your call.
- Follow and Engage People
This is probably the most important step for you. As a business standpoint, you want people to find out about you easily. Therefore, this is the perfect time to follow people after you got some contents posted. Since your account is still new, my recommendation is to follow people first so they can follow you back.
From your profile page, click on the option page. This screen will pop up. Look on the top section with “find facebook friends” and “find contacts”
This is another great way to build up your followers besides hashtaging. It allows you to contact with existing clients you have done business with. Friend lists that are stored in your other social pages can now see your accounts, as a result, increase your followers . At this stage, we want to follow as many friends contacts as possible. You don’t have the privilige to be selective just yet.
- Define your brand’s story
As i have emphasized this before you create your profile, define what your brand is about and follow your mission closely. Big companies like google, home depot, coca cola already had their brand names defined and established, therefore, it’s easier for them to post contents since the audiences are already familiar with them. For a new brand, it’s best for you to create a unique story so the audiences can remember everytime they see your profile. Focusing solely on your brand’s story in every pictures you post. Whether your brands are about travel, fashion, fitness, etc. For more on how to create and analyse Instagram stories click Here
- Get your name out there
One thing cool about Instagram is they provide you with all the tools to promote your account. Take full advantage of them.
After these 15 steps, you are now ready to start your Instagram Business Account. Follow this advanced guide closely, and you could really see how this mobile based app can leverage your business.
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