Since its creation in 2010, Instagram has gone from having only a few hundred accounts to billions of users. Having some of the most engaged users worldwide, Instagram is a popular social platform that local businesses can use to their advantage.
In fact, 7 in 10 businesses use this social platform to grow their online community. However, succeeding on Instagram isn’t easy and will require a lot of work. If you’re just starting with Instagram, here are a few tips on promoting your local business on this popular social platform.
- Engage With Followers
Promoting your local business on Instagram is as simple as socializing and engaging with your followers. After all, Instagram is a social community. And you want to show that your business is a valuable member of that community.
Uploading photos, publishing high-quality content, and posting reels are great ways to start engaging your followers. Make sure to follow other brands and people relevant to your industry. If someone takes the time to comment on your post or share their thoughts with you, respond and show them that you’re listening. Doing so lets you connect with your followers, build relationships, and improve your social reputation.
- Use Hashtags And Geotags
Hashtags drive the search feature of Instagram. As such, tagging all your content with relevant hashtags allows you to ride the wave of trending topics. It also helps increase your reach and grow your local business’s reach.
Since a user can search and click on a hashtag they see in posts, adding relevant hashtags on your posts can help you get noticed, as long as you’re using the right hashtags. Generally, you want to skip the generic hashtags like #professionals or #localbusiness. These hashtags are popular with millions of posts, so you won’t get the necessary visibility. Instead, leverage branded hashtags.
Moreover, don’t go overboard with the number of hashtags you use. While you can use up to 30 hashtags on a single post, adding too many hashtags can hurt your engagement rates since it’ll come off looking like spam. You can follow the example of Dans Plumbing and use 3-5 hashtags on your posts.
In addition to hashtags, don’t forget to add geotags. As a local business marketing your products and services, geotags can help local followers find your physical business location. It also helps in boosting search ranking while increasing post visibility. Furthermore, geotagging offers more user-generated content whenever a follower tags your location.
- Add Hype With Instagram Stories
Instagram Stories continue to be one of the platform’s most popular features. Generally, videos and photos posted on Stories are only available for a day and will disappear after.
One of the best benefits of Stories is that you get on a user’s news feed. Being on top of the news feed gives your Stories a better chance to be seen and engaged with by your followers.
Local businesses should use Instagram Stories to market their products and services. Stories allow you to post several updates about your local business without spamming followers on their news feeds. You can leverage Stories to boost your marketing efforts, from service and product promotions and limited discounts to interactive content such as polls and Q&As.
- Use Stories Highlights
While Instagram Stories disappear after 24 hours, you can save and showcase them to profile highlights. This allows you to share more about your local business and curate essential posts from Stories.
Generally, you can create a collection of Highlighted Stories. Here are some of the general categories used:
- Business Information
- Services or product features
- Customer testimonials and reviews
- Frequently asked questions
- Business locations (suitable if you have several stores)
Stories Highlights allows you to organize those Stories into a neat and easy source of evergreen content.
- Focus More On Local Content
The best way to promote your local business is to focus more on local content to reach followers in your area. For instance, you can share local events you host in the area or post information about a social cause you support. Entice followers with local discounts and sales. Take advantage of user-generated content from your local fans.
Focusing more on local content offers a good PR opportunity. While you don’t want to be salesy, highlighting important information helps your business to stand out as a local authority.
Instagram is considered a visual marketing utopia for local businesses, providing an excellent opportunity to grow their audience and showcase the best of what they’ve got to offer. By following the above tips, you can get started with your Instagram local marketing, allowing your business to improve its online presence and encourage growth.