Instagram Marketing 101

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With over 1.5 million active users from Bangladesh, Instagram has fast taken shape into an advertising powerhouse. Combining the best of both worlds- eye catching visuals with a compelling storytelling approach- it is no big surprise that brands are flocking to this platform for its vast potential. Instagram marketing is thus the new buzzword for the savvy Bangladeshi marketers. Instagram marketing is especially important to reach the sophisticated social media enthusiasts since 60% of Instagram users belonging to the millennial generation. So, for example, for a high end fashion brand, this popular youth oriented platform is nothing less than a goldmine.

Step 1: Setting up the Instagram account for Instagram marketing

Once your business has signed up on Instagram, you are required to fill out your profile. This includes the username and bio.  The username should preferably be the same as all other social media handles to ensure instant brand recognition. The bio is a short and sweet description of what your business is all about, with a link to the primary website. Feel free to include emojis and branded hashtags, as seen fit the vibe you are looking to evoke. The popular Bangladeshi fashion brand Noir’s bio is a great example of informative yet breezy. The prime accelerator behind the rapid rise of Noir as a leader in the local fashion industry has been Instagram marketing. They a loyal fashion conscious follower base of 21000 with over 2000 user generated content in their profile.

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Moving on to your profile photo, this should be a high resolution image of your company logo and kept same across all social media accounts of your business. To end off your profile, your business will need to follow a bunch of other accounts on Instagram. These could be popular brand influencers, loyal customers and even competitors to keep up with them! Finally, remember to add your Instagram handle to all your social media accounts and website for cross-promotion.

Step 2: Designing the perfect content strategy

Without a deliberate marketing plan, even the most fabulous brand content is bound to fail. Content is the star of your show on Instagram and there needs to be be a guided, consistent approach to it. Start off by developing the content themes. Rotate through a number of these to make sure your Instagram account is always fresh and engaging. Contests, giveaways, customer spotlight are some such themes your business could use. Once you do have a theme, brainstorm for possible images and videos, while also maintaining consistency with the overall brand image. Pantone’s content here illustrates visually captivating content aligned with a theme.

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If customer engagement is what your business is looking for, there is no other place like Instagram. Personalized replies to comments is your friend here for that touch of relatability and will also prompt further communication from followers. Look to incorporate your followers into your content strategy. For example, giveaways or “tag your friends” result in not only explosive follower growth, but also a greater recognition for what your business stands for.  Another popular strategy to bring over brand influencers to collaborate or take over the Instagram account for a day for some in-the-moment spontaneity.

Deciding on a posting schedule, however, is slightly murkier. While there is no magic formula for this, you need to stay on your followers’ radar without overwhelming them. Posting twice a day is reasonable in high engagement hours. A content calendar is especially helpful for planning ahead but also be prepared to spout ready content to take advantage of real-time social engagement.

Step 3: Getting creative with Instagram marketing

Instagram marketing is a haven for exercising one’s creative muscle and the possibilities here are endless. There is one limitation though. Being a visual platform, your Instagram should be built around a cohesive brand identity and evoke a unified vibe. This means you should probably stick to a particular color palette or filter. The bottom-line is to align all your posts with visual harmony in mind. So, review your existing brand content including logo, website etc. and build your brand’s aesthetic identity accordingly.

Instagram initially shot into fame with its hashtag feature. While the world of Instagram has expanded beyond, the feature’s utility for business owners remains unchanged. Branded hashtags are a boon for user engagement. Not only does it provide a platform for interaction, you can also use it to monitor if your content is reaping the engagement it wants. Urban Truth, a high-end fashion brand in Bangladesh, became Insta-famous with its hashtag for user generated content, #utpeople.

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An Instagram brand should never skip out on captions. An amazing image is only completed by an equally amazing story. So, tell your story and make it compelling. Don’t ramble on for too long; the fewer words, the better. You should also insert a call-to-action in the caption to make sure your message is heard, loud and clear.

Instagram marketing could appear challenging at first. Progress may be slow but with the right approach and focused targeting, your business could be headed straight to Instagram domination.

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