Hopefully by now your brand has joined the 40+ million users in sharing photos with the widely popular mobile app Instagram and hopefully it has proven to heighten engagement, provide compelling content and afford your brand added depth.
If not, go do that right now.
I am sure you’re an all-star when it comes to applying the perfect filter or capturing the perfect angle, but there are a few features and tricks Instagram yields that are a little less obvious that will help attract and engage your awesome brand army!
Consistency Wins in Instagram Hashtagging
If you are reading this, I am going to assume you are the woman or man with your hands on the brand (say that five times fast! Just kidding. Don’t.). And since you are assigned that role, I’ll also assume you are a wildly enthusiastic creative solar flaring with the brightest ideas your company has ever seen. I’m like a mind reader, I know.
It’s not secret that hashtags are effective for organizing posts and helping content gain traction organically (meaning without being paid for) or at least that’s the ideal. As your company’s branding guru you’ve probably developed time and time again a creative hashtag for a specific campaign to help promote across Twitter, Tumblr, G+, etc…
Where you will win with hashtags on Instagram is by designing a unique hashtag with longevity. A hashtag that will accompany every Instagram photo you share. The reason for this is being that your hashtag is tied to a compelling piece of visual content that can then be in turn displayed on your website, Facebook, G+, or micro-blog by way of RSS or a third-party aggregator such as Statigram or SnapWidget.
You now have created a visually stimulating driver for your social platforms, website and blogs; a place where your fans can check out what you’ve been up to and easily share giving your profiles and content a little more muscle.
Additionally, by remaining consistent with your hashtags on Instagram, you are setting the record for how the hashtag should be used within the social space further fortifying visual branding within your social communities.
Location, location, location
Using Instagram works like this: Take a photo, make it awesome with filters, write a clever little caption and share it. Right? 100% right, just not 110% right.
Instagram allows user to tag the location of photos by using Foursquare’s geo-location technology. Geo-tagging a location is an easy way of authenticating your brand’s photo and simply saying, “Hey, check out this awesome photo from the awesome place we actually just visited.”
I know it may not sound astonishing, but you’d be surprised how your community responds when they know your brand is out and about interacting in an interesting place or just places in the neighborhood. Really send it all the way home with the location tag.
Turn those Photo Maps on
Another reason I recommend consistently geo-tagging your brand’s photos is to build your profile’s Photo Map. If you aren’t familiar with Instagram 3.0’s Photo Maps, get familiar here.
Photo Maps are a great way to show your followers where your brand has been interacting globally and locally. Check out how popular eyewear brand Warby Parker tags store locations, events and more on display with their Photo Maps:
While you’re at it, go ahead and screenshot your map and share it across your social profiles and web to further highlight your brand’s Instagram and local community presence.
Live outside the app
You’re snapping and sharing and your fans love your brand on Instagram. Why not share that love outside the mobile app? Meaning repurposing your Instagram photos to create more compelling Facebook, Twitter and blog posts.
Repurposing is not to be confused with sharing. Refrain from sharing from the app directly to Facebook as hashtags and user tags are do not crossover well and Twitter no longer supports Instagram photos.
Simply e-mail your photo from your phone’s camera roll and put your best Instagram images to work in your next post by manually uploading or posting as a TwitPic.
You’ve got a web profile. USE IT!
Instagram introduced web profiles a little over three months ago which enable functionality to follow users, comment & like photos and edit your profile easily and directly from the web. Visit any users profile by visiting insagram.com/(username).
A very quick and easy way to provide your users with stimulating content and drive traffic to your brand’s Instagram profile is with a simple screenshot of the page and a link to your profile. BOOM!
Check out @Sharpie’s Instagram web profile.
Photo Credit: blogs.independent.co.uk