Instagram is still one of the most popular ways to reach out and connect with your audience on social media as a brand.
It works particularly well over other social media platforms for brands that want to connect with their customers. There is a large number of other possibilities that Instagram has to offer.
Why does my brand need Instagram?
Instagram is a social app with a large number of users from all across the world. You can use Instagram as a communication platform to get in touch with your audience. You can share content with your followers and increase brand awareness.
Instagram also offers other benefits for your brand, such as audience analytics, paid promotion, and in-app shopping.
Here are some of the Instagram benefits for your brand:
- Images and videos are a perfect way for you to showcase your brand and what it has to offer.
- Communication tools are fast and easily accessible because they’redesigned to be used on mobile.
- Users can save your posts or purchase your products directly from the platform.
Who can build a brand on Instagram?
Anyone can have a profile on Instagram. You can benefit from building your brand presence if the target audience for your brand is using the app. This works both with personal and business brand profiles that want to take advantage of the app’s social options.
The reason why brands choose Instagram is that it offers many engagement options for their audience. Sharing photos and videos, interactive stories, and Instagram live are a few examples of how brands use Instagram to reach potential consumers.
Do I need a website to build my brand on Instagram?
Having a website to go along with your Instagram brand is very useful, but it is not completely necessary. You can also pair Instagram with alternative platforms such as YouTube, Etsy, Tumblr, and so on.
On Instagram, you can only share one link on your profile, and the content you post heavily focuses on photos and videos. The reason why a website helps your brand is that you have more control over the content that you publish.
A branding plan for Instagram is your strategic approach toward posting on the platform to increase your reach, engagement, and following of your brand.
Here are 7 steps that you can take to create an effective plan for your brand profile on Instagram:
1. Define the target audience that you are trying to reach
One of the main components in building a brand is finding your target audience. These are the people that you’re trying to serve with your product, service, or any other offer.
Consider your ideal follower, where they are in life right now, and how you can bring value to them.
Value on Instagram can come in many ways. You can help them with something they need, inspire them with your content, you can interact with them on posts, and so on.
Here are a few things to study when building target audience profiles for Instagram:
- Determine demographics that fit a large portion of your target audience, such as age, location, profession, and more.
- Make a list of their potential needs, goals, problems, and other relevant characteristics.
- Think of possible solutions that your brand can offer them on Instagram.
To make this process easier, get into the mindset of your audience, and think about how they spend a day in their lives.
What is the first thing they do in the morning? How often do they check their phone? What are some relevant moments they go through?
You’re doing all of this so you get an idea of who you’re trying to reach and how you can do that. Spend some time brainstorming on this first step.
2. Perform research on what type of content your audience needs
Your potential audience is already using the app, so you just need to find a way to reach them. Spend some time researching the behavior of your potential audience.
Here are some things to look for in your research:
- The type of profiles they already follow
- The hashtags they follow and use
- The language they use on post captions and comments
- The profile description in their bio
Simply put, you need to look for what type of content they need when they visit Instagram.
When you have a clear picture of how they spend their time on the app, you can think of ways to get your profile in front of them.
Spend some time on the app and write down everything that you notice about your potential audience. Even the small things matter.
3. Analyze competitor and other community profiles
The Instagram app is saturated with people and brands in every niche and market. That means many people and brands will be offering the same thing you are.
After you have a good idea of who you’re trying to reach, it’s smart to take a better look at who you’re competing with. Get to know who they are, what they post, and other useful info.
Here is what to examine:
- The most popular and established profiles in your niche
- The type of content that they post
- The difference between your brand and others
There are millions of pieces of content uploaded to the internet each minute. That means that your brand needs to stand out in some way to get noticed.
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4. Build a visual identity for your brand
Your followers need to get to know and understand who you are, so they can connect with you. Forming a unique identity for your brand will help you do that.
It’s not only about the profile picture and description, but you also need to dig deeper to find a purpose behind your brand.
Visuals play a huge role on a platform like Instagram. Only when a post visually grabs our attention, we stop and take a closer look.
Consider the visual elements that you’ll be using. That includes your brand colors, the logo, the fonts, and every other visual element that contributes to your brand aesthetic.
Once the audience has analyzed the visual surface of your brand, and they like what they see, the next step would be to learn more about your purpose.
That includes your brand story, the mission, and the vision behind your work. Your followers need to connect with your purpose.
We’ve evolved to always look for a bigger meaning behind the things we choose to do. The visuals get the attention of people, but they will ultimately stay for the common vision.
5. Optimize your profile and brand information
Your Instagram profile is the main point of interaction with people. When a user finds you in any way they will most likely go to your profile and check you out.
A good profile will help users understand what your brand stands for and how you will help them if they click follow.
- Choose a username that reflects your brand name. If the original is already being used, you can get creative and go for something that still shows what your brand is.
- Go for a profile photo that showcases your identity. The profile icons on Instagram are small so you need to make sure that the profile photo you choose looks good on smaller sizes.
- The bio description is important as well. Describe your brand in a couple of sentences o, and you can use emojis and hashtags that are connected with your page.
- Enter a website where people can look for more information if they are interested.
- Enter an e-mail or a phone number where people can contact you.
Your profile can be the ultimate business card. It’s the place that needs to be perfect because it offers a big opportunity for converting users to followers.
6. Create a content plan with a posting schedule
Social media algorithms tend to favor profiles that post consistently. That is why it’s useful for you to plan ahead for the content that you want to post.
Creating a content calendar is a good way to plan, organize, and schedule specific posts in the upcoming period.
Your content plan can include detailed information about the content format, time of posting, and so on.
You can create a posting schedule on paper or you can use digital software like Later to plan out and schedule your posts.
You can also take a look at your Audience Insights to discover things about the days and times that your audience is most active on the platform.
7. Take advantage of Post and Profile Insights
To grow your brand on Instagram you need to learn and understand your audience and the content they need. This is where the analytics that Instagram offers come into play.
The content you post on the platform collects data and information that can be really useful for getting insight into the performance of your content.
By analyzing this data you can measure the outcome of your posts, see works best for your brand so you can focus on creating more of that content in the future.
There are two ways to look at your Instagram Insights and they are profile and single post insights.
Profile Insights can tell you how many accounts you’ve reached in the past period and the actions that people take on your account. Such as reach, impressions, and profile visits.
Profile data also tells you about your audience, where they are located, what is their age, most active hours, and so on. This can be useful for making decisions about what kind of content can cater to your audience and how to post.
Single Post Insights give you stats on how many people saw and interacted with a specific post. Where people find your posts, and how they interact is a good indicator of your reach and quality.
You can use your top-performing posts to figure out why they worked so well. You can also try to re-create the same type of posts.
Check on your Instagram Insights regularly to keep track of your performance compared to your goals.
What is next?
Remember that it might take some time to get any meaningful traction on Instagram because the platform is oversaturated by now, so don’t give up after a week.
Focus on your audience’s needs, deliver valuable content to them, and try to stay as consistent as possible with posting your content.
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