How To Use Instagram For B2B Marketing
Are you a B2B firm who has been putting off creating an Instagram account for your business? Do you believe in the conventional idea that Instagram is only good for direct-to-consumer businesses? If you think Instagram is more suited for highly visual, personal content like food pictures and selfies, or feel that your target audience is more likely to respond on LinkedIn, here are some facts that will change your mind.
Why Instagram is The Place to Be
- Instagram is wildly popular with 1 billion monthly users as of June 2018, and has the most number of monthly active users in Brazil and in India.
- Of late, Instagram has emerged as the fastest growing platform for B2B Marketers with 400 million daily.
- And yes their audience has a definite skew towards young users, but don’t assume only teenagers are on the platform, because the fastest growing demographic on Instagram is in the 30-49 years age group.
- As this infographic will show, Instagram also has the highest engagement rate as compared to all other social media platforms, with 22.53 interactions per thousand followers, as compared to just 0.86 on Twitter and 1.09 on LinkedIn.
This is why it makes business sense to be on Instagram even if you don’t market directly to the end consumer, and in this post, we will describe a few strategies to devise interesting content to suit your marketing needs.
Getting started: Create a free business account
First off, it is important to set up a free business account on the platform if you wish to take advantage of its built-in analytics tool. This lets you see real-time metrics on how your stories and promoted posts perform throughout the day and how followers are interacting with your posts and stories. Make sure to craft a short but telling bio. Include a tiny URL to the latest post on your company blog or landing page, and use relevant hashtags generously to improve discoverability.
Offer an insight into your company culture
Followers are more likely to be interested in behind-the-scenes stories that give them an insight into your company culture. What are your employees like? What are they working on? How did your company start? Who are your partners? What are informal events like at your workplace? Take your consumer to work for a day. You can create interesting content and not bore your audience with product photographs and straight up advertising when you showcase what goes on within your office. These posts can also help you improve trust and public perception, hire new talent and get you noticed. Mailchimp is a great example here, they use their logo in interesting ways to convey what their brand stands for, and showcase how fun their working environment is.
Make your customer the hero
If you feel that your product or service isn’t very visually interesting, you can turn to customer stories to save the day. Take a look at The UPS Store page which champions America’s small businesses and crafters as its hero. PayPal is another example of a brand which encourages their customers to submit their own stories with hashtags like #Paypalit and #Paypalcandothat, to demonstrate the power of their brand to make life simpler for other businesses.
Humanise your brand
If you are looking to build an instant bond with your customers why not go the tried and tested route by showcasing some 'awwdorable' pictures? If you do not already have a #bringyourkidtoworkday you can humanise your brand online, and offline, with activities that are sure to play well on social media. Also, no one can resist pictures of cute furry animals so why not get them to become your brand ambassadors, with a bring your pets to work photoshoot, or tagging your employees' pets on your company page? The most successful companies in the world like Cisco, FedEx and PayPal feature dogs on their page with an appropriate handle like #officedogs - because it works!
Here are some other tips to add generate interesting content for your handle:
- Leverage the Instagram Live feature, use stories to demo products and create a buzz around an event with pre- and post-event videos, and tag other companies who are attending.
- Share inspiring and motivational quotes, statistics and customer testimonials.
- Generate timely content around important events, like Earth Day and the holidays.
- Ask influencers who embody your brand values, or use your products and services to take over your account. The hashtag #instagramtakeover is a very popular way to interact with audiences.
We hope you found this post useful and decide to embrace Instagram for your B2B firm.
Preeti Prakash | Journalist