Instagram is a social networking app that allows its users to share photos and short videos. Because of its many capabilities Instagram can play a considerable role in brand building if it is used well. These are 5 strategies that I’ve used and you can use to help build your brand via Instagram:

 
Post Great Photos & Videos Along With Awesome Caption

Instagram’s primary capability is photo and video sharing.  The average Instagram user is looking to find great photos and videos that align with their interests: fashion, clothing, shoes, nature, photography, branding, books, entrepreneurship. Profit from this by posting photos and videos of great quality (low pixelation, creatively and beautifully composed). Make your content even more impactful by coupling it with caption that tells the story behind the capture, a popular quote or a story relevant to your industry.

 

Hashtag

Hashtags provide a simple way for Instagram’s  400 million users to find content that interests them. You can find your brand in the sight of the right people by using the right hashtags. New brands often try to build by using customized hashtags. This is great but it is  unlikely that a fairly new or unknown brand will gain any traction if only customized hashtags are used.  For these types of brands, the way to gain the most from using hashtags is to find the right balance between customized hashtags and hashtags that are already popular.

 

Follow Back

Large brands such as Nike, Adidas, or Beats By Dre have a  fairly large number to mark the “followers” count in comparison to a much smaller number to mark the “following” count. However, this is not a strategy that I recommend for brands that have only written the first sentence of their story. A more practical strategy involves following the people who follow you. Unless their content is downright offensive, it is very likely that these people have followed you because your brand is aligned with their interests. Also, you can learn quite a bit about your target market by observing the trends and topics of interest that your followers are attracted to.

 

Share

One of the capabilities of Instagram is that it allows you to share your photos or videos on other social networks such as Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. When you share on other social media networks you increase your reach by thousands and even millions. So… Happy Sharing!

 

Interact With Your Followers

Instagram gives its users the ability to interact via direct message or via comments. Many users will feel uncomfortable asking questions or sharing personal stories publicly but will feel comfortable doing so via direct messages. Interact with your followers by answering questions about your products or services. Also, be sure to make your followers feel  valued by publicly acknowledging compliments or answering questions using the comments.

Apply these strategies and let me know how effective you think they are. Also, look out for  Part 2 where I share with you 5 additional strategies that you can use to build your brand via Instagram.