The short answer is yes! If you have your own small business and you’re not on Instagram you are missing out on so many potential sales. If you have a product based business with a target audience of 16-50 years of age you need to click onto the app store and download Instagram asap. If you are one man/woman band you are the best person to showcase your business on Instagram, after all people buy from people. So sharing who you are and what you do via social media helps build rapport, trust and ultimately to sales! Still need convincing? Let me to give you five reasons why Instagram can work for your small business.
1. It’s how customers can find you
Think of Instagram as your virtual store front, it could be the first time someone has ever come across your business. It can communicate who you are, what you sell and how they can buy it, and most importantly why they should buy from you and not someone else.
2. You can generate direct sales via Instagram
If you have an online store that integrates with Facebook you can also integrate it with Instagram and make your images shoppable! That means someone can click an image on your grid and then buy whats on it! This makes the customer journey so much shorter and easier. For further info on how to set this up click here
3. It’s free!
You don’t always need to spend money on expensive ads whether via social media or in print. You can be your very own marketing team via Insta. If you’re a own person business your time is super precious, I get that, but Insta when done well is worth investing time in. You don’t need to be on there all hours to make it worthwhile. Setting aside time to plan content and to interact with other accounts will all boost your visability.
4. You can speak directly to your customers and target market
One of the best things about Insta and social media in general is that customers can interact with you directly. When you manage your own Instagram and someone direct messages you with a sizing query you can reply straight away. You can build a rapport with potential customers and relationships with loyal customers that will end up being your biggest supporters. I love sharing products I’ve bought from small online stores and tagging in the shop so others can find it.
5. It’s a great way of getting feedback and finding out what your customers want
Instagram is not just about sharing pretty images of your products. It’s a fantastic way of finding out what your customers want. You can ask questions in the captions. You can chat to them over Instagram Stories and even set up polls. It can inform your future product lines and even help you decide which product to launch and when.
My top tips for getting started
- Make sure that it’s clear from your bio what your business is and what you do. Have a direct link to your store/website
- Mix up your content. Don’t just show product images, make sure there’s lifestyle photos and share about yourself too – afterall people buy from people
- Think about your overall aesthetic, does your account, ‘grid’ look good?
- Take the time to interact. Rather than just posting content and running spend some time before and after you post replying to any comments, liking other pictures from accounts you follow. Find and follow complimentary businesses and potential customers. All in all, build a sense of community – Instagram loves that and will show your posts to more of your followers.
- Try and be consistent with when you post and how often. Don’t post 3 posts one day and then none for the rest of the week. Some people swear by posting at the same time of day each day, or just first thing in the morning or in the evening. Why not think about when your target customer is most likely to be on Instagram.
If you’d like to know more about using Instagram for your business I run Instagram group workshops, and I also create bespoke 1-1 power sessions that can be held face to face over coffee if you live in the Preston area or via video call. Get in touch here: firstname.lastname@example.org
Morgana is the founder of CWS Creatives and a social media coach for small businesses and entrepreneurs, specialising in Instagram and Pinterest. Based in the North West of the UK, where she lives with her husband and two daughters. She particularly enjoys a Netflix binge watch and cannot function without black coffee and dark chocolate digestives.