Instagram was launched in 2010 and has since become one of the world’s largest social media platforms. The social media giant sees more than 1 billion active users each month and 500 million daily users on Instagram Stories, making it an incredible platform for marketing your business.
As of 2021, 116 million Instagram users come from the USA, 73 million from India, and 72 million from Brazil. Out of its total user base, 43% of Instagram’s users identify as women, while 31% are men.
Users between the ages of 25-34 represent the largest audience on Instagram, closely followed by 18-24 year olds. Instagram users aren’t just active—they’re engaged. About 60% of users check the app daily. A poll by Ipsos shows that the younger the user, the more likely they are to use the app multiple times a day.
Some of the top interests of these users include (in order of most pursued) travel, music, food/drink, fashion, film, health/fitness, technology, skincare/cosmetics, sports, and news.
As a photo and video sharing app, Instagram gives users three main options to choose from to create and share content: feed posts, stories, and Reels.
Posting to your Instagram feed means your post will be a fixture on your profile page, and it will show up in the feeds of people who follow you. You have the option to post a single photo or video, or multiple photos that post as a carousel for users to swipe through.
Another way you can post multiple photos is to download the “Layout” app, a sister app to Instagram. In the app, you can turn multiple photos into a collage with different layout options.
In addition to adding a caption, before publishing your post, you can also add hashtags and a location. Instagram has just about any location you could think to select for your post, including some specific locations like large or annual events, parks, arenas, or more broad locations like cities, states, or even countries.
If you are organizing your profile to follow a specific aesthetic or preparing for a new announcement, you can now archive posts. This will take them off your profile without permanently deleting them. You can always allow them back on your profile later!
The options on Instagram stories are endless! Not only can you repost something from your feed to your story, but you can also post any photos, videos, or boomerangs! If you are familiar with Snapchat, Instagram stories are similar, but they have even more features.
You can use the in-app camera to take a photo or record a video with features like “Photobooth,” which turns multiple photos into a small video, and “Superzoom,” which zooms in on whatever you are taking a video of. You can also add stickers that show your location, tag someone, add a hashtag, play a song, or show a countdown, or post interactive stickers to quiz your followers, take a poll, or allow followers to ask you questions.
If you have a logo or additional photo (or multiple photos!) you want to add to your story, save it to your camera roll, and then copy and paste it into your story on top of any of the other features you have already added!
Unless saved to your “Highlights” tab, everything uploaded to your story will vanish from the public eye after 24 hours. The uploader may access these files after they expire (in Instagram Archives), regardless of whether they’re on the highlights tab, but others cannot see them.
Launched in August 2020, Reels is the newest feature to Instagram. Similar to TikTok, Reels was created as a way to record and edit short 15- 30-second videos with audio, effects, and plenty of new creative tools.
All editing can be done within the app, and you can record one straight clip, a series of clips, or pull video uploads from your gallery. You can add text, stickers, or filters, alter the speed, add music or other sounds, and much more.
Reels are great for keeping up with trends and allowing people to connect with your business and the team that runs it! As these short video platforms become more popular, new trends are emerging that are paired with certain songs and sounds. Putting your own spin on these trends will not only give you a fun way to educate people about your products or services, but by creating videos with the right sounds, you can put your content in front of a whole new audience without even having to promote it!
Make sure you hit the “Also Share to Feed” button before posting. As long as you have a public account (which your business should!), your Reel can be shared to the Explore page, where it has the chance to be seen and discovered by a wider community.
Advertising on Instagram
Instagram advertising can be done either in the app on your phone, or through your business’ Facebook page. You can promote feed posts or stories (even previously posted ones!).
When you set up your ad, first you’ll have to choose your marketing objective (brand awareness, reach, traffic, app installs, post engagement, video views, or conversions). Next, you’ll set up your target audience, where you can choose country, region, state, city, zip code, age, gender, language, interests, and even more specific demographic information like education level, relationship status, and more! Then you’ll choose where you want to place the ad (on your feed or story), set up your budget and schedule, and finally, add your content and post!
Instagram allows you to use its advanced marketing tools to reach your specific target audience. You can choose to focus your promoted posts on a specific gender, age group, geographical region, or people who identify with certain interests. The app uses Facebook’s demographic data to serve your ads to the appropriate audience, which is incredibly valuable since Facebook has a thorough history of demographic targeting.
But promoting posts isn’t the only way to advertise on Instagram. Instagram now has a “Shop” section where users can browse their favorite products. Connected through your Facebook business page, these items can be advertised on the app through influencer posts or directly through posts uploaded to a brand’s page. Similar to how you see who is tagged, your audience can click on the post to see what product is tagged, where they will be directed to the Shop to purchase.
Instagram can be a great tool for any business to employ in their marketing strategy, but it’s important to note that the app’s audience is generally less professional than other platforms. When creating your posts and ads, make sure you have a good mix of fun and creative content to grab your audience’s attention.
Need help making sure your business is using Instagram to its fullest potential? Reach out to us today and let’s chat about what we can do to make your social presence stand out!