5 Things Businesses Should Know About Instagram

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A lot of businesses have heard of and are users of the well known Social Media networks: Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. It is important in any Digital Marketing Strategy to also keep an eye on the upcoming Social Media tools. Social Media networks rise and fall; just think about Friends Reunited and MySpace. All businesses should keep their options open and be ready to adapt to changing circumstances and adopt new technologies in order to make the best of their Social Media marketing.

InstagramInstagram is one such rising network you may have heard of. Basically it is a photo sharing system. You take a picture with your smartphone, edit it with the Instagram app, add some useful hashtags and uploaded it for your followers to see and comment on.

The network is very popular and was recently acquired by Facebook. To date though there doesn’t seem to be any major moves to merge the two more closely from a user perspective and both retain distinct brand identities.

As a quick introduction to Instagram here are five things to get you thinking about where (if anywhere) it should sit in your Digital Marketing Strategy.

  1. Instagram is growing. It has 155 million users a month and 55 millions photos are shared a day. That is a lot of imagery and a lot of people looking at it. Some users are your customers or target clients.
  2. Instagram is monetising. The network recently announced it is beginning trials with advertising. At the moment it is with a few select partners but that is likely to change.
  3. Instagram does video. As well as images you can now share up to 15 seconds of video on Instagram. That is quite a long time to get a message across and video continues to grow in popularity with end users. Also, you can prepare video to share outside of Instagram using professional editing tools. This is something it’s Twitter backed 7 second clip rival Vine does not do (yet).
  4. Instagram is primarily a mobile experience. Whilst you can view Instagrams and ‘like’ through a desktop account all the image and video sharing needs to take place through the mobile app (iOS or Android). So to get stuff on to Instagram you need a compatible mobile device.
  5. Instagram has no way of linking to external services outside of the app except on your profile page. So you cannot upload an image and then add a call to action with a usable link in the description field. Essentially Instagram is a contained experience.

So why you should bother? A lot of businesses are connecting with the public in the Instagram space. Although often associated with the fashion industry the service is getting other high-profile users like General Electric sharing a lot of content with a high number of followers.

In terms of testing the platform out to see if it works for you or has potential it is low risk. The platform is free and the tools to edit images and video are straightforward all you need is an Android or iPhone device and something to take a picture of!

Stuart Smith Founder and Chief Shepherd 3 Sheep To find out more about how Digital could help your business, contact us or call 3 Sheep’s Chief Shepherd, Stuart Smith on 0161 408 6626. Or leave a voicemail now using the button on the right of your screen.

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