Instagram can be an excellent way for your business to connect with potential customers while they’re scrolling through their feeds. And it’s no longer just for B2C businesses- people of all ages and in a variety of roles use Instagram in their downtime.
However, we’ve all seen some social media fails by businesses over the past few years. And unfortunately, those fails tend to go viral. Even if you don’t commit a social media faux pas, there are still plenty of mistakes to be made that can cause potential customers to eye-roll and damage your reputation online.
Here are the top 5 mistakes to avoid when using Instagram for your business:
- Being Too Salesy
Every business owner and marketer wants to see their sales numbers increase. But Instagram is still a social platform- not a shopping platform. Sure, you should occasionally post about new product releases and sales, but your feed should mostly be messages and photos that demonstrate your brand voice or showcase your team members.
- Buying Followers
“I would never do that!” Well, plenty of businesses do. Many marketers and business owners feel the need to quickly get to 1,000, 10,000 or even 100,000 followers. After all, the more followers you have, the more followers you’ll get- that’s social proof at work.
Unfortunately, this is a bad idea for a number of reasons. First, most Instagram users can easily spot this shady practice- after all, if you have 15,000 followers and you’re only getting 20 likes per post, something is going wrong.
This is terrible for engagement since those accounts are fake. They’re often robots, and Instagram is getting better and better and spotting fake followers- and the businesses that buy them. One of the ways it fights this behaviour is by implementing shadowbans. That means that you could add as many hashtags as you like, but only your followers would be able to see your posts. It can be very difficult to get these bans lifted, and often you’ll need to start a brand new account.
- Not Optimising Your Bio
Instagram allows you to showcase your business in your bio. This is a valuable opportunity, but you’d be surprised at how many people forget to do it. Make sure that you’re not one of these people and get your bio sorted as soon as you set up your account. Make sure to include contact information, including a link to your website.
- Too Many Hashtags
Hashtags are a good thing on Instagram, but you need to use them the right way. Avoid making every word in your description a hashtag. Instead, post your hashtags below to make it easier for potential customers to read what you have to say. Make sure those hashtags are relevant, and insert your personality for one or two of them- don’t be afraid to be a little quirky.
There are a number of ways to use hashtags- you can use them to add yourself into a particular trend/conversation, find new followers by making the most of a trending hashtag, or create an event hashtag for your business.
- Forgetting About Your Employees
Employees are an excellent way to increase your engagement, and when they comment and like your posts, it shows that they’re invested in your business. Consider starting a competition to encourage your employees to interact with your brand on Instagram. Your employees are your ambassadors, and it can also be a great idea to feature them in posts as well.
If you need some help getting started with a B2B Instagram strategy, get in touch today.