When one talks about Instagram marketing, it is natural to assume that is for businesses wanting to build better engagement for consumer brands, however, it can be as effective for B2B firms with the right approach. Since with the help of specific demographic filters as well as other parameters like interests and past purchase behavior, the target audience can be defined more specifically, it has now become possible for social media marketers to achieve more “bang for the buck” in their marketing campaigns.
Instagram – Leading the Social Media Pack
Being early starters, Facebook and Twitter have for long riding on the top of the social media wave. However, many may not have realized it that Instagram has had a meteoric rise since its inception and has now crossed the one billion user mark, second only to Facebook among all the social media platforms.
The huge popularity that Instagram has particularly with the younger generation, has made almost all businesses sit up and make attempts to reach out to this audience with targeted images and curated content. Not strangely, the engagement level of real Instagram followers is significantly higher than that of all other social media platforms. With a large portion of its audience being outside the US, Instagram also represents a fabulous opportunity for businesses and brands wanting to connect with a global audience.
Instagram for B2B
Today there are over 25 million active business profiles on Instagram. According to studies, more than eighty percent of all Instagram users follow minimum one brand and more than two hundred million users visit a business page every single day. What is even more interesting is that around 50% of the business profiles don’t link to an external website, indicating that they are happy to conduct business on Instagram itself.
Conventionally all the action on Instagram by businesses is by consumer brands and B2B businesses have tended to largely remain content with a very low-profile presence marked by random posts and lack of a coherent approach to social media marketing. The principal reason why B2B businesses have not had much success on Instagram is chiefly due to a lack of creative ingenuity that is able to surpass their obvious disadvantage of not having a really photogenic product to showcase to the target audience. Some tips on effective Instagram marketing for B2B businesses:
Use Infographics to Engage
If you are a business selling industrial goods or even software services, you do not have the same advantage as that of a business selling lifestyle products that are visually appealing or products that can leverage the glamour quotient of models or celebrities. However, the lack of appealing photos should not deter you from engaging with your target audience. For example, if you have interesting data, you can design an informative and engaging infographic that will serve to convey a lot of information in an attractive manner. If you are really creative, you can even come up with a meme specific to your industry sector. When you are in a ‘boring” sector, you will really have to think innovatively and come up with visuals that your target audience will love instead of product photos.
Brand and Community Building
Just because Instagram limits you to a single link in the bio section to an external website, it is no reason why you cannot engage in direct selling by building in direct or subliminal messages into the visual content itself. Instagram is a perfect platform for building brand awareness and with it, the brand image as well as a loyal community of users and followers who believe in the brand and trust the products or services. An excellent way of doing this is by showcasing the inner workings of the organization and even sharing some light-hearted moments with the staff in the workplace. Candid photographs with appropriate comments that will go down well with the target audience can be used. The advantage of doing this is that the business is projected as being warm, friendly, and accessible.
Use Instagram as a Networking Platform
Even though businesses are primarily concerned about how to connect with their target audiences to drive sales revenues, it is possible to achieve this objective by using platforms like Instagram to network with leaders and opinion makers in the industry. While you may be fighting pitched battles to win contracts, you can always use Instagram to connect with the competition and all the stakeholders including suppliers, contractors, regulators, and even your own team members in an informal atmosphere.
Promote Tradeshows and Events
If you are participating in an even or a tradeshow, it becomes very important to cast your net as wide as possible and get the maximum number of your target audience to attend. You can use Instagram to connect with them and keep on encouraging them to visit with news of your participation, including sneak previews of new products. You can also make announcements regarding any talk shows, seminars, press briefings, product launches, etc. so that they can time their visits accordingly. While the event is on, you can keep posting pictures and streaming content as well as organize contests to create excitement around your participation.
For B2B users, Instagram provides the perfect platform for sharing detailed testimonials of customers who have used the product or service and have been delighted with the experience. If in case, you are not getting the testimonials naturally, you can go ahead and ask your customers directly to share their experiences. You can even encourage some users to specifically review your products by offering it to them free of cost. Testimonials don’t have to be necessarily dry documents, you can make very interesting videos with customers speaking about the various features and benefits interspersed with shots of the product or service in action.
With a little imagination and innovative thought, B2B businesses can use Instagram to great effect to build brand awareness and drive conversions. Even though the product or service may not be visually appealing and very technical, you can engage with target audiences in a large number of ways that will appeal to them.
Author bio: Kristen Smith is a Professional writer. She has written many articles on Social Media. She is quite experienced in the field of web marketing as well as website designing. She can help you to get more real Instagram followers to increase the revenues of your business.