Should your business be using Instagram?
When it comes to social media, Instagram still appears to challenge many companies. It seems for that for businesses looking to attract consumers, Instagram is a fantastic way to engage with their audience, but is this also the case for businesses who are trying to attract business from other companies? In this article we will observe business to consumer pages as well as business to business pages.
With 70 million photos posted on Instagram every day, businesses really have to post attention-grabbing, unique photos to ensure that they don’t get scrolled past. Statistics show that 67% of consumers consider detailed images to be more valuable than product information; a picture really is worth a thousand words. When businesses post attractive images, they can appeal to customers without explicitly selling anything, allowing viewers to make their own decisions based on the creative photos on the page.
The best Instagram pages succeed through a good strategy. The right content can enable businesses to increase their audience, followers and clients and will also solidify their brand. It is important to stay recognisable and create popular posts that users want to follow. Another prevalent way to take advantage of Instagram is through using regular hashtags; they increase the life of posts by linking key words - making photos discoverable forever.
Below are some examples of how business to consumer companies use Instagram and which tips you should be taking from them.
Lego are leading the way with their Instagram content, aiming their posts at a wide audience. They post regular photos, captioning each one using hashtags and appropriate information about their product, without any hard selling. Their captions have a hint of humour which attracts more attention to their page. They promote new products using live videos and reveal their collaborations with other businesses such as Disney. As well as this, they post photos of customers using their products – a great way to involve their audience and create an interactive Instagram page.
Vans is known for its stylish shoes but the brand’s use of social media is just as stylish. Vans’ Instagram account displays unique content that appeals to a varied audience. Their photos include product shots and action shots of people wearing their favourite Vans gear. One of their most engaging posts revealed a video showing their partnership with Marvel Comics. The caption read ‘Coming soon… Be the first to know! Sign up now.’
If that isn’t persuasion, I don’t know what is!
Staples are particularly good at grabbing attention and engaging their followers through asking questions and being consistent with their playful personality. They appeal to their audience by asking questions such as ‘that’s pretty much our day, how about yours? Tell us in emojis.’ Another way that staples publicise their products on Instagram is with celebrity endorsement. This widens their audience and also verifies their business.
As you can see, many businesses are able to provide us with an insight to how they use Instagram to promote their brand to customers. However, it seems more difficult for businesses to use Instagram to attract business from other companies. I searched for the top six law firms on Instagram; only one of them had an Instagram account. Although there are 41 engaging posts on the page, the account does not regularly post photos and therefore doesn’t display interactivity. The lack of Instagram content within top law firms allows us to question; are other social media more important to law firms? Are there too many to choose from? Or is it simply that it is too time consuming to post onto Instagram each day, considering the high expectation of content?
Since this is the area we specialise in, it’s only fair to look at how accountancy firms use Instagram to promote their businesses too. As we know, social media dominates our culture and is a great opportunity for networking, marketing and branding. Studies indicate that LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter are most widely used in the accounting industry, making those three essentials for a firm. So why are some firms not using Instagram to promote their business? It seems that similarly to law firms, accountancy firms are inconsistent with their Instagram presence. Instagram business accounts allow followers to see that the people behind the firm are actually human. This is a great way to show off employees hard at work or having fun or even the environment they work in. It is also great for spreading good news about clients or thanking them for their business.
A good example of an accountancy firm who are using Instagram to their advantage is Cone Accounting. They are particularly creative with their photo stream and how they appeal to their Instagram audience. Let’s look at a breakdown of their page too see how they do business.
One of the big 4, PwC also have a strong Instagram following on their business pages. They have an account to promote PwC in each country with an office while also maintaining a ‘Life at PwC’ page holding 18 thousand followers. Here is a breakdown of the positives of their Instagram page.