Simple Instagram Hacks To Boost Your Business Using Instagram To Fuel Your Business According to Adweek, there are 400 million monthly users on Instagram and it is the second most widely used social media outlet (next to Facebook, of course). This is not only important because it’s an effing huge number, but because in the world of tech it’s the key performance indicator – and an awful lot of people who you could be targeting with your business Instagram account. I get it though, Instagram might not be your thing. If that’s the case, I’d recommend hiring out right away – that’s just how important of a tool this platform is for developing brand identity, bringing on more clients, and most importantly – fueling your business as a whole. If you don’t quite have the funds yet to hire someone to help you out, here are some tips to get you started on rocking this social media platform. 1. Remember that it’s owned by Facebook. In April of 2012, Facebook bought Instagram, a start-up at that point. Now it’s a well oiled machine, but still a part of the Facebook portfolio. What does this mean for you? It means that you need to keep in mind that they are businesses looking to make money, just like you. Whenever you boost a post on Facebook (i.e. paying for advertising), you can choose to have it sent through to Instagram as well. This is a great tool to use and not a huge investment as you can set your budget accordingly. On the flip side, you have to keep in mind that with algorithm changes it’s even more important to have a budget for this type of advertising because your posts aren’t going to be seen by nearly as many of your followers if you don’t. Posts are also shown in order of popularity instead of chronologically, so you really have to play the game and learn what triggers your readers to interact with your posts. 2. Make sure you have a business profile and use your account as a business. Say buh-bye to posting personal pictures and having a personal account for your business, as you must create separate accounts. You can now have a business account on Instagram (you can convert on your profile page with the click of a button) and this will give you access to important analytics that give you insight on the best time of day to post to reach your demographic. It also switches your profile a little bit by giving you a big blue “contact” button on your profile – allowing people to instantly reach out to you. 3. Make daily use of Instagram Stories. Instagram Stories are basically Snapchat on Instagram and they are important for so many reasons. Here’s why: It allows you to integrate video and additional ways to personally connect with your customers. We all can tell that they most beautiful pictures are the ones that get the most likes, right? Well stories give you a place to post the not-so-pretty stuff that still gives a look at what’s happening throughout your business’s day. You can use it to give a sneak peek (build excitement) about something to come and also use for behind the scenes looks at your business operations. Lastly: posting frequent stories keeps you in the forefront of your customers Instagram homepage. We follow a lot of people on Instagram making it easy to forget about different accounts, so posting often keeps you on your customer’s minds every single time they login. 4. Collaborate If you are working with another business on a project or post a picture where tagging another brand that’s in the photo would be relevant, don’t hesitate to do so. More often than not, they will give you some love back and it can bring a new audience your way. 5. Amplify Your Reach With Hashtags Hashtags are pretty much everything on Instagram because it’s how people search for content and then ultimately discover your business. First, make sure not to clog your post up with hashtags. The best alternative is to leave about 5 lines of spaces underneath your caption and then list about 10 or so hashtags there. Beyond that, you have to make sure you are tagging photos with the right hashtags. To do this, search and see what’s trending and for the rest, find other images from similar accounts that are doing well and utilize their tags on your post. Copying and saving these somewhere for easy copy/paste access for future photos will also make your life so much easier! Allison Cooper Allison Cooper is a full time blogger at Project Motherhood and freelance writer. You can find her balancing her time equally between writing, spending time with her family, running, or sipping on strong coffee! Connect with her on twitter for daily chit chat and mama musings!