The Top 5 Instagram Marketing Tips for Business

This article is an excerpt from the Shortform book guide to "Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook" by Gary Vaynerchuk. Shortform has the world's best summaries and analyses of books you should be reading.

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Do you need Instagram marketing tips for business? How is marketing on Instagram different than other social media platforms?

Instagram is a very visual platform. It is a photo and video-sharing social media platform that’s owned by Facebook and is becoming increasingly popular. Below we explore what sets Instagram apart and provide five Instagram marketing tips.

Keep reading for more Instagram marketing tips for business.

Note: The information in this article is from the book Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook by Gary Vaynerchuk. The book was published in 2013 and some statistics and information may be out of date but the advice is still valuable.

Instagram Marketing Tips for Business

Like Pinterest, Instagram is a very visual platform. Instagram is a photo and video-sharing social media platform that’s owned by Facebook. Images are becoming more popular than text and will be the future of social media. 

The audience: In December 2012, there were 130 million monthly active users. Users upload 40 million photos a day and there are 1,000 comments per second.

Who uses it: Instagram is a young person’s app. Kids are on Instagram while their parents are on Facebook. 

Why they use it: Instagram is a consumption platform. People want to look at each other’s high-quality photos—photos often tell a story better than words. Additionally, Instagram has unique photo-editing capabilities.

Notable Features

Instagram has several features that distinguish it from other social media platforms:

Feature #1: No reposting. You can only post your own content, not reshare other people’s. However, you can get around this by using outside apps, or by screenshotting a post and then posting the screenshot.

Feature #2: No linking. Posts can’t be linked to outside sites. However, you can get around this by putting a URL into the photo’s description. It won’t be as effective as if the link was direct, but people will figure it out, and you can encourage them to go to the trouble of copy/pasting by giving discount codes.

Feature #3: Integration with other social media platforms. Users can connect their Instagram accounts to Twitter and Facebook and post images to all three platforms at once.

Feature #4: “Baked-in utility.” Baked-in utility means a platform is good at what it’s designed to do. Instagram is designed to help users take good smartphone photos.

Feature #5: Explore. Explore is an Instagram page that features the best content on the site. If you can get your content featured on Explore, its visibility increases exponentially—everyone, not just your followers, will see it.

Tips for Creating Good Instagram Content

To create effective and engaging Instagram content, use the following tips:

Instagram Marketing Tip #1: Use hashtags freely. On Twitter, hashtags are used sparingly for humor and irony, but on Instagram, use as many as you want because they’re how people find your posts (clicking on a hashtag brings users to a page of all the images that use that hashtag). You can place the hashtags in either the photo description or a comment on the photo.

  • Example of good content: Comedy Central shared a photo of some of their merchandise on a shelf and included the hashtag #shelfie, which is a pun on the popular #selfie tag.

Instagram Marketing Tip #2: Cater to the younger generations. Many people on Instagram are young.

Instagram Marketing Tip #3: Create holiday-themed content. Holiday-themed photos tend to create engagement because they evoke excitement and nostalgia.

Instagram Marketing Tip #4: Use high-quality, indie, artsy photos. Good photos are important on all social media platforms, but especially on Instagram, because, like Pinterest, it’s a visual platform. People don’t visit Instagram to see stock photos and ads.

Instagram Marketing Tip #5: Pay attention to placement. For example, if your image has a heart in it, crop the image so that the heart of the “like” button lines up with it.

  • Example of good content: Gansevoort Hotel posted a photo of the ocean rolling onto the beach with the sun reflecting on it in the shape of a heart. When users roll their mouse over the photo to like it, the “like” heart lines up with the heart in the photo.
The Top 5 Instagram Marketing Tips for Business

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  • Why creating strong social media content is like boxing
  • How the rise of social media has brought many changes to marketing
  • How to build a connection and then convert a sale

Hannah Aster

Hannah graduated summa cum laude with a degree in English and double minors in Professional Writing and Creative Writing. She grew up reading books like Harry Potter and His Dark Materials and has always carried a passion for fiction. However, Hannah transitioned to non-fiction writing when she started her travel website in 2018 and now enjoys sharing travel guides and trying to inspire others to see the world.

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