Instagram for Business Checklist
Instagram has over 800 million active users. Instagrammers like telling stories and sharing everyday. Every Social Media platform is different and businesses should learn to adapt according to how they work. Instagrammers like looking at stories, interesting photos/videos and sharing this content with friends. Instagram has a high rate of interaction and so just posting is not an option. You, as a business, need to build a community and interact with your followers. This Checklist will help you kickstart your profile and the daily use of the application. So let’s start… First you need to install the app on your android/IOS phone and then follow our checklist for the rest. Some of the features may be slightly different based on Android or IOS built. But this will help both types of users.
Step 1 – Set-up your Instagram Profile
- Sign- up on the Instagram App ( or you can sign up using Facebook account ).
- Go to ‘settings’ and switch to a ‘Business’ account. If you have an existing. Once you have a business account you can add your business details and get statistics, advertise, and access a few additional features.
- Make sure your Username is the same as your other social media accounts.
- For your Bio, explain about your business and what your audience can expect in your feed. Add your Website URL.
- Your Profile Photo should be simple and recognizable. Best way to do that is using your company’s Logo.
- Invite your clients and co-workers to follow your account. Follow influencers and followers of competitive brands.
- Urge your audiences to ‘Turn on Post Notifications’ and get notified when you post new content.
Note: If you are handling more than one brand, you can add multiple accounts by going to your settings and selecting ‘Add account’. You can switch between accounts whenever needed, just press and hold the profile icon at the bottom right.
Step 2 – Create a Content Strategy
For an individual profile, you can have scroll through your feed, like and comment on images, this could be enough. But for a Business, Blogger and Influencer profiles, you need to have a elaborate Marketing plan and build a community and get results through your posts.
Creating new posts ( photo / Video / GIFS / Creative designs )
Instagram is all about the visuals, so aim to build a distinct and recognizable brand identity.
- Click good and high quality photos. Make sure you find a good setting, lighting and you are set to click a great photo. You can even use doodles or creative designs as images to posts, this could be a separate bucket of photos.
- Create visually pleasing images and videos for your feed. If you are advertising images of products, then create a template for each type of product line.
- Use video and photo albums. You can use multiple images in one post, which can tell a story about the product/service or give important information about it.
- Stick to the sizing guidelines, there is a specific image size for instagram ( 1000*1000) if you don’t want the white borders. Make sure all your images are the same size.
- Optimize your Captions with Hashtags. Search for your hashtags to find other industry members whose brand aligns with yours and start following them. Use them in your Captions to get your posts noticed by people who search for such hashtags.
- Humanize your Instagram feed/stories by including photos of the people who help run your company. Post interesting stories behind the scenes, what your products can do, how they are made.
Define your Content Style
You need to define your goals in terms of what kind of content do you want your audience to see? What will be the color scheme and style of images? What are the timings you will post? There are important factors for any social media marketing strategy.
- Set a primary Content Bucket. Use secondary Content Buckets, like campaigns, contests, etc to keep the content interesting for your audience.
- Create a theme for your photos. Your Primary Bucket will have a certain theme. Whereas, all the other buckets need to have a theme and style of its own. Keep a consistent theme for the primary bucket.
- Use a distinctive and interesting style guideline. Make it consistent with all your images.
- Make the Caption relevant and specific to the post. Make sure of the holidays, Popular events and hashtags.
- Create a Calendar for your posts and stick to it. At the start of each month or week ( depending on the no. of posts you will be putting up), make a plan for images and caption content. Make sure you include important holidays, events, int’l days celebrated, etc. Your post analytics will prove which timings are working best and post around them.
Keep in mind the following before posting each new image;
- Does this make sense to your audience?
- Is the caption interesting and engaging?
- Does this stand true to your brand and style guide?
- Are you sticking to your Calendar?
Step 3 – Create a brand for your business on IG
- Maintain a Visual Consistency for your feed. By using a certain filter, color scheme, size, etc you can make your brand recognizable to your audience.
- Create a branded Instagram Hashtag for your profile. This Hashtag isn’t just your company name but this relates with your posts and encourages your audience to post images that fit the hashtag.
- Create Hashtags for specific Campaigns and Events you are hosting. Get your audience/customers to post using the same Hashtag.
- Collaborate with Influencers and Bloggers that will be able to help you with reach and growth. People relate to things they post and follow their word.
- Use Links in your Bio to draw followers back to your Website or other pages. Mention in the caption ‘Link in bio’ to get followers to check it.
Step 4 – After Posting – staying connected
- Reply to the Comments. People love it when you interact and notice their comments and take time to reply. It could be an emoji, a simple ‘thanks’ or solving a complaint.
- Utilise the Stories feature, let your community know about the newest posts. Stories are the first thing people see when they login/open the app. Take polls and share the results. If you have a event happening, go ‘Live’ or share snippets/images of the event with your audience.
- Connect and link your other social media profiles to your instagram and vice versa. Let people know you are on instagram through your other social Media handles.
Note: If you are handling multiple accounts, make sure you check other accounts constantly. Be careful which account you are posting on and/or replying to comments on.
Step 5 – Keeping track of results
Business profile comes with the many perks, one of them being analytics. Keeping track of it and making sure you are providing your followers content they want to see is important for your business.
- Periodically check your posts to determine what types of posts are doing better, try to make more of such posts. The ones with more likes and comments will be your inspiration for future posts.
- Keep looking for new Hashtags that align with your business and follow + use them to engage followers.
Next Steps: Would you like to get a handy template for this checklist? Visit our Marketing Tools and get the Instagram for Business Checklist now!