Launching a business on Instagram can be a difficult endeavour.
With a large amount of competition, it can be difficult to stand out from the crowd and gain a truly loyal audience that’ll back your brand.
To help you with the process, we’ve uncovered 9 essential tips that you’ll need to follow to successfully launch your business on Instagram.
If you’re wanting to watch a video instead of reading, check out this great video by Santrel Media, which gives a great overview about starting an Instagram business.
Why Start a Business on Instagram?
So many people are starting Instagram businesses nowadays, so there must be a good reason for it!
Here’s 5 reasons why you’ll want to start your business on Instagram:
- Wide Audience Reach: Instagram boasts over a billion active users, offering access to a vast and diverse audience.
- Visual Storytelling: Instagram’s emphasis on visual content allows businesses to tell their brand story creatively and effectively.
- Cost-Effective: Launching a business on Instagram is often more cost-effective than setting up a physical storefront or investing heavily in traditional advertising.
- Targeted Marketing: Instagram’s advertising tools enable businesses to target specific demographics, interests, and behaviors, ensuring messages reach the right audience.
- Engagement: Instagram users tend to engage with brands more actively than on other social platforms, fostering meaningful connections.
How Do I Start My Business on Instagram?
To assist you in kickstarting your business (or taking it to the next level) on Instagram, we’ve created this 7-step process:
Step 1: Choose A Great Instagram Name
Naming your business is a substantial challenge, but don’t neglect the Instagram aspect.
Besides securing an available Instagram handle (preferably consistent across all social media platforms), consider your hashtags. With creative hashtag projects gaining popularity, having an active branded hashtag that customers are eager to use can be a significant Instagram asset.
Herschel’s #WellTravelled hashtag has been used over 700,000 times, compared to #HerschelSupply’s 150,000 uses. If you’re launching a new business, a brand name that doubles as an aspirational hashtag could be the key to your Instagram success.
Step 2: Make Your Images Aesthetically Pleasing
Before inviting friends, family, and followers to your Instagram channel, ensure it showcases excellence.
Post a few photos (3-5) to provide a glimpse of the content they can expect from you. Your visual content should communicate your brand and business identity. Wait until you have a stunning preview feed before launching your Instagram presence.
Step 3: Direct All Traffic To Your Instagram
If Instagram is your chosen platform for your business, make your Instagram profile the go-to destination for information about your launch date, products, and other essential updates.
Redirect all traffic from blog posts, emails, and your website to your Instagram profile, giving you a head start in building your Instagram community.
Complementing this strategy with regular postings on the account keeps it fresh in the minds of your new followers, fostering community engagement. While this approach may not suit every business—some may prefer directing traffic to a newsletter sign-up page—it’s a winning strategy for those aiming to make a splash on Instagram.
Step 4: Engage The Instagram Community in Beta Testing
When launching a new business, gathering feedback on your ideas, concepts, and products during the early stages is crucial. To ensure your business thrives on Instagram, involve members of the Instagram community in your testing phase to gain valuable insights.
This strategy not only gets you valuable feedback from real users, it also drums up excitement as people will be able to see your product’s development and feel that they can contribute to the final product they’ll buy.
Step 5: Cultivate Your Following
To successfully launch your business on Instagram, it’s essential to build anticipation before going live.
If you’re going to release a product, build excitement by posting sneak peeks of your new release in the weeks leading up to the big launch. You can learn more about doing that in our full guide to launching a product on Instagram here.
Step 6: Offer Exclusive Instagram Perks
After building your Instagram following and curating an outstanding feed, keep your customers and community engaged by providing Instagram-exclusive incentives, perks, rewards, or discounts.
Whether it’s a unique discount code only found on Instagram or an Instagram giveaway, offering a little can yield substantial returns.
Step 7: Be Consistent
Growing your business on Instagram requires patience and commitment, and the effort never truly ends. Scheduling Instagram posts in advance is an effective method for staying organized and on top of your Instagram schedule.
Even after your business launch, continue networking with other Instagram users by participating in various hashtags.
Instagram For Business Checklist
Worried about whether you’ve got everything sorted when setting up your Instagram account for your business?
Don’t worry, just follow our simple checklist and you’ll be setup in no time.
Part 1: Establishing the Basics
In this section, we focus on laying the essential groundwork for your Instagram profile, covering the fundamental elements that might seem obvious but are critical for a successful start.
- Select Email & Password: Whether it’s for your personal account or a client’s, ensure clear communication to avoid permission issues.
- Choose a Clear Username: Opt for a concise, brand-representative username that’s easy to read, remember, and tag. Prepare alternatives in case your first choice is taken.
- Pick the Right Profile Photo: Ideally, use a 180 x 180-pixel image (at least 110 x 110) that is clear and legible, especially if it includes text like your brand name.
- Craft Your Profile Name: While using your brand name is solid, consider adding relevant keywords to boost profile visibility. You have up to 30 characters.
- Write an Informative Bio: Use the 150-character limit wisely to convey who you are and what you do. Use the last line as a call-to-action for the link below.
- Add a Website Link: This is prime real estate on your profile. Unless you have over 10k followers, it’s the only functional link allowed, so make it count.
Part 2: Crafting Engaging Content
Now, let’s dive into the core of your profile—content. This includes imagery, captions, hashtag strategies, and more, all of which will define your Instagram presence.
- Define Your Imagery Style: Carefully consider your visual content. Balance different styles and maintain a consistent aesthetic.
- Launch with At Least 6 Grid Posts: Start with enough content to make your profile appear active. Your early posts are crucial for building your audience.
- Build Hashtag Collections: Prepare sets of up to 30 hashtags for future posts. Research and plan to save time when publishing.
- Brainstorm Instagram Story Topics: Stories are discoverable and expand your reach; plan content even if you don’t post immediately.
- Plan Instagram Highlight Topics (with Covers): Highlights offer a chance to showcase your brand; consider creating covers for a polished look.
- Create a Content Calendar: Plan at least a month ahead to avoid scrambling for ideas. A well-thought-out calendar ensures consistency.
Part 3: Navigating the Logistics
Creating your profile is just the beginning. To sustain it, you need a strategy and tools for the long term.
- Set a Posting Schedule: Initially, establish a schedule for consistency. Adjust as you gather data on your audience’s activity.
- Choose Posting Tools: Instagram lacks native scheduling; explore third-party scheduling tools like Buffer.
- Build a Follow List: Identify related profiles and potential followers in your industry or target audience to engage with.
- Plan Profile Interactions: Set goals for daily, weekly, or monthly interactions, such as liking, commenting, and following.
- Add Instagram Link to Your Website: Promote your Instagram profile on your website to increase visibility.
Part 4: Leveraging Business Benefits
For businesses aiming for Instagram success, there are specific steps to consider.
- Switch to a Professional Account: Upgrade to a professional account to access profile insights and enable an Instagram Shop. Linking to a Facebook page is an option.
- Set Up Your Instagram Shop: Use Facebook’s Catalog Manager to create a product catalog and link it to your Instagram profile for shopping features.
- Launching a business on Instagram can be challenging due to intense competition and the need to stand out.
- To succeed, follow these 9 essential tips for a successful Instagram business launch.
- Reasons to start a business on Instagram include its wide audience reach, visual storytelling, cost-effectiveness, targeted marketing, and high engagement.
- The 7-step process for launching your business on Instagram involves selecting a great name, creating aesthetically pleasing images, directing all traffic to your Instagram, engaging the Instagram community in beta testing, cultivating your following, offering exclusive perks, and maintaining consistency.
- Ensure you’ve established the basics, crafted engaging content, navigated the logistics, and leveraged business benefits for a successful Instagram business launch.
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) cover introducing your business, advertising, the number of posts before launch, launch announcements, first posts, and gaining followers.
- With these insights and steps, you’re well-equipped to build a thriving business presence on Instagram and effectively connect with your target audience.
- How do I introduce my business on Instagram?
- Start with a clear and concise bio.
- Share high-quality, engaging content.
- Engage with your target audience.
- How do I advertise my small business on Instagram?
- Use Instagram Ads Manager.
- Define your target audience.
- Create eye-catching ad visuals.
- How many posts before launching Instagram?
- Aim for at least 6-9 well-crafted posts before launching.
- Ensure your profile looks “lived in” to attract new users.
- How do you announce a launch on Instagram?
- Use countdowns in your stories.
- Share teaser posts.
- Host a live Q&A or giveaway event.
- What should be my first post on Instagram business?
- Introduce your brand and its mission.
- Highlight your unique value.
- Make a memorable impression.
- How many posts before you get followers?
- Building followers takes time.
- Focus on content quality over quantity.
- Engagement and consistency are key to gaining followers.
Alternatively, see our unique marketing ideas to get more people to visit your Instagram feed.