Using Instagram to build a brand

2021-06-28 by Ronn Torossian

There’s no sign of Instagram slowing down anytime soon. Instagram is not just about choosing filters to transform images and sharing them with others. Studies have shown that on Instagram, users are more likely to be shoppers than on any other social networks. There are nearly one billion active users on Instagram, and its brand engagement rate is the highest of any social media platform.  90 % of users follow at least one brand on Instagram in order to get perks and giveaways. How and why this hub of business activity is effective is given below.

1) Content optimization –  just any content will not cut it with Instagram’s savvy audience .  The content used has to be non-obvious, natural, and true to a brand. 150 characters in the bio can be used to give followers a reason to follow a brand, and also to tell them what makes a brand unique. The tone should be light and fun, and the bio should include  a business-specific hashtag. Some businesses choose to include a link, as that slowly helps to build their brand image rather than “force” consumers into making purchases

2) Consistent editing and filters – It is better to decide on a filter that a brand will use consistently. The filter should help the images used on Instagram to reflect a brand’s personality and culture, whether it is serious and professional or fun and playful. Not using filters can also make images stand out from a plethora of heavily edited photos. The nofilter hashtag is often employed to show how one didn’t depend on filters to produce stunning images.

3) Monitor hashtags – Many consumers use tags to connect with a brand or a business. It is important to check on hashtags for reputation management purposes. Hashtags also provide  a way for people to discover products and services. Hashtags are also used by people to search for content on Instagram. A good mix of broad hashtags related to a business or service will enable a brand to make regular appearances within the Top Posts and Recent Post sections of the Instagram search page.

4) Instagram contests – Instagram contests always get more engagement. They get followers to discuss brands and tag friends and family. They also help spread the word about a brand across Instagram and beyond. There are also some simple contest strategies, like asking consumers to like a photo, to re-post an image, or follow an account. A short call-to-action also helps to amplify entries. Simon and Schuster asked users for stories, for instance. Users had to comment with their personal troublemaking strategies. The prizes were a book, tote bags, pins and a bookmark. The contest was a hit.

5) Scheduling posts – To increase the effect of promotions and campaigns, posting photos at exactly the same time every day is helpful. Content details can also be released at a set time. Using an instagramscheduler can also help in creating a more consistent brand experience, which would ultimately lead to more Instagram followers.

Ronn Torossian is CEO of 5wpr, a leading PR firm.

Ronn Torossian: Insights from a Native New Yorker and CEO of 5WPR

Ronn Torossian is the founder and CEO of 5W Public Relations, one of the largest independently-owned PR firms in the United States. With over 20 years of experience crafting and executing powerful narratives, Torossian is one of America's most prolific and well-respected Public Relations professionals. Since founding 5WPR in 2003, he has led the company's growth, overseeing more than 200 professionals in the company's headquarters in midtown Manhattan. With clients spanning corporate, technology, consumer and crisis, in addition to digital marketing and public affairs capabilities, 5WPR is regularly recognized as an industry leader and has been named "PR Agency of the Year" by the American Business Awards on multiple occasions. Throughout his career, Torossian has worked with some of the world's most visible companies, brands and organizations. His strategic, resourceful approach has been recognized with numerous awards including being named the Stevie American Business Awards 2020 Entrepreneur of the Year, the American Business Awards PR Executive of the Year, twice over, an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year semi-finalist, Metropolitan Magazine's Most Influential New Yorker, a 2020 Top Crisis Communications Professional by Business Insider, and a recipient of Crain’s New York 2021 Most Notable in Marketing & PR. Torossian is known as one of the country's foremost experts on crisis communications, and is called on to counsel blue chip companies, top business executives and entrepreneurs both in the United States and worldwide. Torossian has lectured on crisis PR at Harvard Business School, appears regularly on CNN & CNBC, is a contributing columnist for Forbes and the New York Observer, and has authored two editions of his book, "For Immediate Release: Shape Minds, Build Brands, and Deliver Results With Game-Changing Public Relations," which is an industry best-seller. A NYC native, Torossian lives in Manhattan with his children. He is a member of Young Presidents Organization (YPO), and active in numerous charities