Melissa is a mother of 2, lives in Utah, and writes for a multitude of sites. She is currently the EIC of HarcourtHealth.com and writes about health, wellness, and business topics.

It goes without saying. Small businesses should bet on Instagram to grow their business.

The social media platform helps you find new customers, continue engagement with the existing ones and even make sales right from your app.

But since Instagram posting is all about images, you need to both ingenious and tactful, especially if you’re just a beginner.

Without much ado, the article walks you through Instagram fundamentals small businesses should focus on to increase follower count and, in turn, business sales.

#1. Post Quality Content

Content quality reigns supreme over content quantity. Instagram has over 400 million users. And the best way for your account to stand apart is to create quality content that’s not only heavy in the design aspect of it but lends equal weight age to words as well.

#2. Use Right Hashtags

To find the right hashtags for your small business, start exploring Instagram’s Explore Page. The page will help you find a hashtag that is in keeping with your brand and messaging.

When Instagram throws up the hashtag results, scrolls bar pops up at the top of the related hashtags; this is where you could find new hashtags for your posts.

However, if the hashtags have been used a thousand times, then avoid using the same because it won’t benefit the business any which ways.

So, a better way out, is to check your competitors’ hashtags or use a professional Instagram hashtag tool such as Later Hashtag Suggestion tool. The tool will provide you with more hashtags recommendations for you to try out. In fact, there are top social media marketing companies out there that could help with Complete Hashtag Strategy. Try them out and see for yourself. Using right hashtags will ensure that your post appears in front of your target audience more often, which, in turn, will drive them to your online web store.

#3. Use Geotags for Local Visibility

You can tag location to your Instagram posts and stories. It could either be the city where you are residing or the location from where the photo or video was taken.

Local businesses can take advantage of these location tags by updating their local feeds often and even by engaging with posts from customers who are present in the same locality.

#4. Steal Competitor’s Followers

Yes, you read that right! To grow your Instagram business quickly, you need to steal your competitor followers as well. Stealing followers make sense because you don’t have to waste time figuring out their interests given that they are already following similar accounts. To make the most of your efforts you can consider Like + Comment + Follow Strategy. Rather than just following users start liking their pictures, and even leaving comments on the same.

#5. Milk Sponsored Posts and Product Reviews

All these free tactics help, no doubt. But then, if you want to make a real impact, you need to leverage influencer marketing. This will, without a doubt, connect your brand to a larger audience.

To start with, come up with a list of people with large followers in your niche. For instance, if you are into baby products, you need to find mommy bloggers with a large fan following. Sure enough, you would be already be following these accounts. But, it doesn’t harm to build up a database of mommy bloggers who are big time into Instagramming about their daily mommy chores. For this, you can make use of Webstagram and look for closest hashtag keywords. When you use this tool, it will show both the related keywords and, most importantly, top Instagram accounts using those keywords.

A few things to consider while finding your influencers:

  • 20k to 200k followers
  • An email address in their profile

Go on and email them and ask them for their sponsored post pricing. It would be around $20-$50 per post, depending on the follower count. However, if your products are unique, you could think of sending your products to be reviewed and posted. The more natural your postings look, the greater the engagement and response rate would be.

But then, remember to not just target macro-influencers. You could even target micro-influencers with high engagement rate.

#6. Run a Joint Contest with another Account

Partner with another Instagram account, which belongs to the same domain as yours, and run a joint content with that account. This will ensure users follow both the accounts if they want to participate.

This will attract quality followers for both the accounts. For running online contests and more, you could seek the help of digital marketers.

#7. Promote your Account

Sure, you need to promote your Facebook account, because everyone seems too much into Facebook these days. But then, Instagram is much popular among the young crowd and apparently displays better stats in terms of content sharing and engagement. So if you are focusing more on online content creation, product packaging and more, it’s time you switch your focus to Instagram promotion this year.

#8. Take Advantage of Stories Highlight feature

Despite looking casual and sometimes informal, stories sometimes do take a lot of your time and resources.

So, if you don’t want your stories to disappear in thin air, use Instagram Highlight feature. You could display some of your brand’s best stories as long as you want by highlighting them on your profile alongside your cover image. Try using this feature for special promotions, campaigns, and soon that need special coverage.

Wrapping Up

Instagram Strategy for small business is not that hard to follow. All you need to ensure is that you strike a right balance between creativity and strategy. That way, you can be rest assured to reach new audiences and, more importantly, convert them into loyal customers for your brand or business.