Your brand serves a purpose beyond selling products or services. It’s a representation of what you believe in and the values that your company upholds, and how customers connect with you on an emotional level. To build a solid brand, it’s best to nurture engagement from your target audience online, and Instagram can be the best place to start.


Instagram is one of the quickest growing social media platforms, with over 1.45 billion users worldwide, and 90% of Instagram users follow at least one business on the platform. Thus, it’s no surprise that Instagram has become a powerful tool for marketing. So, if your brand isn’t on Instagram, now could be the best time to jump on board.


Here are some actionable tips to help boost brand engagement on Instagram:


Define Your Target Audience

You probably want to reach as many people as possible with your brand. And, the first thing that could come to mind is to buy Instagram followers. This is because the more followers you have, the more reach and engagement your posts will get. In other words, it may give you a quick boost in numbers. After all, people are more likely to engage with a brand that has a large following. 


But, before you do that, defining your target audience must be the top priority. Trying to please everyone may end up pleasing no one. So, it’s essential to focus your efforts on a target audience that’s most likely to convert into paying customers.


To identify your target audience, consider the following:


  • Who is your ideal customer?
  • What are their values and interests?
  • What are their pain points?
  • Where do they hang out online?


Answering these questions will help you paint a picture of your target audience and what they’re looking for. Once you understand your target market well, it’ll be easier to create content that resonates with them and speaks to their needs. This approach will help you attract more relevant followers who are more likely to engage with your brand.


Use Hashtags Strategically

Using the right hashtags is all it takes to get more eyes on your brand. Hashtags help users discover content and brands on Instagram. And, when used correctly, they can be powerful tools for boosting engagement.


To find the best hashtags for your brand, start by brainstorming a list of relevant keywords that describe your business. For example, if you sell eco-friendly products, some relevant keywords could be #sustainability, #ecofriendly, or #zerwaste. Once you have a list of keywords, do a quick search on Instagram to see the most frequently used hashtags.


It’s also best not to stuff your captions with too many hashtags. This approach will make your post look spammy and may turn people off. Instead, use a combination of popular, medium-, and low-traffic hashtags. Using a mix of hashtags will help you reach a larger audience while maintaining a high engagement level.


Share Compelling Visuals

Instagram is a highly visual platform, meaning your visual quality is essential to success. If your photos are blurry or poorly lit, users are less likely to be attracted to your content. On the other hand, eye-catching and visually appealing images are more likely to get interested in your brand.


It’s also vital to be strategic about the photos you share. For example, share pictures of your products being worn in real life if you’re a clothing company. This strategy will give users a better idea of how the clothing looks and how it can be styled. You can also share product close-ups or user-generated content to give users a more well-rounded view of your brand.


Go Live

It’s no secret that live videos are all the rage right now. This technique is a great way to connect with your audience in real-time and show them the human side of your brand. Live videos are also more likely to stop users in their scroll and make them want to see your content.




When you go live, make sure to introduce yourself and your brand right away. This will help people just tune in to understand what your live video is all about. It’s also best to interact with viewers by answering their questions and responding to their comments.


Here are some live video ideas to get you started:


  • Share a behind-the-scenes tour
  • Announce giveaways or promos
  • Product demonstration
  • Do a Q&A with your team or customers
  • Livestream an event or tradeshow
  • Offer a sneak peek of a new product or service


You might also want to consider running a contest in your live video. For example, you could ask viewers to share the live video with a friend for a chance to win a prize. This idea will encourage people to tune in and help you reach a larger audience.



There you have it!  These are four surefire ways to boost brand engagement on Instagram. Start putting these tips into practice and see how they can help grow your business.


instagram business growth


Social media marketing flourishes on Instagram, which has over a billion monthly users. Apart from the sheer numbers, the fact that Instagrammers are shoppers turning to social media for references works well in your favor. 


So, using Instagram for small business is the next big thing. If you’re only getting started, let’s review some of the best strategies to apply.


Make a Business Account

Marketing has to keep your audience in the center, not yourself. Instagram for any business is a fantastic tool, and you should hop on the bandwagon.


Note: To make yourself seem more human and relatable, you can link the personal account in the bio.


Optimizing Your Business Account

The bio is an essential part of your business account. It’s the only place where you can place the clickable link to your store or landing page. 


Make it catchy and actionable. You’re seeking to inform potential followers that the content you’ll bring to their feeds is valuable and engaging while also concisely describing your service. 


Avoid an overly promotional tone in your bio. Craft a text that appeals to the platform you’re on, and leave the keywords for your text posts. The only SEO-related element to include is your niche’s hashtag.


hash tag


Moreover, focus on branding. The key is to keep your posting recognizable and related to your business, from the username you choose to the profile picture.


Monitor Your Niche

Networking on Instagram isn’t that difficult when you find your niche, as people are already looking for profiles like yours.


Hashtags are a fantastic way for people to connect through shared interests. This trend can work for you. Examine and get in on the relevant hashtags to grow the community through in-app connections. 


The best way to stay up-to-date is by following the biggest brands in your industry. You can also keep an eye on the people who fit your target demographics. 


These accounts will often follow you back, giving you a chance to engage with them meaningfully.


Post Engaging Content

Images are Instagram’s bread and butter, so you should make yours pop. Keep the design and relevance high-quality and valuable to your customers.


While writing for your profile, take advantage of calls to action in your descriptions, comments, and, most importantly, bio. Direct people to your home page and tell (or show) them what they’ll get from clicking on the link. 


Bonus Strategies

You could also take advantage of guest posters. It works exceptionally well with industry experts, which adds credibility to your brand. For example, have a live chat with a big name in the community you’re targeting. 


Another thing you could capitalize on is people’s love for gifts. If you sell products, reward people who engage with your brand the most. If your business revolves around services, you could team up with another account in the same niche – bonus points for networking.


Post Regularly

A consistent posting schedule is a must, as people work with companies they trust. If you’re too busy, there are many services for posting on social media, letting you schedule daily content in a batch. 


Note: Use the analytics from your business account to find the best times for posts, and use the info.


Apart from your regularly scheduled daily posts, get in on Instagram Stories and live videos. Here, you can go a bit more casual and breathe life into your brand.


When it comes to stories, organize them into logical categories below your bio for new followers to see.


Stay Genuine

Finally, one of the crucial strategies has to do with a road you shouldn’t go down if you want to stay genuine. Never buy followers


Social media is all about building relationships, and if you do so dishonestly, people will quickly pick up on it. Instead, use the ethical way to generate a following, even if it’s slower. 


The Bottom Line

If you don’t have enough time to engage with all social media marketing forms, Instagram is the way to go. Create the account, make it high-quality, and engage with your audience. Your business will reap the rewards that are ten times worth the trouble. 


instagram marketing game tips

Social media has changed the face of online marketing, with Instagram being among the top sites enabling marketing professionals to reach vast audiences. What sets Instagram apart from other social media platforms is its focus on images and videos.


To be an effective Instagram marketer, you need to develop your skills for creating visual content. It is imperative that you come up with very interesting posts because you’re competing for attention with a multitude of highly talented content creators. In highly competitive industries, such as fashion, it takes a lot of creativity to make it to the top.


That is not to say that it’s not possible to gain a strong footing on the platform. By coming up with unique content and doubling in on areas that your competitors commonly ignore, you’re destined to succeed. Here are two areas of your Instagram marketing strategy you need to work on.


Up Your Caption and Hashtag Game

Posting photos on Instagram is not the same as posting photos on Facebook or Twitter; you need to make each one count. A lot more thought and creativity goes into Instagram posts because the aim is to impress. But what would be the point of creating the perfect Instagram post if only a few people see it?


That’s where captions and hashtags come in handy. Used correctly, they can vastly increase the size of the audience that views your posts. Remember the following when using them.


  • Only use hashtags that are relevant to your brand, and most importantly, your post. Otherwise, you run the risk of being seen as spam, which would seriously hurt your brand image on the platform. Also, don’t add too many hashtags to your post, even if they’re relevant. It comes off as spam to your Instagram followers.
  • Coming up with posts that gel well with popular hashtags is more of an art than a science, and it involves more than just thoughtlessly hopping on seemingly popular hashtags. Put some thought into it and make sure you understand the primary aim of specific hashtags before using them.


Interact With Your Followers

This may sound like a no-brainer but far too many brands use Instagram as a primitive broadcast tool or simple catalog for their products and services. Such brands end up missing out on opportunities to truly connect with their audience and build lasting relationships with existing and prospective customers.


It’s called social media because you’re meant to have conversations, i.e., two-way interactions with your audience. As such, you should encourage your followers to interact with you through calls to action asking them to like and comment on your posts. Respond in kind by commenting and liking posts relating to your brand.


As you engage with your audience, keep in mind that the comments you make depict your brand’s personality. Find the right balance between being thoughtful and professional as well as casual and relatable. Instagram users are drawn to the human aspect of your brand, so talking to them will certainly keep them watching.



Walter Moore is one of the leading editors at a budding social media marketing consulting website ( His expertise in social media comes from leveraging Instagram followers for destination organizations.
Copyright: 2nix / 123RF Stock Photo

Instagram Tips


Instagram has become an insanely popular marketing tool over the past couple of years. With recent trends showing more Instagram users are buying products based on what shows up in their feeds, brands are learning to adapt – and influencers are helping them do it.


Instagram influencers are users of the platform with larger, established audiences. These users have built-up credibility with their audience and have a larger degree of trustworthiness. It’s for this reason that influencers provide a great opportunity for marketers. But finding the right influencer is easier said than done.


Some users can charge exorbitant sums of money for a shout-out – and without picking the right influencer for your brand – this can mean a lot of wasted funds. If you plan on using influencers to market your brand – it’s best to make sure you’re choosing the right influencers and going about it in the best way.


Here are some things to keep in mind when choosing an influencer and running an influencer campaign.


1. Know your audience

It’s important to establish early on who you want to market to. This will help in selecting the right influencer to grow your audience. The influencer with the most followers might seem to be the best – but it most cases, it’s not.


Think about your target demographic. How old are they? What interests them? What are they likely to scroll past and what’s likely to catch their attention? Knowing which influencer to select is all about knowing your own audience. Try to avoid focusing too much on the number of followers and influencers has and focus more on the types of followers they have.


2. Stay transparent

The average internet user is more media-savvy that they’ve been in the past. It’s easy to fall into the trap of creating a promotional post that feels more like a shameless plug. If your campaign comes off as disingenuous then it can hurt both your brand and your influencer’s credibility.


Be honest with yourself and your audience. If you believe in your product or service – find an influencer that you genuinely think would benefit from the use of it. If your influencer really digs your product, this is going to make your marketing campaign all the more effective. Users can tell the difference between a sincere endorsement of a product and a half-hearted plug, so make sure to choose an influencer that genuinely likes your products.


3. Consider the user experience

Think about how you want your audience to engage with your product in the context of your marketing campaign. Avoid thinking too much about direct sales relating to your campaign – using influencers is a long-game marketing strategy. Successful influencer marketing strategies are more about creating brand awareness among users who you think would benefit from your product.


4. Treat your influencer as a partner

Instagram influencers have motivations for partnering with brands that go beyond simply making money. When coming up with ideas for a campaign – think of what your influencer wants to get out of the campaign as well.


The best brand-influencer partnerships are ones in which the influencer truly benefits from your product. Find an influencer that genuinely believes in your product. This will make the campaign resonate more with their followers.


5. Don’t overlook content

Instagram is a visual medium – above all else. This means that as analytical as you are about the types of users you’re targeting, you also need to be sure that your product is something that lends itself to visual branding and that the content for the ad is visually interesting.


Products like clothing, phone cases and jewellery are generally better for a visual medium like Instagram. You obviously want your images to include the influencer alongside your product – but remember that the image has to be visually interesting.


Take this photo from Burst as an example. This could easily be an image like this used to promote a hat, watch or clothing – but what’s important to take away from it is the way the lighting, framing and color-scheme all help to brand the product and set a moody atmosphere. It works because it showcases the products in a way that adds to the character of both the brand and the influencer.


Don’t pick influencers with too many followers


This may come as a surprise but it’s been shown that engagement with a post in Instagram decreases as the user gains followers. Influencer marketing platform Markerly showed that for unpaid posts – Instagram influencers with fewer than 1,000 followers have a like rate of about 8 percent, while those with 1,000 to 10,000 followers have a like rate of 4 percent. This has given rise to what marketing gurus refer to as “micro-influencers” – smaller Instagram profiles that target more niche audiences.


As the number of followers goes up – the percentage of engagement goes down. This means that it can actually be beneficial to use influencers with smaller amounts of followers – especially because these influencers target more specific niches. It makes sense when you think about it; it’s far easier to built trust networks with smaller audiences and content promoting a product feels more genuine coming from users who have more intimate relationships with their audience.


On top of this – smaller influencers are likely to charge a lot less – or even not at all – since they’re likely working on building their own fan-base and promoting their own content. It’s in this was that working with many smaller influencers can be more beneficial than working with one larger influencer.



HarveyStewart is a writer and digital artist based in Toronto, Canada. He’s written about content marketing, futurism and technology. He graduated from York University in 2012 with a degree in Journalism. You can visit his Instagram to learn more –

Image: 123rf/ Tul Chalothonrangsee

SnapChat Instagram War

For start-ups or any business for that matter, one of the best ways to grow is to avoid competition. Yes, you’ve heard it, “competition is good”, but if that were true there would be no need for patents or anti-competitive laws. The best companies try to avoid competition and create monopolies. The Facebook and SnapChat war isn’t a board game, however, disguised as Instagram, Facebook is out to dominate social. And with SnapChats rising popularity, the objective is to kill any momentum.

Why Avoiding Competition is Good

Disruption has been a hot buzzword for start-ups. Uber disrupted the transportation industry and AirBnB disrupted lodging. But disruption shouldn’t be a strategy, it should be a result of great companies being innovative.


Napster disrupted the music industry and was crushed by the RIAA. On the contrary, Apple found a way to work with music executives and iTunes thrived for many years because of it. Now streaming services like Prime and Spotify are on the rise, and this was done by avoiding competition, not picking fights.


For years SnapChat has been in a league of its own, growing exponentially using innovative ideas only found in China. In 2013 Facebook attempted to buy SnapChat for $3 billion, but after being rejected, Mark Zuckerburg launched a similar app called Poke. It flopped, however, but that didn’t stop Mark and the Facebook team from taking shots at the young company. With Instagrams latest release of “Stories”, Facebook mimics SnapChats interface and functionality. CEO of Instagram Kevin Systrom, recently announced the introduction of events, a move some are calling a full-blown SnapChat blitz. Many Instagrammers are excited about the new features since they are comfortable using the platform, and wanted to avoid the cost of taking on another social network.



Image Source: Instagram


War is Costly

The reason why finding a niche is so rewarding is because you get to focus on growth and avoid distraction. War is costly. Don’t believe me? Ask Blockbuster and Hollywood Video (who no longer exist)… While they were busy warring with one another, Redbox and Netflix were finding new ways to serve their industry.


So what does this mean for SnapChat? I personally think SnapChat has done a great job at being creative and keeping to themselves. They have attempted to stay off the grid while focusing on growth. Unfortunately, this doesn’t prohibit larger corporations from competing against them. And who can blame Facebook? They don’t want another company to do to them what they did to Myspace. So the mission is to buy or destroy. And right now Facebook is in destruction mode.


Will SnapChat be able to survive this offensive? Who knows. The founders have proven to be savvy and strategic, constantly innovating and resisting competition. Nevertheless, Facebook has deep pockets and the best talent. This may be the reason they fell behind in the first place. Buy and absorb has been the MO of many market leaders in regard to small competitors. And when you can’t buy, #attack.


In the end, who will win, Grams or Snaps? I guess we’ll have to wait and see.


About Author:

Larry C Lewis is an Internet behavior scientist best known for his work in social media and video marketing. He is the head of marketing at Digital Exponents and the founder of For more information, Larry can be reached on Twitter @larryclewis.

Instagram Advertising Tips


Instagram was launched as a tiny mobile app with a dozen users posting pictures of cats and dogs. Six years later, with over 400 million users actively posting pictures and taking part in discussions, the app stands as one of the leading social media platforms for business.


According to eMarketer, Instagram’s global ad revenue is expected to cross 2.5 billion dollars by the end of 2017 – and that’s roughly 10% of Facebook’s revenue itself. That’s big!


Now that brands and businesses are using Instagram to promote their products and services, it makes sense to utilize every opportunity and reach out to tons of potential customers on the network. 


Here are 10 awesome tips for instagram marketing success on Instagram.



Let’s take a quick at the different formats we will look to tap into for our marketing campaign:


Image Ads – A picture speaks a thousand words. What better place than Instagram to tell your story to thousands of audience? Whether it’s a beautiful product image or behind-the-scene images of your support team, make sure to show them to the audience to get a wider reach for your brand.


Video Ads – If a picture can speak thousand words, video can add more. Given the limitations of the texts in pictures, it makes sense to tap into video marketing to add to the interest and curiosity of the audience. Whether you wish to show the real making of your product or post teasers of an upcoming service, videos are a great tool to spark interest among the audience.


Carousel Ads – Choose carousel ads to add an extra layer of depth to your image ads. These ads allow people to effortlessly swipe through the images and take action to visit your website.   



When it comes to Instagram marketing success, there is no ‘holy-grail’ for businesses. However, here are some tips to increase your odds of building credibility and reputation on the platform.




Instagram itself is built around the idea of sharing awesome photos and videos. Since photos are more popular than videos, let’s get started by posting some fantastic pictures.


One of the best ways to make your Instagram ads an instant hit among the audience is to post high quality images. Great photos leads to more action, brand recall, reputation, inquiry and increased sales for your brand. No prospect will remember a photo ad that is blurry and unattractive.


Take a look at the image below using which Philadelphia saw its sales go up by 41% with an amazing photo and an appropriate caption.




When people are scrolling at lightning speed on their Instagram feeds, photos that make them take notice are the ones that have great colors, effects, quality and of course a catchy caption.




As mentioned earlier, it’s important your photos belong to the noticeable elements in your audience’s feed. But, also remember that they be like direct recommendation from a friend and not a direct sales pitch.


Make a few alterations like using smaller logo size and more creative elements that resonate with the interest of the audience in your target industry.


Here’s is an ad from Sony with a soft branding tone. It went on to handover the brand a 43 point rise in ad recall, 6 point rise in message association, and a 6 point rise in brand awareness too.




3. THE 80/20 RULE


If you’ve noticed the American marketing styles, you will be able to recall that native speakers talk less but express more. They use less words in their images and sound interesting to the audience.


The 80:20 rule seems to be a great fit in image promotions on Instagram. Try posting images with 80% focus on the image and 20% space for text. If you analyze the most popular non-celebrity accounts on Instagram in 2015, you’ll be surprised to see how images with few or no words were liked by tens of thousands of people.


Here’s an example from Easy Canvas Prints, which turned photos into custom prints and garnered crazy response from the audience. The ad went on to generate over 300% ROI and a 55% lower CPA for the fast-growing eCommerce company.






The online users of today have a less attention span, so they want to read less and know more about a product or service that they’re interested in. Instagram is no exception to the rule. Make sure that the wordings that go with your image are really, really short and simple to understand.


The ideal character for texts in an image ad is 40 for Facebook and even Instagram captions have got great response when they are 40 characters or less. Take a look at Instagram case studies for some interesting information on this.




It’s a no-brainer that Facebook took the right decision to get more visibility for Instagram by allowing users to put their Instagram posts on their Facebook timeline. That’s almost double visibility for Instagram business users.


You will find the technique of integrating your Instagram ads with your Facebook promotions more useful especially when you are running targeted ad campaigns. Targeted ads work wonders for business promotions because they help eliminate uncertainties and in turn increase your chances of being seen by the right audience i.e. people that are actually interesting in buying your products or services.


A lot of businesses just copy-paste their Instagram ads on their FB timeline, but if you wish to go a step further, then try A/B testing by going for different variations for the same ad.


Before that, take some time to look around for ways to find your target audience on Facebook. What posts of your competitors have they liked, shared, and commented on? Find out what type of posts are easily getting ignored so that you can learn from your competitor’s mistake. Run a few mini Instagram-Facebook campaigns to understand people’s response better.




Okay, Facebook and Instagram are united by the owner; they’re united by the ‘integration’ feature. But, when it comes to advertising, Facebook and Instagram are divided. They are separated on the basis on two main factors: user-behavior and demographics.




Instagram is a platform for photos and videos whereas Facebook focuses on texts, images, and videos. Shared content is more popular on Facebook than on Instagram.


Based on our research of user behavior of the two platforms, we found that:


  • The user engagement on Instagram is two times more than Facebook
  • The user engagement per follower is 58 times more than Facebook



Source: Selfstartr




Despite the huge difference in their user base, Instagram has more users under the age of 30 than Facebook. The table below shows that 28% of Internet users are active on Instagram – that’s huge! What’s even more surprising is that, the majority of instagram users are women.



Source: Pew Research Center


Even with Facebook, women users outnumber their counterparts. But, most of the women on Facebook are in the age group of 50-65+. So, if your target audience is young women, then Instagram is the best place to promote your stuff. Use Facebook to get noticed by the older generation if at all you feel it adds value to your promotion.


Takeaway: If you have a small marketing budget, then make sure to try Facebook ads for greater visibility.




Instagram allows only one clickable link and that’s in your bio. No other post in your timeline will have clickable links to drive traffic to your site.


Probably the only reason why you do not need brand awareness is when you are a Fortune 500 company that does not need clickable links to drive traffic to their site. If not, you need serious brand awareness. Now, that’s a challenge.


But fortunately for upcoming brands like you, the owners allow paid Instagram ads with CTAs to get higher response for their ads.


Think of simple, short CTA’s like Watch Now, Learn More, Contact Us, Sign Up, Shop Now, Download, and Apply Now and choose different variations in your advertisements.




When visitors are coming to your website through Instagram ads, the next step of your success is largely determined by the appeal of your landing page.


Imagine you’ve posted an awesome ad that gets high engagement and clicks, but you have a bad non-mobile optimized landing page for your website. What happens when people check in? They check out in no time. You missed a potential sale.


Bringing visitors to a bad landing page is like inviting them to a shopping mall and telling them that they’re not getting the latest mobile model. That’s giving your customers a bad experience. Make sure you do not disappoint potential customers. Create awesome landing pages that are well-optimized for the mobile version to increase your conversion.




There is one more way how Instagram differs from Facebook – hashtags. Though people have started using hashtags on Facebook, they aren’t that popular yet. On the other hand, hashtags are widely popular on Instagram. People use hashtags to find their preferred category of posts under one roof.


Make sure you tag your posts with hashtags related to your industry and, wherever appropriate, come up with your own variations too. This will help improve the search-friendliness of your posts and get more visibility on the platform.


Above all, keep in mind that hashtag marketing isn’t just about including 20+ hashtags in your posts. Even here, quality comes over quantity. Use these tools to find the right hashtags for your photos and videos:



Here’s an ad from @Scotiabank that uses hashtags smartly. The ad campaign was aggressively using #ThingsOrganizedNeatly to promote its list of items from a movie.



Source: Buffer


Through the campaign, @Scotiabank witnessed a 20-point rise in ad recall and a 6-point rise in brand awareness.




Trust is the factor that stands between promotion and conversion. If you wish to see long-term results for your ad campaign, then you need to focus on earning people’s trust.


How to earn the trust of people with advertisements? Well, this is where user-generated content comes into the picture.



Source: Nielson


As you see from the data given above, there are two forms of advertisements that buyers take seriously. They are “recommendations from known people” and “online user reviews”. These two factors are the top priority for potential buyers because they come from people that have tried the product or service that is being advertised.


In addition to developing trust, user-generated content also help to generate more social signals for your promotions, which is again very crucial for the success of your campaign.



If you were depending only on Facebook for your business promotions, then after reading this post, you should probably know what kind of marketing potential Instagram offers for business. Even if you’re a new user, don’t be afraid to give a shot at Instagram marketing. A lot of businesses that thought Instagram was just for selfies and food picture are now running mighty big campaigns and getting six digit revenues per year.


May be, now it’s your turn to jump on the board and make things better for your business.


Author Bio:

Nancy Grace is a social media writer at who also contributes for hundreds of other blogs. Her articles predominantly focus on social media and are widely followed by readers from all over the world

Instagram Growth


We all like to share our photos and filter them in order to get the best possible photo effect. In this article we will concentrate more on business strategy of the most famous photo sharing app in the world and inspect 5 aspects of its success through quotes of Kevin Systrom, CEO and co-founder of Instagram.

“Part of being an entrepreneur is understanding how you’re going to be different.”


Before Instagram, people who wanted to customize their photos needed to use Photoshop. Although it is a great piece of software, is more adapted to professional users. Since Photoshop is a paid software and it can only work from desktop, there were a lot of people who wished to play with their photos, but simply didn’t have the means.


Instagram changed everything, with the introduction of photo filters that are great for photos taken by phone, that often come out too dark, even during a sunny day. Each startup should have at least one thing they do different from others.


“Optimize for people, don’t optimize for valuation.”


Each new Instagram feature was made to be useful for their audience. You can look at their innovation timeline and see for yourself:


  • October 6, 2010- Instagram Launch
  • September 20, 2011- Introduction of 4 new filters
  • February 11, 2012- Introduction of “Lux” filter
  • April 3, 2012- Launch of Android phone app
  • June 28, 2012- Photo page redesign
  • August 16, 2012- PhotoMaps launch
  • September 13, 2012- Mobile profile pages redesign
  • February 5, 2013- Launch of web feed
  • June 20, 2013- Launch of Instagram video
  • October 24, 2013- Sponsored photos and videos launch.


Although their app became instantly popular, they waited for three full years to add any sponsored content to it. From this timeline we can see how Instagram adapted its product to make it more suitable for people who like playing with their photos. Imagine 2010 is 2015 and think about what you are doing at the moment to make your startup more optimized for your targeted audience.


“I think that above all else, [what] makes products spread is when they’re useful and they’re usable.”


Unlike other photo sharing apps and websites, Instagram is fully oriented to creating the best possible user experience. On Instagram’s photo pages, there are no commercials and ads and everything is highly transparent. In addition to that Instagram also set a new standard when it comes to fast photo uploading process. All this shows us Instagram’s serious approach to UX which makes it one of the most popular apps in the digital world.


“Bringing a prototype into a pitch meeting is so much more powerful than a bunch of graphs that say you’re going to make lots of money in the future.”


For the moment we will go back to the launch of Instagram. Back then, this app was only available for iPhone users, who were at the time the best audience for app testing. “iPhone People” were always more respectable towards innovations and more diligent in testing all possible features of certain apps. That’s mostly because they are younger and more affluent, plus they invested more money in the gadgets and want them to provide the best possible experience. That’s how Instagram skip the initial talking and put their prototype on the table for everyone to try it. Enthusiasm about this app, which was shared through social network channels by its initial users, put Instagram where it is today.


“You should not be afraid to have simple solutions to simple problems.”


Everybody has that one thing he/she is really good at, and the same goes for startups. When mobile apps introduce too many features, they shift the focus from things they are really good at to those for which they offer average or even above average performance. From the beginning of its work, Instagram focused on photos and filters, and they let other companies to deal with check-ins, video games and stuff like that. Each company has its thing:


  • DropBox– practicality and ability to connect to any device;
  • Zoho– users can make custom email addresses for free;
  • Tesla Motors– makes electric cars.


This rule doesn’t only concern tech businesses, but any other company that wants to be successful. Do one thing you are good at and have a wide network of people and organizations to provide you with all other services you are not into., You can search for business advice online, the same goes for accounting, graphic design, marketing etc. That is also one of the reasons why outsourcing gives great results for startups, because pros work best with pros.


In 2012, Instagram was a company with almost no revenue, but lots of soul. It was bought by Facebook for $1 billion, which proves our point that making your product more convenient for the users always pays off in the end, and that making over-commercialization leads to small amounts of fast cash, and nothing more than that.


Instagram Followers




Making an account on Instagram is quite easy. However, getting started on Instagram necessitates a consistent use and interaction with other people. Receiving followers organically requires a lot of time and hard work.

Although gaining followers isn’t easy, following some of the below mentioned tips may help you to organically gain Instagram followers:


1. Always share relevant, humanized pictures


Social media is all about connecting with your audiences. Posting personal, humanized and relatable photos is a key to success behind most of the famous Instagram accounts. Try to share pictures to which your audiences can emotionally connect with. Sharing pictures of current activities, behind-the-scene shots, inspiring scenery, etc can be the best way to emotionally connect with the audiences. If you get success in drawing some sort of emotion of your audiences, they will like your pictures, comment on it and follow you for more great pictures.


2. Endorse your Instagram


These days, most of the brands are cross-posting their Instagram content to Facebook. Since, Instagram is part of Facebook, every time you capture or like a photo, that story can be shared out on your friend’s Facebook feed. This will not only help your brand to get more exposure, but will ultimately provide you more followers on Instagram. Instagram comes with the feature to auto-follow or find all your Facebook friends within few seconds. Moreover, by connecting your Facebook account, you make it easy for all your friends or network to find you easily.


3. Share often and filter your photos


Sharing frequently is very important to gain followers. Each of your new post can help you bring new visitors to your account. If they find that your account is active, there are huge changes that they hit the follow button. Furthermore, making use of filters, one of the great featured offered by Instagram, can beautify and make unique each of your photos. By creating your pictures breathtaking, stirring or impressive, people are more likely to connect with your photos and may follow you to see more beautiful pictures. Just remember to share your pictures at the right time, which can be either in the morning or in the evening in order to yield maximum engagement results.


4. Use relevant and popular hashtags


In order to get more exposure, you must always hashtag your photos every time when you post it with relevant or popular tag. People often search for hashtags on Instagram on particular topics. Adding one or three hashtags per photo will increase the opportunity of your photo to be found and interacted. The more people discover and interrelate with your photo, the more probability is there that they will look into your Instagram profile and follow you for more interesting photos.


5. Follow others and like their photos


If you expect people to engage with your posts or like your pictures, you must also do the same. Try to engage more and more with other’s photos. The more active you are more chances you’ll have to get exposure of your username or account to the owner and owner’s followers. However, don’t overdo it. You can comment on other’s photos, which is an effective strategy in the long run.


6. Give importance to your followers’ feedback


Never overlook the importance of heeding to the feedback from your existing followers. They are taking out some of their precious time to comment on your posts, which mean they care enough about your brand.  You must also listen to their feedback. More engagement will give you more exposure and ultimately the more potential to get followers.

To sum up, Instagram is truly a great social networking platform for sharing your photos throughout the world. If used properly, you’ll be able to gain a large number of organic followers to your Instagram account.


Author’s Bio

Christopher, a professional author and blogger is sharing some important tips on getting more followers on Instagram. He has good experience of advertising through Instagram and so he is pleased to share some important guidelines with other users. For more info please visit


Not all businesses have been able to incorporate the youthful photo sharing tool Instagram but, many have. Photo sharing is not a new concept. It has been a popular choice ever since the days of Flickr but Instagram changed up the concept just a bit. Heavily integrated with social features and easy to use editing tools, Instagram has made waves in the business world.

Our fine friends at Marketo put together this great infographic piece describing the impact of Instagram and how businesses can use photo sharing for marketing purposes.

Instagram Business Marketing

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