Even though more than 70 million businesses in the United States currently use Instagram for marketing or plan to in the future, most don’t understand how to make their account unique enough to capture the attention of potential customers. Below are four tips to help your company use the social media phenomenon to your advantage.

Some Planning is Good, But Don’t Go Overboard

There’s nothing wrong with planning your Instagram posts in advance. However, you should know that the site doesn’t work with third-party applications so you will still need to publish your posts manually. Another thing to keep in mind when pre-planning posts is the times you publish them. If it’s at the same time every day, you’re only going to reach a small portion of your potential audience. You also should retain some flexibility to bump pre-planned posts in favor of your company’s reaction to breaking news.

Aim for Engagement

The whole point of a business Instagram account is to get people to interact with your brand through comments, likes, and shares of your post. This is challenging to achieve in a highly competitive landscape. You will need to start by monitoring and following the accounts of your competitors. Study the posts that bring them the most attention and figure out how you can make yours even better.

It’s also a good idea to follow accounts that follow yours and like or comment on the posts. While you can use third-party tools for mass likes and comments, you must follow Instagram’s limits or risk having your account suspended.

Understand Instagram’s Algorithms

Unfortunately, your company’s posts won’t automatically appear in the feed of your followers. With Instagram’s newest algorithm, the site will only display the post to a larger number of people if your account has received a positive reaction to a similar post in the past. However, you need likes and comments from your followers to get to this point. If few people interacted with your last post, your newest post will miss most of your intended audience.

You need to engage in some creative thinking to ensure that more people see your post. If your company has the budget, you could always run a sponsored post. If not, consider cross-posting with another business. You can find accounts willing to post about your business if you post about theirs under hashtags such as #like4like #follow4follow.

It Takes Time to Determine the Right Type of Content

It’s disappointing when you think a certain type of post will resonate with your audience but receives no interaction at all. You may wish to consider investing in a tool that analyzes your Instagram posts to determine which qualities bring high engagement. Be sure to respond to anyone who took the time to leave a comment on your business post and follow anyone who interacted with it in any way. This is an excellent way to learn more about your target audience.

Do you need more help improving your social media presence? Request a complementary strategy session from visionPATH today.