This article was originally published on Martech Advisor. Check out the original article here.
Recent research shows that Instagram is being used by 73% of online audiences, which makes it one of the most important channels for businesses to reach their customers today. Here’s what you need to know in order to succeed on the platform.
With over 1 billion active daily users now on the app, Instagram is no longer just a destination for young content creators. According to a Wibbitz consumer report, Explore Instagram Video, a majority of respondents from every generation and demographic are not only using Instagram, but consider it to be one of their favorite social platforms. Of course, it is still a popular hang-out spot for the Millennial and Gen-Z crowd – with 86% and 93% of their generations using Instagram, and 75% and 79% claiming it as their favorite platform, respectively.
So why are so many people (and especially young people) so drawn to Instagram? For the most part, video.
The report’s findings suggest that a majority of Instagram users are most active between the hours of 8-11 PM, and spend about 1-2 hours a day on average scrolling through the platform – with 69% of that time spent watching video. The most popular types of video content on the platform include how-to tutorials, behind-the-scenes, and interviews, and the most followed types of brands include food & drink, travel, and music. Plus, 31% of users revealed that they have made a purchase through Instagram directly after watching a video.
Clearly, the impact of Instagram has become the go-to social media platform for users who want the type of instant gratification only video can provide – which also makes video the best way for businesses to reach their audience on Instagram at every stage of the funnel. And when you have specific goals in mind, you can create content users will love to engage with across the entire platform.
Here’s how to attract, engage, and convert more Instagram followers based on recent research.
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Getting new followers
1. Create videos for your Feed, Stories, IGTV, and Reels
Trying to figure out how to turn Instagram followers into customers? Not only will videos help increase your discoverability, it will also win over the Instagram algorithm since it largely prioritizes the length of time users spend on your content. And videos in general take more time to consume than photos. Just make sure you’re using the right formats and perfect video lengths when creating content for each part of the platform (which can all be found in Section 2 of the report).
Need inspiration? Here’s a video that LA Times’s team created for their feed and IGTV.
2. Use Instagram’s reporting and targeting features to find the best hashtags and/or locations for your audience
Users say they find 18% of new accounts through hashtags and 26% through the Explore page. Also, if you already have a popular video post with great hashtags and a popular location, try paying to promote it and get even more new followers.
3. Keep new potential leads on your page longer with a striking grid design
In addition to posting consistently, try to follow a set color scheme and subject matter for your Feed content. Not only does it help users understand what your brand is all about, it’ll also increase their time spent looking through your Instagram grid to find other posts they love. More time viewing your content equals better algorithm results which also equals more opportunity to be featured on the Explore page.
Engaging your target audience
1. Create videos that audiences can interact with
These days, an engagement score is even more important than a follower count – and to increase engagement, the key is to give your users something to interact with. Focus on creating content that asks questions (like quizzes or riddles) or provides a call to action to encourage comments, shares, or tags.
Revolt got creative with Instagram marketing and engaged audiences with trivia about Nas. The use of subtitles, music, and thought-provoking trivia questions turned it into a must-watch video from beginning to end.
2. Get direct audience feedback through Instagram Stories
If you’re trying to figure out hw to get customers from Instagram, you can tap into their available resources. Tools like polls, questions, countdowns, and ratings sliders can all be used to create an ongoing dialogue with your audience. With so many options available (and constantly being added), it’s best to test and see what your audience enjoys the most.
Boosting sales & conversions
1. Prioritize in-feed video ads to drive sales
31% of users have made a purchase on Instgram directly after watching any kind of video – and 27% have done so after watching an in-feed ad. Remember to include your clear CTA, keep the video short (10 seconds is ideal) and either make it Shoppable through Instagram or direct viewers to a landing page.
Here’s a recent Instagram ad funnel we created to promote Wibbitz. It’s simple, to the point, and drives home the point that our products and services make your life a little easier.
2. Incorporate Swipe-Ups and Link-in-Bios to drive website traffic
If your goal is to drive traffic to your site, however, then in-feed ads are actually the least effective. Most respondents said their preferred way to access a website is through Swipe-Ups in Stories, than Link-In-Bios. If you have more than 10k followers, try using Swipe-Ups and Link-In-Bios whenever you have a specific website page or article you want to promote. If you have less than 10k followers, Swipe-Ups will not be available – so use a free tool like Linktree to guide viewers towards next steps.
With the help of Instagram’s useful tools and endless inspiration to choose from, you can leverage the impact of Instagram one video at a time.
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