5 Tips to Use Instagram for E- Commerce

Wednesday 15th, June 2016

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So Instagram has 400 million users. No mean feat for an image sharing application.

Though Facebook has 4 times the amount, there is one aspect that people fail to notice – Instagram’s user base is much younger than Facebook’s.

What’s more – Facebook’s user base is gradually shrinking while Instagram is having a phenomenal growth rate.

There you go – businesses that are visual in nature looking for a hipster brand targeting have Instagram as their solution.

Again, Instagram has its own set of complications and you have to adapt to the situation to make the most of it.

Let’s take a look at some hacks to push your ecommerce.

Encourage User-Generated Content

Today’s generation expects a far more social interaction with their chosen brands.

For that, you can consider creating a possibility for them to include their pictures on your page. This way if people like your brand they will post pictures of themselves with your brand mentions. This serves 2 purposes: pleasing your fans and also getting free publicity.

There are a lot of 3rd party tools that can help you achieve that.

Product Placement

A great way to get attention for your product is to use them in real-life scenario and post the pictures on Instagram page, thereby giving users an idea of how your product should be used and how it would look on them.

This might appear completely staged, but by giving the illusion of authenticity, users will feel that your product has been social proofed and will be just another marketing gimmick.

At its most basic you can use people from your company to pose in this way and this is certainly a good initial strategy (Especially if they have an Instagram account and don’t mind posting the pictures on there).

Then again, you can take it a step further and find influencers, or people who have a huge fan following, and ask them to post pictures with your products. This can prove to be tricky, but it will be well worth it, as it’ll help both your brand, your product as well as fetching huge exposure.

Avoid Hard Selling

Posting pictures on Instagram page is free, so there is no need to have sales pictures there. Instead, aim to have mood shots that emphasize how cool your brand is.

Consider hiring a photographer and give them a brief about your brand and getting them to make your brand portfolio. You should release these slowly over time, along with your actual products.

Especially if your pictures are of good quality, they’ll serve to attract new customers as well as bolster your current customer base. They’ll appreciate your soft selling strategy.

Run Contests

Everyone loves contests – especially the ones where anyone can participate and vote. All you need to do is come up with idea for a contest and publicize it to maximum people. Have a prize attractive enough to spark people’s imagination. Now this is really important. You don’t want to skimp on the opportunity by giving out vouchers.

To put things into perspective, evaluate how much exposure you can potentially get and how much you would allocate for a traditional campaign to get the same amount, and then use that figure as a benchmark to decide how much prize’s worth. Also, plan several rounds to draw out the exposure over a longer period. Consider having three trenches, for example, with the five best of each round going through to the final round.

Provide an Interface to Your Customers

One thing is clear that you need to focus on the social aspect of your brand. You need to ensure that your customer base is engaged, interested and active.

If you’re able to do just that, your customers will act as brand ambassadors and draw more traffic to your website and your product. On the other hand, if you’re unable to do it, you’ll just end up as another out-of-touch business trying to appear hip by venturing into a new medium they don’t really understand.

You don’t want to be that brand, right? So weigh in your options and implement the strategies to boost your business.

 

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