Instagram is quicky becoming one of the most influential social networks, with over 400 million daily users as of February 2017 (for some perspective, Facebook has 1.3 billion daily users) – demonstrating that one again, that there is strength in simplicity.
This means for owners of small and medium businesses, that you have a potentially very vibrant, very visual way of reaching your customers; many of whom are probably in the aforementioned 400 million.
Seems simple, right?
Yes. If you have an business for baking, fashion, or photography. Something that is visually striking is easy to succeed on Instagram with. Having said that, what if you’re a B2B company that provides consulting services or another “intangible” good? Not so easy. But it also means there is ample opportunity to be creative and reach your potential clients in way that is totally unique to you. With a growing number of millennials becoming decision makers in their companies – Instagram is definitely a great way to reach them.
The tricky part?
Finding a way to communicate who you are and what you stand for, but as a partner – instead of a vendor. In other words, advertise by adding value – not by forcing your product unnaturally into photos and content.
To help you get started building your Instagram account, we’ve made a list of some of our top B2B Instagram accounts, why they are great, and what you can learn from them.
It shouldn’t come as any surpise that marketing giant has a gorgeous account filled with posts that are perfectly tailored to their audience, while also keeping the voice of the brand.
Why we love it: The variation of content from employees (aka “Hubspotters”), fun pics, and useful content, you can be sure that whatever the daily post from Hubspot is, will be something that definitely ads value to your day.
What you can learn: The importance of relevance – or perceived relevance! What do strawberries, waffles, and quotes from “Parks & Recreation” have to do with marketing? Not much – but they do give you a better feel for who Hubspot is and entice you to learn more.
2. J.P. Morgan
Who says banking and finance have to be boring? With an eye to their millennial consumers, JPMC is making sure that their account is visually appealing enough to make you double check that they are indeed a bank.
Why we love it: As they have a few lines of business directed towards consumers and enterprises, it was important that they found a way to strike a balance between the two. Their account does a great job with announcing corporate news without being boring.
What you can learn: Inspiration goes a long way. For this account, they found a great way to make the company attractive to future employees with photos taken at headquarters worldwide while also communicating top company news and developments.
Ahh taxes, accounting, and audits. Everyone’s favorite topic, right? And definitely what you want to be thinking about when you’re scrolling through your Instagram? Well, maybe not – so KPMG has put a huge focus on the charitable efforts of the corporation worldwide – and their Instagram reflects those efforts.
Why we love it: Every big company will tell you that they are doing their part to contribute to lifting marginalized communities, but KPMG does a great job of demonstrating through onsite pictures of their efforts.
What you can learn: Philanthropy is great – and we all have our responsibility to help those that we can, but this is not to say you shouldn’t be able to share your efforts; and perhaps inspire others to do the same.
OK so if your products are aerospace vessels, you’ve got a pretty solid start to having a visually appealing Instagram account. In addition to great action shots of their vessels in action, you also get a to see the view from the perspective of some of their pilots and engineers.
Why we love it: Who doesn’t want a look behind the scenes of one of the companies that has changed how we look at air travel forever?
What you can learn: The importance of “regramming” your favorite photos. If you’ve got clients that end up benefitting from you products and they snap a picture of it, it can be a great way to a) show your appreciation for your client and b) demonstrate this happiness to potential clients.
With these four brands in mind, it’s clear that there are a few different strategies that you can take for your Instagram identity. Having said that, there are some key points to keep in mind – regardless of your business for an attractive and effective profile:
- Always use high definition photos. For this reason, make sure you check all of your photos and how they show up on different size devices.
- Links in photo descriptions aren’t clickable – so your CTA will need to be in the “profile” section of your page – so make sure to keep it short!
- Do use relevant hashtags and descriptions – utilize all that keyword research you’ve so diligently completed!
- When regramming, do make sure to give credit to the original poster.
- If you’re going to use filters, choose one when you get started and use it consistently. This will give your entire profile a more seamless and branded appearance.
- Do respond to comments and questions.
- Avoid using the same photo/caption across all of your social networks (especially if it includes a link on your other channels) as it may not “translate” as well.
- Spend some time liking and commenting on photos of the brands you follow – you never know who will find your account this way.
- Make sure to follow relevant brands (for inspiration and for market knowledge, of course).
As you go, you’ll find what works best for your audience and what helps you grow. The key thing to remember is that Instagram is very much a scrolling app, where people will just see your photo for a half-second before continuing; so it’s essential that you create content that is eye-catching.
Unsure how to get started? Have an account, but lack the growth or direction to make it work for you? Write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org for your free evaluation and consultation.