Instagram has over 300 Million daily users, and 500 Million users worldwide. Before you can get started, you need to get an account setup. Your username and bio are how you make a first impression when someone goes to your profile. Studies have shown that it takes less than 2/10’s of a second for an online user to form a first opinion of your brand. And we all know there’s no 2nd chance to make a first impression.
If you already use Instagram, you probably already know all of these, but a refresher might be good if you’re setting up a second account. If you’re new, grab a cup of coffee and dig into this article. Some of these are easy, and others require a bit more thought. But they’ll have you up and running in no time.
Let us know which of these Instagram tips worked best for you. Leave your usernames in the comments below.
1. Choosing a name and username
Before you decide what to start posting on Instagram, you need a username that reflects you, your brand, and the image you want the public to see. You want to try to stay as consistent with your brand name as possible. Instagram searches accounts by name, both in the username and in the name. Google does as well, that's right, when searching on Google, both will appear in results.
Your Instagram username is the lowercase text next to the icon that looks like a person. This will appear at the top of each photo or comment.
Your name is the text that can have spaces, capital letters etc., and is located next to the icon that looks like a hanging name tag. Depending on your username, you can utilize this space to reinforce or reflect your brand. Or in case the inevitable...your username is already taken.
What if the name you want is already taken?
If the name that best reflects you and your brand is taken, here’s a few ways you might not have thought of to make your brand stand out.
· Add an underscore.
· Add a dot.
· Add your niche or Industry.
· Add an extra name. ex: traveltomtom
· Add Team, group, etc. ex: teamswish
· Use your domain name.
· Use “I am”, “this is”, or “the”. Ex: iamkate, thisiskate, thekate.
· Begin with “we are”, ex: weare
· Lead off with an appropriate title. “Mr”, or “Mrs.” Ex:
· Use your Country, city or state. Or even a combination, a good example is :
· Use HQ. Inc. etc. (especially if they are brand relatable)
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2. Website URL.
Instagram is strict on clickable links. This is intentionally done to cut down on spam in bios, posts and comments. You can only put one clickable URL in your bio, but with some specialized 3rd party services you can add them to each post. This is usually done so that people can order merchandise directly. We will cover Instagram marketing for business in a later post.
That’s not to say you can’t take advantage of this to drive traffic to a particular product, blog article or page. You can change this as many times as you’d like. Say you just posted a new blog post; post the accompanying photo (we prefer to 3 in a row, all related to the blog; more on this later), and make sure you add that you just added a new post to the blog in the photo caption with a clear call to action. But before you do that, you should set up a link shortener/tracker such as Googles URL shortener or a Bitly tracker.
This way you can track where your traffic is coming from. Not only does it track the number of clicks, it will shorten the link into something a little more pleasing to the eye. If you don’t use a URL shortener when someone clicks on your Instagram link, the traffic will just show up as “direct” in Google Analytics instead of “Instagram.” If you took a few seconds to track your traffic source, then you’ll know where all of your effort should be focused.
Make sure you change the URL out per blog post, product update, or leave it in place if you’d like the traffic boost to a certain landing page.
3. Create a good bio.
If you’re new to Instagram, you should do a little research on bios of other accounts. What is it about them that makes you want to follow them? You should shoot for a look that people will identify with the brand you’re trying to build.
The bio is one of the most important parts of your account. It’s like a mini “about me” page of a website. If they haven’t already made a first impression about you and your brand, then this is where they will. Your Bio is the first thing followers or potential followers will see when they come to your profile. If you have no bio, or an uninteresting bio, they may not click the link.
Your bio deserves the most attention because this is often the first thing people will see when searching for your brand or after tapping on your name if you were mentioned in someone else’s post. Not only does it serve as an introduction to new viewers, but it can also determine whether they’ll follow you or take other action, such as clicking on your link. A good bio will keep your followers interested, but if you can leave them wanting more, then all the better. You only get 150 characters, so use the space wisely.
A good bio should explain who you are and what you do. What is it that sets you apart from your competitors? Describe this part of your brand as best you can.
Instagram is a social network, not just image sharing. You can be fun and still build a good brand with emoji. Emoji in your bio not only show your fun side, used wisely they take up a bit more real-estate. They can help you fill out the bio to help with placement and more. Don’t be afraid to experiment here.
You should try to use keywords that describe your target audience and why they are or should, follow you. That way they know if this is an account they want to follow.
You can also add skills, perfect for a public speaker, or other contact info; your snapchat e-mail address or twitter.
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