How to start a small business on Instagram

Instagram is the fastest growing social media platform and statistics show that 80 per cent of users follow at least one business.  The world’s biggest brands use it to promote their products and their services and more and more Australian small businesses use Instagram to compliment their website or bricks and mortar store.

But did you know it’s possible to build an entire small business around the Instagram platform?

Here are five steps to take when starting a small business on Instagram.

Step 1: Research. Make sure you’ve got a market for your product and/or service. What does that mean? That people actually want to buy it. Facebook groups are a great place to start! Identify your target market, join some Facebook groups where you think your target might be and ask if they would buy what you’re selling, and for how much.

Step 2: Customers. Define your ideal customer in as much detail as possible. Why? Because the better you know them, the better content you can serve of value to them on Instagram.

Step 3: Branding. Time to decide on a name for your business. Make sure it’s something your ideal customer will love and relate to and be sure there’s a story behind it (this makes for great Social content). Check your Social handles are available then register your business name and domain. Create an email address that people can contact you on and be sure to add your Social handles to the email signature. Set up a mailing list on a program like MailChimp to send regular newsletters and updates.

Step 4: Content. Set up your bio – who you are and what you do. Show some personality and don’t forget a call to action. Create a content plan. Use the headings “entertain, educate and inspire” to brainstorm what you can share to draw an audience in. Set a theme for consistency and credibility and decide when the best time to post is based on who you are trying to attract and when they most use their phones. Remember that your content should always be relatable, admirable and shareable.

Step 5: Communicate. Consistency is key. Show up daily. Accounts that post daily grow 56% faster. Seek out your ideal client by following and engaging with them. Interact with accounts who have similar target markets. Use hashtags and location tags to optimise your posts. Repeat daily.

Good luck!

Brooke Vulinovich, Social Media Expert, www.villamanagement.com.au

Feature image courtesy of Kate Drennan Photography www.katedrennan.com

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