Who doesn’t want to be recognized? The obvious answer to this is – everyone. While recognition is an invincible requirement of the social animals, to attain this, they have created numerous platforms. But, is it just the individuals who are looking for recognition over social platforms? Definitely not! Social websites like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and others can be seen flooded with promotional activities of the business industrial giants from automobiles, lifestyle, apparels, to name a few. The major reason behind this new marketing strategy is the inclination of the entire population towards these websites. Above all, one can also define the region, age group, and other factors so as to get to his target audience. Be it something for either kids, teens, grownups, matured, or the elderly people, the social websites have a good number of users from each category. Amidst all this, the small businesses are trying their best to stand in the market. The Visual Experience In the past few years, it is noticed that a photo sharing application – Instagram, born in the year 2010, now has more than 300 million users. Yes, with this massive growth they have left behind Twitter. The reason behind it is pretty clear – the visual experience. In a report recently shared, it was found that over 70 million photos and videos are getting shared on the social community every day. And these photos and videos get the deserved accolade, as another figure reveals that “Like” button gets hit over 2.5 million times a day. The figures on their own reveal the reason behind the inclination and also share the need for small businesses to get into the social community market. How SMEs can use Instagram for business Instagram isn’t like Facebook. The way to use and market properly is a little different compared to its other counterparts. However, you need to believe when I say that if your marketing plan needs to be strong and in right direction, nothing should bother you. Let us have a look at some of the ways in which you can use Instagram for business to enhance the brand’s presence: #1. The strategy Before you get your brand over the platform, make sure you understand it very well. For this, you can try by yourself. Go through the accounts of not only your competitors, but also the established brands. Check out their profile and the way they are enhancing their brand presence. Once you get aware about the entire scene, bring in your brand. Remember, if strategized properly, Instagram can give you engagement per follower of up to 58 times more than Facebook and 120 times more than Twitter. Hereby, the figures alone narrate the saga you can create. All you need is to make a strategy that eventually takes you to the ultimate target of success and recognition. #2. Hashtags Now that you understand the social networking platform, you might be aware of the sense of using hashtags. Use them, while commenting, in your username, photo description, contest promotions, or while creating an event, etc. However, make sure that you are not using them without any sense or for every word. Use the Hashtags only when they are appropriate. Unnecessary use might affect your brand identity and might leave a negative impact on your followers. You may also create a signature hashtag for your posts. This can be used every time you share something. It can be your brand name, a keyword, or anything of the sort that well describes you and your brand. #3. Community engagement Before the brain makes way for shopping, party songs and yes the bachelorette, let us concentrate back to our business. When we use the term ‘Community Engagement’, it implies getting engaged to everyone in your community. Spending some time scrolling through what your followers, people from industry, and what your competitors are sharing, will indeed keep you and your company updated. Try noticing their likes and dislikes and people they follow. This way, you definitely will understand how your competitors are doing and likewise you can get more, exposure, and market insights. You’ll learn what your follower like and eventually you can create the plan accordingly so as to get more noticed. #4. Follow back Yes, you are a brand and you might be having some attitude. However, you should also remember that you are a small business trying to establish. Be humble and laid back. Always follow back your followers (even the US president does this). With this, you won’t only leave a positive impression but will also get to know about the posts that your followers are liking and commenting on. Hence, you can further create or modify your marketing strategy accordingly. You can also follow other brands including your competitors or those with resemblance so as to learn what they are doing and how you can implement them for your business to grow. #5. Keep the suspense Make sure that your posts aren’t always about what you’ve done or have been doing. There should be visuals once in a while which would talk about your upcoming products, services, events, etc. This way, you can keep your followers engaged in your business activities. It’s been noticed that a sneak peek into the upcoming days, not only excites people but also gives ample amount of response to the product or service. #6. Don’t confine Don’t make your professional account all about your work and achievements. Add visuals that make people smile and even think. Though the social site has become a good marketplace today, however, the fact remains that apart from gaining knowledge, people come here to spend some good time. Sharing fun activities while at work, or other things that talk about apart from work can be of help. Being corporate doesn’t mean talking business every time. It is about knowing what to talk, when to, where to, and with whom. #7. Don’t over post, please Last but not the least, over posting spoils everything. Always remember never ever overpost. Instagram isn’t like Facebook where the photos will get grouped. Here, by over posting, you’ll be flooding your followers’ photo feed with only your posts and that no one would like it. Eventually either you’ll leave them annoyed or might even make them unfollow you. Hence, focus on quality posts and not on quantity. Conclusion Instagram has proved its worth as a mobile application. It isn’t just getting all the love from this new social savvy generation, but the corporate giants too are promoting their brands on this huge social platform. Make sure you are utilizing the same in the best possible way, so as to take your brand to new standards. Image: Kiev, Ukraine- May 16, 2016: Instagram new logo and icon printed on white paper. Instagram is an online mobile photo-sharing, video-sharing service.