Once the new features on social media platforms get announced, social media marketers often try to determine the cost and the benefits of using particular features for their business. They need to decide whether the cost of learning how to use a new feature will be worth it, and whether or not it would translate into extra engagement and sales.
The Instagram Guides feature is a new way to share information and recommendations with your followers. Effectively, when creating a Guide, you are creating a blog post that is comprised of other Instagram Posts but is built into the Instagram platform.
Growth can look different for different businesses. The goals of growth depend on the aims of the brand and the purpose of the content strategy is. When trying to grow your brand, it is important to set tangible goals. This will ensure that you are on track and posting effectively. It is not enough to simply post; you must post effectively.
Growth on Instagram can look like many things. One of the most common growth metrics is follower growth. So, perhaps you want to increase your overall follower count. When doing this, you need to remember the difference between the number of followers, and engaged followers. What this means is ensuring that your followers actually care about your business and interact with your content—uses Guides effectively is a great way to target interested users.
Growth with Instagram Guides is similar to growth in other areas and post types. The principles and basic theoretical understandings of growth are the same.
There are three types of Instagram Guides: places, products, and posts.
1: Set the rules and stand out
Naturally, as Instagram Guides are a new feature there are no conventions or expected posts. This means that you get to make the rules. Once your audience has an expectation of a kind of post the standards increase exponentially. This is why there are so many elements of posts that are consistently replicated across many accounts; because those are the things that work. When users view a feed post, in particular a brand post, they have certain expectations that need to be met, or they will disengage.
But, with Guides, however, you can be a part of the revolutionary users who get to decide the rules. Conventions and expected formats do not exist as of yet meaning that you can be as creative and exciting as you want.
It is also important to note that audiences may not be receptive to undertaking new features and forms of posts. This means you get to entice them. You got to be the entry into the world of Instagram Guides for them.
Nevertheless, being one of the first people to use a new feature, and use it well, is central to a growing audience. It will show that you are on-trend and relevant–given how fast we are used to receiving information and how accustomed we are to instant gratification we only want to be receiving do you find relevant information.
2: Promoting your content
Being able to promote your content is the best way to grow your audience. Promotion runs two ways; first promoting your content through Instagram Guides, and second, promoting your Guide.
Using the product Guide, you will be able to create insights into the product that you are selling on Instagram. Often people do want to know more about a product before committing to buying, see creating a Guide to your products is a great way to show your audience more. It could be the difference between a sale and not. Anything you do to help make your products is good and will help you grow your audience. It will also assist in the growth of your business, and translating views into sales.
If your business has a physical location using the place Guide is a great way to show it off. You can create a Guide into many different elements of your business; it can be an effective way of communicating to your audience what your brand is all about. You can share informative content about elements of your business, and create an easy way for your audience to share your brand with their friends and family.
By including your post in the “posts” Guide, you are effectively promoting that content, too. Whether your Guides are comprised entirely of your own posts, or you are creating a compilation of many user’s posts; having your own post in there is a promotion of your content. The same goes for if your post is included in another user’s Guide—it is an easy promotion of your content.
These three kinds of Guides; products, places, and posts, all have different, yet effective implications for growing your audience and business.
As for the promotion of the Instagram Guide itself, there are several avenues you can take.
Primarily, though, you will be relying on shares. You should share your posts to your story and also encourage your audience to do the same. Eventually, Instagram Guides will show up on the explore page, but until then you need to promote them organically.
Promoting your general content, too, will also subsequently promote your Guides. Using hashtags add location geotags on your standard feed post is a fantastic way to do this. Leave a reference in your caption to your Guide to direct your audience over to your profile and onto the Guide.
For example, implementing sponsored posts is a great way to reach new audience members. Instagram ads are going to be particularly useful if you either have a shop on Instagram or a business with a physical location.
In essence, you need to be able to promote your content and that means all kinds of your content. Getting people to your profile should be the first step, and then having such high-quality content that your audience cannot resist hitting the follow button. It should be easy and clear on your profile to see exactly what your business is all about, which leads us into branding.
3: Expert branding
Creating Instagram Guides is a great way to further your branding which will help you to grow your business. Branding is essential to growth.
Effectively, branding is the perception that your audience has of your business. Your brand needs to consider the needs and wants of your target audience and it needs to be appropriate for your content. Branding strategies usually involve raising brand awareness, gaining brand recognition, and, finally, achieving brand loyalty. Instagram Guides will add a new dimension to your brand.
Instagram Guides are a way to market yourself as an expert; one of the fundamental pillars of marketing and branding. Your audience needs to trust you and they need to believe that you are a credible source of information. Given all the scam and spam accounts that are out there, you need to do anything you can to ensure that your audience believes that you are real and relevant.
You should also ensure that your account is set up as a business profile. This adds a level of professionalism. In social media, appearances are everything, so you should take all opportunities to showcase your brand.
This will help you grow because only brands succeed. Random business accounts get lost in the clutter and forgotten about. Branding is pivotal to growth; it helps with clarity and professionalism.
4: Depth to your posts
Instagram Guides are a great way to add a level of depth to your posts. You are able to expand on your content and add more detail to themes that you have already shared on your feed.
Grouping your posts by subject or theme in a Guide is a great way to direct your audience to a particular element of your expertise. Building Guides around certain ideas and concepts is a fantastic way to show your audience what you can offer them, beyond just simple feed content.
This will help you grow because audiences do not want surface-level content. They want to know who they are supporting, and they want to feel like they are a part of it. there are thousands of brands that users are exposed to on a daily level, but they want to build a connection, instead.
The reason that Instagram implemented Guides was to make it easier for users to give and get recommendations, tips, and information. This gives you the opportunity to create a deeper connection with your audience. To be able to share additional information, whether it be about products, places, or posts, is a fantastic way to improve your branding.
Irrespective of whether you choose to supplement your own posts with posts from other users, you will still be able to further your branding goals. But, if you choose to include other user’s posts in with your own content, you are also including your own content in the conversation. The other users will likely share your posts, therefore exposing your content to new audiences. But, by being selective about the content that you share, and only including content from reputable brands with a following that is similar to your target audience, you will add depth to your content and grow your business.
Instagram Guides are also a great way to collaborate with new and different accounts. As you are able to add posts from any user into your Guides it is a great way to expand your network of connections.
Collaboration is one of the best parts of Instagram. Being able to create content with another user is a fantastic way to bolster both of your brands.
Creating Guides for different kinds of businesses, for example; cafes, secondhand stores high-end stores, small businesses, cellar doors, pizza restaurants, whatever it may be may lead to sponsorship opportunities as well.
Businesses want to promote themselves through influences and brands that they trust and are trusted by their audience. Therefore, if you have used Guides effectively in the past and presented yourself as an authority and a trendsetter it is possible that brands will want to collaborate with you in order to grow their audience which will, in turn, grow yours.
Users also love to see collaborations. They often trust the brands that their favorite brands post about. Finding unique and exciting opportunities to collaborate with is a great way to grow your audience. Guides are a fantastic, and easy way to collaborate with new users.
Additionally, once you have built a strong reputation, and integrated your content into the wider community, your posts may be included in other Guides as well. This will help expose your account to new people, which will translate into new followers and overall brand growth.
Overall, Instagram Guides bring many new opportunities for growth.
Instagram Guides are a fantastic way to help you grow your audience.
But, it is also important that you do not neglect the tried and tested methods you have for growth. If you have discovered success in one area continue to do so. However, new endeavors can complement your existing strategies but, at least initially, should not overshadow them. In essence, the only way you are going to know if something will be successful is to try.
You will need to be monitoring and checking your analytics and see which methods are providing you with the results that are in line with your business goals. Check your engagement, analytics, and insights; using built-in tools, as well as third-party tools, and measure and quantify the things that you are doing and how they are giving you the results that you want for your brand.
Instagram Guides are a new and exciting feature that you can use to grow your brand. Take advantage of the opportunity to present yourself and a trusted source of information, as well as a valued resource in your industry, and watch your brand grow!