7 Common Instagram Mistakes to Avoid
Updated: Jun 22
Instagram has become a huge hit in the business world. The social media platform currently has over 25 million active business profiles - with small businesses being the majority.
A lack of growth on Instagram often comes down to making common yet easy to avoid mistakes.
Here are 7 Instagram marketing mistakes to avoid in order to develop your presence effectively.
1. Being inconsistent
This is a very common marketing mistakes that many businesses make. The frequency of your postings matters because if you post too much, you will scare the audience away. If you post too little, they will forget who you are and will not get the chance to get to know you on a personal level.
Think of it this way - if you had a physical store, would it be appropriate for you to open and close at different times every day? You should treat your Instagram business account with the same approach. You need to show up constantly and consistently to build trust with your audience.
Being consistent on this platform not only helps your audience to get to know you, but it also helps you get to know them as well.
2. Posting poor quality images
Instagram positions itself as a social media service that’s accessible to anyone, regardless of their photographic skills. But the truth is that the most successful accounts are run by people who know how to create images that really pop out with audience appeal.
First impressions matter when it comes to your brand’s social media presence, so make sure you are serving up the best looks possible. If you want your profile to look professional, you shouldn’t just snap away with your smartphone and hope for the best.
Instead you need to consider things like shot composition, lighting, the position of your subject and other influential elements that determine whether a photo makes a good impression or not.
It doesn’t have to cost a lot of money, some simple tweaks can make a huge difference.
These are a few tips you can put into action today:
Lighting: If your lighting is bad, filters will not do any good. Have a look at tutorials on how to maximize natural light, so your eye for it keeps developing. You don’t always need a super fancy lighting setup to make a nice photo, you just need to know how to use your immediate surrounding and whatever equipment you may have.
Shooting: There are many styles of photography out there, and some of them are a lot better for what you want to accomplish. Learn about angles, perspective, composition, and focal point.
Editing: Once you’ve learned to shoot well, using light, angles, and content, it’s time to edit your photo and put the final touches to it. There are many editing styles, and sometimes it just comes down to choosing a few great filters that you can use consistently to give your brand it’s own personality.
3. Not using appropriate hashtags
Hashtags can be a very powerful tool to get your business and product seen by people who are currently looking at the hashtag you include. It can be tempting to cram as many as possible to try and maximise post searchability. This is not a good idea. There’s been much debate over the best number of hashtags to include, but ideally it should be 10 or less. Tailor your hashtags so that they are relevant, quality over quantity is essential.
If you do research and use the appropriate hashtags on your post, then your business should pop up on Instagram's 'explore page'. This means that you will be featured on a timeline tailored to the likes of users similar to your target audience based on their previous engagement behaviours.
4. Posting too frequently
We already mentioned that you need to consistently be seen by your audience in order to build trust and familiarity with your brand. However, you also want to avoid being the company who posts too much.
You can get away with one or two daily posts, but beyond that and you are going to become the annoying next-door neighbour nobody likes. The reality is, if someone is seeing a ton of posts from you throughout their feed and they are unable to see posts from other people, the chance is they will unfollow you.
Research has shown us that an organically grown and nurtured customer relationship translates into a longer lasting and repeat clientele.
5. Writing an uninspiring bio
Your Instagram bio is essentially like your 30-second business pitch. If you are being unclear on who you are and what you offer it can slow your growth and keep you from reaching your marketing goals.
Think about the most creative and essential things to say that will present your brand accurately. Be specific if you offer a specialized service. Simply sharing your business' mission statement is also helpful to your audience - as long as it's written clearly and concise.
Instagram also has categories that appear right under your name for business profiles. Be sure to choose the title that is most relevant to your brand. Just remember that your bio is a first overall impression of your brand.
6. Lack of engagement
Social media is not designed to be a one-way conversation. Make sure you are responding if someone leaves a comment or send you a direct message. Commenting on customer posts about your brand can also promote brand loyalty. Instagram will see that you are connecting with these people and will be more likely to show you to them again as you have built a relationship.
There are plenty of ways to upgrade your engagement with your followers. Here are a few options to try for your business:
Creating posts that encourage conversation
Asking followers to tag other people who would like a post
Liking and responding to page visitors in the comment sections
Going live and speaking directly to viewers
Using engaging Instagram story features, such as polls, questions, etc.
Use CTAs (calls-to-action) in your posts, stories, and bio
Over time, you will find your Instagram followers come back regularly to see what you have posted. Most importantly, the information they provide in comments can be invaluable in learning more about what customers think of your products, services and employees.
7. Neglecting influencer collaboration
There is a new tier of celebrity called social media influencer. Influencers are the number one resource for driving traffic + sales, as well as generating content that you can upload on your own account to build brand awareness.
Most successful businesses create a marketing campaign which involves using influencers to create content such as photos/videos to share on their account. This makes your brand look extremely trusted as it has lots of social proof that people are purchasing and using your product: even if you’ve paid them to do so.
Trying to succeed on Instagram may seem overwhelming and impossible. Just remember to remain consistent, listen to your followers, and produce great content. If you need help with marketing on Instagram, feel free to contact us today!