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The new rules: Instagram for Business

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What’s new in the social media world? The latest news flash is that Instagram and Snapchat are arch enemies battling to the death to try and outdo one another. It appears that Instagram has emerged victorious. And why is this news important to you, dear business owner?

Well, while Snapchat is the lesser known, less reached for mobile app by businesses, Instagram has gone off and copied Snapchat’s thriving ‘My Story’ share feature with the introduction of ‘Instagram Stories’.

With the new addition, Instagram is riding the unwavering success train. For the very first time, businesses now have a powerhouse app that goes beyond bikini clad models, protein shakes and a viral photo of a Kardashian behind at their disposal – Instagram is an outlet not limited to creating buzz, but for leads and sales, offering avenues for businesses to narrow the gap between their targeted audiences, and data to extrapolate on their behaviours. In short, it’s never been a better time to be on Instagram.

What’s different?

Instagram racks up a whopping 500 million active users, with an astounding 300 million opening the app on a daily basis. Suffice to say, the platform is only going to get stronger in shaping a customer’s spending habits and sources of inspiration. 

But with feature overhaul at Instagram HQ, the playbook has been thrown out. Long gone are the days where businesses manning virtual real estate simply fade into the background; Instagram recently introduced a new algorithm to keep up with the quantity of content produced on the app, displaying the posts we care about most higher up in our feeds. So unless you want your account to vanish into the realm of overpopulated feeds, it makes sense for businesses to capitalise on the new features offered in Instagram for Business.

With Instagram for Business, you have free access to:

  • Carousel posts
  • Facebook for Business sync
  • Insights and analytics
  • Promote your best posts by turning them into ads
  • Optimise your profile for sales
    • Customise your contact button: email, text, call or get directions straight to your door
    • Switch on business profile mode to access insights and promote your posts without adding a contact button to your profile
    • Link to Facebook Pages
  • Instagram stories
    • Upload a post like you would normally
    • Add text, emojis and more
    • Publish it on your account where it can be played as many times as your followers like
    • Viewers can respond with direct messages to your Instagram inbox
    • Posts disappear after 24 hours

There’s no doubting that Instagram’s booming success is fast becoming the app any business would be crazy not to be on. All the effort is going to fall into Instagram’s back pocket, so it’s a delicious incentive to cash in now.

Will Snapchat become extinct? Who knows. But the important question remains: are you on Instagram?

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