Friday, May 5, 2017

Instagram — Are You Using It To Grow Your Balloon Business?

Instagram is one of the social media groups that I have not really got to grips with. Since I set up my Instagram account, I have used it mainly to post personal photographs, rather than balloons or business related items. It was only when Shannon Kilford of Born to Party in Sydney, Australia, made a really interesting comment regarding Instagram on a recent blog post, I decided that I should really find out more about this social media platform. 
"I am also a passionate Instagram user! This social media platform has literally changed my life and my business! 90% of our customers use it and come to us with pictures off our Instagram account requesting a particular design. I also find it useful for instant messaging and sending images back and forth to my clients. Not many days go by when I'm not using direct messages to communicate with my clients this way! As our account grows, so does our business. It's definitely not a coincidence. You are welcome to check out our Instagram here;
We also use Facebook, and in the beginning it was a great tool for growing our business. But since Facebook made changes to its reach for business pages, it is not nearly as good as it used to be so we don't focus on it as much as we used to."

To read Shannon's full article on "Modern Balloon Styling," click on the link below;
Giant Balloons, Confetti Balloons, Tassels, and Organic Decor — Modern Balloon Styling by Shannon Kilford, Born to Party, Sydney, Australia.

I found this article, "The Power of InstaGram in Your Marketing Campaign" on the Paperless Proposal website that was concise and easy to understand. Ideal for those who do not already have an Instagram account set up or still a little unsure how to use it — like me!

If you are using social media websites in your marketing campaigns and not utilizing the power of Instagram you are missing out on a huge amount of potential traffic and business. Social media websites have been gaining in popularity each month and recent studies have shown on Facebook alone the average user is now spending over fifty minutes a day on that one website. Instagram has been gaining in popularity because of all the added exposure your business can gain from posting your information on their site.
Instagram is very simple to use and has the potential to get your name and links in front of millions of possible customers very quickly. When you first setup your account you are allowed to include one link in your profile. Be sure to list your main website here because your username will hyperlink to your profile page where your main website is prominently displayed. Choose your username carefully. Y
ou can change your username if needed as long as it is not already taken.
Try to get the name as close to your business name as possible so your brand is recognized across all social media platforms.
Once you have your user name and profile set up it is time to harness the power of this explosive social media website. No one is going to see your posts if you don’t have fans and friends, so use the free tools to search emails and Facebook for current fans you have. Once you have a few fans it’s time to make a post. You either post an image or a ten-second video that relates to your business. The way you get the word out. After you choose your image, use hashtags in the description that will link your post to all those hashtags as well. So for example, if you are a screen printer you use the hashtag around words like printing, tee shirts, and embroidery so that your image and link will appear automatically under all of those hashtags. This is an extremely powerful feature that many people do not utilize correctly. Your one post can be sent to dozens of other pages instantly if you use the hashtags frequently throughout your post.
One other power feature within the Instagram platform is when you are about to post your message you have the option to have it automatically post immediately to Facebook and Twitter as well. Here is where the power of social media can really explode your visibility and your business. When you include large numbers of hash tags within your post on Instagram, it auto-posts to Facebook and Twitter with those hashtags as live links too. So your one post to Instagram goes to dozens of hashtag pages within seconds, and then when it hit Facebook it does the same thing. Your hashtags are all live links within Facebook reaching another dozen pages. One single post is automatically sent to dozens or more pages with all your links to your main website in place. The power of Instagram can explode your visibility in a very short time and should be incorporated in your marketing campaign immediately.

If you are not already following Qualatex® on Instagram, start today and see all the fabulous new products that are being added to the Qualatex collection along with lots of great decor ideas, too! 

I think that it is important for us all to find the best marketing tools for our business, and it is very hard to ignore comments like these; "More consumers are buying goods and services based on what they see in their Instagram feed."

Starting an account can sound scary, but I would encourage you to just play around with Instagram. Make sure that you add a small logo or website details in the bottom corner of all your photographs. That way if they go viral or someone wants to know where that design came from they know where to find it, but it needs to be subtle or else it will take away from the image.
Here is a great free Instagram Social Plan by Fiona Flintham. I believe that this would be a fantastic tool for anyone starting or refreshing their Instagram marketing campaign, and I think that I will certainly try this and see how it goes. Click on the link and download your free planner!

I would love to hear your Instagram successes! 
Happy Ballooning!


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