Earlier this year, Instagram has been slowly rolling out a new in-app feature called Local Business Profile Pages. These pages are reminiscent of Google’s local knowledge panels, in that they show a company’s address, business hours, type of business, price range, website, and phone number. Business owners also have the option to claim a profile page and edit the pre-populated information if they also have access to their business’ Facebook page.
What this means for businesses is that this new feature makes it easier to market locally on Instagram. Here are some tips for local businesses on how to effectively implement an Instagram marketing strategy:
1. Tag your location
Geotagging is one of the most basic strategies in local marketing, though many businesses fail to consider this.
Tagging your business location to your Instagram posts allows users to discover your local business and help them find your location more easily. Additionally, while it’s important to tag your exact location, it’s also equally essential to use generic hashtags often, such as the name of your city or a popular landmark in your area. This way, you create variation in your posts and give users who search those locations on Instagram the opportunity to discover your business.
2. Localize your hashtags
To further optimize your local reach, use localized hashtags. This means including area-specific hashtags such as #TexasDigitalMarketing in your posts; think of this as long-tail keywords. This allows potential customers in your area to discover your business should they search for that hashtag on Instagram.
The crucial consideration when localizing your hashtags, however, is knowing how local you should get. There isn’t a hard-and-fast rule to hashtags on Instagram; you only need to determine what phrases people use when searching in your local area. You can use third-party tools like Focalmark or Hashtagify to determine and analyze related hashtags, and then you can refine your localized hashtags.
3. Demonstrate your products in action
As a visual platform, Instagram makes for the perfect medium to demonstrate your products in action. This shows customers how your products or services can make their lives easier. Doing so also strengthens your brand value and encourages people to make a purchase.
When creating such photos or videos for your brand, it’s essential to incorporate popular landmarks around your business location. This helps customers envision living that lifestyle better if they see a familiar setting.
4. Regularly post on Instagram Stories
Ephemeral content through Instagram Stories is gaining a lot of traction as of late. In fact, according to Instagram, there are over 500 million users who actively watch an Instagram Story every day and that 80% of accounts follow at least one Instagram business page.
This is why it’s important for businesses to consider curating separate content for Instagram Stories and posting frequently, aside from the regular Instagram posts. To integrate local marketing into your Instagram Stories strategy, geotag your posts and make sure to showcase local sceneries. It also helps to reshare posts from your followers and tag them; not only does this expand your local exposure, your followers will appreciate the shoutout as well.
5. Engage and interact with the community
As with any social media marketing strategy, posting relevant and high-quality content isn’t enough. It’s also crucial to engage and interact with your followers regularly — after all, social media is all about getting social.
To maximize your time in engagement, you can use social listening tools like Brandwatch, Squarelovin, and Sprout Social. Take note of brand mentions and join in on the conversation. It can also help if you follow local influencers and other brands to help establish your reputation in the Instagram community. Encouraging user-generated content (UGC) is also a great way to expand your reach and actively involve your followers in your brand promotion.
Instagram is a powerful marketing tool that, not only boasts worldwide reach, it also aids in targeting a more granular and localized market. When creating your local Instagram marketing, always have your target audience in mind. Pay attention on what works well for them, and listen to their concerns.
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