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Want to Use Instagram for Your Business? Step # 5 – Hashtags

Want to Use Instagram for Your Business? Step # 5 – Hashtags

hashtag

This will be my last post in the Instagram for Business series.  And I am going to talk about the use of hashtags.  Before I do, however, I would like to go on a bit of a rant.  I love Instagram.  I love social media (except Facebook).  But I have a really big problem with people who over use hashtags.  I mean do you really need to hashtag every single word in your post?  Is that honestly necessary?  This is actually relevant to this post.  It’s a turn off for me, and I mostly see it in terms of social accounts.  Meaning, not for businesses.  Which annoys me so I can only imagine how I would feel if I saw 30 hashtags in your post.  I would immediately unfollow you.  Or really consider following you in the first place.  Further, I wouldn’t be thinking about purchasing your product.  Why?  I already told you I’m fickle.

That being said, you need to be careful with hashtags.  Consider the following when thinking about hashtags:

  • Are they relevant?  Make sure that they fit your brand and your audience.  Let’s go back to the bakery example that I’ve been using throughout this post.  If you are a gluten-free bakery, perhaps you don’t want to #gluten.  Gluten is not relevant to your brand.  #glutenfree, however, is.  Do you see where I’m going with this?
  • Do you have at least one hashtag that’s branded?  Maybe consider hashtagging the name of your business.  
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Want to Use Instagram for Your Business? Step #4 – Engage Your Clients

Want to Use Instagram for Your Business? Step #4 – Engage Your Clients

instagram for business

In the business that I’m in, engaging your clients is a big deal.  And it should be for your business also. The more engaged you are with your customers and clients, the more likely they are going to want to buy your product or use your service. The interesting thing about engagement is how much feedback do you really want to receive from your customers or clients? You have to be prepared to respond to the feedback, and make changes to your business or product if necessary.  Which means, you need to be prepared for some negative feedback.  That being said, hopefully your customers will also provide you with positive or constructive feedback.  But that isn’t usually what happens.

Engagement is usually about a two way conversation between you and your customer.  Feedback, in my opinion is one way.  You have a product or service, and I comment on whether I like it or not.  That doesn’t mean you will follow up with me, nor does it mean you will improve your product or service.  Engagement, however, does.  Engage your customers to find out what they are liking and what they aren’t.  Don’t take the negative feedback personally.  You want your customers to feel like they’re being listened to, and that you care about them.  You should after all.  They’re buying into you and your brand.

One thing to consider is how quickly you are responding to DM’s.  This is kind of customer service 101, if you think about it.  … Read the rest

Want to Use Instagram for Your Business? Step #3 – Have Great Content

Want to Use Instagram for Your Business? Step #3 – Have Great Content

instagram for business

The third step in this series is to think about your content.  You have identified your goals, and you have decided what your brand and voice are.  Now you have to figure out what content you want to show to the world.  Your content needs to be consistent, but it also needs to be great.  It needs to be better than your competitors.  You want to give people a reason to choose your business over another.

If I’m being honest, I can be fickle when it comes to why I make certain choices.  I’m specifically talking about products, services and brands.  I recently went to a store, which will remain nameless, where I had a bad customer service experience.  I am not one to ask for help a lot.  Almost rare, to be honest.  I was buying clothes and someone approached me and asked me if I needed help.  I didn’t really need help, but I was looking for something specific and I wanted to make sure that I didn’t miss it.  I then asked for the item that I was looking for, and the response I got was astonishing.  The sales associate actually said “I don’t even know what that is”.  But she didn’t give me the opportunity to explain and she didn’t seem interested in learning about it.

All that being said, I am not going to be returning to that store.  Which brings me to this point about being fickle.  … Read the rest

Want to Use Instagram for Business? Step #2 – Identify Your Brand

Want to Use Instagram for Business? Step #2 – Identify Your Brand

instagram business

The second step when using Instagram for your business is to identify your brand.  You need to first understand what your business is and what you want to achieve.  Which, you should have already figured out.  The first post in this series talks about goal setting.  Based on your goals, you determined who you were going to target.  But now you’re going to shift slightly and figure out what you want your brand to look like.  This will set the tone of your business, so make sure it’s something that you truly want.

Because we are talking about Instagram as a marketing tool, you should first assess what your Instagram account looks like?  Is it an extension of the rest of your business, or does it look completely different?  It shouldn’t.  If it does, now is the time to change it.  Think of some big name brands out there.  Take Starbucks for example.  Their Instagram account includes pictures of their products.  Mostly drinks.  Always with the Starbucks logo on the cup.  This tells viewers what the brand is and who they are.  Regardless of the size of your business, a potential follower should be able to look at your Instagram account and immediately get an idea of who you are what your business is.

This includes your Instagram handle and bio. First of all, you want your handle to be something related to your business.  Maybe a little kitschy.  But not too kitschy.  … Read the rest

Want to Use Instagram For Your Business? Step #1 – Set Some Goals

Want to Use Instagram For Your Business? Step #1 – Set Some Goals

Instagram marketing strategy

Do you use Instagram as a marketing tool for your business?  If so, you need to be continually thinking about your strategy and goals.  How dated are your goals?  What are they exactly?  It wouldn’t hurt to audit your Instagram account to see how you are performing.  If you don’t know where you’ve been, how can you know where you are going?  We all have goals.  Personal goals, professional goals, fitness goals etc.  They have to change from time to time.  You have to adapt as well.  The best way to do this is to stay on top of what you want to achieve, and make sure that your plan is working for you.

What are your goals?

I’ve mentioned goals about 12 times in that first paragraph, so you had to know that this was coming.  Regardless of the platform, or what you’re trying to achieve, you need to understand what your goals are.  When it comes to your business that specifically means marketing and business goals overall.  Instagram is a tool for your business.  It’s a way to drive more people to your service or product.  It needs to reflect that.  Instagram itself isn’t the goal though.  You need to understand what your business does, or what stage you are at with your business in order to understand this better.  Let’s say you’ve got a new business, are you trying to bring people to your site?  If so, your goal is probably going to be around followers and engagement.… Read the rest

Judge Says Galaxy Tab does not Infringe on Apple’s patents

Judge Says Galaxy Tab does not Infringe on Apple’s patents

Seems Apple is getting hit left and right now adays. First it gets some bad PR for not being so Green anymore. After that it gets fined for up selling its AppleCare instead of offering the standard two year warranty. Now Samsung has won its fight with Apple in the UK by not being so cool.

A UK judge in the High Court of Justice’s Chancery Division has ruled that Samsung’s Galaxy tab did not infringe on Apple’s iPad. The reason for this win for Samsung sounds more like a lost. The judge said that the Galaxy Tab was just not as well designed as Apple’s iPad.

Judge Colin Biriss said that Galaxy Tabs “do not have the same understated and extreme simplicity which is possessed by the Apple design and that they are not as cool.”

However he did also say that The court did find that there were similarities in the design. The judge said that “the view from the front is really very striking. The Galaxy tablets are not identical to the Apple design but they are very, very similar in this respect.”… Read the rest

Jeans + iPhone = a genius idea or foolery

Jeans + iPhone = a genius idea or foolery

 

Jeans with a pocket for your iPhone may seem a bit much but then again why not. I’m thinking that it is the most nerdy thing I have seen since the BookBook by TwelveSouth for the iPad and iPhone.  Although I can see the appeal because you don’t have room in your pockets. The convenient thing about the pocket is that you can use the phone while it is in the pocket.  The DELTA415 Wearcom jeans from Alphyn Industries let you hold your phone and look stylish.  The transparent iPhone pouch has a protective denim cover flap that can be zipped shut. The iPhone pocket also has button hole for your earphones. The jeans the same price as a pair of nice diesel jeans at $160. You can get a pair here and while you’re there pick up the sweatshirt below.

 

 

 … Read the rest