There are now half a billion active users on the photo-sharing app Instagram, with more than 300 million people using it at least once a day. The platform has now overtaken Twitter in popularity.

So why should you use Instagram to market your business and raise your brand profile? Well, here are 10 reasons:

1. KEEP UP WITH THE TIMES

Social media marketing can be tricky because the whims of the population change at a moment’s notice. The “it” factor of usage and coolness is far more important than a platform’s technical capabilities. Instagram has that cool factor in spades.

2. REACH YOUR CUSTOMERS ON THE GO

Mobile is still the preferred method of accessing Instagram, which is a bonus for marketers. This means that your customer base is always a click away from seeing your posts and becoming more engaged with your business.

3. MARKET YOURSELF IN A NEW WAY

The visual-based marketing Instagram provides doesn’t translate to every business, but Instagram affords companies the opportunity to market themselves in new and unique ways. Behind-the-scenes photos and videos make it possible for any company to attract a following on Instagram.

4. USE HASHTAGS TO MAKE YOURSELF VISIBLE

Hashtags are obsolete on Twitter, and Facebook hashtags never really caught on. Instagram hashtags, however, are extremely powerful. In fact, the only way to show up in search results is through hashtagging. Hashtags have a two-pronged effect; not only can you promote your business, but hashtags make it easier for consumers and other businesses to find you.

5. CONDUCT MARKET RESEARCH

The native hashtag search engine on Instagram gives you the number of times a hashtag has been used. This gives you an idea of how popular certain hashtags are, which allows you to target the most relevant hashtags to your company. Additionally, apps like Followers+ run analytics on your posts and your followers so that you can better understand how well your posts engage your audience.

6. PROMOTE YOURSELF TO YOUNGER DEMOGRAPHICS

As Facebook and Twitter continue to skew towards older demographics, Instagram is all about the younger audience. More than 40 percent of Instagram users are between 16 and 24 years old. This is a coveted demographic; if your company caters to this group and you aren’t on Instagram yet, you need to change that immediately.

7. ENJOY TREMENDOUS GROWTH POTENTIAL

Brands that advertise on Instagram receive 15 times as much engagement as they do on Facebook. As people continue to abandon Facebook, they’re likely to migrate to Instagram, largely because of its growing popularity and favorable opinion in popular culture.

8. USE SPONSORED POSTS TO EXPAND YOUR AUDIENCE

Instagram’s sponsored posts program is more successful than Facebook’s equivalent version. Sponsored posts on Instagram come across as organic and relevant rather than spam.

9. SOLICIT USER GENERATED CONTENT

Marketing campaigns featuring user generated content have become commonplace, and Instagram is a great place to launch such a promotion. Businesses can enjoy the benefits of residual marketing that happens organically, and all you have to do is advertise the promotion and monitor the results by clicking a hashtag.

10. INCREASE REVENUES

The massive growth of Instagram means that virtually everyone is rushing to get on board, including your competition. Don’t get left behind – use Instagram to increase your customer base and your social media engagement - and, of course, your bottom line.

Need help with setting up your Instagram profile or your wider social media strategy? We can help you create engaging content and we’ll even manage your social media accounts for you too. Want to know more? Please contact us – we’d love to hear from you:hello@progress.agency