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Instagram for Businesses 101

Updated: Jul 29, 2022

Instagram is a video and photo social networking platform founded in 2010 by Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger and later purchased by Facebook Inc. Users can upload photos and videos which can be filtered and grouped with hashtags and geotagging. Instagram posts can be shared with the general public or with pre-approved followers. Users can explore other users' content by tag and location, see what's trending, such as photographs, and follow other users to add their content material to their own personal feed.

When one thinks of Instagram today, the first thing that comes to mind is probably not its use in business but its association with influencers. However, when you think of it, what are influencers but experts in the art of advertising? Instagram influencers are ordinary Instagram users with a special ability to influence others, established credibility, and a sizable following. From a marketing perspective, an influencer is someone who has the ability to sway the decisions of potential consumers. An Instagram influencer typically has a large following and a high interaction rate.

However, who is to say that an influencer has to be a singular human being? A business can exercise its influence on Instagram users as well. It is a sound strategy. Over the previous five years, Instagram usage has increased by a factor of ten. Instagram was named the most significant social media medium for influencer marketing by eighty-nine percent of respondents.

There are a few differences between the accounts used by influencers and the business accounts used by professionals. "The distinction between a person and a business Instagram account is that the business account allows you to monitor your analytics," said Mark Lamplugh, head of marketing and growth at Maryland Oncology Hematology, "Business accounts should be a little more disciplined, with explicit directives on the content that is published. “The biggest difference between a personal and a corporate Instagram account is that a business account comes with a number of extra capabilities that a personal account does not.

Here are a few of the other features of a business account:

  • Adding swipe-up links to Stories is now possible (if the account has at least 10,000 followers)

  • Possibility of boosting posts

  • Posts that can be purchased

  • Observations on Instagram

  • Posts that have been promoted

  • Links to get in touch

  • Following the scheduling,

  • Posting by itself

Setting Up an Instagram Business Profile

Coming out of the Gate

  1. On your iOS, Android, or Windows device, download the Instagram app.

  2. Open the app and sign up by entering your information. If several individuals have access to this account, make sure you use an administrator email address or log in using Facebook to quickly link your Facebook business page.

  3. Choose a username and password, fill out your profile information, and log in.

  4. When you create a new account, it will be set up as a personal account by default. So, you'll proceed with the procedures to convert your Instagram account to a business profile from here. (See section below for more information)

Converting an Existing Personal Account

Go to your profile page from the app.

  1. In the top right-hand corner, click the menu. It appears to be three short lines layered on top of each other.

  2. Select "settings" from the menu.

  3. Go to the settings menu and select "account."

  4. From here, you should notice highlighted alternatives to switch to a business account at the bottom of the account menu. When you click on it, you may be asked to fill in any missing information or prompted to switch over right immediately. That is all there is to it.

Things You Should Know

Statistics Don’t Lie

Fifty-nine percent of adults in the United States use Instagram on a daily basis, with thirty-eight percent of those users visiting many times each day. It is also the world's seventh most popular website and the ninth most popular Google search phrase.

If commercial reach is a cornerstone of your social media plan, you should know that Instagram's ad reach is currently surpassing Facebook's. This year, Facebook's global advertising reach climbed by only approximately seven percent, whereas Instagram's expanded by about twenty-one percent, and two-thirds of individuals believe the network facilitates meaningful engagement with brands; it is a strong branding tool.

Insightful Information

When used for business, Instagram may help raise brand visibility, increase sales, and establish and track audience engagement. It's a great approach to finding clients in places where they already spend time. It can also provide useful audience insights that you can employ in all of your marketing strategies.

Instagram's powerful analytics, known as “Insights,” can be a huge boon for businesses. Instagram Insights gives useful data that can help you better adapt your posts and other Instagram content to your target audience and achieve your objectives, all through the power of data and analytics.

Data and analytics may help you assess the effectiveness of your marketing efforts across several channels to determine if there's anything you need to change, such as targeting a different audience, posting at a different time of day, or experimenting with a different content type. In the same way that other areas of your marketing may be measured and improved, social media can as well. As a result, you'll be able to use Instagram Insights to design a more effective Instagram strategy.

Instagram Insights allows you to do more than just measure your reach, although it is an excellent tool for doing just that. You can track followers and content interactions and determine website clicks for links you have posted.

Using Instagram Insights

Follow the steps below to begin your journey using Instagram Insights.

  1. Open the Instagram app and go to your profile.

  2. Go to the "Settings" page.

  3. Select 'Account.'

  4. Switch to a professional account by clicking the 'Switch to Professional Account' button.

  5. Select a category and then click 'Done.'

  6. Change to a Business account if you want to.

  7. Connect your Facebook page if desired.

Insights Overview

Think of this as the Instagram Insights' "home page.". You'll be able to see how you did overall in this section. On this page, you'll find the following details.


If you ever find yourself feeling lost or don't know what something means, you can use the I button in the top right-hand corner to look up definitions for the phrases on the screen. Think of the information button as your own personal help desk.

Date Range

The date range on the screen displays the days and weeks of data on your screen. By clicking "Last seven days" in the top left-hand corner, you may modify the duration of time shown.

Accounts Engaged

The number of users you've reached and who have interacted with your material in some way is referred to as Accounts Engaged. Likes, saves, comments, shares, and responses are all examples of interactions.

Engaged Audience

The engaged audience area displays the number of unique users who have liked, commented, saved, shared, or responded to your content. Follower status, gender, age, nations, and cities will be used to segment your engaged audience.

Content Interactions

This area displays the total number of times your content has been liked, commented on, saved, shared, or replied to. It then splits down the total into individual post interactions. You'll also get a list of your most popular posts by category.

Total Followers

The quantity of people who follow your Instagram account is referred to as total followers. Instagram Insights' total follower page displays the total number of users who follow you. Followers, unfollows, top locations, age ranges, and genders are all visible. There's one more area, most active times, under total followers and its demographic split.

Most Active Times

The most active times area displays the hours and days when your followers are most likely to be on Instagram. This allows you to discover the optimum times to post in order to reach the greatest number of people.

Content You Shared

This area displays the total number of posts, Stories, reels, videos, Live videos, and promos that you have shared.

Accounts Reached

Here, you will find the number of unique users who have seen the content you have uploaded, such as posts, stories, reels, videos, Live videos, and promoted advertising, at least one time. Under Accounts Reached, you'll find more detailed information on the users who have viewed your material and interacted with your profile in some form or another.

Reached Audience

This part displays the number of unique users who have seen your posts. Your audience will be segmented on their follower status, gender, age, country, and city. You may also monitor how many individuals you've reached through advertisements and promotions.


The number of times all of your posts have been seen, including repeat viewings by the same individuals, is referred to as impressions.

Profile Activity

The actions visitors perform after seeing your profile are broken down by profile activity. The number of website clicks, company address clicks, call button clicks, email button clicks, and text button clicks may all be seen. However, you must have established those buttons in order for these metrics to appear.

Content Reach

In the content reach area, you can observe which types of postings have gotten the most attention. The number of individuals who have taken a look at your posts, stories, reels, IGTV videos, and Live videos will appear first on a graph. Below that, you'll get a list of your top-performing posts based on reach.

To see your post insights on Instagram, go to your profile and click the "Insights" icon directly above your posts. Otherwise, you can tap Insights from the hamburger menu in the top right corner. You'll find Insights for all of your articles, reels, live videos, and other content there.

Checking Out Your Reel Insights

  1. Go to your profile page.

  2. Navigate to the specific reel for which you'd like to see insights.

  3. A banner will appear at the bottom of your reel. Select View Insights from the drop-down menu.

  4. You can now see how often your reel has been played, liked, commented on, shared, and saved.

Taking a Look at Video Insights

Check out the steps below for live videos you have just completed.

  1. After you've finished your video, tap View Insights.

  2. The number of watchers, likes, drop-offs, comments, and other interactions will all be visible immediately.

  3. If you've previously aired a Live video:

  4. Go to your profile page.

  5. At the top of your post grid, tap the Insights action button.

  6. Tap the row of Live videos you've already shared under Content You Shared.

  7. Select the old Live video for which you'd want to see insights.

Check out the steps below for videos you have posted.

  1. Go to your profile page.

  2. Right above your post grid, click the Play triangle icon.

  3. Select the video for which you'd like to see insights.

  4. Tap the three dots in the video's corner, either horizontally or vertically.

  5. In the pop-up menu, select View Insights.

Viewing Insights for a Single Post

  1. Go to your profile page.

  2. Click on the specific post for which you'd like to see insights.

  3. There will be a banner at the bottom of the post. Select View Insights from the drop-down menu.

  4. You can now see how many users have liked, commented on, shared, and saved your post.

Taking a Look at Story Insights

If your Story is currently visible on your profile, follow these steps.

  1. Go to your profile page.

  2. Go to your profile photo and click it.

  3. Continue reading the article by scrolling up.

  4. You'll be able to see responses, exits, link clicks, forwards, and more for that Story right now.

If your Story has already expired or it has been more than 24 hours, follow the steps below.

  1. Go to your profile page.

  2. At the top of your post grid, tap the Insights action button.

  3. Tap the row of Stories you've shared in the past under Content You Shared.

  4. Swipe up on the specific story you'd want to learn more about.

Keeping Your Business Relevant

In today's fast-paced world, it's critical for all companies to develop a competitive advantage that will set them apart. A competitive advantage is a benefit that a company has over its competitors, such as reduced prices or additional benefits. Staying relevant, which implies remaining valuable, innovative, and current, is a tremendous competitive advantage.

A relevant business is one that responds to a current problem or needs with a solution or product. Businesses and organizations must discover strategies to stay relevant in the marketplace in order to be successful. However, staying relevant when using social media is also about knowing what will keep people following your feed; even if, at first glance, the company is not one, they would usually take the time to follow.

Arby's, for example, is well-known for its roast beef sandwiches. This isn't everyone's cup of tea, and it can get a little monotonous. You can only upload a photo of a sandwich so many times before it becomes boring. Arby's, on the other hand, makes it worthwhile for their followers to continue to follow them on Instagram.

They've had a surprising amount of success wooing nerdy audiences. They produce creative odes to pop culture from a variety of video games, anime, television, and film assets using a combination of food and paper-crafts. The humor comes from the identification of the cultural references, as well as the content's inventive and skillful construction. If the content includes their own in-jokes, fan communities are very grateful.

Ultimately, finding the material that works best for your company may require some trial and error. Other brands, such as The North Face, use amazing adventure photos to appeal to their clientele, whereas Arby's leans on humor. The notion is that marketers must provide value to Instagram's community rather than relying just on the platform for advertising. For your long-term success, this really is crucial.

Audience Engagement

Relevancy is important because it draws an audience in and keeps them coming back for more, but it is also imperative to engage with the audience you have created. Engaging with your audience makes them feel important and, as a result, more connected to your company. You can interact with your audience in a variety of ways. You may respond to comments on posts, join comment threads, hold contests or giveaways, use Instagram Stories polls, or give shout-outs to followers on your Stories, especially if they post something relevant to your brand.

Starbucks is a great illustration of what connecting with an audience can be. Starbucks does an excellent job of offering a personal experience to its social media followers, especially for such a large brand. The business is noted for its speedy social media reaction times, which are essential for providing excellent customer support, as well as for randomly engaging with accounts of all sizes that interact with its page. With 17.9M followers, you know they must be doing something right.

Build Website Traffic

By building a loyal brand following on Instagram, you are also driving traffic to your company's website, where the bulk of your business happens.

The "link in bio" strategy is the most typical approach to direct Instagram followers to your website. You can put one clickable link in your Instagram bio, so make the most of it. Go to Edit Profile and type the link in the Website text box. In your bio, provide a call-to-action that tells users why they should click the link and what they will get if they do. If you have a free eBook, for example, include something like, "Click below to download the free 30-page guide." You can avoid an unattractive URL length by shortening it with the free website, Plus, if you sign up for an account, you’ll be able to track how many clicks that link has received.

You should never just expect your viewers to click on your bio links on their own accord. Start directing audiences to that link in your post comments once you've built up a link system in your bio. Include a caption with your graphic that tells readers how they can learn more or obtain something special by visiting your profile and clicking on the bio link. By describing the value or benefit they will receive by clicking your link, you can persuade them to take action.

You can also share links within your stories. Digital storytelling comes to life with Instagram videos. In fact, Instagram videos generate three times as many inbound links as image postings, so it's well worth the time to create a 15-second story. There is one stipulation to this. However, you must have a business account with at least 10,000 followers.

If you don't have 10,000 Instagram followers, you can still use your videos to increase traffic. You can take advantage of IGTV. IGTV is an Instagram feature that allows you to publish videos and build a content library. When uploading from your phone, videos can be anywhere from one to fifteen minutes long, and when uploading from a computer, videos can be anywhere from one to sixty minutes long.

When you make an IGTV video, you can include a link in the description to direct viewers to your website. To encourage viewers to check out your video details, include a call-to-action in the title of your IGTV video, such as "Tap the arrow for more info" (and links). Then you can provide a link to your website or blog.

If your website is a store, you can also use Instagram to increase traffic and sales by including Instagram Shopping. Instagram Shopping transforms your posts and page into a storefront, allowing visitors to click on your posts, view prices, and be routed to your website to complete a purchase.

Instagram Ads

Through Instagram advertisements, companies can pay to have their posts delivered to Instagram users. Instagram advertising appears in users' feeds, Stories, Explore, and other areas of the app, similar to Facebook ads. They look to be regular posts, but they always include the word "sponsored" to indicate that they are adverts. Links, call-to-action buttons, and product catalogs are usually included, as are more elements than a standard post.

Ads can be used in a variety of ways on your Instagram account. With so many different ad types to select from, deciding which kind of ad to use for your campaign may be challenging. The good news is that Ads Manager is built for testing, so you can experiment with multiple formats to see which one works best for you before launching a full campaign.

Image Advertisements: Image ads allow businesses to promote their brand, products, and services by using single images. Text can be added to these graphics as well. For the best results, Instagram advises reducing overlay text as much as possible. Image ads are great for campaigns that have engaging visual content that can be presented in a single image. These graphics can be created using high-quality photography, as well as design and art.

Instagram Stories Adverts: Instagram Story ads are full-screen picture or video ads that show in between users' Stories on Instagram. Instagram Stories are one of the most popular features of the platform, with more than 500 million people seeing them every day. Engagement is often higher because Stories adverts take up the entire mobile screen and feel significantly more immersive than in-feed ads. Instagram Stories ads that meld in with the remainder of the feed and don't stand out as ads are the best. When creating Stories advertising, business owners can use all native Instagram Stories components, such as filters, text, GIFs, and interactive stickers. Still, photographs, videos, and carousels can all be used in Stories adverts. At the bottom of the Story, the call-to-action is given as a swipe-up link.

Video Advertisements: Video ads on Instagram are similar to picture ads in that they allow businesses to give customers a deeper insight into their brand, products, and services. Although in-feed video advertising can last up to 60 minutes, they are usually more effective when they are shorter.

Shopping Ads: Users are directed to a product description page within the Instagram app when they click on an Instagram Shopping ad. Users can then make a purchase on your mobile site. You must first create an Instagram Shopping catalog in order to run Shopping advertising.

With 130 million monthly users tapping on buying posts, it’s no surprise that Instagram's e-commerce tools have improved dramatically over the last two years. Users can now view and purchase items all without having left Instagram, thanks to the app's new Shopping capabilities, which is limited to businesses that have Instagram Checkout enabled.

Carousel Advertisements: Users can swipe through a succession of images or videos in carousel ads. They can appear in both the Instagram feed and Instagram Stories, complete with a call-to-action button or a swipe-up link that takes audiences to your webpage.

Carousel advertisements can be used to perform the following tasks.

● Showcase a group of products that are connected with one another.

● Tell a story that is divided into several parts.

● Posting up to ten photos or videos.

Collection Ads: Collection ads are a hybrid of carousel and shopping advertisements. Products from your product catalog are included in collection adverts.

E-commerce firms should employ collection advertising since they allow users to buy things immediately from the ad. When a person clicks on the ad, they're taken to the Instagram Instant Experience Storefront, where they can learn more about a company’s product and then purchase it.

Reels Ads: Ads appear between Reels and can last up to 30 seconds, similar to Stories ads and full-screen vertical videos. To be harmoniously combined with organic Reels, they should contain sound or music.

Instagram advertising does not have predetermined prices; instead, the pricing is determined by a number of criteria. Create a draft campaign in Ads Manager and check the Audience Definition and Estimated Daily Results modules to see if your budget options will allow you to reach your target audience within the timeframe you decide.

The following are some cost considerations:

● You've chosen your target audience.

● Your industry's competitiveness

● Certain seasons of the year (costs often go up during holiday shopping periods in Q4, such as Black Friday)

● Positioning (costs can differ between ads shown on Facebook vs. Instagram)

Another option, if you have a Facebook page for your business, you can use Facebook Ads Manager to manage your Instagram Ads. You can add your Instagram account to your Meta Business Manager or connect it through your page's settings. Instructions are included below.

To choose Instagram as an ad placement using Facebook Ads Manager, follow these steps.

  1. Go to the Ads Manager page.

  2. Choose to Create.

  3. Select an aim that encourages the use of Instagram as an ad medium.

  4. Select the Continue option.

  5. Fill in the blanks for your ad set's details.

  6. To have your advertising displayed on Instagram, go to the placements area, and pick Manual Placements and Instagram. If you choose Automatic Placements, your ad will appear on a range of Facebook Placements, including Instagram, to ensure that you get the most bang for your buck.

  7. Select the option that says to continue

Remember that businesses today are major influencers. Interacting with current and potential customers and business partners via Instagram can not only grow your business but can also build its street-cred. A well-curated Instagram is not just an advertisement; it is entertainment. It builds brand awareness and builds a connection with its audience.

Final Thoughts

Instagram for business can help to increase brand recognition, increase sales, and build and track audience interactions. It's a great way to find clients where they already spend their time. It may provide useful audience insights for use in all of your marketing tactics. It can seem overwhelming at first, but our staff at 7Social has directly managed more than $3 million in ad spend on platforms like Instagram, and we know how to help you get the results you seek.

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