Instagram awesome growth
Instagram has skyrocketed in popularity.
Today, it’s weirder if a brand doesn’t have an Instagram account than it is that they have one. Something that wasn’t true a few years ago.
For the vast majority of brands, their target audience is to be found on Instagram. And fortunately, brands have realized the tremendous marketing potential that Instagram has. Because today, there are over 15 million registered businesses using Instagram business profiles.
And if you look at some of the Instagram statistics, it’s not strange that this is happening.
But there’s a small problem though.
As more and more brands hop onto social media, and in this case, Instagram, the competition of getting seen is getting tougher and tougher. More and more content is being shared, and Instagram is getting more saturated.
Marketers have to find new ways on which they can stand out from the crowd and get seen by their audience, with the help of Instagram’s organic reach that is constantly declining as the platform gets more saturated.
Some even turn to paid advertising to get seen.
Instagram can drive your brand amazing marketing results, but as the competition is growing, you need to tap into untapped sources on Instagram in order to cut through the noise and generate amazing marketing results.
An amazing untapped source of marketing for brands is Instagram Direct Message, also known as ”DMs”.
Here are 5 of my secret tips on how I have leveraged the power of Instagram Direct Message in my marketing campaigns.
Building relationships with your customers is tremendously important.
Because when you do, they’ll increase their trust in you, and they’ll also become more loyal to your brand.
This is important because if your audience doesn’t trust you, they won’t buy from you.
Think about it: would you buy from a brand you don’t trust?
Of course not!
The best part about this is that Instagram Direct Message is meant to be used for interacting and chatting with people, and really, the only way to strengthen and build a relationship with someone is to interact with them.
And Instagram Direct Message allows you to talk to your audience one-on-one, which also helps make your conversation more intimate, something that helps when building relationships.
Social media has given brands the opportunity to instantly interact with their audience, and those who aren’t taking advantage of it are missing out.
You can interact with your audience in your comment section, leave comments on their posts, etc – something you should! However, there are few things (except for real-life human interaction) that build relationships as much as one-on-one intimate conversations.
Far too many brands see every source where they can reach and communicate with their audience as an opportunity for them to promote their brand, and shove ads down their audience’s throats.
Of course, this is never a recipe for success, and it especially not on DMs.
I have to warn you that if you’re going to use Instagram DMs to send spammy and generic promotional messages to your audience, you might as well not do it at all because it won’t benefit you.
In fact, in the worst case, it can even harm you and give you the reputation that you’re a spammer.
If you’ve used Instagram for some time, you’ve probably received a few Instagram DM spam messages.
Essentially, you need to understand the main reason that you should use Instagram DM, and that is to build relationships with your audience.
Because the truth is, having strong relationships with your audience is incredibly valuable, since it will allow you to make them convert easier, and to become loyal supporters of your brand.
So why is it important to provide value when you approach someone on Instagram DM?
Well, because if you don’t, you’ll be seen as a spammer, and you won’t receive a response.
However, if your initial contact with the person is that you offer them something that they value, they are much more likely to respond.
For example, a tactic I use is that I contact people in my industry and compliment them on their great feed. Then, I ask them if they would like to receive a free ebook to learn more about our products and industry.
Most people don’t respond, and a very few people say ”no”, but some say yes, and having one person saying yes is better than having zero, right?.
This way of approaching people is a great way to make people aware of your brand because you provide them value right from the start.
And most importantly, you avoid coming off as a spammer and thereby having a 100% chance of not getting a response.
The more value you can bring the person you’re DM: ing, the more responses you’ll get.
This is why you should only send Instagram Direct Messages to the people who are within your industry.
If you send a DM to a person who has a passion for dogs and offers them an ebook about cats, you aren’t really providing them value, right?
Sure, the ebook in itself might be valuable, but it is only valuable to people who are actually passionate about it.
This puts a great importance of only sending messages to people within your target audience because it is only those that will find your messages relevant and appealing.
Providing value is a great way to spark the first interaction with people from your target audience without coming off as a spammer, and after that first interaction, you can take it from there and continue the conversation to build your relationship.
A great thing about this strategy is that when you DM someone, offering them, let’s say an ebook, you ask them for their email address, which also means that at the same time as you’re building relationships and increasing brand-awareness, you’re also collecting email addresses.
Here’s a template of a message you can use if you have an ebook you can send:
We just came across your profile and love that you are sharing your passion for (your industry)! We are equally huge (your niche) fans like you!
If you’d like, we’d love to send you our ebook where you can learn more about (your industry).
We think you’d enjoy it!
There are obviously tons of other ways to provide people value and to contact people on Instagram Direct Message without coming off as a spammer, but this is an approach that I’ve found effective.
Someone has to take the first initiative to an interaction on Instagram Direct Message.
And when you are the one taking the first step, you don’t have the leverage.
As a result, you have no clue about whether or not your prospect will respond.
But what if I told you that there is a way you can get your audience to take the first step, and be the one who DM:s you first?
One way to get your audience to DM you is to run a giveaway where the rule of entry is to send a Direct Message to you on Instagram.
And remember: the better the incentivize (prize) is, the more people will take the time to do it.
How you set up your campaign solely depends on what goals you have with your campaign.
For instance, let’s say you want your users to create user-generated content which you can use in your marketing.
If so, one method is to ask your audience to create user-generated content and then submit it by sending a Direct Message to you.
They take the first step which allows you to continue the conversation, and you get access to user-generated content which has shown to be tremendously effective in marketing.
Talk about win-win, right?
Humans love to feel like they are unique.
Therefore, they love to feel like they have access to information that other people don’t.
This is something you want to leverage.
And you can do this by offering to share unique and exclusive information, in exchange for something by your audience.
The idea is that you’re going to tell your audience to do something for you, it can be anything from sharing a piece of user-generated content to tagging a friend in your post.
In other words, something that benefits your brand.
In exchange for this, you’re going to offer them to get access to exclusive information and share it with them on Instagram Direct Message.
And you’d be surprised at how many people will do things in exchange for exclusive information.
But remember, just don’t ask for too much.
If nobody cares about your exclusive information, and you ask them to go to the moon and back, nobody will do it, right?
However, if Apple offers its audience to get information about the new iPhone if they just sign up to their newsletter, a lot of people will do it, right?
What you’re essentially doing is building up the hype, which also leads to your audience becoming more engaged in your brand. Something that is very valuable for brands.
Something worth remembering is that you shouldn’t offer to share exclusive information with your audience, get them to do things for you, and then not deliver anything interesting.
In other words, if you don’t have any tasty, exclusive, and delicious information, don’t ask your audience to do a bunch of stuff in exchange for it.
Because all you’ll do is make them angry and decrease their trust in you.
5. Spark engagement by offering exclusive insights
As you probably know, Instagram is now driven by an algorithmic feed that decides what you get to see in your newsfeed.
Previously, Instagram had a chronological feed, where the posts from the people you followed were presented based on the time the posts where shared.
Today, the algorithm basses the posts you see in your feed on relevance.
”How relevant does the algorithm think a certain post is to you”
If it’s not relevant, it might completely filter it away, and if it’s highly relevant, it might put it at the top of your feed.
The algorithmic feed has made people’s engagement rates decrease, as not all of the people’s followers will see each and every one of their posts.
But there are ways to trick the algorithm, however.
The algorithm is driven by several factors, and one important factor is engagement, and more correctly, fast engagement. This means, that by receiving lots of engagement, and fast engagement on your post, it is signaled to the algorithm that that post is relevant, and therefore, it will show it in more people’s feeds.
This is something you want to leverage in order to get more people to see your posts, and you can do this by leveraging Instagram Direct Message in a similar way as mentioned in the point before.
What you’re going to do is reward the people who comment on your new posts early on by giving them something.
It can be anything from valuable exclusive information to a coupon or a free gift.
Anything that your audience finds valuable.
What you’re going to do is ask people to ”turn on post notifications” by tapping the three dots in your profile, and then selecting ”turn on post notifications”.
What will happen now is that every time you share a post on Instagram, they’ll instantly get a notification.
And now that they know that they’ll get rewarded if they interact with your post quickly, they’ll instantly go to it and comment on it.
You can ask the early birds to comment things like #60secondteam, or #earlysupporter, etc.
Not only will this make your audience more engaged in your brand, and get people to actually engage with your posts, it will also make people get your post in their feeds, as the high and fast engagement indicates to Instagram that your post is high-quality.
Which, in turn, can lead to better marketing results.