More and more businesses are looking for ways to be able to generate extra foot traffic today. Whether you are B2C or B2B doesn’t really matter. The content you put out and where you put it is key. With the aging up for Instagram(Snapchat isn’t far behind), it is easier than ever to get in front of the customers you want.
Instagram is where the eyeballs are for now(First Quarter, 2017). 55% of all 18-29-year-olds are on Instagram now and 28% of 30-49-year-olds as well. This gives you a good mix of customers, no matter what your audience is. There are two big strategies that have become very successful. It all depends on whether you are selling direct to consumers or from business to business.
For your typical B2C business it is hard to “Slip into the DMs” like the kids say. This is a solid “right hook” and most customers will dodge it or even get annoyed. A better model would be to look into the niche you sell to and find someone that lives the life of your niche and has a large following. These people are called Influencers. Talking with an Influencer can be challenging but if you can bring them enough value then you will be able to use their popularity to promote your brand. In order to start this process, you have to give them some value proposition. Whether that is a percentage of the company, free products, a percentage of sales, or anything else you may think of. Always remember that these people are getting contacted on a regular basis and being “ask to give” their followers to a brand. You want to “give” them something for their attention and make it worth their time.
If you have a B2B service you can use influencers to some extent but using Direct Messages (DMs) is a great tool. The way you do this is to look for a business on Instagram that needs your service. Whether they need marketing help, or a coaching session, or maybe even tax advice, the one principle is always the same. Find the business, find the value you can give them, and make it so you are giving and not asking for something in return. The key is to give them something so good, normally for free, that they will want to work with you more in the future.
If you build websites then offer to make a few easy changes to their current site for free. If you are a photographer then offer 5 free photos to show them your expertise. If you are a barber shop then give them 5 free haircuts. Whatever “the give” is, make sure it is worth it to them. If you offer value and then deliver on it, they will be sure to talk about you to their audience. You want them to be thinking that they need more of your service without even asking for a sale.
So as you can see, Instagram is turning into a huge biz development tool for all businesses. Using it to grow a business is key because of the low cost of this organic advertising. Other platforms like Facebook and Snapchat have their place but none of them give you the ability to capitalize as quickly(and for cheap) like Instagram.
If you have any questions about your specific business then feel free to contact us here and we will be glad to help. Thank you for reading this and I look forward to sharing the next blog. Check out the book “Thank You Economy” by Gary Vaynerchuk to see great examples of how to give without asking.