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How to start an Instagram business? The useful guide for you

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The benefits of using social media for your business are innumerable. The internet has transformed our world into a global village. Nowadays, it doesn’t matter where you are or what you’re doing; you can easily reach millions of people at any time. However, all you need to do is choose a suitable social media platform to advertise and grow your business. Also, you can start any business on these platforms and turn it into a huge success. But you must follow the best strategies, timing, and information. That’s why we want to offer an in-depth exclusive on how to start an Instagram business.

Instagram is one of the popular social media platforms, where millions of people visit every day.

According to recent statistics, almost 500 million people use Instagram actively every day.

RELATED: HOW DO BLOGGERS MAKE MONEY IN NIGERIA?

No wonder we see many individuals and brands employing every available strategy to grow their businesses on the platform.

The truth is, they’re making it big time because reaching 500million potential customers is not a joke.

So, even if you’re on Facebook, YouTube, Whatsapp, Twitter, Pinterest, etc. and hasn’t done anything to leverage Instagram’s popularity, let’s start it today.

In this article, we’ve covered everything you need to succeed on Instagram.

You’ll find a guide on how to create your Instagram account and how to complete your Instagram business profile.

We will also show you how to change your account into a business account if you already have one.

The best part!

We have discovered the simple things you can do to grow your Instagram business, and we have it all here for you.

So, let’s dig in!

How to do an Instagram business?

Doing business on Instagram is fun and simple.

In this section, we’re going to take you through the processes one after another in a way you can easily follow.

So, let’s do this!

1. Choose your audience

The first step in doing Instagram business is to decide on the audience you aim to win on the platform.

You can’t start a business without having a target market in mind.

Companies create products based on the needs they want to meet.

That’s why some companies will tell you that their main targets are the youths or women between the ages of 30-60years.

Others may target the elderly, while some may produce goods that cater to the needs of infants.

So, you have to determine who you’re posting for or the category of people you want to view your content.

We call it “target audience,” and once you know who they are, it will be easier to post contents that’ll enthrall them.

However, if you’re finding it difficult to identify them, follow these simple ways to determine your Instagram audience.

  1. Research your competitors-it will show you the type of people who need your services.
  2. Also, determine your existing customers-if you already have a business, those who buy from you already is a clear indication of your target audience.
  3. Dive into your analytics on other social media platforms; your followers on other channels will point you towards the type of audience you should target on Instagram.

Once you’ve known the audience, you’ll serve on your Instagram business; it will guide you to the right content to share.

If you go further to research them a little, you’ll know what they like through the contents they share on their pages.

2. Set your Instagram Goals

You can’t start a business without goals & objects.

Companies don’t exist if they don’t have one goal or the other they’re pursuing.

That’s how you should handle your Instagram business.

Before you even create your account, you need to have a clear goal(s) to achieve with the platform to start an Instagram business.

App's icons of Instagram, Facebook, Twitter. There is an instagram app to start a business
Photo by Thomas Ulrich from Pixabay 

Once you’ve set your goals, you can go ahead to develop effective strategies to achieve the goals.

Don’t forget that the most important reason for setting goals is to guide your activities.

Instead of doing random things that waste time and effort, you’ll focus on activities to help you achieve set goals.

So, to help you set goals and objectives, follow the SMART model, which states that goals should be specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and timely.

Apart from this framework, you can also create goals based on your followers, likes, and comments.

But no matter what you do, the goals you set must be relevant to your business objectives.

For instance, the goals of many businesses we studied during our research centered around these areas:

  1. Showcasing their services or products
  2. Building a community of customers
  3. Increasing brand loyalty
  4. Advertising their services and products to millions of potential customers
  5. Showcasing their company values and culture
  6. Increasing awareness for their brand
  7. Sharing company updates and news to their community
  8. Increasing engagement with every Instagram post.

You can follow these examples to create SMART goals for your Instagram business.

3. Choose a good Instagram business idea

The first thing about how to start an Instagram business is to select the best idea.

If you already have a brand, you can start on Instagram as quickly as you did on other platforms.

But if you don’t have the slightest idea of what to do, there’re many Instagram business ideas you can explore.

Let’s consider some of them.

Instagram business ideas:

Affiliate marketer

If you don’t have any business in mind right now, you can become an affiliate marketer on Instagram.

The process is simple, and the benefits are numerous.

Also, simply register as an affiliate for any company and promote their products and services through Instagram story and earn commissions.

Instagram influencer

If you become an influencer on Instagram, you’ll make lots of money through it.

The first milestone is to build your audience in a niche and connect with brands in that niche.

As you share content related to the brands to your audience, the company pays you.

Product Reviewer

Once you grow your audience, you can pick any product and review it for them.

You can use captions or videos to share your thoughts about the product and earn a commission when they buy.

Social commerce

Also, with the “Buy button,” you can sell physical goods on your page and send an invoice to interested followers on Instagram.

Instagram manager

Many brands need someone who can manage their social media activities.

You can be their social media manager who handles their Instagram posts.

Stock photographer

If you’re a professional photographer, you can take good photographs to help brands showcase their businesses.

You can sell these pictures to them through your Instagram business account.

A photographer who is taking a photo for her instagram business account.
Photo by Pexels from Pixabay 

Selling digital products

You can use sell ebooks, software, or printable through your Instagram account.

They can get these products online.

So when they pay, you can send it to them through your account.

Fashion blogger

If you are a fashionista, you can start a blog about fashion right there on Instagram.

You can share photos of different outfits and work as a brand influencer.

DIY Expert

If you know how to do some things, you can shoot video tutorials and post them on your page.

Therefore, your followers can learn new techniques through you, and you can supply the materials they need for a commission.

Food blogger

Blogging about food can help you to garner a lot of popularity and followership.

Therefore, sharing simple recipes and tutorials on preparing some foods can make you a successful influencer for food brands.

Travel blogger

If you transform your Instagram account into a travel blog, travel brands will contact you once you grow your audience.

Old camera is on the map with some vintage photos from different places worldwide for instagram business account
Photo by Dariusz Sankowski from Pixabay 

All you need to do is share travel tricks and your experiences during your travels.

Lifestyle blogging

This niche is broad, and it attracts lots of followership.

You can share many things with your followers and work as an influencer for many brands out there.

Infographic designer

You can start a successful infographic business on your Instagram account.

Once you pose some samples of your work on your page, your followers can hire you remotely to work for them.

Graphic designer

You don’t need to have a shop when your Instagram page is live online to start an Instagram business.

Showcase your best works and let millions of people see it.

You might be surprised at how many clients you’ll get.

Animator

However, if you know how to create amazing animations, use Instagram to showcase your work and win more clients from there.

Brand Ambassador

If you’re a brand ambassador, Instagram will help you to grow your influence more.

If you successfully promote the brand, you’re sure to make more money in multiple ways.

Webinar host

Hosting webinars on a series of subjects can help you grow your following and open doors to multiple opportunities.

Promoter

Do you know that people can hire you to promote their events on Instagram?

They’ll pay you for that, and if you’re good and has many followers, expert a boom in your business.

Instagram consultant

You can start a successful Instagram consulting business on your account.

People need to know how to make it on the platform.

You can be a consultant to many brands and individuals who will pay for your services.

Coaching

There’re lots of opportunities for you to explore as a coach.

You can be a business coach, fitness coach, life coach, or even a finance management coach.

These ideas and many others can be transformed into a successful Instagram business.

Apart from making money through the services, you can make more by being an influencer too.

4. Build a business Instagram account

Building a business Instagram account is the next step after choosing the best Instagram business idea to start.

If you have a personal account on the platform already, you don’t need to create another one.

All you need to do is convert it into a business account because you’ll get access to business features to help boost your efforts when you do that.

Also, converting an already existing account will make it easier to retain your followers.

So, before we start creating an Instagram account from scratch, let’s show you how to switch your existing account.

How to change your Instagram account from personal to business?

  • Open the Instagram app and log in.
  • Go to Profile
  • Locate the “3-line icon” at the right side of your screen and tap it
  • Tap on setting from the drop-down
  • Choose “switch to Professional account.”
  • Select Business
  • Connect your Business Facebook Page

That’s the simple process to switch to a business account on Instagram.

News Flash!

You can also change back to a personal account if you want.

Now that we’ve taken care of that for people who already have an Instagram account let’s take it to the next phase, which is building a business Instagram account.

How to make a business page on Instagram from scratch?

Now, if you haven’t created an account yet on Instagram, do the following things to start an Instagram business.

Download your Instagram App

You have two options when you want to download the app.

You can get it with your phone or through your PC or Mac.

If you want to use your phone, go to the Google Play Store or Apple App Store.

You can even get the Instagram app on Microsoft Store.

Instagram app on iphone, where you should log in to your instagram account to do your business
Photo by Solen Feyissa from Pixabay

It doesn’t matter the device you’re using since you can get the app easily.

But if you’re using a smartphone, you’ll enjoy the app more because it’s optimized for mobile devices.

Create an Instagram account

After downloading the app, the next action is to create your Instagram account.

The process is not anything new because we assume that you have accounts on other platforms.

So, follow the required fields and input your basic information.

You’ll see where to write your phone number, name, email address, brand username, etc.

These are the basic information you need to create the account.

Add a profile picture

After adding these details, you’ll need to add a profile picture.

But before you add this profile picture, bear in mind that it’s going to represent your business to your followers.

So, choose a clean, professional headshot or a brand logo that will impress your audience.

But bear in mind that the size should be 110 X 110 pixels.

Complete your Instagram business profile

Since your Instagram account is for your business, you must present a complete Instagram business profile as it befits a business account.

We recommend that you use your brand name exactly as it is on other social media platforms.

The advantage is that your fans will find you easily wherever they visit online.

Also, add your website in the field on the Instagram business profile page.

If you want to add a clickable link on Instagram, here is your chance.

You can link your landing page, blog posts, or even an ongoing campaign.

Other important details to complete are the following:

  1. Business contact information; should include a phone number, official email address, and the business’s physical address. Also, with this information, potential clients can contact you for your services.
  2. Business Category; you have to select a category that best describes your services. It will help people to know what you offer at a glance.
  3. CTA Buttons(call-to-action): these buttons encourage people to take one action or the other on your Instagram page. Your words CTA maybe “buy now,” “Book now,” etc.; adding the CTA buttons is easy. Tap/click on “Edit profile” – “Contact Option”- “Add an Action Button.”

Optimize your biography

How do you get the best out of every feature that Instagram provides to help you succeed?

By making the most of them and using them rightly.

Don’t ignore any feature, and make sure you use them in a way to favor your goals.

So, another feature to optimize is your biography.

The challenge here is that Instagram only allows for a bio of 150 characters.

So, you have to make it sharp, accurate, and engaging.

I know it’s hard, but you can use the following pointers.

  1. Focus on your brand: professional, cheeky, or casual, depending on your business, of course.
  2. Use Emoji: that one little character says a lot if you choose it right.
  3. Add hashtags: bio hashtags on Instagram are clickable. So, use them.
  4. Use line breaks and spacing: so your bio is readable online.

5. Post quality contents

Instagram is about content sharing in pictures or videos.

It is not a platform to read long blog posts, no matter how entertaining.

People who visit Instagram want to see some nice things, whether pictures of yourself, products, cities, etc.

So, your visuals must be eye-catching and captivating if you must grow your Instagram business successfully.

The first step in posting quality content is to decide on the content will about.

Your niche is the simplest indication of what you should post.

For instance, if you’re a food blogger, you may need to post pictures of mouth-watering foods to attract attention.

A food blogger who posts clothing and accessories will confuse the audience.

Therefore, if your niche is service-based, you may need to showcase stories from your clients or post pictures of your workers and maybe work processes.

The point is that you’ll post content relevant to your business to start an Instagram business.

The most important thing to mention is that you develop a style for your content.

Try to be consistent in your filters, colors, appearances, etc.

That way, your fans will quickly locate you on the Instagram feed, especially when you’re starting.

How to be successful with your content?

Take great pictures

Instagram is all about visuals.

So let’s start with the pictures to post on your page.

The good thing is that you can do it even if you’re not a professional photographer.

Moreover, all you need is a mobile phone and not that very expensive camera if you can’t afford it.

So, if you want to take pro pictures even when you’re not, consider the following:

  1. Take pictures with natural light: it improves your picture quality and makes the color richer.
  2. Create off-center but balanced pictures; a phone camera is all you need
  3. Mix things up with different angles; it’s more interesting that way. You don’t want to bore your fans.
  4. Don’t use harsh light; sunny days make the worst pictures. Try late afternoons for your pictures.

Edit the photos

Editing your photos will improve the quality a lot.

You may think the pictures are amazing but wait till you edit them a little.

Also, try to be as consistent as you can while editing.

That way, your images will be easy to locate anytime.

The good news is that you can use photo editing software to improve the aesthetic appeal of your pictures.

There are many good apps to use, such as Enhance or VSCOcam.

You can find others on Google and try them out too.

Make your Instagram Stories count

The number of people who use Instagram stories will amaze you.

However, according to Facebook insights, 400 million Instagram users make use of Stories, and one-third of the users are business owners like you.

When utilizing these Instagram stories, try to be creative, genuine, and believable.

Remember, Instagram stories disappear after 24 hours.

But you can keep them longer by using Instagram Stories Highlights.

Anyway, make sure that when your story is up, your fans will be enthralled and eagerly wait for the next one you post.

You can use Stories slideshows to creatively tell your brand story.

But never forget to add a call-to-action at the end of your Instagram stories.

That CTA will help you to increase your Stories conversion rate.

Enthrall your fans with captions

Your captions are very important because they drive meaning to the pictures you post.

Enthralling captions evokes lots of emotion from your fans.

It can make them laugh, think, or connect with your brand.

So, always think of what you want your captions to achieve when your fans read them and focus on that when writing it.

Another way to achieve a compelling caption is to be consistent with your brand voice.

Use emoji, hashtags, and try as much as possible to make your captions unique.

How to make business Instagram successful?

Now that you’ve completed the preliminary stages of your social media business journey on Instagram, the next step is to make it successful.

You’ve already completed your killer Instagram business profile and seen how to make your Instagram stories count.

Now, do the following things to make it all work out to start an Instagram business.

Be consistent with your posting

If you want your Instagram business to be successful, create a consistent posting schedule.

By being consistent, your audience will know when new content will appear on your page.

It will also help your business grow as you’ll update your customers regularly on what’s happening and when to expect.

So, when creating your Instagram strategy, make sure to include a daily posting schedule.

Unfortunately, you cannot schedule your posts on Instagram, but you can use BUFFER to do it.

Create a unique style with a color palette

Don’t confuse your audience with varying colors for your posts.

If you want to be more engaging, noticeable, and unique, choose your colors, and maintain them.

If you already have your special brand colors, stick with them even on Instagram.

Don’t use different colors and different social media platforms.

This can only portray unprofessionalism and a lack of coordination.

Try using the same fonts

If you locate your perfect font, stick with it.

Many people write texts on their photos or even as subtitles to their videos.

Also, if you’ve discovered that your contents feature some texts, make sure that you’re consistent with the font you use.

This will distinguish your brand from others.

If you can help it, use the same fonts as what you have on your company website or other platforms.

It will create a unique style that your fans will easily recognize.

Analyze your posts

This is another way to be successful on Instagram.

From time to time, you need to check how your posts are performing on the platform.

The woman is making analysis for her business instagram account
Photo by Tumisu from Pixabay 

And, also check the ones that are getting more likes, check the ones that have the most comments, and check how your posts influence your engagement.

You can check all that in your analytics.

But if you want more detailed analytics, use Buffer Premium plans to do that.

Respond to fans’ comments

Don’t ignore the importance of engaging actively with your fans.

Therefore, if they dedicated a part of their busy day to write comments on your posts, try to reciprocate the gesture by responding to them.

The action will show them that you care about their opinion and suggestions to start an Instagram business.

You may not know this, but the way you treat your followers will encourage them to share your posts.

It will also encourage or discourage them from spreading good stories about your brand to their friends through word-of-mouth.

So, no matter how busy you are, dedicate a little time to your followers.

If you want to make your business popular on Instagram, do the following things:

Use hashtags

Try to include as many hashtags as you can in your posts.

Don’t overdo it but study some famous brands and see how they’re leveraging hashtags to grow their visibility.

typewriter with a sheet where it is written "#corona"
Photo by Markus Winkler from Pixabay

Hashtags help Instagram users to discover accounts and content to follow.

If you can, create unique hashtags relevant to your brand.

Add Faces

If you want to make your Instagram business more popular, do all you can to increase engagement.

One of the ways we’ve discovered is by adding faces to your posts.

Therefore, if you can help it, add human faces to every post, you share as it will increase the likes and comments you get on the post.

Run contests

You can run contests on your Instagram account to engage your followers more.

There are 3 types to consider; photo-sharing contest likes contest and comments contest.

You may not know this, but these contests will help to make your brand popular to start an Instagram business.

Share trendy content

This is not to encourage you to join every popular conversation or share every popular story.

Also, ensure that the content is relevant to your brand and not a random topic that has no relevance to your strategy.

Leverage Instagram ads

Don’t forget the power of advertisement for every business.

However, your social media business is not an exception and if you can help it, try some paid ads for your business.

Instagram ads are available in the form of video ads, photo ads, or carousel ads.

You can leverage them to make your business popular.

Use quotes sometimes

Instead of sharing pictures and videos only, why not mix things up by sharing quotes that will inspire your followers.

Make sure the quotes align with your values, vision, and mission.

If you don’t know how to create quotes, you can use a tool like canva to design engaging quotes to share.

Engage Instagram Influencers

If you want to grow your presence or even make more sales, an influencer can help you to achieve it fast.

But make sure that you choose the right influencer for your goals.

You can easily locate them by checking if their audience is your target audience.

Also, check if the influencer(s) is a force to reckon within the industry you belong to and check their success rate.

Final Words

If you’re still thinking about how to start an Instagram business, we believe that this article has answered your question.

One of the easiest ways to make a business very successful in this era is to take it to social media.

Therefore, with billions of people using these platforms every day, you have more chances of growing and expanding any type of business.

Doing business on Instagram is not a complicated venture.

It’s more like an adventure that’ll lead you to unimaginable lands of opportunities.

You can explore many tools and strategies on the platform to achieve your set goals.

All you need to do is get it right from the beginning, and the sky will be your starting point.

So, follow the steps and tips we have shared in this article to make your Instagram business successful and popular.