How to Start Your Instagram Journey Even if You’re 5, 6, 7 Years Late!
In life, we love to think that only those who make the most of an opportunity at the time of its appearance stand the best chance to maximize the benefits therein. But that ideology doesn’t hold in the world of Instagram.
The fact that you joined the Instagram party at the time of its launch in 2010 doesn’t necessarily guarantee that you’ll have more followers, and be more popular than the guys who started in 2016. In fact, if history is anything to go by, we can say with confidence that success on Instagram has nothing to do with when you join.
So, all those thoughts of “I joined late,” “Am I not too late to be joining now,” “Won’t I be in the shadows of those that have joined earlier,” should be thrown into the bin bag.
Even if you joined the Instagram train in 2018 or you intend to join after reading this post, that’s no measure or dictator of your success.
The following tips, however, are what you need to pay attention to smoothen your journey.
Look before you leap
I know you’re buzzing to get off and create your business account, take a snap of your products, choose a username, and start flooding people’s feeds with your posts.
But before doing all that, you really should take a deep breath and look at what those successful accounts are doing right.
It is by no chance that some brands have already etched their names in the hearts of their audience. To achieve a similar feat, you really have to understand how things are done.
Here are some of the things you want to look out for when researching successful competitors’ accounts:
- How their brand name relates with their username
- The sort of tone and language they use in communicating with people
- How frequently they post
- The quality of photos and videos they post
- How they relate and engage with their audience
- How they’re showcasing their products
And so much more!
Choose a username
I know the first idea that would come to mind would be for you to use your business name as your username. But what if someone else is already using it?
If that were to be the case, follow these tricks to create another:
- Add a “The” in front of your business name to create something unique from what’s already existing
- Place “Dotcom” before or after the username, especially if your brand is a tech or digital inclined one.
- Use “I Am.” You can prefix your desired username with this.
- Simply place an “underscore” at the beginning or end of the chosen username.
By and large, make sure the name you’re choosing is one your audience can easily remember and relate with.
Optimize your bioIn as many details as possible, tell people everything you think they need to know about you. That is, make your bio as convincing as you think it has the power to be. Typically, here are the major elements of a sound bio:
- Profile picture: You can change it as often as you see fit, but make sure you’re using something that relates to your business. If possible, a branded picture will do!
- Subtitle: In 33 characters, you’ll have to describe yourself and what you do. Be as straight-to-the-point as possible. And don’t forget to add exciting emojis.
- URL: From time to time, you can edit this, depending on how frequently you want to drive people to your site or store. But whatever you do, make sure the URL on your bio page reflects the action on your most recent IG posts
Learn and master the art of Instagram optimization
I call the process of Instagram optimization an “art” because it requires a lot of mastery and ingenuity. Reason why you don’t find too many posts generating hundreds or thousands of engagement.
You really need to be a master of “Instagram optimization” to make people discover, cherish, and long for your content.
I know you’re dreading the process already. But you need not be! You just have to spend a few days learning how the elements work. But what exactly are the elements you may wonder?
- Hashtagging and tagging
- IG Storytelling (IG Stories)
- Alternative text (Alt texts)
- IG analytic tools
- Photo quality
- Post scheduling
Create your posts
At the time of your account launch, try to target a round of content posting that features as many as nine posts at once.
Why? Nine is a good way to announce your arrival and demonstrate the essence of your account and why you feel people should keep following you. With up to nine posts, there is no way you won’t resonate with the public because “nine is simply too many to be ignored,” even for a crowded platform like Instagram.
Buy social proof
Bonus tip: For your new account to blossom, you might have to buy lots of social proof like likes on Instagram, new followers, and even views. By default, Instagrammers are wired to believe that new brand profiles are not all that they seem. And as such, they can’t really be trusted. In order to correct this impression, you’ll need to show them that others – their friends and the people they follow – already like what you’re doing.
Hence, the need