Instagram is an incredibly powerful tool for B2C organizations. Through Instagram’s Shoppable Posts feature, you’re able to tag your products for one-click shopping directly on your feed. Yet even as powerful as it is, there are plenty of mistakes that significantly undercut its effectiveness. Here are three of the most egregious.
With over one billion monthly active accounts worldwide, Instagram is an incredibly powerful marketing tool for brands. Its effectiveness is only further augmented by the new Shoppable Posts feature, which officially launched across 45 countries in 2018.
For the uninitiated, with Shoppable Posts, a business can tag its products in any Instagram photos it comes across. These tags show the product’s name and pricing details. More importantly, clicking on one takes a customer directly to your storefront to purchase the item in question.
Pretty great, right? There are a few caveats. Your business needs to maintain a Facebook Business Page with an attached Facebook Catalog, sell physical goods, and be approved as a business by Instagram itself.
It’s fairly easy to misuse the feature and miss out on its full potential. Avoid losing money with three of the most common mistakes brands make with Shoppable Posts.
Blindly Focusing on Selling without Community
Many businesses misunderstand the term “social selling.” If you’re able to leverage Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter to drive sales, that’s great. But never forget that conversions are the result of a maniacal focus on your community’s needs. At their core, social networks are about the interactions between brand and consumer.
They’re about relationships and conversations.
If your business has been approved to use Instagram’s Shoppable Posts, don’t change your content strategy to focus more on sales. Keep the focus on getting people engaged with your brand. Hard-sell tactics, as noted by enterprise publication Fast Company, are a no-sell on social networks.
In other words, don’t spend all your time pushing your products on customers. Instead, just tag your products where they appear, and focus on highlighting products in authentic user-generated content. Because that’s ultimately what makes Shoppable Posts great – they’re not at all intrusive.
They let people who are looking to make a purchase buy from your brand while not interfering with people who just want to look at photos.
Ignoring User-Generated Content
If your brand is good at what it does, then people will talk about it. Even a quick glance at some of the more popular consumer brands and restaurants on Instagram shows countless satisfied customers tagging their meals, purchases, and more in their posts. Engaging with that content is a great way to show your most loyal customers a bit of love and appreciation.
But with Shoppable Posts, you can take that to another level.
Has someone published a photo that looks particularly awesome? Reach out to them and ask for their permission to repost it to your profile. If they approve, you can share it with both their profile and your products tagged.
This concept can also be used to give a significant boost to influencer marketing campaigns – especially since Instagram allows you to tag products directly in an influencer’s post without having to share it on your own profile first.
Failing to Leverage Shoppable Stories
If you’re going to use Shoppable Posts, don’t forget about your story. The feature is practically tailor-made for Shoppable Posts. It can be a great way to drive awareness of new products, to announce flash sales or special events, or simply to create more eye-catching promotional materials around your brand’s products.
What makes Stories particularly valuable is that they always appear at the top of the news feed. Instagram makes a point of keeping them front-of-mind for users. And that means they’re a great way to attract attention from a follower who might otherwise not be particularly engaged with your feed.
Instagram’s Shoppable Posts is ripe with potential for brands. Particularly if you’ve got a winning content strategy in place that truly engages your existing community, you’re looking at a whole new avenue of revenue.
Terry Cane is the COO at SEOHost.net, a reliable and supportive SEO hosting partner.