10 common mistakes businesses make on instagram

Posted by Localized Digital | August 28, 2016 | Agency Tips, SME Tips, Social
common instagram mistakes
Photo credit: digitaltrends.com

Instagram is the new cool right now. Worth noting that Instagram has more users than Twitter, strange yeah? But it’s not really rocket science figuring out why so many people embraced Instagram quickly. I mean, no baggage, just post your picture and go. Well, as Instagram kept growing, more and more opportunities were opened. These days, people use Instagram for serious business, it has become the primary platform to showcase your product – people relate more with images than with long crafted words no matter how it was written.

As more people flock into Instagram, it’s almost inevitable that many of them jump on the bandwagon without taking the time to figure out what makes Instagram unique, this could prove costly especially to people who have turned Instagram into their marketplace. If you’re using Instagram for business you would want to come across as a professional and someone acquainted with Instagram. As a business on Instagram, here are some mistakes you should totally avoid.

Using the same name and username

Like really? Your username is funkytunde, and your name is also funkytunde. Common man! The name and username are two separate fields. The username is the @name you use and how you will be recognized on Instagram. When you comment, like, or post, it’s your username that will appear. This is all lowercase and one word (unless you use a dot or underscore to separate names/words). Please, your name is NOT your username. The name is the name in bold in your bio. This can have capital letters, symbols, spaces, and other simple formatting.

See how they’re different? They should be! They shouldn’t be the same thing. Even if your business name is one word/name, use the single word/name for your username but add another differentiation or descriptor to your name.

Source: Twitter.com/valaafshar

No bio description

You think this is child’s play? Instagram has over 400 million users and you think we will be patient enough to see your pictures load without your bio giving us a clue as to what to expect? Someone cannot play with you again? Is that how you used to do? Please never ever leave your bio empty. Include a well-crafted bio that describes your business and what you have to offer. Make it attractive, entertaining, and descriptive. Always add a web link to your bio, it should serve as your Call to Action button that is the only place where you can click on a link on Instagram, (Link in Bio) as they always say.

An irrelevant username

Worse than using the same name and username is having a username that is completely irrelevant to your audience. If you are using Instagram to promote your business but your Instagram username is some goofy name or variation of your own name, you look like an amateur. For example, if your username is “sexylekkibabe” or “jennyoyo” or something like this, you look completely unprofessional! Even if you want to cast your village people, take it to Facebook at least, not Instagram.

Posting images too close together

There is nothing wrong with posting multiple times a day to your Instagram account. But posting content too close together is one sure way to put off your followers. If your followers are scrolling through their feed and see back to back to back posts from your account, they will probably just scroll right passed your multiple posts — which will kill your engagement. Or they’ll just get fed up and click “Unfollow.” To ensure this doesn’t happen, try to space out your content. Give your followers the chance to interact and engage with what you have to say. I mean, they didn’t pay for data to watch just you.

Hashtags in the bio

Your bio should be straightforward, tell us who you are and what you do. Simple! Hashtags on your bio aren’t clickable. There’s no point having a hashtag on your bio, unless it’s some proprietary stuff whose popularity can be traced to you, I mean Olamide can put #WhoYouEpp on his bio and it’d still look cool but don’t be deceived, headless hashtags on your bio will only succeed in telling us you need deliverance from your village people.

Not responding to comments

You need to respond to comments on Instagram if you want build a stronger relationship with your followers. Remember, the whole reason your business is sharing content on Instagram is to engage and inform your followers. Ignoring comments from them makes it obvious that you don’t really appreciate their connection — which isn’t great news for anyone, and will probably lead to unfollows. To prevent that and make sure your followers get your replies, just “@ Tag” their Instagram handle in all replies. Then they’ll get a notification — and will probably even respond and engage.

Using a private account

If you don’t have very personal pictures with GPS induced-kidnapper-luring captions, please remove that padlock from your account! Private accounts are typically reserved for personal use so if your business is set to private, you look very unprofessional. Make your account public so that people can see what you post and determine if there is value in following you.

Bad Profile Photo

Poorly cropped photos, grainy photos, images where you are small or distant in the frame, or worse, no photo at all – are all bad options for your Instagram profile. If you’re using Instagram for business, your profile photo here should match or be similar to the profile photos you use on your other platforms. It should be clear, professional, and well cropped.

No or Short Captions

Yes! Instagram is about sharing photos, but if you leave out a caption, you are neglecting a huge portion of an effective Instagram strategy. Anyone who uses Instagram regularly knows the value of a good caption, a call to action, and hashtags. So, if you’re not writing effective captions and using this real estate to build your brand and audience, you look like a rookie who just doesn’t get it. Every caption should be at least a couple sentences, if not a couple short paragraphs. Hashtags are every important in captions, not useless routine hashtags, try to create a custom hashtag that will be synonymous with your account. Works well!

Low Resolution Images

The primary aim of Instagram is to show images. Please if your images are not very clear, sharp and catchy, you are already losing half of your target audience. Please get it fixed, if you can post only digitally enhanced images fine, or you can also use filters. The Clarendon filter is my favorite, it does a good job of papering the cracks. Please pay attention to the quality of your images!

These are some of the mistakes we found while checking some Instagram pages, do you think we missed out on anything? Let us know in the comment box below.

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About The Author

Localized Digital

We work as a team to answer your most pressing questions about Digital marketing in Nigeria. Feel free to ask any question by tweeting @localizedigital

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