Create an Instagram account

1. Sign up for an Instagram profile on the mobile app or on the desktop version.

The platform requires you to sign up with an email, phone number, or through connecting your Facebook profile. If you have a Facebook account for your business, connecting these two platforms allows you to cross-share content and build a following through your existing audience.  Choose a username, display name, profile image, and biography. Keep these fields as similar to other brand elements as possible to increase discoverability and decrease confusion.

2. Register your Instagram page as a business profile and connect it to your other communication channels.

To register your Instagram profile as a business account: Tap the settings gear icon. Select Account > Switch to Professional Account. Select the category that best describes your business. This will display on your profile. Select Business > Next. You then have the option to add contact information to your profile. This would give visitors the ability to call, text, or email your brand, directly from your Instagram page. This is an additional opportunity for you to connect your new platform to Facebook.  If you would like to direct visitors to other communication channels, the Instagram profile configuration allows for one link to be included within your bio. Services like LinkTree allow you to create a separate page that can then provide many outbound links.

3. Promote your new profile on your other established platforms. Add a link to your Instagram profile on your website, newsletter, and other online brand components.

This will help to grow your Instagram audience and get your profile recommended to new users. It will also establish the credibility of this new account.

4. Upload high-quality photo and video posts. Use hashtags and comments to boost engagement.

Instagram is primarily a photo and video-sharing app. Content that is well-lit, high-resolution, and free of errors generally performs better. Improve performance on your Instagram uploads:  Ask a question in the caption, prompting users to comment a response and increase engagement with your post.  Add hashtags to make your content easier to discover and easier for the algorithm to appropriately recommend.  Try out some of Instagram’s other content types like long-form IGTV videos, short-form Reels videos, and 24-hour Story uploads.

5. Take advantage of Instagram for Business' analytics and insights to most effectively reach your key audience.

On the mobile app, business profiles can access post insights and audience analytics. This data can include:  What type of content performs best with your audience. What time of day your audience members are most active on the site. The demographic information of your audience. The success and reach of paid advertising campaigns.

6. Engage and build relationships with your followers through hashtags, comments, giveaways, and direct messaging.

Giveaways increase traffic to your profile and give back to your supporters. Listing a product for a free giveaway can be used as an incentive for users to share your posts and help you reach more people.  One of the most organic and successful ways to build your Instagram following is by communicating with your audience directly. While hashtags will bring more users to your post, commenting and direct messaging with your existing audience members will build brand loyalty and naturally improve your posts’ position in the feed. This open dialogue will also portray your brand as communicative and trustworthy.