Since being founded five years ago, Instagram has really taken off in popularity. Though simple in its concept; a social network centred around photos and videos, Instagram has provided millions of users with a fun, intimate experience that more and more people are joining every day.

Despite the buzz around it, many businesses are still not making Instagram part of their marketing strategy. Here are some of the myths you may have heard about it.

Instagram is for businesses that sell a visual products

The most common myth I hear about Instagram is that it’s only for businesses that sell a visual product. Sure, if you’re selling sculptures or canvases, promoting it through a picture-based social network will come a little more naturally.

However, having to communicate through images should be motivation to get more creative, rather than something discouraging. Get in some shots of your company culture.

Show your employees working with some new piece of equipment, a charity event you were all involved in, or just the board winding down at your favourite spot. Whenever anything happens at the company that would be interesting to some people, be sure to capture and broadcast it.

It can only be used for posting photos

Another common misconception is that Instagram can be used for posting photos, and nothing else. This is a pretty massive generalisation of the whole social network. It’s true that Instagram has a distinct focus on photos and videos, but posting your content certainly isn’t the only thing you can do.

Like other networks, Instagram allows a two-way channel of communication between you and your followers. This in turn allows you to leverage user generated content, using things like photo competitions and themed campaigns. The former can be hard to manage, and will cost you a little for the prize.

However, it’s a great way to motivate your followers to share their high-quality content, which you can then use for further marketing success. If you engineer a campaign that’s fun enough, you won’t even have to dangle a prize in front of your target market. However, you’ll still be able to reap in all the marketing benefits!

Instagram is hard to measure

Another complaint from marketers who try to wave away Instagram is that it’s too unruly and hard to measure. This is far from the truth! While the metrics and tools around might not be as sophisticated as those for Facebook or Twitter, there are still many ways you can monitor your Instagram success.

Obviously when you buy Instagram followers you get an exact quota! Aside from that, you can check your received comments to gauge how engaging this or that content is. Checking on the engagement with individual hashtags is also a great way to make your content more visible.

Finally, referral traffic is your bread and butter; how many Instagram users are translating into traffic for your website. Instagram certainly has its faults as a social network, but measuring its effects isn’t one of them!

If you’ve been putting off making Instagram a part of your marketing strategy, then I hope this post has turned things around. This network can be an exceedingly powerful tool when you know how to use it.

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