411 Locals researched, that Instagram recently reached the milestone of 500 Million users. 67,2 Millions of these users are from the US. Their number is expected to grow to 95 Million by 2020. It is estimated that approximately 30% percent of the population of the US uses Instagram. Daily, Instagram is used by 49% percent of the adults in the US.

For every dedicated specialist working in the field of marketing, these figures can mean new and bright opportunities for reaching new clients and markets. However, a small business owner or self-employed professional can use their Instagram profile for marketing purposes. Currently, most people use Instagram as a place to share their cool pics, short videos, and to follow popular profiles. However, this is only the first step of turning your Instagram profile in a business-oriented marketing tool.

If you are a small business owner or self-employed professional, you may already have a brand name. Fill the bio section in the profile, and tell people more about you and your services. Post your best and most eye-catching content. Instagram allows you to write several short sentences, so make them brilliant.

Instagram is a social network that focuses on visuals such as pictures and short videos, not longer than 15 seconds. 411 Locals reminds, that users are looking for visual rather than written content. So, carefully pick your profile picture. It should be clear, colorful, and ïf possible, present your service somehow. For example, if you specialize in construction service, the picture should be of yourself wearing protective helmet, glasses, and carrying some tools.

You may be tempted to use hashtags in your bio. You’d better not do it. The hashtags in your Instagram bio are not clickable, so they will not be in great use and will just spoil the look of your profile. However, you can use the hashtags in your posts.

Take pictures regularly, but not too often. Once or twice a day is fair enough. Share your work and latest achievements. Also, share your latest work-related challenges and how you managed to cope with them. Your followers will love to see the results of your work. Clients nowadays check everything - not just the prices. They are also looking for examples of projects completed by the contractor they are thinking of hiring. And having lots of pics of your completed projects could be the ultimate commercial and low-budget marketing approach.
It is now time for hashtags. Remember, do not overhashtag your posts. 3 to 5 is the optimal number.

A bigger number could be considered as improper behavior and can ruin your post. Use hashtags that are relevant to your brand, business, and services. If you are in the roofing business, using the hashtag for campers may not be the best idea. However, use keywords such as “roof, repair, roof leak, ceiling” and so on. Of course, you can share some posts that are not strictly related to your business, but this should be no more than a few times a week. Remember: you hashtags have to be relevant to your activity. Creating a custom hashtag is also a great way to promote yourself and create awareness. Use several hashtags in a post.

Tell a story with any image or video you decide to share.Use Instagram to educate potential clients about your services, products, results. Try to be creative as possible. For example, you can use the photo filters that are built in Instagram. Choose the one you like most. In addition, you can add photos with some quote about business or motivation. Helpful and useful info will be much appreciated too.

Get social, and connect your Instagram profile with your twitter, facebook, WordPress, and with all directories you are registered in. This will help you reach a bigger audience and maximize your influence. You can embed your Instagram or Twitter posts in your website. This will act as an engagement trigger.

Be active on Instagram - just follow current and potential clients, friends. It will be great if you give likes to some of the activities your clients or friends are posting. Send them a message, congratulate them for a success they are proud of. There is a comment option in Instagram too. Just use it and post relevant and positive comments. The comments should be under posts of your friends, potential, and current customers. Commenting under posts is a really easy and fun way to generate some attention and more followers. Add and share videos too.

In addition to pictures and posts, you can add short videos that are 15 seconds in length. Make every second count. Point your smart device to the work you already completed and generously share it with your audience. You can add some comment. For example: “After 5 days of hard work, we just completed this project and we are planning on celebrating our success”.

Author's Bio: 

We have been in business for over eight years with offices in the United States and Europe. 411 Locals
is a full-service Internet Advertising Agency specializing in search engine optimization, web design, online and mobile marketing, and quality content.