Instagram is already an institution within the internet , and with one billion monthly active users, Meta’s social network is a colossus that we must take advantage of within digital marketing strategies.
At first glance, this platform may seem like a mere leisure activity, but using Instagram for companies or making your brand, products and services known is possible ; as long as you do it properly and, especially, if you know all its benefits and improvement points.
That’s why at Cham We will talk about all the advantages and disadvantages of Instagram, as well as give you some tips to reach those ideal users for your marketing efforts.
Instagram: what is it and how does it work?
Before starting, we think it is pertinent to tell you a little about the history of Instagram
And it is that this social network was officially launched on October 6, 2010, as a project by Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger , who had the purpose of creating an app focused on photography created with smartphones.
Initially, the social network Instagram was only available for iPhone, but it was precisely its success on this mobile device that a specific version for Android was later launched on April 3, 2012.
Curiously, 6 days after launching the Android version, they were acquired by Facebook —now Meta— , being one of the most important and profitable purchases of the company created by Mark Zuckerberg.
Without a doubt, both of them did not imagine the impact of this photo and video creation app 12 years later.
And it is that since it is ” Instagram from Facebook “, this platform has gone from being a place to share images and videos to being practically a platform completely focused on socialization, communication and even electronic commerce.
Some of the most important features that were added by Meta (along with the possibility of uploading short videos) and that are used by Instagram users from all over the world on a daily basis are:
- Instagram Stories, added in August 2016.
- Live videos, late 2016.
- Musical functions, in 2018.
- Chat, officially presented in 2019.
- Reels, feature added in summer 2020
Advantages of Instagram
Without a doubt, this social media platform has so many benefits that we would not finish listing them all.
But, in Cham! We summarize the advantages of Instagram that make it one of the platforms to adopt within your digital marketing strategies.
1. Popularity and high volume of traffic
Without a doubt, the popularity of Instagram is one of its strengths.
As we mentioned at the beginning, the social platform has more than one billion monthly active users —according to the most recent figures for 2022—, for which we practically have almost the entire world in the palm of our hands.
Although Instagram is a platform focused 100% on leisure and socialization, companies and businesses have an important participation .
The visual nature of this platform literally makes it a showcase for millions of active users to see your product.
Did you know that 60% of Instagram users enter this social network to learn about products and services ? And that 70% of them go to Instagram to make their next purchase ?
According to platform data, 50% of users follow at least one company of their choice.
In addition, Instagram Stories play an important role in the distribution of content for brands, since a third of this content with the most views is produced by companies .
Instagram Stories, as well as the possibility of creating publications for the feed with images and videos, allow you to create a visual storytelling , which does not miss any detail of your products and services.
Of course, it is important that you define your target audiences , since trying to cover all Instagram users is practically impossible.
As you could read, no matter how specialized your products or services are, there will always be users who meet the points of your target audiences and who might be interested.
2. Synchronization with other Meta products
Being “Instagram from Facebook” —now “from Meta”— this social network has a very strong synchrony with other products of the house.
So if you have your company profile within Instagram , one of the main advantages is that you can link it to your Facebook page and thus share posts on both platforms and not neglect each of your customers.
Similarly, you can link your WhatsApp number and allow your customers to connect with your brand in a single click and start chatting with them, on the most popular instant messaging platform in the world.
In addition, through Meta Ads you can carry out pay per click (PPC) campaigns to expand the organic reach of your publications within this social platform.
Without a doubt, an Instagram-oriented ppc strategy will allow you to have more likes , reach new audiences and obtain more followers , as well as generate traffic for your website or ecommerce.
It is important to note that you can manage all these accounts from one place with Meta Business Manager.
With this tool you will be able to answer Facebook messages, Instagram DMs, and respond to comments made on the posts you make on both platforms.
3. Company profile with total sales orientation
One of the advantages of Instagram is that it allows you to use your account as a virtual store.
In recent times, Meta decided to give Instagram an ecommerce approach, encouraging small and medium-sized businesses to turn their company profile into a dynamic showcase to display their products and services.
This is possible through “Shopping on Instagram” , a set of functions in which the photos and videos of your brand are no longer a static element by being able to add interactive labels with which they can find out prices and product specifications.
The above can be applied to previously created content, as well as to posts dedicated entirely to advertising.
In fact, in the United States, they can buy your products directly from your profile with the Store feature. It is expected that it will be available in more countries in the future.
Along with the above, Instagram for business offers you high-value metrics for your digital marketing strategy , such as reach, interaction rates, to name a few, that will allow you to optimize your efforts.
4. It’s free!
This point may be very obvious, but, without a doubt, one of the main reasons why companies are on Instagram is because it does not cost anything .
This point is one of the strongest advantages of Instagram, especially if your business is small or at a point of growth and you want to migrate to a completely digital environment.
You can practically use the publication tools, messaging, linking with other Meta services as well as analytics without paying a penny.
Disadvantages of Instagram
Without a doubt, Instagram is not a panacea when it comes to including this platform in your digital marketing strategy.
Be careful, we do not mean that it is a bad tool or that it is deficient; Rather, when we talk about the disadvantages of Instagram, we refer to those points that, by its nature, it cannot cover.
We emphasize that Instagram should not be at the center of your strategy, rather it should be a distribution channel for your content, products or services to get the most out of it.
Below we list the disadvantages of instagram.
1. Limited organic reach for businesses
Due to its popularity, one of the main disadvantages of Instagram is that by hosting billions of users, it is possible for your brand to get lost in the crowd.
Be careful, it does not mean that your content is bad, rather, Instagram prioritizes content created by real people over those created by companies.
To avoid this, it is important to consider an advertising campaign within the platform —as we discussed in previous lines—.
In this way you can boost the delivery of your content to your target
2. Limited to visual formats
Due to its nature, Instagram places a lot of emphasis on content that is highly visual.
Did you know that the more text we add to an Instagram post, the less positioned it will be?
This is something that many people are unaware of, because the Instagram algorithm favors highly visual content , and reduces the relevance of content with too much text.
For this reason, we do not recommend using Instagram to literally describe your product; rather let the images and videos do the talking and convince your followers or visitors to your account.
3. You need a lot of visual creativity
This point is closely linked to the previous one, since Instagram favors those posts that are fresh or creative.
Unfortunately, no one outside of Meta employees knows in detail how the Instagram algorithm works, however, we do know several of the elements that artificial intelligence takes into account. One of these is not to fall into monotony.
What do we mean? Not to turn your feed into a catalog where only your products and services are displayed over and over again.
Without a doubt, the best advice we can give you is to create photos and videos that humanize your product as much as possible, while also being visually attractive.
4. High incidences of image theft
This is one of the most sensitive points within Instagram.
Being a very popular social network, it is common for other accounts, regardless of whether they are fake or not, to tend to take content from users and publish it as their own.
This is because the images and videos within Instagram do not have any type of copyright , and currently, there are few regulations that prevent the theft of content within this social media platform.
Some of the recommendations that we can give you to prevent or reduce the rate of theft of your content on Instagram are:
- Use your branding within your photos and videos, in a way that is identifiable to your followers.
- Ultimately adding watermarks to your content.
- Adopt some photo certification tool, like Blockai.
Instagram in my digital marketing strategy: what we recommend you consider
As you can see, before selecting Instagram within your digital marketing efforts, it is important to know the pros and cons, in order to make an accurate decision, which will allow you to optimize your marketing efforts and, especially, obtain a good return on investment. investment.
1. Do not focus your strategy on Instagram
As we have seen, the various features of Instagram only operate within that platform.
In addition, it must be remembered that the target audiences will not always be within this social network , which is why it is important to look for new channels to distribute your brand.
If you want to expand the reach of your business, it is certainly important to consider an Inbound Marketing strategy that considers both Instagram and other social platforms —such as Facebook, Twitter or even LinkedIn— and even media, such as a website.
2. Recognize your target audience and their behavior
As we mentioned in previous lines, your target audiences will not always use Instagram as the main source of purchase or consultation of your products.
For this reason , being clear about the person or buyers of our brand will allow us to understand their purchasing method and their behavior on and off the internet.
3. If Instagram works for you, try to offer fresh content
In case Instagram is the main or one of the main channels of acquisition of your clients, we recommend you to keep your profile active with fresh content.
Without a doubt, we recommend you not to repeat content, that is, not to re-publish old content , since a feed with repeated images or Instagram Stories that only tell the same thing can generate boredom and trigger a drop in followers.
4. Use all the tools that Instagram gives you to create content
In Cham! We recommend you make use of all the tools that Instagram offers you to add to your posts and Stories .
Using them will favor your content before the algorithm and will improve its organic and paid positioning.
For the profile:
- Use a profile photo.
- Add a description that makes your brand known in an entertaining and concise way.
- If you have a website, add the URL so they can visit it.
- Add some of the default call to action.
For post we recommend:
- Add location, if available.
- Use hashtags, without abusing them.
- Use the collaboration option in case of doing influencer marketing.
For Stories we suggest:
- Apply stickers that go according to your brand, but without abusing them.
- Use the Music function.
- Generate interaction through the polls function.
- If you have a website, online store, or blog, add links for them to visit your site.
Instagram: an ideal complement for your digital marketing strategy
As you can see, there are various advantages of Instagram, and some disadvantages that can be solved with some extra effort.
Likewise, we suggest you consider Instagram as another distribution channel for your content, brand, products, and services within a global digital and inbound marketing strategy.
Do you want to know more about social networks, marketing, SEO, design and sales. Visit the Cham blog, where you can learn more about these topics and apply them to your business.