The modern brand and product discovery process usually involve at least some form of a social media reference. Even if your social presence is not driving direct sales, it can still have a significant impact on shoppers brand perception, which could be hugely relevant, dependent on your target market.
That won’t show up in your attribution reports, people coming to your social profiles to take a quick look, and potentially not clicking through on anything. But it can have a significant impact on brand perception.
No surprise, Facebook is always on the lookup for more ways to maximize the revenue generation potential of Instagram. So it commissioned research into how users perceive brand content on the visual platform, and how businesses can maximize their opportunities based on audience expectation. And data made it clear that social media marketing, especially that on Instagram, shouldn’t be on the back-burner, especially for B2C companies.
Boost brand perception
Simply by being on Instagram, brands can make a positive impact on how potential shoppers perceive your brand. People say they perceive brands on Instagram as popular (78%), creative (77%), entertaining (76%) and relevant (74%).
The results speak for themselves. Creating an Instagram account is easy and it’s clearly a quick-win for boosting your brand’s appeal to your audience.
By simply having an active Instagram presence, you can greatly influence audience perception. In addition to this, Instagram, in particular, can play a big part in the purchase process.
Help potential shoppers
The key to any successful digital marketing strategy is to meet people where they’re already looking. As such, if consumers are using Instagram throughout their buying process, make sure your strategy includes touch points that speak to them as they move through it.
Instagram can play a big role in the purchase path, with images providing additional context as to how the products look in real life, and how they might fit in the customers’ own usage.
Potential shoppers use the platform to discover what’s currently trending through the explore page, hashtags, or influencer profiles, research products using posts from brand accounts and comments, and even use it to make the decision if they want to buy the product or not, sometimes even making the purchase on the platform.
Reach users in the discovery stage with targeted ads, utilizing hashtags, or partnering with relevant influencers. Post testimonials from loyal customers, product reviews, or specific product details that will aid users in the research process.
Announce sales, exclusive discount codes, or limited time offers that will compel users in the decision stage to pull the trigger and make a purchase.
Drive action from consumers
Social media is becoming so much more than a brand awareness tool. Referral traffic is no longer the only effective way to view the effectiveness of your social media marketing strategy.
Some users read comments on company photos to gauge community opinion of the brand, while others browse a brand’s tagged photos to see others using or wearing the product and some browse hashtags to get more information.
A user can do virtually all their discovery, research, and even make the decision to buy your product on Instagram without ever going to your website. In some instances, they can even make their purchase without leaving the platform.
Marketers should be hyper-aware of this and evaluate their current Instagram strategy to see where they can improve.