Instagram is not just a way to post beautiful images. Used strategically, it can become a very effective marketing tool. This quintessential visual platform allows you to identify your potential customers and build a more attractive relationship through images, videos and stories.

Interest in Instagram is turning more and more to marketing, as shown by the latest updates published by the platform. In September 2017, Instagram announced that it had reached 800 million subscribers, a milestone knowing that just three years ago, there were 200 million users. Every day, more than 52 million images and videos are published, while 300 million users use the stories daily.

In France, 11.8 million users connect each month ( 2018 statistics ). It is estimated that 41% of users are between 16 and 24, 35% between 25 and 34, 17% between 35 and 44 and 8% are 45 and over.

In sum, Instagram can be a very powerful tool to develop your brand. Over 60% of platform users declare that they have already discovered a new product or service on this social network.

These statistics being very impressive, I am often asked the question of the relevance of Instagram for your businesses. So I decided to write this article to answer the question: does your business really need an Instagram account to grow?

Why use Instagram?

Instagram has grown very quickly. Born in 2010, it reached 100 million active users in February 2013 and 200 million in March 2014. It has grown exponentially to reach more than 800 million active users per month in September 2017. Among these users, 500 million use their account daily. This figure experienced stratospheric growth during 2017: it went from 150 million daily users in January 2017 to 200 million in April and to 500 million in September.

31% of Americans who earn more than $ 75,000 are on Instagram

According to demographic data collected by Pew Research in 2016, almost a third of wealthy Americans use Instagram.

In particular, it is estimated that:

  • 38% of those earning less than $30,000 use Instagram
  • 32% of those earning between $30,000 and $74,999 use Instagram
  • 31% of those earning more than $75,000 use Instagram

This figure is very interesting for companies selling medium profile products. In fact, the most active and active age group on Instagram ranges from 18 to 29 years old. Many of these people are students or new workers. Of course, they may not have a high income yet, but it’s the group most likely to spend on articles promoted by Instagram influencers.

Instagram Marketing, used by 70.7% of businesses

This is another statistic that indicates how quickly Instagram is growing. In 2013, 11.5% of American companies used Instagram for marketing purposes. This percentage rose to 18.4% in 2014, to 32.3% in 2015 and to 48.8% in 2016. In 2017, this statistic reached 70.7%, surpassing Twitter, which was present in 2017

by 67 , 2%.

Instagram advertising and How it works

From kids to businesses, hipsters, models and football players, everyone uses Instagram. It is the social network of the moment. Anyone using it may wish to develop their account and often organic traffic is no longer enough.

By eliminating the unorthodox methods available (for example the use of bots or the purchase of subscribers), sponsoring your publications with the platform can be the most effective and sustainable strategy in terms of costs.

Instagram has become a sort of “goose that lays the golden egg” for Mark Zuckerberg and his company. In the last 24 months, changes on this platform and especially on the advertising side have improved the system to make it conform to the business needs of users.

Just like with Facebook , companies have the ability to target their audiences very precisely to provide them with advertisements. In addition, Instagram provides very precise management statistics to better control campaigns and thus obtain better results.

In short, Instagram advertising is a very effective way of showing your products in front of people who don’t know you yet and who are likely to like your products and therefore buy them.

How does Instagram advertising work?

Unlike the simple use, the world of advertising on Instagram at the beginning is not intuitive. Especially for those who have never had to deal with Facebook Ads or online advertising in general.

Advertising on social networks follows different logics from traditional advertising. First, after creating and publishing a sponsored post, the platform must approve it. It can decide to refuse it at any time if it does not comply with the rules regarding online advertising.  

Then, the appearance of advertisements is based on an auction system, for which the price, performance, or the type of action you want to get from the recipient of the ad can vary over time. As a general rule, for the sponsored publication to function properly, it must be as close as possible to those disseminated on social media in an organic context and very far from a poster or the page of conventional print advertising.

On Instagram, it is possible to sponsor content using several tools and many types of ads. Regarding tools, the photographic social network offers the possibility of creating advertisements both via its official application and via advanced tools such as Facebook Ads. Instagram also offers different types of ads, each more interesting than the next, for those who need to promote their business.

  • Ads with photos : this is the simplest type of ad that can be used on Instagram, but also one of the most effective. By using photo inserts, you can use images in horizontal and square format.
  • Video insertion : if a picture is worth a thousand words, a video is worth even more. In fact, video ads combine images, sounds and movements that create a significant visual impact for the users who watch them. On Instagram, you can create ads with videos in horizontal or square format with a maximum duration of 60 seconds.
  • Carousel insertion : this type of insertion allows you to insert several photos and videos in a single advertisement. To display them all, the user does not have to do anything other than scroll the contents of a simple scan. Ads with collection include multiple posts on Instagram and are ideal for giving visibility to the products you want to sell.
  • Placing ads in stories : Placing ads in Instagram stories is a very smart strategy, as millions of users create and display this type of content every day. To insert an advertisement in a story, it is however necessary to respect specific directives concerning the size of the files used, the format, the maximum duration of the video, etc.

How to Create Your Instagram Marketing Strategy

To sponsor content on Instagram, you must have a Facebook page and use a corporate Instagram profile. Once these two preliminary operations are completed, you must configure your file, define its budget and finally publish it. Here are the steps to follow to create your strategy.

1) Create an attractive Instagram company profile

How many times have you wondered why your Instagram profile doesn’t have a lot of likes or, even worse, you can’t increase the number of subscribers, while putting quality photos and following many people?

A successful Instagram profile is a perfect blend of complete profile information, unique photos, correct use of hashtags and above all constant work in the publication.

Having a complete profile containing all the information is the first ingredient necessary to start on the right foot. Choose an engaging profile photo that best represents you, then enter a description of the impact and highlight who you are and what you do, trying to link it as closely as possible to the photos you post.

I also suggest that you use emoticons to make the description more attractive to users who visit your profile. Also remember that in the description it is allowed to use a maximum of 150 characters, use them wisely!

If you want to get new Instagram followers, users need to instantly understand who you are and what you do when they visit your profile.

2) Determine your audience

Beyond Instagram, determining your audience is a fundamental step in any marketing strategy. However, Instagram has the distinction of being a visual social network, reaching a certain type of people.

As we saw earlier, Instagram users are mostly young people between the ages of 18 and 29. 76% of users are under 35 years of age. Remember this information when determining your target and putting up your ads.

The challenge here is to reach the right audience with the right content to attract users to your profile and website in order to sell your products or services.

3) Define your goals

For Instagram marketing, the goals are divided into three areas.

  • Reputation or increasing the visibility of your company : this objective will be used to increase the notoriety of your brand, develop your visibility or put forward the values ​​of your company.
  • The consideration : serves to increase awareness of our brand and our products, generally by directing traffic to the website through links or videos.
  • Conversion  : pushing the user to perform an action, usually a purchase or making a contact.

Correctly setting your goals on Instagram is essential. When you measure the performance of your campaigns, your KPIs (performance indicators) will be different depending on the direction you have taken. These will allow you to measure your return on investment and, if necessary, make adjustments to your campaign

How to make a good Instagram account and increase your followers?

1) Your account

  • The profile photo: put a profile photo corresponding to the best for your brand
  • Your bio: the pillar of your account, your description must be ingenious and creative to best present who you are and what you do with specific keywords.
  • The name of your account: in principle it will be the name of your company, but you can also insert keywords related to your activity
  • Your website: a link to your website should appear on your page. This is essential because Instagram does not allow you to insert other links in messages or comments. Be sure to update this link regularly depending on your activity.

2) The content

Next comes the publication of your content. Even if you can strive to make great quality photos, they will never make a difference if you fail to reach the hearts of your followers.

Taking unique photos means standing out from the crowd and showing something different that nobody expects. This becomes a huge advantage, as it allows you to attract new people to your profile and increase the number of your followers.

Consistency in the publication of photos is a fundamental weapon for successfully creating a successful Instagram profile. This shouldn’t necessarily mean posting more than one photo per day, especially if you don’t have the time or the right photo to publish, but the more you can publish, the better.

What really matters is to keep the pace as constant as possible when posting new photos so that your followers are informed and acquire new ones. My advice, however, is to stick at least one photo a day in order to get good results without wasting too much time with the publication.

3) Hashtags

Liked and abused by all, hashtags are one of the most important factors in increasing the number of members and gaining visibility. However, they are often not used, or incorrectly.

Hashtags should not only always be used, but above all, they should be chosen intelligently, that is, they should refer to what concerns the photo and the context in which it was taken.

4) The stories

Instagram stories have changed the classic way Instagram works, allowing people to share all the moments of the day with their followers.

This translates into a powerful tool which, if used properly, allows you to recruit new subscribers and increase the engagement of your profile. 


The answer to the question “Do you need an Instagram account for your business?” Is simple: YES!

However, some trades will have even more interest in using the platform than others. I mainly think of companies that can share artistic content or e-commerce platforms .

Take the time to set up an Instagram marketing strategy, organic and advertising, consistent over the long term, and you will be impressed by the results it can bring you.

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