Instagram, a mobile-based social media platform reliant heavily on hashtags and strong graphic content, can be an excellent resource for small businesses looking to build a community around their product, service, and customers. Unlike more traditional media where pure sales tactics can prove most efficient, Instagram's quirky filters and infinite hashtag options offer users a more creative way to share photos and experiences.

1. Introduce Your Culture
First, focus on the culture surrounding your small business: Where are you located? What does your storefront look like? Who is your happiest customer? Starting from there, share images that best represent you and your customers. Remember the first day you started your business? Convey that in some of your Instagram photos to let others know exactly what they are buying into.

2. Tell Stories, Not Stock Photos
The most effective images you can share of your small business are those which reflect positive experiences, organic interactions, and transparently warmly introduce who you are and what you do for the outside world. Happy customers, smiling staff, and a great clean space are always more effective than a stock image on Instagram. Behind the scenes moments captured candidly can give potential (and dedicated) customers an more intimate experience with your small business.

3. Use The Right Hashtags
With infinite possibilities at your fingertips, its important to use hashtags that actually relate to your small business or the content you have posted. Some popular tags like #tbt (throwback thursday) can be great opportunities to share older content that gives customers a sense of where you came from and where you are now. Also, a quick hashtag search for your small business's name can help you find and interact with images that satisfied (or disgruntled) customers have posted after visiting your business or about one of your products / services.


By: Charlotte Kellogg 

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