By Sofia Pompeo

Instagram has become a great platform to use in your marketing strategy. In fact, 80 percent of Instagram’s one billion users follow a business account. Creating posts, sharing stories, and tagging your customers is what people like to see. More and more companies have started using it to make their brand presence more prominent.

It’s a great way to showcase your product or service or simply show off what your brand is about. Using this social platform has become a way for companies to interact on a personal level with their customers or prospects. Having a presence on Instagram in 2019 can really boost your brand awareness if it fits for your company and what your purpose is.

Heard of Instagram Live?

If you are familiar with Instagram, you've likely seen some of the accounts you follow "go live"—or maybe you've tried the function out yourself. Instagram Live is a feature on Instagram that allows you to live-stream to your followers, who can then engage with you in real time.

Your followers can choose to be notified when you start a live video. Otherwise, a purple circle shows around your profile picture on Instagram to show you have a live story up, and people can tune in from there. You can also pin the topic of your live video so people know what they’re tuning in to. The pinned topic will show up at the bottom of the live screen.

As people comment and send likes through your live video, you can react to their messages and develop an engaged audience.

You can also save a recording of your live video to your regular Instagram story so people who weren’t able to watch in real time can watch later on at their leisure.

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What’s the Outcome for Instagram Marketing with Live Video?

You may be asking yourself, “Are there really any benefits to using Instagram Live”? And the answer is, yes, there are. Here are some reasons you should consider this marketing tactic:

  • You’re increasing engagement: As a brand, one of the keys to success is your ability to highly engage with your customers or prospects. By using Instagram Live, you’re creating a conversation—and people like that. Everyone wants to feel that they are a highly valued customer, and engagement creates that feeling. You’re also giving your customers a look into the behind-the-scenes of your company. The interaction on Instagram Live is what pulls people in and interests them in learning more about your brand.
  • Instagram will give you more visibility: Using Instagram Live can help expand your company’s reach on Instagram because live stories are placed in front of regular stories and, hence, get more visibility. Live stories are also push notification enabled so if someone has notifications turned on in their settings, they will get an alert that you have started a live video. It’s a great way to catch your followers’ attention!
  • It’s authentic: Your followers can see you face to face! They’re able to see that genuine people are working behind your brand. You’re developing real conversations, and in marketing today, it’s all about being real and transparent. This platform maximizes that opportunity. Customers appreciate when you’re authentic and real with them. It’s way more relatable.

How Can I Incorporate Instagram Live into My Marketing Strategy?

If you are looking to increase brand engagement, Instagram Live is definitely something you should incorporate into your marketing strategy.

If you aren’t sure how to get started, here are a couple of tips: First, what strategy you use for Instagram Live depends on your company’s brand, what you want to share with your followers, and what you’re trying to sell or promote.

Set a broad goal of how you’d like your live video to turn out and go from there. I say “broad” because it’s live so you really won’t know what will happen!

Ways to incorporate Instagram live:

  • If you are promoting a product or a service, going live is a great way to do a demo or a tutorial for your followers so they can see everything firsthand and in real time.
  • Are you having a limited time offer on something you’re currently promoting? Let your followers know (and create excitement!) by doing a live announcement.
  • Do a live Q&A so you can give immediate answers directly to people who have questions, which in turn could influence someone to make a quicker decision about your brand, product, or service.

In general, it’s a good idea to engage with your followers as much as you can, so fitting Instagram Live into your strategy and planning when you’d like to go live is a smart idea.

If you’re looking to get in touch with your follower base and customers/prospects on social media, you should definitely test out Instagram Live. Adding this to your marketing strategy will show others that you’re willing to communicate in real time, while also being authentic and transparent. You’ll be able to gain visibility on the platform, and you’ll gain people’s trust and loyalty along the way. Go live on your next big company-wide announcement … it’s worth it!

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Sofia Pompeo

About the author

Sofia Pompeo is a Marketing Consultant for SmartBug. She has had previous experience providing marketing solutions for clients in different industries, developing and executing social media content and implementing inbound marketing campaigns. She really enjoys utilizing every aspect of HubSpot. Read more articles by Sofia Pompeo.

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