5 reasons why Instagram needs to be in your 2016 Tahoe business plan | SierraSun.com

5 reasons why Instagram needs to be in your 2016 Tahoe business plan

Milena Regos
Social Media Savvy

INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — Instagram wins my heart this year, not only because of its beautifully pleasing visuals, but also for its large "human" factor (lots of people, few ads) and high-engaging nature.

From a business perspective, Instagram needs to be in your arsenal, and here are some Instagram guidelines and tips:

1. You have a visual story to tell

Your product or business is highly visual in nature and you can tell a story with images and videos. Many local Tahoe businesses can benefit from this visual aspect of the network. The caveat here is that you need to have a repository of amazing images. Consider hiring a photographer or getting better with taking images. You can also count on user-generated content to support your original images but if you are thinking about using Instagram, make sure you have at least 50-70 images in your library.

2. You are targeting a younger, female demographic

If your business is trying to reach a younger, female demographic, then Instagram will be a solid choice. Fifty-five percent of online adults ages 18 to 29 use Instagram. Additionally, online women continue to be more likely to be Instagram users than online men (31 percent vs. 24 percent). Source: Pew Internet.

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3. Share a compelling and inspiring story

Don't use Instagram to only sell your business. Instead, keep it inspiring and entertaining. Mix in your promotional messages, but only after you have grown your loyal online following. A few local accounts to follow for inspiration are: @sierra_at_tahoe, @coffeebar96161 and @tahoenorth.

4. Experiment with Instagram ads

Now available for small business, you can promote an Instagram post right through the Power Editor (free program) that Facebook offers. You can even combine your Facebook ads with Instagram ads. Why not experiment with ads on a platform while it's not completely saturated yet like Facebook is? But before you do, please, make sure your creative is visually appealing to your audience and you are adhering to the natural aesthetics of the platform.

5. Capture the holidays on Instagram

Ignite your audience's holiday spirit with invigorating visuals that inspire them to either take action on your website or come into the store. Many small businesses took advantage of the #shopsmall popular hashtag on the platform, and Macy's released 3 videos in one single day motivating people to shop. Of course, the only place you can insert a link is in your bio but you can change that as often as you like.

I encourage you to explore Instagram first as a user to get used to the nature of the platform.

Start by following 20-30 people and see what they are posting. You can connect it to your Facebook profile, and Instagram will automatically tell you which ones of your Facebook friends are already on Instagram.

From there, you will start seeing the benefits of the channel for a business. I invite you to connect with me @milenaregos to follow my travel adventures from Tahoe and around the world.

Happy Holidays and Happy Instagramming!

Milena Regos is principal and founder of Out&About Marketing, an Incline Village-based digital marketing and social media consulting firm. She can be reached for comment at milena@outandaboutmarketing.com. The post: "My favorite social network is" appeared first on Out&About Marketing.