Before Instagram blew up in popularity, there was just one type of account—whether you were using it for personal or business purposes. In 2016, Instagram introduced the “professional account” as an option, and it opened up a whole lot of opportunities for brands using Instagram for marketing. Though the professional account has now been around for four years, its use is still not as widespread as that of Facebook’s business accounts, for example. Here we’ll look at some of the benefits of using professional Instagram accounts for your marketing efforts.
Personal vs. professional Instagram accounts
To establish a business profile on Instagram, you first set up a personal account. Then, you “convert” that profile to a business account. In essence, that means a business profile has all of the same abilities as a personal one—plus a whole lot of added perks to help drive traffic to your brand’s content.
The benefits of using professional Instagram accounts
Professional Instagram accounts not only allow your followers to better-recognize you as a brand, but also they help you as a marketer by providing a handful of helpful tools.
Contact info in bio
Compared to a personal account, a professional Instagram account allows you to put more identifying information in your Instagram bio. That includes dedicated spaces for your industry category, address and phone number (in addition to your website). A professional account also includes a space for a contact button to help followers find you easier.
Instagram offers its own internal post scheduling for business accounts, so you can set up content to go out ahead of a scheduled date. In addition, most third-party content schedulers, like ContentCal and Hootsuite, accommodate Instagram scheduling, but only for professional accounts—not personal ones.
Instagram advertising options
Just like you can pay to have your Facebook posts seen by more Facebook users, Instagram works the same way. In fact, Instagram ads are managed through Facebook’s ads manager. In order to run Instagram campaigns, you must have a business Instagram profile that is connected to your business Facebook page.
Access to analytics
Called “Insights,” Instagram’s analytics are another of the benefits of professional Instagram accounts. Through Insights, you can track who your followers are and their use behavior, as well as monitor your content to record how well it is performing in terms of engagement.
Shoppable posts are another feature available only to business Instagram accounts. Through Instagram Shopping, approved business accounts can feature products in their posts and stories. These posts allow you to tag products in them and essentially turn your feed into an ecommerce vessel.
Special benefits for high follow counts
Though reaching 10,000 followers on Instagram may seem like a lofty goal, it’s very possible—and doing so opens up another feature that can benefit brands. Whereas you cannot add clickable links to your regular Instagram post captions, accounts with 10,000 or more followers can include links in their Instagram stories. It’s yet another way to provide your followers easier access to your content, especially on a platform where links are few and far between.
Professional Instagram accounts are a must for brands planning to use the platform for marketing purposes. A business account will help your brand look more professional and identifiable in the eyes of your followers, not to mention the many beneficial tools that come along with it.
McNutt & Partners is a full-service advertising and digital marketing agency. Contact us today for your marketing needs! Call 334-521-1010, or visit our contact page.