You probably think Instagram is all about photos.
And while it DOES take a strong image or video to stop the scroll, it’s words that are going to move a casual visitor to get out their credit card. A consistent brand voice across all parts of your Instagram account and your website is going to build the know, like and trust factor, as followers move seamlessly across Instagram and your website.
In this article, we’re going to look at how Instagram’s platform can work with your website and take you step by step through the ways a skilled writer can help create a consistent brand voice to build authority and trust that ultimately lead to sales.
Why a brand voice is important for Instagram sales
With more transactions moving from desktop to mobile phones every day, online business owners need to make the most of social platforms such as Instagram to drive traffic and conversions. Instagram knows how important sales are to its bottom line – hello ad revenues – and is doing everything in its power to make selling on its platform seamless.
Instagram’s selling tools now include product tags and shops that link to sales platforms such as Shopify and WooCommerce, through its parent company Facebook. In order to sell through Instagram, you need to have a business account, be active in a supported market, and compliant with its merchant agreement. Instagram’s shop links mean a win-win for Instagram and shop owners: Instagram gets to keep its visitors close – as well as product data – and online store owners have a smoother road for conversions.
That said, those same useful tools are available to everyone with a business Instagram account – that’s a lot of shop owners. So how can you stand out from your competition and convert tyre-kickers from Instagram’s one billion users into sales? Let’s look at the seven ways that a talented writer can help get window-shoppers over the line and have those sales notifications pinging your inbox.
Here’s how to set up your Instagram account for sales and connections to your website.
Connecting Instagram and your website
Connecting your website to Instagram and vice versa gives your company social proof and improves your SEO rankings. Also, online customers are likely to buy products from your Instagram page if it contains a direct link to your website. So, let’s explore ways to connect both platforms to increase exposure and sales.
Take advantage of Instagram business
If your business runs on a personal page, convert it to a business profile or create a separate business account. Instagram has a business-friendly algorithm for verified companies, small businesses, and startups. You can use promotions and sponsored ads to reach a wider audience.
Create an Instagram shop
You want to get enough attention to your product as fast as possible. The Instagram shop can serve as a supplement to your website’s product page. So, don’t forget to add a ‘find out more’ link that leads to your website.
Use Instagram plugins on your website
Instead of adding links to your Instagram page on your website manually, use plugins to import the content. Add-ons like Spotlight allow your business to import multiple Instagram pages to your website. You can also filter the content to focus on specific hashtags and search terms. This gives your website regular, fresh content that Google loves to see and can boost your search engine optimisation (SEO). Just be careful that the plugins you use aren’t slowing down your page too much.
1. Instagram captions that entice.
Once your image, graphic or video has stopped the scroll, the hard work really starts. The perfect caption speaks to your ideal client, calling them out and speaking their language. It starts with a hook, so they start reading, draws them in with expert storytelling and does this all in your brand voice that builds trust and authority.
Bear in mind that Instagram users generally are on the platform to be entertained, inspired or connect with friends. They are not scrolling through to ‘be sold to’ – and are already dodging Instagram’s own ads. It takes a skilful writer to write enticing captions that leave your ideal clients clicking on product links or checking out your profile and visiting your website link.
2. Instagram captions that engage
Instagram’s algorithm rewards accounts that share engaging content by showing it to more of their followers and sometimes sharing it as suggested posts. That means that engaging content brings you more organic reach – for free!
This is one of the places that hiring a skilled writer pays immediate dividends. They can increase engagement on every Instagram post, Story or video, building your account into a popular haven for ideal clients. Do share engagement rates with your writer, so that they can see what is popular and what flops, and use this data to improve future posts.
3. Collating user-generated content
A skilled writer who knows your ideal customer can curate and share user-generated content (UGC) with flair, engaging the contributors and inviting others to share more of their own stories and content, building engagement and rewarding existing fans with acknowledgment. They may even notice trending hashtags in your niche and add those into your captions.
4. Your Instagram profile
With just 150 characters, your Instagram profile has to work HARD to explain your brand. This is where a skilled writer can communicate clearly what you do and inject it with brand personality. Are you sassy or authoritative? Laid back or proactive? Don’t forget to make sure that your Instagram name includes terms that Instagram users might search for – you can appear in their search results.
5. Product descriptions
Alongside basic information like size, colour and availability, your products NEED great descriptions. You’re selling the sizzle, not just the sausage. If your product is a water bottle, would your ideal client take it on hikes through the Californian hills, on a picnic with their besties or to keep in their everyday work bag to stay hydrated? Do you tell a story about saving the planet by eliminating the need for single-use plastic water bottles or is it one about a leakproof stopper seal that means you can use the bottle in your favourite leather bag without accidents.
6. High quality consistency
Almost anyone, given enough time and guidance, can turn out one engaging caption. It takes skill and craftsmanship to write engaging captions day in and day out, especially if your product range remains static. How many stories can you tell about that water bottle that engage and send potential buyers towards your buy button? How do you keep regular readers as well as new ones reading all your captions? Skilled writers know to keep their well filled with current trends so they can create the perfect captions every time. Do keep them in the loop for behind the scenes moments, so they can add an on-brand narration when sharing.
7. You can’t do it all yourself
Every company founder learns at some point that they need to build a team, so that they can focus on creating and holding a vision. Great founders hire people who are better than them at tasks – like writing – and then get out of their way! It takes practice to get good at hiring the right people for your company who have the skills you need and are a good cultural fit – whether that’s freelancers or full-time staff. You can start by hiring writers for a paid test task and finding the ones you prefer. Hiring professional writers frees you up to stay in your zone of genius – the things you are best at and that bring most value to your company!
Writing is a skill and while most of us can do it, it takes an expert to tick all the boxes that Instagram demands – engagement, driving users to click on your profile link or product tags and to go through your checkout over and over, in ever-increasing amounts. When you realise the importance of great writing to help move your audience through the Instagram eco-system to become buyers, you’ll jump at the chance of hiring experienced professionals and increase your sales.