For any business, it is almost impossible to keep up-to-date with the different sets of connections you have on the different networks. Instagram is just one social network among many others you can use if you are using social media as part of your marketing strategy to grow your business.
Below are seven (7) ways to grow your business using this medium.
1. Create a brand specific strategy
Your brand strategy on social media should be unique. Keep your content strategy focused on your brand’s unique way of seeing the world. Instagram is a photo and video sharing site. Connect your business with your ‘tribe’ or customers on this social network in a very consistent and particular visual way.
2. Generate a flexible posting plan
Carley Keenan offers the following advice on the frequency of sharing on Instagram:
“You don’t need to post every day. The ‘feed speed’ on Instagram is still mostly laid back. If you start posting a lot, you might saturate your followers’ feeds, and you don’t want to force yourself into the noise too often. Decide what you have ready to post and create a schedule to help you remember what to post when and to track what is working once you get going.”
3. Cultivate a following
To get more followers on Instagram:
– Connect your Facebook account.
– Use relevant, popular hashtags.
– Engage by following others and liking their photos.
– Cross-post selected images to your Facebook page with a hashtag that aligns with your campaign or brand image to help people who don’t know you’re on Instagram to find you there.
4. Follow your followers back
The people you follow on social networking platforms make all the difference in the world. Many brands and businesses on Instagram, especially those with very large followings don’t follow back. To create strategic relationships on Instagram, find the brands and people you enjoy and can learn from in your followers and follow them back.
5. Monitor your brand hashtags
Your consumers are using your tags to connect with you. Be sure to keep checking your Instagram hashtags’s, just like you would your Facebook Page and Twitter mentions. Respond to comments and concerns quickly, and you’ll build happy customer relationships.
6. Inspire potential customers
Post photos that are relevant to your brand and potential customers. For instance, a foods store or market posts representative photos to promote healthy, wholesome food products, store events, sustainability and their active community of customers and employees. Attract your target market with images that share a compelling and inspiring story.
7. Embed Instagram video in your blog or website
Instagram released a new embed feature for its desktop web browser version. Since you never know who will see your shares on a social networking platform, embed your Instagram video in your blog or website to extend the reach of your content.
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Source Beauty is pushing the boundaries of Egyptian e-commerce
Egyptian e-commerce: the county’s digital drive has not yet gotten to the growth typically seen in European countries and North America. However, as businesses have started shifting online, customers are now following suit, resulting in the gradual development of the digital eco-system.
Innovation, such as digital marketing, is reinventing the consumers’ path to purchase. The Egyptian e-commerce market is expected to grow at a rate of 33% annually to approximately $3bn by 2022, according to Oxford Business Group.
Source Beauty and disruption
The increase in e-commerce comes from rising internet penetration rates, driven by connected and digitally savvy millennials. Several platforms, both locally and internationally, such as the direct-to-consumer beauty platform Source Beauty, have disrupted the beauty industry in the region to drive their growth by truly connecting with their customers.
By being aware of the changing consumer behaviour trends in the e-commerce landscape, service providers like Source Beauty are continually fostering customer engagement with a community they have created. The customer service team, along with the editorial and marketing teams, respond to each comment and direct message, making customers feel listened to.
Lydia Schoonderbeek, the founder and CEO of Source Beauty, said:
“Egypt has traditionally been a price-driven market. After devaluation and high inflation rates, people have become much more price sensitive. People are consuming less and are shifting away from imported products due to price, accessibility and inconsistency in supply. As a result, they’re looking for local alternatives.”
In line with its digital transformation and financial inclusion agenda, the Egyptian government has set in place directives to raise the limit for electronic payments for individuals via mobile phones to EGP30,000 (USD1,905) per day, and EGP100,000 (USD6,350) per month, since March 2020. Traditionally, 70% of online purchases were cash on delivery, which has proven to be a major challenge to e-commerce growth throughout the region. This preference has changed to credit card payments, increasing to 30% from 16% due to the spread of Covid-19, but it remains to be seen whether purchasing behaviors will be affected in the long term.
The CEO of Source Beauty further added that, the company had seen substantial growth thanks to the COVID-19 global pandemic, with existing and new customers wanting to limit in-person beauty services and adhering to social distancing and mask-wearing requirements. Beauty customers, she says were changing spending habits, moving towards products that allow them to recreate the salon experience in their homes and protect them from the potential impact of an increasingly digital lifestyle. Finally, she believes they have seen customers prioritising skincare and haircare purchases over makeup.
The question is, ‘Is anyone in Egypt going to buy beauty products online?’. Who thought people would buy books on the internet from a website called Amazon! Well, the answer seems to be YES. Consumer spending in Egypt on non-essential goods has reached EGP 3.90bn in 2020 and is set to reach 8.81bn in 2021, according to FitchSolution’s 2021 Report.
According to the Egyptian e-commerce beauty company, Source Beauty, it believes that the world is in an era where consumers are looking to associate with brands and not products, to make their beauty purchasing decisions and this is where homegrown brands like theirs will doubtlessly lead to economic growth in Egypt.
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