You would have to travel pretty far to reach a region where Instagram is not a well known name. In the United States, 140 million users have Instagram accounts and log on regularly, but actually 87% of users, another 360 million people, access Instagram around the world–and this is just in the age range of 18-24 year olds! Many Instagram influencers opt for buying Instagram likes to increase their reach.
Instagram is an incredibly popular social media platform that has steadily risen to popularity since 2010 when it was first launched. Facebook recognized the app as a major investment and purchased it in 2012, changing the algorithm of what posts show up on whose feed as well as modifying other features.
Under Facebook, Instagram has grown from an independent platform where young creatives posted photos of their art, food, pets, or friends to a major marketing and e-commerce social network. Of course, people can still post photos of all the same things, and they do, but the app has undergone a major facelift with inexplicitly understood high standards of quality for all photos and videos. Now social media influencers can make a living–and a comfortable one at that–from curating an Instagram-worthy life on the app; showcasing the foods they eat, the places they visit, the clothes they wear, the workouts they do, the friends they see is all part of the job, but the system only works through the promotion of different brands and products that users can purchase on the spot.
Also, short videos called reels that are reminiscent of TikTok’s videos have taken over the app to the point where businesses need to incorporate reels into their marketing strategy. Instagram has shifted so radically in the past few years that Adam Mosseri, the head of Instagram, confirmed the changes, discussing primarily the new shift to video marketing.
“We’re no longer a photo-sharing app. The number one reason people say that they use Instagram, in research, is to be entertained. So people are looking to us for that…What you’re going to see over the next couple of months really is us start to experiment more with the space of what we call recommendations, so showing you things in [your] Feed that you may not be following yet…We’re also going to be experimenting with how we embrace video more broadly — full screen, immersive, entertaining, mobile-first video…We have an idea of where we want to end up in a half a year or a year’s time, but I’m sure things are going to change many times between now and then. This isn’t just something we can do overnight,” said Adam Mosseri, CEO of Instagram.
Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO of Facebook which now owns Instagram, also recognizes the value of Instagram as a marketing platform for businesses and creatives selling their products, as he said in a live broadcast with Mosseri that Instagram is making moves to connect brands with like creators for a mutual exchange that will help attract followers for both.
“[E-commerce on Instagram and Facebook has] been especially important in the last year,” said Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook. “A lot of physical stores have had to close during lockdowns, but online stays open. It can be a more personalized and convenient experience.”
Because of the shift towards shopping and new page recommendations, Instagram is now a prime location for businesses, and small businesses and startups can be particularly successful on Instagram by attracting their target audience on the app where they already reside, since the majority of users are in the 18-24 year old range. Users from all around the world can find brands located absolutely anywhere and follow links to their e-commerce shops. And with the added features that make selling more convenient on the app–like linking products in posts and stories and the Shop tab in the bottom bar–Instagram is a top shopping destination. Businesses should view marketing themselves on Instagram as a necessity to expand the reach of their brand.
This is where Instagram boosts come in.
What Are Instagram Boosts?
Boosting is a marketing strategy you can utilize through Instagram or Facebook where you choose to “boost” your post for a fee to reach a larger audience. You can either select the target audience of the boost as people who have engaged with your content previously to push sales with interested users, or specify the demographic you want to reach.
“Boosting your posts on Instagram is a great way to go around the normal methods of gaining attention on your pages and reach new people,” says Jeremy Gardner, CEO of MadeMan. “Normally, the way to promote your business on social media is through organically following posting schedules, engaging with other followers and their pages, and sharing content made by other creators, along with other methods in this vein. However, with boosting you skip these steps and immediately promote your business to new audiences. Of course, your efforts towards organic growth should not cease but incorporating multiple systems will provide better results.”
Arguably the best way to promote your business on social media is to combine a little bit of paid advertising like boosting with a priority spent on organic growth that can not be purchased. Organic growth is a valuable commodity because it shows that people find your content engaging enough to like, comment, share, and save it for later.
“Don’t forget to still focus your efforts on engaging with your audience and conducting social listening. While paid advertising like Instagram boosting can offer tremendous results and reach a lot more people than you otherwise would, there is still something super valuable about naturally gained followers and content engagers. Never put the social connections to the side because no amount of money spent on your advertising strategies can do what establishing your reputation through being personable and communicative does,” says Lindsay McCormick, Founder and CEO of Bite.
You can also easily boost your content between Instagram and Facebook since the two platforms are joint due to being owned by the same people. This looks like either running your Facebook ad promotion on Instagram as well or boosting Instagram content in a way that also reaches your Facebook audience.
“Due to the connection between Facebook and Instagram your advertising strategy on one of the apps can perfectly be synced with the other. I recommend incorporating boosting on these platforms into your marketing strategy because you’ll reach even more people from both apps simply by boosting with one,” says Tyler Read, Founder and Senior Editor of PT Pioneer. “Instead of planning separate ad campaigns for each platform it feels like half the work is already completed. And we all know any method of saving time with the same or better results is 100% worth it.”
The Benefits of Using Instagram Boosts
A large benefit of Instagram boosting is the way it helps your marketing campaign. By boosting your content you reach more people in your targeted demographic and hopefully gain new followers and conversions.
One way to use Instagram boosts to your advantage is to pay attention to the data you receive on the users who viewed your content due to the boost. You should then structure your next steps around what type of feedback you receive from the data.
“Take advantage of how many people you can target and the data you can gather from doing so. By targeting many people at once, you’ll be able to identify any trending characteristics amongst the people who engaged with your boosted posts the most. Remember that the power of data is invaluable towards creating even more effective campaigns in the future because you will have a much better idea of which target audience will lead to the most ROI,” says Joaquín Roca, Co-Founder & CEO of Minerva.
Boosting your instagram content also helps your marketing efforts in that you can specifically aim to reach a target demographic with your boosted post. Say for example that you have trouble getting engagement from a certain demographic or more specifically that you want to launch a new product for male customers and your follower base is mainly female. While you can certainly angle your posts towards girlfriends, wives, and sisters who would buy or recommend your products to the men they know, you could also make a targeted post to a demographic of men and boost to their specific group.
“One feature of boosting that you can consider either a positive or a negative is that a boosted post does not get featured on your timeline; it is solely for advertising purposes. While you may want that content on your timeline instead of it disappearing once you cancel your ad spend, it can actually be beneficial to consider the boost as purely an advertisement and go outside the normal bounds of what you would feature on your page to reach new people,” says Michael Jankie, Founder of The Natural Patch Co.
Fortunately, boosting on Instagram is an easy step-by-step process that you can find tons of free information on and trial and error experiences about online. Boosting on Instagram is certainly one of the more easily manageable tricks to follow to increase your business’s reach.
“You can hire a social media manager or head of marketing strategist and allow them to use their expertise to take your social pages to new levels of recognition but small starting businesses may not be able to afford this. But they can manage their own social media marketing until they have built up a marketing budget by following the same techniques a marketing strategist would. Luckily, following proven methods for achieving more renown, such as boosting your Instagram content, is straightforward and inexpensive to do independently until you can hand off the task to an outside hire,” says Courtney Buhler, CEO & Founder of LashPRO Academy.
Overall, you can consider the method of Instagram boosting as a valuable learning experience. You will gain a ton of insight about your audience, the content that is most successful, and which direction to continue in going forwards.
Now you know all about Instagram boosting and how you can leverage it in order to expand your audience and reach new people and new demographics. With the rise in popularity of Instagram, be sure to utilize the platform as a means of advertising and representing your business. Even with a passive page you may be able to attract new followers but be guaranteed that by putting in advertising and marketing efforts you will undoubtedly achieve results.