We already know that Instagram is one of the most popular social media channels out there, and for brands especially the virtual opportunities to target our unique audiences is enticing. There is, in fact, over 200 million Instagram users who visit at least one brand profile every day. But many brands are not taking full advantage of the platform and its ability to help businesses get ‘er done.

While it has been historically difficult to use Instagram for marketing, like adding external links to your posts, now thanks to time, consumer demand and the emergence of third-party tools you can turn your IG feed into a lead generation machine.

We’re not mathematicians but if we were to create a formula for what we’re talking about here it would look something like:

eyeballs + products for those eyeballs = $

How Does it Work?

While 2020 has so far been a dumpster fire, the good news is that brands have never before experienced more creative freedom and choices to customize their online presence for audience reach and acquisition. While the world is burning, digital marketers are sipping their coffee saying, “this is fine.”

On that note, when it comes to marketing on Instagram your channel is capable of acting as a sales landing page. You can turn your posts into an interactive online shop for products or dynamic content like blogs and articles that you’re looking to share. What that means is that your audience can easily and immediately purchase or view what you’re marketing to them. And that, as we’ve noted, looks like eyeballs + products for those eyeballs = $. 

You can showcase product details, descriptions, and other items from the shop along with big juicy button CTAs that will guide interested buyers and readers through to the cart functionality on your website.

If you’re selling content, you can post multiple blogs from the bio link. This means that your audience can read the full articles from your website without having to leave Instagram. Why does that matter? Because the sheer convenience and ease of use with this level of online shopping, or information distribution, provides an ideal experience that will bring more traffic and better sales. 

Can I Set These Features Up Myself?

Totally. In today’s digital market, it’s all about making things easy–for the consumer and for the brand. Whether you use Linkin.bio from Later, or Instagram’s own built-in toolbox for e-commerce, there’s plenty of free options for optimizing your page that will capture and engage your audience. The bottom line is that if you have something to monetize, you can monetize it here.

Real-Life Instagram Examples

Shopping Features

We’re going to showcase a local company we recently worked with as an example. Leiv it or Love It is a brick-and-mortar & online women’s boutique in our neighbouring city of Lantzville, BC. When you visit the company’s Instagram page, you can browse the posts of their latest in-stock items or feature items available for ordering and shipment online:

screenshot of a boutique store's Instagram Page

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The slim-fit drawstring pant and jacket combo do look cool so I’m just going to click into the post for more details:

screenshot of a woman modeling beige pants and a black jacket

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Well, the pants are very affordable and I basically want them now, because quarantine means I have nothing else to do but online shop and why not stock up on comfy fashion since this pandemic may never end?

Product details about a pair of slimfit dustry rose slacks online

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A click on the post with the cool pants takes me to this product details page–and I’m still not on their website, I’m just killing time on Instagram! I can now check out the photos of the pants, remember that, actually, dusty rose is one of my favourite colours, get the size, and the brand, and look at other items featured on the company’s Instagram page. When I’m ready to purchase, I click the big blue button that says “View on the Website,” while walking myself over to my purse and pulling out my credit card. From here I enter their e-commerce website to add the pants to my cart (which I have to do quickly because there’s only one left in stock!):

screenshot of slimfit dusty rose pants for sale on an online boutique store

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So, there you have it. I’ve now spent $36.95 (including taxes w/ local pickup) and all I meant to show you was how to sell your stuff on Instagram.

Landing Pages for Bio Links

The Harbour Chandler is a marine supply and tackle shop in Nanaimo. We helped them build a comprehensive e-commerce shop and they currently ship worldwide. On the company’s Instagram page they have Linkedin.bio set up to feature products from their website, which can be found by clicking on the link in the company bio: 

Screenshot of the bio link on The Harbour Chandler Instagram page

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They’re advertising their new fishing report, which you can read off their website through the Instagram landing page:

screenshot of a fishing report archive from The Harbour Chandler website

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The other posts featured on The Harbour Chandler’s bio link feature previews to featured products: 

Screenshot of a linkin.bio page for a marine supply and tackle shop Instagram page

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Ooh, those kabobs look good. Clicking on that post gives me bbq grill search filter results from the Harbour Chandler’s online shop: 

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But you don’t just have to use your bio link as a landing page for products. Many magazines and blogs that generate dynamic content use this type of feature to mirror their Instagram posts with links to the full articles from their websites. We’ll keep this blog content wholesomely Canadian and use CBC’s bio link as an example of this in action.

Need Help?

While the intention of this article is to show you the possibilities on Instagram that you can achieve on your own, social media management is a marketing service we specialize in. This means we’re fast and effective in helping our clients prioritize what they want to sell and how they want to sell it for real tangible results. 

Let us know the kind of help you need and we’ll offer recommendations on your possible next steps.

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