Instagram Best Practices – Tips & Tricks For Brands In 2023

Just when you think you have the Instagram puzzle all figured out, the algorithm ends up surprising you, right? We’ve all been there. It helps to stay updated about all the new changes and all the new marketing trends specific to each platform. That’s when you can be sure that your Instagram marketing strategy will come to fruition. Want to know about the Instagram best practices for 2023? Look no further!

In this blog, we’ll talk about all that’s new with Instagram in 2023 and how your brand can stay ahead of the game. Before we get to our Instagram best practices let’s also quickly go over some statistics that prove that Instagram is still a priceless element in a brand’s marketing. 

5 statistics to show that Instagram is an indispensable marketing tool 

  1. More than one-fourth of the world’s population uses Instagram. In fact, there are more than 500 million daily active users. Such figures only show that Instagram still gives you a large scope to reach a wider group of target audiences for your campaigns. 
  2. Statista research shows that, as of January 2023, 84.8% of Instagram users are less than 44 years of age. And most brands looking to increase sales through social media and other online channels target young audiences. Both these factors put together clearly show why Instagram is a great channel to promote your brand and to stay connected with the relevant audience segments. 
  3. 90% of Instagram users follow at least one brand. Because just like brands need social media to connect with their audience, people need social media to connect with brands they love. And for this, Instagram is one of the most popular platforms. 
  4. Different brands have different goals with respect to social media marketing. Customer engagement is one of the main goals for most brands. Instagram Reels is said to have an engagement rate of 1.95% which ensures better conversions for your brand. 
  5. About 70% of Instagram users do not mind when they are presented with ads when watching videos on Instagram. This makes the platform a great place to place your social media ads. With the right ad targeting strategy and memorable ad graphics in place, this means better exposure for your brand. 

Alrighty, now that we have covered the why, let’s get to the how! How do you reap these benefits for your brand? How do you ensure that all the budget that goes into your Instagram budget brings the returns you expect? Let’s talk about the Instagram best practices that make this happen. 

Instagram best practices for brands in 2023 

1. For that killer first impression, make your Instagram Bio pop

Businesses that do not pay attention to their Instagram Bio are missing out on a lot. Facebook has a cover image. YouTube has an About page but Instagram has nothing of that sort to give your visiting customers a clear and memorable introduction to your brand. Your Instagram Bio is the only section that fills this void. 

Your Instagram Bio has three main roles to play:

  • It tells your customers what your business does
  • It tells them what your page offers them
  • And finally, it also tells them how to connect with your brand – through the links you add. 

For example, the Instagram brand has multiple pages on Instagram for Business, Creators, updates, and more. To know which is which, all you have to do is to look at the Bio. 

Your brand logo as the profile picture and your brand name as the Username are the foundational blocks. Then comes the Bio section. 

You do not have to exhaust the 150 available characters. Remember that the text gets truncated. So, the key is to identify the one solid message you wish to convey to a first-time visitor and then deliver that in the crispest and most effective form. 

And finally, don’t forget those links. In the last week of April, Instagram announced the option to add multiple links to your Bio. 

But yes, you can only add 5 links as of now. Anyway, too many links, too many choices in general, end up confusing users. So one or two good links will get the job done. Also, when you do add links, instead of displaying the URLs, add relevant titles to make the Bio look more organized and easier to navigate through. 

2. Use Instagram Direct 

In addition to bringing additional channels for promotion, social media also brings additional channels for communication. Some of the conversations happen in the comments section. But customers who have the intent to purchase often wish to communicate directly with businesses. This is why direct messaging becomes a necessity. Consequently, Instagram simplifies this through Instagram Direct. 

While there are several messaging platforms like Messenger on Facebook and Whatsapp messenger, Instagram Direct has its own special place in marketing. In fact, it comes in handy when you run ads on Instagram. That’s why even big brands make use of this feature. 

For example, Starbucks Indonesia ran pilot ads that click to Instagram Direct for a campaign designed to drive in-store sales. In other words, the CTA in these ads was to send a message to Starbucks Indonesia to join the Rewards Program or to choose a discount, and in response, customers received links to sign up for the Rewards Program or coupon codes. 

Direct messages combined with automated responses worked well for this Starbucks campaign. As a result, the brand made a 6X return on its ad spend. So, if you aren’t effectively using Instagram Direct for your brand, start today. 

But yes, the direct messaging option will not be of any use if your users do not get instant responses. Automated responses come in handy for this reason. Meta messaging now supports adding images, videos, links, or easy buttons to customize the automatic response. Doing all the groundwork it takes to identify the right keywords and generate the right response makes a huge difference. 

3. Make the most of Broadcast Channels 

Instagram announced a lot of updates in 2023 and the introduction of Broadcast Channels is one of the most important among them. This is a particularly handy feature for small businesses to stay on top of the minds of their target audience. Whether you have a large following or a small one, Broadcast Channels are pretty useful when utilized right. 

The concept of Broadcast Channels is as simple as it sounds. It is your own private channel to broadcast messages. Brands can use this feature to create exclusive spaces for sharing updates and announcements. 

Like traditional chat, these channels support text messages as well as images, videos, and voice notes. And you can also post polls to gather your followers’ opinions. As of April 2023, this option has been released only to select creators and accounts. You can place your request and join the waitlist to be able to start using the feature as soon as it is made available on your business page. 

Once you have a Broadcast Channel, you can share a link to the channel on your Story or through direct messages to let users join the discussion. 

Only Admins can send messages while participants in the channel can react to messages and respond to polls. They can also share the channel link with their network in case they feel that the discussions will be relevant to their friends. People need to follow an account to be able to join the Broadcast Channel. All of this makes this feature a handy way for existing customers to stay informed and get exclusive updates from the brand and also to bring new leads for the brand. 

4. Pay more attention to advertising on Instagram 

Paid social media advertising has become an essential element for brands on social media. To cut through the noise and to be heard amidst the online chatter, paid ads give a boost. It is projected that paid advertising on social media is likely to hit US$207.10bn by 2023. Meta occupies a huge chunk of this. Therefore the need for paid ads on Instagram goes without saying. 

Instagram now lets you advertise on Story, Feed, Explore page, as well as within Reels. Instagram has been expanding the scope of advertising on the platform slowly and therefore advertisers now can get the most bang for their buck with diverse ad placements. 

So, one of the Instagram best practices to remember for 2023 will be to come up with a solid paid ad strategy for the platform. Of course, depending on the goals of your campaign and your budget you can choose the ad placement. But be sure to explore all the options to identify the most effective ad format and ad placement for your brand. 

If you have the time and resources invest in Instagram AR ads. These are easy to create with Meta Spark Studio and they make the whole experience much more interactive for customers. 

AR or without AR, the key is to create engaging ads for Instagram so that users who see multiple ads a day do not treat yours like just another ad. 

5. User-generated content is still pivotal for engagement 

One of the biggest challenges brands face when it comes to using social media for their business promotion and growth is winning the trust of customers. 

Instagram users might follow several brands but they do not interact with all of them. They do not purchase from all brands they follow on social media. For this to happen, the user should trust the brand. And one of the primary content types that helps in this aspect is user-generated content. 

Remember that while promotion is possible on Instagram, your main focus on the platform should still be engagement. Featuring your followers and giving them a shout-out when they talk about your brand or share their experiences are just a few ways to boost engagement. And therefore sharing user content continues to be one of the most reliable Instagram best practices for 2023. 

In fact, there are brands like GoPro that have massively strengthened their social media presence through user content. 

Kimp Tip: When sharing user content, it helps when you share raw unedited versions of the video or image shared by your customers. If you would like to add your brand elements to them, keep it minimal. This can be in the form of a quick intro or outro video with your logo animation or a standard thumbnail that you use whenever you share user content. Steps like these will also help establish consistency in your Instagram aesthetic. 

Need help creating video intros or logo animations to brand your videos? A Kimp video subscription covers that! 

6. Have a strong hashtag strategy 

Amidst the dispute between how many hashtags to use, and where to use them (in the caption or in the comments) one fact remains – hashtags are still very important. Irrespective of the many updates to the Instagram algorithm, hashtags still influence the reach and visibility of your post. Therefore, one of the Instagram best practices you cannot ignore will be to work on your hashtag strategy

The key is to have a strong hashtag strategy in place. Just because Instagram lets you use 30 hashtags, you do not have to use all 30 for all your posts. On the Creators page, Instagram recommends using 3-5 hashtags. However, there’s no magic number. Keep experimenting while continuously monitoring your post visibility and reach. That’s how you find out what works for your brand.

Having said that, your hashtags should be a mix of:

  • Brand hashtags 
  • Niche hashtags to tell what category the post belongs to 
  • Any campaign-specific hashtag when required 
  • Or to express solidarity in case your post is about a common topic of discussion on social media
  • Sometimes this can also be a hashtag to represent the holiday or topical content your post talks about 

For example, you wouldn’t find many hashtags on the Starbucks page but the below post has one. And that’s to indicate that the post is for Earth Day. 

Similarly, identify a clear purpose for the hashtags you choose. 

7. Create Reels for better reach 

Gone are the times when you had IGTV for long videos and Reels for short videos. There was a mid-2022 announcement from Instagram that all video posts on Instagram will be Reels. 

Steps like these keep proving the increase in priority for videos on Instagram. So, if you are struggling with Reach for your brand page, one of the Instagram best practices for your page for 2023 will be to incorporate more Reels. Vertical videos work best.  

When you do incorporate Reels, explore the features like Reels remix and Reels templates. If you come across a trending video in your niche and if you think you can give a creative spin-off of that Reel, use Reels Remix. For example, you could create a solution video for a trending video talking about common problems your target customers relate to. 

With templates, you can instantly jump on trends and get noticed by the relevant audience. This helps in expanding your brand’s reach and therefore increases the chances of gaining more followers on Instagram. 

Finding it hard to keep up with the ever-growing video requirements for social media? Get a Kimp Video subscription. 

Ace your Instagram marketing game with a Kimp subscription 

There’s a lot happening on Instagram. It helps to periodically spend time monitoring your brand’s progress on the platform. Your Instagram strategy is always a work in progress. No matter how well-prepared you are, there’s always a new trend to surprise you. So, one thing you can do from your end is to have a solid plan for design – both for static posts and video posts on Instagram. One of the easiest options for that will be a Kimp subscription. 

Register now for a free trial and start exploring the benefits of working with Kimp.