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There’s no doubt that 2020 has been an exceptionally challenging year for businesses. As we look ahead to 2021, however, there’s one strategy more brands are taking advantage of to help drive revenue and stay ahead of the competition: social media marketing.

With so many social media platforms to choose from, it might be hard to know which one to use, especially if you’re new to social media marketing. We want to help your brand get a head start for the new year, so our team at Spark Growth has put together a mini-series to help your business with why you should use a particular social media platform.

In this article, we’re starting with one of the most popular social media apps—Instagram! There are countless stats out there about how efficient and useful Instagram is as a platform for businesses. One recent survey found that 62% of people were interested in learning more about a brand and its products after seeing it in an Instagram Story. Instagram has been an effective platform for our own clients, such as Little Kickers, which saw a 60% increase in organic engagements.

With so many new and updated features that came out this year, 2021 will be a great time for brands to finally get on Instagram and start connecting with their target audience through paid and organic content. Here are our top three reasons why your business should use Instagram in 2021.


Why your business should use Instagram in 2021

  1. Instagram is the place to be if your brand sells consumer products
  2. Instagram ads just keep getting more effective and useful (for brands and users alike!)
  3. Instagram is where brands can get creative with their content


1. Instagram in 2021 is the place to be for consumer products

Over the past few years, social media platforms have added more shoppable features, allowing users to browse product catalogs or even make a purchase right in the app itself. While B2B brands and those offering services can have a place on Instagram, this platform gives B2C (particularly product-centric brands) a major advantage in terms of refining their marketing funnel.

In one of its recent updates, Instagram gave its Shop feature a more prominent position by including the icon in the bottom navigation of the app. Throughout this year, the platform has become much more business-friendly by adding or updating relevant shopping features. For example, letting brands tag products in a post’s photo is one way to effectively continue the consumer’s journey. It transforms your organic post by adding a new layer of functionality to convert potential customers. This is one strategy we use for one of our eCommerce clients, iLook Glasses Canada (read our case study here and learn how we got them 14x return on ad spend).

Even videos on Instagram were made shoppable by connecting the feature to product catalogs.



What your brand should do on Instagram in 2021: 

  • Develop an organic content strategy that incorporates some product photography (keep in mind that you want to balance promotional content with non-promotional content)
  • Make use of tagging features on Instagram and always tag products in your photos
  • Create a shop catalog on Instagram to deliver a convenient storefront experience on the app itself


2. Instagram ads just keep getting better

What makes Instagram ads so effective is that the company has refined its ad placements to make it feel more natural when users browse through the app. For example, after viewing all the new content on their feed, users will see a “Suggested Posts” feature that mixes in organic content with paid social media ads. This normalizes seeing content from other people that a user may not be following.

For marketers, Instagram’s robust ad options continue to be one of the most effective ways to reach their audience. Stories are exceptionally popular on Instagram and Story ads recently got interactive features that also make them feel more like native content. Instagram continues to be the place most influencers flock to and the latest updates to the branded content ads add more transparency to promotional content.

What your brand should do on Instagram in 2021: 

  • Review Instagram’s ad features and see how your brand can benefit from them (or give us a call and we can help you determine your most effective options)
  • Develop a marketing campaign that takes advantage of Instagram’s unique Story ads and its interactive features


3. Instagram lets your brand get creative

Earlier this year when TikTok was banned in India, Instagram quickly swooped in and released its Reels feature. After testing it in several markets, the company finally released Reels globally and has since included a link to it on the main bottom navigation.

From carousels and Stories to IGTV and Reels, brands now have a wide variety of different content formats to play with. Users love to engage with brands on social media, so why not get more creative with your feed in 2021? 


What your brand should do on Instagram in 2021: 

  • Review your brand’s current Instagram content and see what new features your feed may benefit from
  • Set a goal to make use of at least one more content type. For example, if your brand’s feed only includes single images and some carousels, consider adding Stories to the content mix to take advantage of the millions of people using that feature.


What are your brand’s goals on Instagram for 2021? As one of the more established social media platforms, the app has been fine-tuning its organic and paid features for years and has become one of the most popular social media apps for businesses.

Be sure to check back every other Monday to read the rest of this mini-series, which will feature other social media platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook, and more!

If your brand is already on Instagram, are you doing enough to ensure your content meets your business objectives? If your brand isn’t on social media yet, what can you do to get a head start on Instagram before 2021?

Click the button below to talk to one of our social media marketing experts and learn about setting up a digital marketing program that makes the best use of Instagram’s business opportunities.

href="#" data-color-override="false" data-hover-color-override="false" data-hover-text-color-override="#fff">Get your business ready for 2021!

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