Instagram has moved beyond personal use and vacation pictures. Ask yourself: is Instagram marketing worth your time? Should your business join the platform too? Research says, Instagram, being a visual-first social medium, boasts over one billion monthly active users and 500 million daily Instagram stories. So, the answer is an absolute yes. Instagram has evolved into a worldwide platform where brands can humanize their content, attract new talent, display products, and inspire their audience. But in case you’re pondering over what is Instagram marketing, this guide will walk you through a winning marketing plan, coupled with our insights on getting the most from the platform.

What is Instagram marketing?

Instagram marketing, in simple words, refers to promoting products, services, or brands to a targeted audience. It benefits in building a community leading to increased brand visibility, attract followers, and drive conversions. But interestingly, Instagram stands out from other social media platforms due to its strong focus on visuals. No wonder users spend an average of 12 hours per month on the app. 

Who does this well? Tiffany & Co. They are an excellent example of what is Instagram marketing. Being a heritage brand, they have utilized Instagram to reinvent themself and expand their audience. By embracing its iconic ‘Tiffany Blue’ hue for brand consistency, they allow room for innovative creativity. Also, in the luxury sector, Tiffany injects a sense of fun and modernity into its marketing strategy, through engaging Instagram Live sessions. This outperforms those of the average watch and jewelry brands. The outcome? An Instagram feed that instantly screams Tiffany, drawing viewers deeper into the brand’s narrative.

Tips to craft an Instagram marketing strategy 

Know your audience

To understand what is Instagram marketing, you need to know first who your audience is. Where do they live? How old are they? What hashtags or communities are they part of? Check your analytics to figure out who you’re talking to. This helps decide on content, tone, and campaigns that’ll connect. Your Instagram will be very different if your followers are Gen Zs from India or suburban adults from the USA.

Curate an Instagram profile that would standout 

No discussion on social media marketing is complete without curating a profile. As it’s all about the initial impression you make, it’s crucial to get your profile right. Ensure your bio is concise and includes relevant SEO keywords. Utilize Instagram story highlights to feature previous content. Opt for a high-resolution professional profile picture that reflects your business’s branding. Highlight what sets your brand apart from the competition. Clearly communicate your brand’s unique value proposition and what benefits customers can expect from engaging with your content or purchasing your products/services. Utilize the clickable link in your bio to direct users to your website, blog, latest product launch, or a specific landing page. 

Your social media strategy and business objectives must be in sync

To understand what is Instagram marketing, ensure if your social media plan fits your business goals. If you want more people to know about your brand, focus on getting seen. If you want to find more customers, make sure your plan drives them to your sales funnel. Essentially, every action you take on social media should be purposeful and tied to your larger goals.

Who does this well? GoPro. They utilize Instagram to narrate stories from the distinctive perspective of its product. GoPro’s feed is a repository of inspiring and aspirational content, comprising images and videos captured with their cameras by real customers. The brand’s objective with its Instagram presence is to encourage individuals on how they could incorporate GoPro into their everyday lives, ultimately driving purchases. To further enhance their content offering, GoPro has introduced regional accounts showcasing localized content and customers. This strategic move has led to a significant expansion of their overall follower base, surpassing 20 million.

Understand how algorithm(s) work

In order to comprehend what is Instagram marketing, ensure how algorithm(s) work. Instagram’s algorithm(s) dictate what appears in users’ feeds, what gets featured on the Explore page, and what remains unnoticed. To thrive on the platform, it’s essential to familiarize yourself with these algorithms. In essence, Instagram’s algorithms analyze content data (such as reels, feed posts, and stories) and user data (including interests and platform behavior) to deliver suitable content to specific individuals. Each algorithm takes into account post details (such as relevance and popularity), the creator’s profile, your interaction history with them, and your overall activity on the platform.

Try out different formats

The platform now provides an array of formats to engage with. Users can curate their main feed with a visually appealing Instagram grid, sharing photos, videos, or even carousel posts. Instagram Stories hold a prominent position at the top of the feed, garnering tons of views daily before disappearing after 24 hours. Instagram Reels, on the other hand, offer an opportunity to experiment with short-form video content. Many businesses opt for a blend of these varied content styles. Think for yourself, which format best suits your requirements.

Measure performance with analytics

What is Instagram marketing without analytics even? Fortunately, the valuable insights you need for optimal performance are readily available through analytics. Instagram’s Insights tool provides comprehensive data on post engagement, story performance, and the reach of your reels. This feedback is invaluable for refining your content strategy. It reveals what resonates with your audience, and what falls flat.

Additionally, utilize Instagram’s boosting feature. Simply set your budget according to your preferences, specify your target audience, and invest to give a regular post an extra boost in visibility.

Mistakes to avoid 

Incorporating too many hashtags

Hashtags are a double-edged sword. While they can make your content more discoverable on Instagram, they can also make it look like spam. Most brand accounts typically stick to one to three per post. According to AdEspresso, using up to 11 hashtags is also fine. But, it’s essential to experiment to find out what works best for your account.

Being unsocial

Social media is a two-way street, not just a platform for broadcasting. Yet, a common mistake businesses make is neglecting the “social” aspect. As a marketer, it’s crucial to balance your time between creating content and engaging with your audience. Interact not only with your followers but also join conversations with other brands to enhance engagement. Each comment, question, mention, and direct message is an opportunity to foster loyalty and create a positive experience for your audience.

Making content inaccessible

Raise your hand if you always add alt text to every image you post on social media. If you do, you’re already ahead of everyone else. Here’s a checklist to help you get started:

  • Add descriptive alt text for every photo.
  • Add closed captions (or subtitles) to videos with audio.
  • Avoid using fancy font generators.
  • Don’t use emojis as bullet points or within sentences.

Overlooking trends

Trends aren’t just for influencers and Gen Z. Be it long form corporate video production or short form content, social media marketers should stay aware of Instagram trends and adapt them. Understanding current trends allows brands to create content that resonates with their audience and keeps them engaged. Trends can provide fresh ideas and inspiration for content creation, helping to prevent your social media presence from becoming stale. 

Posting without a strategy

Many businesses understand they need to be active on social media, but they often don’t consider the reasons behind it. Are you aiming to drive traffic to your website? Do you want to become the most recognized brand in your category? Or are you looking to make sales directly through your Instagram Shop? Achieving success on Instagram is challenging without a clear objective. Start by choosing one goal and crafting a strategic plan to reach it. This will guide your decisions and provide a way to measure your progress.


Now that you’ve already gained an idea on what is Instagram marketing, you’re better off to follow our guide and update your marketing strategies. At Brandshark, we’re the industry mavens of video production services. As a leading video production company, we bring your vision to life with expertise and flair. From brainstorming concepts to polishing the final cut, we handle every step with precision and professionalism. So, make your move and let us help you unlock Instagram’s full potential for your brand!