Instagram— that cute little rainbow camera app— has grown into a social network powerhouse in just a few short years. With hundreds of millions of users and billions of photos shared, it is a highly beneficial (not to mention fun!) social media marketing tool. Here’s how you can get in on it.

What It Is

An app that lets users take pictures and videos from a mobile device and, using the ‘Share Settings’ option, share on Instagram and across other social networks such as Facebook and Twitter. What makes Instagram unique is its selection of filters that allow users to alter the color, tone, and contrast of photos. Add a caption, throw in some hashtags, and you have a polished and personalized image to share.

Instagram vs. Pinterest

On Pinterest, each pin is a link to an external site. This social network is more like a search engine where users can look for specific products or content. Because of this, small businesses generally use it to generate website traffic and for search engine optimization purposes.

Computers and Instagram

Instagram photos and videos may only be uploaded from a mobile device. You can, however, browse profiles and post comments from a computer.

Earning a Following

Use your current social networks to notify followers and customers about your Instagram account. Or send out a newsletter— either way, include your Instagram username so that even folks without smartphones can follow you. Instagram’s ‘Find People to Follow’ feature in Account Settings makes it easy to find supporters. Finally, add an Instagram badge to your blog and website.

Measuring Success

Use Iconosquare (formerly Statigram), a free Instagram analytics platform, to track comments, monitor photo engagement, and view other analytics. If you use HootSuite, you can stream Iconosquare to Instagram and monitor both.

Multiple Accounts

Switching from your personal Instagram account to your business’s account to post is not yet possible. However, Fotogramme and Iconosquare both allow switching between accounts for monitoring purposes.


As with most social networks, Instagram lets you do more than just promote products: it allows you to connect with the people who matter most to your business. Digital marketing pros in Scottsdale know that Instagram lets companies show a personal side, tell stories, and take people behind the scenes. This creates familiarity, builds trust, and provides a platform for long-lasting relationships.

Some final tips about Instagram: participate in popular hashtags like #waybackwednesday, #throwbackthursday, and #flashbackfriday. Introduce employees and discuss non-profit or charitable projects. Successful social media marketing campaigns on Instagram are human, authentic, and fun, creating impactful, emotional connections.