Instagram is a great way to engage with current, past and potential students, and if you get to the stage of letting your students ‘takeover’ your account, it can be a cheap and easy way to increase your reach.
What is Instagram?
Instagram is an online mobile photo-sharing, video-sharing, and social networking service that lets its users share pictures and videos either publicly or privately on the app, as well as through a variety of other social networking platforms (such as Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, and Flickr).
Why use Instagram?
Instagram is an excellent way to showcase your organisation. It gives you a platform to visually take people on a tour of your campus and classrooms, promote your facilities, your teaching style, your homestays, your region and whatever else you want to promote as your unique selling points. Combined with other social media tools, it can be a great way to increase your reach.
Top tips for using Instagram
Here are just a few top tips to get you started on using Instagram.
Be consistent with your posts
Like any social media, make sure you have a plan to consistently post. Use your Content Calendar and Social Media Tools to schedule and manage your posts. Consistency is key. Don’t let your account go stagnant; you’ll be forgotten about if you do. Once you get into a routine, it’s easy to add photos more frequently.
Showcase how beautiful you are!
They say a picture paints a thousand words, and Instagram is all about the picture. It’s your chance to showcase everything you have on offer.
Don’t go filter mad
Instagram offers an abundance of filters, but remember: simple is best. You want to showcase the reality of what it’s like to study with you, and live in your region. Quality images are easy to take in our gorgeous country - minor tweaks to your images should be enough.
Put your hashtags to good use
The simplest way to connect with other Instagram users is to add #hashtags to your photos to best describe the content. This allows others to find and ‘like’ or comment on your photo, and for you to browse topics that interest you.
Keep hashtags in your caption relevant and to a minimum. Create a second comment on your own photo with several applicable hashtags. It’s helpful to keep this list handy so you have reference to it.
Fill out your profile
It may seem like a no-brainer, but your profile is important. Keep it short and sweet. Make sure you include your website - this is the only place with a clickable link.
Track your stats
Like any tool you use, make sure you’re tracking your engagement. Check out the Social Media Tools projects for more information.
Takeovers are basically where you let others ‘take over’ your account to post pictures and video. It’s an excellent way to get students on board with your social media activity, and means less work for you.
Having a direct student voice will also be more likely to resonate with your audience and make your content sound less of a marketing pitch - they’ll add authenticity and kudos, that alone you wouldn’t be able to achieve as effectively.
The content that students generate can then also be shared across your other channels.
You could theme the use of takeovers, maybe something new each month to match your content planning. However you manage it, remember to think about how this will combine with the rest of your digital strategy and social media plan.
- Instagram is all about the picture!
- Have a plan for what you want to achieve
- Be consistent with your posts
- Think having students takeover
- Link it all together with your content marketing plan