Last week I wrote an article about using Twitter at your next trade show. Based on the response, I thought I would continue the series and write another article about Trade Show tools. This week I am going to cover the effectiveness of using Instagram to market your brand.
Do you have an Instagram account yet? Yes, I know you are going to tell me that your 12 year old has one. But, do not let that intimidate you — it is for grown ups as well. Instagram is a powerful marketing tool to showcase who you are, your products, your booth activity and it is even an incentive builder.
Here are a few tips to get the most out of Instagram at Trade Shows:
What Is in an Image or a Hashtag?
Images and Hashtags are two things you need to know when you use your Instagram account. Images will capture the action and show your visitors what has taken place at the event, who was there and what took place. A hashtag will define who you are talking to, about what and will also describe your image.
An Image Tells a Story
I usually select images that follow my marketing strategy. If there is a new product launch, then I feature the product. I also share booth numbers, activity and sometimes if relevant, I create an image for a contest or a booth incentive. Here are a few samples:
Feature the Friendly Reps – Snap a picture of that person that is likely to be making connections at the trade show booth. Tag his Twitter handle or add his name as shown in this sample below.
Showcase Your Product – If your product is on display in a special location, take a quick picture from your smart phone and post to Instagram for a free advert for your product!
Inform Attendees about Booth Activities and Events, a book signing or a contest. Post anything that would interest a show visitor. This will help draw people to the booth.
Show Off Your Swag – Swag is a great way to get people interested in your product, especially if it is eye-catching and useful. Visitors will want to stop by and catch the fun.
Ham it up for the Crowds – Instagram is a fun app. Attendees usually let down their hair and want to have a good time. Show off your brand by appealing to that human base instinct of laughter and fun.
Make Use of Those Hashtags.
Research: Follow the Trade Show Hashtag Pre-Show – Just like with Twitter, use your Instagram account and search for the trade show hashtag. Explore the feed pre-show. This is the best time to do research and get a good grasp of whom your prospects are and what they are looking for.
Reach Out to Press
Using certain Instagram hashtags you can reach out to bloggers and press going to the event or following the updates. I usually post a gift package and then invite followers to our booth. For best results I use the following hashtags:
- The Show Hashtag
- Booth Number
- Brands Featured
- Type of Industry
- Show Location
Use Social Media
Instagram, for example, is a great place to share your show pictures and relevant hashtags. You can also post to your Twitter feed from Instagram. Start a conversation using hashtags. If the convention is about organic food, then use “Organic Food” as a hashtag.
Let Us Pull that Camera Out!
It’s time to take the plunge. Pull out that smart phone, take a few pictures and upload them! Instagram is a fun tool and the extra benefit is that it will help your business. You cannot beat free advertising for your brand! If you have any questions you can follow me @websuccess, I love to chat.