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Integrating Instagram: Are you using it?

instagram-tips

Written by Amy Armstrong

Instagram is one of the most popular social media tools on the market, and it’s easy to understand why; we’re visual learners. Instagram, which launched in 2010, is a photo and micro-video communications distributor. In essence, it’s a place where you can share the visuals of your life, brand, and experiences.

In this post, we’ll explain 3 reasons you should be using it to enhance your exhibit experience and brand. You’ll be surprised how easy it will be to integrate it into your overall Marketing plan.

1. You Get to be Inclusive

Creative marketing is an amazing thing, and every business has their own special flavor of doing it. On Instagram, you get the opportunity to be creative about your brand, not just its products/services. One major change in marketing over the last 10 years has been “inclusion,” and if you’re not including people in the experience of your brand, you’re missing out.

A few ways to do this are:

  • Taking photos or videos from team meetings
  • Highlighting how your product integrates into a “normal” person’s life.
  • Interviewing team members about “funny” items (what are you doing this weekend, etc.)

By being inclusive, you actually make your brand an emotional investment for the user. These types of posts create a human connection behind the brand. Your Instagram followers know that someone runs the business Instagram account they follow. Humanizing your brand makes your company more appealing to interact with, especially on social media.

2. Behind the Scenes Advertising Opportunities

While you’re including people on the engaging, fun, and brand elements of the company, you’ll also be able to include with them by introducing the behind the scenes. Guess what, everything is a bit of a mess behind the scenes (and you can own that). Instagram allows you the opportunity to show your audience how you:

  • Hide boxes, cords, and such while you’re at the trade show
  • How tired you look after the event
  • The ridiculous outfit that “John” wore to the exhibit
  • What it really looks like to prepare for an exhibit performance/demo

By documenting the behind the scenes of your company with Instagram, you’ll be able to create a way of laughing, experiencing, and enjoying the reality of business (and life) with your audience. This will help you create a more approachable brand.

3. Hashtag Your Movement

Hashtagging is a great way to create a movement, tie into others, and ultimately create something that is bigger than yourself. A hashtag is simple, it’s literally placing a # sign before a word (like this: #Skyline). When you do this in the text of your Instagram post, you’ll be creating a movement. For example, during the Super Bowl, there was a #SuperBowl hashtag that you could search and see what people – all around the world – were saying about the game.

Now, your business likely won’t have the reach of the Super Bowl, but you can create your own micro-movement with a hashtag. Here are some things you may want to create hashtags for:

  • #FreeHatsFromSkyline
  • #SkylineTakesOverDallasConference
  • #BehindTheSkylineScenes

Then, as you use these hashtags, you and your audience can create feeds of content throughout the day to enhance your online presence. Here are a few things to think about with starting a hashtag movement:

  1. How will we encourage people to use our #hashtag? Giveaway? Contest?
  2. What is the purpose of the micro-movement?

One emerging tool occurring more and more on the trade show or event floor is the use of the hashtag to promote a company in conjunction with Instagram. For example, a company will encourage visitors to take a picture or selfie in the booth and to use a specific hashtag given by the company in the caption in order to be entered into a raffle drawing or prize. This becomes very effective in promoting a company online, creating an increase hashtag trend for the company, and create the live social media presence at the event or trade show.

Instagram can be a very powerful resource to aid in the success of your trade show booth. These are just 3 reasons, but there are actually much more. Experience and inclusion marketing continues to change the industry.

About the Author:
Amy Armstrong is an Account Executive with Skyline Philadelphia, with over a decade of experience. Amy helps her clients traverse the challenging world of exhibit branding and event marketing strategies in order to meet their objectives and trade profitably in their industry.


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