Instagram is one of the most popular social mediums in the world for influencer marketing. 88.9 percent of global influencers are benefiting from Instagram influencer marketing, compared to a year ago. Pakistani Instagram influencers have also taken center stage in our marketing scenario. These creative individuals are taken inspiration from their counterparts abroad to bless us with truly unique content.
Pakistani brands on Instagram
This growing pool of talented influencers from Pakistan can give you a golden ticket to reaching your target audience more effectively. Instagram influencers from Pakistan can help you boost brand recognition, increase sales and become a known name in your niche.
Bloglovin found out in a study that 2,500 micro influencers find Instagram as the most effective social medium to connect with the audience. Moreover, posts that perform best on Instagram are laden with branded products.
The reason behind this massive marketing shift is that traditional marketing is not achieving the same goals as it was ten years ago. Your customer now owns a mobile phone and saves inspiration from Instagram where they can relate to the influencers.
How to launch your brand on Instagram
Ever since Instagram was created, it has become to a go-to platform to share images and videos. More than 60 million photos are posted on Instagram every day. As a brand, you have to make sure that you post content that resonates with your target audience. It can be a little difficult to crack the code as soon as you enter this platform, but there are some steps each brand should take when shifting to Instagram:
Fine tune your profile
From the get-go, you should launch a profile that represents your brand in the truest way possible. These are the steps you should cover to launch your account on Instagram:
- sign up: If you are the brand manager, make sure you use the company email ID that can be transferred to the company if an employee leaves
- profile photo: use the same profile photo that you have on other social mediums, to showcase consistency
- account name: the name of your account should be the name of your brand/company, etc
- website: the ONLY clickable link on the entire page is here. Use it well to take users to your website or any page of significance
- bio: the bio captures the introduction of your brand in a few words. Make that space count!
Don’t think that if you are on Instagram, people will find you and follow you. Adopt the ‘tribe’ mentality here, and create your own tribe! It starts with creating one on one relationships with your followers and growing your tribe.
You have to invite people from your target audience to interact and follow you. Use relevant hashtags that match your niche, but don’t use the most crowded ones. Tags like #beauty and #love are overcrowded with content that lives a very short showcase life. Opt for tags that don’t have that much clutter, like #prettyface or #selflovetips. You will learn more about hashtags as you keep posting content on Instagram and search for tags in the search bar.
Instagram, unlike Facebook, can’t be used to reshare content. You have to come up with your own content and seek permission from people to repost their content. This means you can benefit from user-generated content by promoting your customers on your profile. It also gives followers incentive to tag you in their post, for a chance to get featured. It also humanizes your brand.
Don’t be the brand that posts one photo and disappears for six months. Keep posting daily and interact with everyone who comments on your posts. It will become difficult as the account grows, but you should give the impression that you listen to your followers.
Craft a narrative
You just can’t join a social medium just because everyone is there. Craft a narrative that makes your presence on the website look genuine. The biggest brands on Instagram have a story to tell, so what is your story?
If you are a clothing brand, do you want to show women empowerment?
If you are a food brand, do you support organic?
If you are an educational institution, do you promote gender equality?
The story helps content creation and connecting with like-minded people and organizations on Instagram. It also helps in building collaborations that are worth it.
It seems like Instagram stories are unavoidable. They appear on top of your feed and you just feel like clicking them. Stories can also help you generate leads. You don’t have to worry about ruining your feed or posting an HD photo, because stories give you that liberty. Moreover, you can tag people, places, and hashtags in stories, to expand their reach.
Now that your groundwork is done, you can start showcasing your products or services on Instagram. The best driver of traffic to your page is good imagery because Instagram audience appreciates good aesthetic.
Use good graphic design and strong copywriting to pull people to your brand on Instagram. Other content ideas include:
- Giveaways: everyone loves free stuff! You can launch your presence on Instagram by holding a contest/giveaway to get more people to your account
- Video tutorials: make use of the newly-announced IGTV to post informative tutorials about your products/services
- Theme: maintain an account theme which looks impressive when a person lands to your profile
- Product teasers: product teasers or BTS visuals from an upcoming product or service will be a good piece of content to lure people to your account
- Ads: sponsored ads involve spending money, but you can control how much you spend on ads. This involves using a new targeting mechanism to reach people who are not following you but fit within your target audience. Some ad formats include: Photos, videos, carousel, story ads, and story canvas.
Switch to Business mode
This is a common error marketer make when starting out on Instagram. As a company or brand, you must switch your profile to Business profile. To switch, go to your profile>Settings on top right>scroll down to find Switch to Business Profile.
These are the benefits of switching to Business profile:
- You can place calls to action on your profile like ‘contact us’
- You can publish Ads without using Facebook ad tools
- You can access Instagram analytics and learn more about your user engagement patterns and a complete analysis of user demographics and peak times
- The more you analyze, the more you will understand what is a hit and what is not working well
Interact with influencers
You will benefit a lot from the influence of people who already have authority within your niche. Your brand can enjoy immense exposure through creative collaborations with the perfect Instagram influencer. So, what are you waiting for? This is the time to seize this opportunity and launch your brand on Instagram with a blast!
Influencer marketing on Instagram in Pakistan
With 800 million active users around the world, you can guess that the potential is huge for marketing yourself on Instagram. However, you should also know that all the smartest kids on the block are eyeing the same prize.
How to stand out?
By following a system:
Step 1: define a goal
The best marketing strategies are measurable. Find out what ‘success on Instagram’ means to you. Take a notepad and a pen and list down the goals your brand wants to achieve through influencers. Team Bradri can help you with identifying key performance indicators (KPIs) and coming up with realistic goals.
The most common goals for brands include
- Increasing brand awareness
- Increasing click-throughs
- Boosting sales
- Raising awareness for a cause or event
- Finding brand ambassadors
- Promote an upcoming launch
Identify the goal and how you will accept the success of that goal. It will give you a clear idea of engagement, traffic and reach to get through influencers.
Step 2: target influencers
Influencers are individuals with 1000-100,000 followers on Instagram who have worked hard to gain a reputation in their field. They are ordinary people who put an effort in their posts to stand out from common accounts. Adweek found out that micro influencers are 6.7x more engaging than macro influencers because they personally curate all the content and people trust their word.
Therefore, influencers can be categorized into three sections:
These micro influencers have a close relationship with their followers, and they may even know the followers by IDs and display pictures. These influencers may or may not cover a diverse range of niches and have high engagement and conversion rates. Most importantly, these influencers are cheaper than celebrities or macro influencers.
These macro influencers achieve popularity because they have been consistent with their work and publish good content regularly. They have known names in their community, and people love to talk about them and their work on Instagram. This conversation takes their influence to a diverse audience, broadening their reach. These influencers were on a 1000+ number once, so they are experienced in working with brands and spreading their word across.
1,000,000 + followers
Influencers with 1,000,000 followers achieve celebrity status in their community. Actual celebrities on Instagram also have this follower number, so the title fits well. These celeb-level influencers are pros at their job, know how to deal with brands, and have a solid work ethic. Needless to say, these individuals have immense marketing potential, so you can approach them to reach a vast audience and broaden your brand’s recognition.
Targeting the wrong influencers may be a disaster for your brand, because you might not be able to reach your target audience. We at Team Bradri have a large community of influencers who can collaborate with your brand. Here are some metrics you can consider when choosing the influencer:
Niche: you can’t pitch a beauty campaign to someone who posts only about food. Niche is a very important metric.
Engagement rates: are the followers of this influencer engaging with every post? Average engagement rate varies according to the follower count of each account. It can be as high as 10% for 0-1000 followers or 1.4% for 100,000 followers. However, the actual rate lies between 1-3% for all posts on Instagram. If someone is hitting >5%, they are doing well!
There are plenty of tools online to calculate the engagement rate, and the common ER calculation formula goes like this:
ER= Total reactions on the post/Reach x 100
Ave ER=Total ER/posts in count x 100
If you are confused, one of our team members can help you with the stats!
Location: is the influencer’s location important for you? For starters, Pakistani brands should stick to Pakistani influencers because of the target audience.
Contact the influencers
When you pick a few influencers who are the right match with your brand or campaign, it is time to reach out to them. Every company has a different method of reaching out, but the most common way is to direct message the person on Instagram and ask them for their details. It is a short and direct approach where a few messages are sent back and forth, and the influencer tells you if they are interested in working with you or not. On the other hand, there is always an email ID on the influencer’s profile where you can formally message them and introduce yourself.
Pro tip: don’t launch on to business immediately in an email/message. Introduce yourself, show interest in the influencer’s content and try to establish a good friendly impression first. For example:
I am (your name) from (your company/agency). I was looking through your feed and have been so impressed with your work. I specifically love the posts where you talk about the struggles of finding the best location for a photoshoot. Can relate to it so much!
I wanted to get in touch with you and discuss this topic further and see if we can work on something similar together. If you are interested we can set up a meeting or phone call this week.
(your name and contact details)
Process and payment
You will receive many ‘yes’ and ‘nos’ after the outreach phase. Never push someone out of their comfort zone or to make them work with you without their consent. You don’t want to create a negative impression. Once an influencer decides to work with you, talk to them about compensation and mode of payments. Many cash-strapped companies provide free products/samples to influencers after mutual agreements, so talk it out with the influencer first. Lastly, bind this agreement in a written contract, because it is the safest way to work and get together for future campaigns.
Optimizing an influencer campaign
When we say optimizing, we want you to understand that nothing is perfect. In digital marketing, optimization is the way you create an optimal environment for growth and improvement. Anything can be optimized to make it better, your blog’s content, a Facebook post or an influencer campaign. It is important to monitor each step so you can make minor tweaks that help optimize things.
Influencer marketing is still a new realm for brands, but here is where optimization can help the most. The digital landscape is constantly evolving, and constant improvement will make sure that you pivot and keep flying high.
Ideas for content collaboration
Once influencers agree to work with you, there are many ways to collaborate and create awesome content. Some of the most common types of collaborations include:
No matter what size of their following, Instagram influencers always welcome sponsored posts, because most of them follow a theme that needs to be consistent. Sponsored posts help to maintain the theme and carry the brand message at the same time. You will pay the influencer for this sponsored post:
For example, here is Momal Sheikh’s sponsored post for Foodpanda Pakistan:
Here is Seher, promoting Casamia Dreams in a sponsored post:
Giveaways and Contests:
As mentioned before, giveaways are what made Huda Beauty a household name in the beauty niche. You can also team up with an influencer to give something for free. The process that ensues will bring your profile more follows, engagement, brand awareness, basically whatever your goal is for the campaign!
Work with the influencer to come up with branded content that matches their persona. It will help you fit in to their world and educate people about the ease of customization. For example, Soufeel Jewellery worked with The Desi Wonder Woman aka Shehzeen Rehman and sent her customized jewelry with her name on it. It was too easy for the influencer to put this up on her feed, because the brand was creative and matched her persona really well.
This is one of the most common ways to promote your brand/product on Instagram. Influencers can review your product or service and post honest reviews on their feed/stories. This kind of collaboration applies to any industry, be it beauty, apparel, accessories, services, etc.
Here is Tahleel Gulalai Khan reviewing some products she received from wbstores.pk:
some brands may get influencers onboard for events or even a day to take over their accounts. It can be done better on Instagram stories, where the influencer will take charge of the particular brand’s Instagram account.
It will attract the influencer’s followers to your account and also produce good content for your feed for a day!
While you are at it, you should know that content collaborations are not enough. You have to tweak and keep polishing your campaign to get the best results. You can also optimize during a campaign if something is not going in the right direction.
One of the most important ways to optimize a campaign is through branded hashtags. These tags help in indexing all the content at one place so you can measure the results and also gather the audience through one branded tag. Moreover, it is possible to follow hashtags on Instagram too, so the tag can stay as your individual identity on Instagram.
You should also maintain transparency by asking the influencer to announce that they are collaborating with you. Many influencers announce by using the brand/collaboration tag on Instagram or using #sponsoredpost or #AD on their captions.
Measure everything! This is the only way to get better. Use the free Instagram analytics section to get an idea of your reach and ask the influencer to share statistics as well.
The most important piece of advice when marketing on Instagram is to “keep learning!”
Stay updated with the newest app updates, industry trends, and tools you can use to advertise better on this amazing platform. Even new or small businesses can benefit from influencer marketing on Instagram, because it is a gift that keeps giving! Once you end a campaign on a successful notes, many influencers might become word-of-mouth ambassadors for you and keep blessing your account with more engagement!
The last piece of advice is to cut through the clutter and refrain from blatant advertising. Be creative and make your collabs look as natural, fun and cool as possible.
For more tips, read up on how to sell to Millenials in Pakistan using influencer marketing.