The short answer is yes. And allow me to summarize the necessity in two little words: #brandopportunity. Each time WeddingDay Magazine features a wedding in print or online, we ask brides about the inspirational resources they use to plan their weddings. Of course, Pinterest is always the familiar reply, but more and more brides are now talking Instagram. Instagram is a highly visual and highly influential social media platform—while most of us follow our friends and family on the platform, many of us also follow people we don't know or celebrities because we love having a behind-the-scenes look into other people's lives and businesses.
And with any marketing strategy, your business should be present where your audience is present. And let me assure you, your audience (assuming your audience is men and women planning a wedding) is very present on Instagram. I say that with confidence because according to Instagram, 300 million people use the photo app each month and over 90 percent are under the age of 35.
However, this is not the place for promotional content or advertising your business, at least not upfront. Instead, your responsibility on Instagram is to showcase your talents and let your work speak for itself. It's about capturing moments. You don't have to have a sales pitch on Instagram, you simply have to show your audience that you're good at what you do—creating beautiful things for beautiful weddings. This is a prime opportunity for anyone who creates: photographers, florists, planners, linen companies, décor rental companies, cake designers and venues.
But Instagram will only work for you if you put forth an honest effort into making it work for you. Posting images that don't reflect your brand or the quality of your work are pointless. You should post images that show off the final result like a gorgeous centerpiece, an impressive cake or a creative table design. On the other hand, take the opportunity to give users a little behind-the-scenes look into your business. Is your lead cake designer covered in flour while making the weekend's wedding cake? Are your florists in the process of creating bouquets? Snap that photo and give users a little insight into the internal process of what you do and who you are.
A few things to keep in mind while venturing out into the world of Instagram:
- Keep your hashtags relevant. Hashtags actually do serve a purpose. They are intended to index your content and make it more discoverable.
- Tag other vendors. If other vendors contributed to your post, like a photographer or florist, tag their business name. It gives credit and it broadens your reach!
- Link your Instagram page with your Facebook business page.
- Instagram is a mobile app. It's intended to take your audience with you wherever you go. It's about giving a look into your daily life or business, not about product promotion.
- Keep your brand voice consistent across all of your platforms.