Social Media

Instagram for Business Makes You an Affiliate Winner

June 20 2016 20 Jun 2016 6 min. read
Instagram for Business Makes You an Affiliate Winner

When promoting affiliate programs on your website, it's long been essential to use social media to give your partners that extra push. Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn are established pillars of a great affiliate marketing campaign, all of them catering for slightly different audiences.

However, there is another channel, which has been dismissed as a toy and a gimmick in the past, but now cannot be avoided. That's Instagram, which announced last month that it would be launching a new option for business accounts. What is Instagram for Business and what will it mean for your affiliate marketing business? Let's take a look.

What is Instagram?

Starting at the beginning, Instagram, which was founded in 2010, is a social network that lets members take and share photos of anything they want (as long as it conforms with Instagram's terms and conditions), applying filters to change the look of the photo, and posting text below if wanted. Some people broaden the reach of their photos by using hashtags (#) to indicate which words the photo can be searched under.

Instagram is enormously popular, with around half a billion people accessing their accounts at least once a month. What makes Instagram so popular is that it gives individuals and organizations a chance to share aspects of their lives with others, in a fun and exciting way. It also provides a way of explaining, visually, what a brand wishes to convey. In other words, Instagram does with pictures what Twitter does with words.

What is Instagram for Business?

Originally, Instagram was designed to be used by personal users - individuals could sync the accounts to their phones or tablets and take photos using the camera app on their devices. However what was perhaps not envisaged was the way photos, and their presentation, would become so much more professional in a short time. Soon, serious Instagram power-users such as bloggers were using SLR camera to take photos and videos, then transferring them to Instagram.

People with businesses often had the problem that Instagram offered no option to switch accounts, so users would need to log out of one account and into another - a potential problem if, for example, you have an individual account and an account for your affiliate marketing business.

Instagram announced at the start of 2016 that it would begin supporting more than one account using the app - this was part of an acceptance that the platform had outgrown its original purpose as a quick photo-sharing forum and was now part of a major marketing machine.

Now, Instagram has announced further that it will allow official "Business" accounts, which will have Contact buttons, along with phone numbers and email addresses if desired, enabling business users to be reached easily. Analytics will let businesses see exactly how many users its posts reach, and when. The reasons for this change are also the reasons why you should consider Instagram for your affiliate marketing. It's a fast, efficient way of advertising affiliate programs in new ways.

How Can You Promote Affiliate Programs Using Instagram?

Instagram can be a very effective way of promoting affiliate programs in a way that users might not expect. You've got to stay one step ahead of the competition if you want to make good money on your programs. If you create an eye-catching post that shows everyone exactly why your program is so exciting and why they need to participate in it, you'll win friends and customers, and raise revenue.

Perhaps the best way of using Instagram is to raise interest in a pursuit or an idea. As an example, fitness Instagrammers are now part of a multi-billion-dollar business, and many people showing their workout technique are sponsored by sporting apparel brands who recognize that everybody benefits from a memorable Instagram post. You might not spend all your time in a gym, but you can learn lessons from this.

Let's say you advertise trading affiliate programs. Are you selling trading? Or are you selling its benefits? We'd argue it's the latter. People trade, just as they play poker, casinos, lotteries or bet on sports, because they think they can get a financial gain. If you can show your audience the life of a successful trader, perhaps by showing a few of the material benefits of those who have profited from binary options, you will get a lot of positive attention for your affiliate programs.

The same applies to poker and casinos. Many users are attracted to the glitz and glamor of the casino, or the poker table, because of what they signify. People think of sports cars, tuxedos, darkened rooms, and the spoils of victory in a game. The feeling of winning a jackpot is unmatchable. If you can show that feeling in a photo, you'll be a winner on Instagram.

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