A mother-daughter team launched a new business this July via Instagram. It quickly brought in sales and is still responsible for 90% of sales to the ecommerce website AModernBoutique that sells low-priced high fashion jewelry and clothes.
Annie Copinga and Diane Terry launched AModernBoutique.com, a low priced jewelry and other fashion, on Instagram. In just seven weeks after launching, their Instagram following shot up to over 10,000 followers and just a few months later, they have over 11,000 followers. It’s not unusual for the site to get sales within minutes of posting a new photo.
I interviewed the founders of AModernBoutique to learn what works for them. “We sent friend requests to all of our friends and started putting up attractive images, and we noticed who our fashion friends would tag.” Then they reached out to form relationships with friends of friends. Fashion bloggers with large followings started sharing their images tagged with @amodernboutique. “They would tag us on Instagram and then we’d get friend requests from people who loved our necklaces and wanted to be friends.”
After finding bloggers on Instagram, they “listened” – essentially noting what they were posting and writing about on the site. When they found a good match they asked if they’d be interested in featuring their necklaces on their blog. Often when bloggers got their necklaces, they’d put a picture of themselves wearing it on Instagram and thank AModernBountique – which brings even more followers.
Copinga explained she chose Instagram because she used it – “My peers are on there. We just want to see pictures.” When it comes to a small business it’s perfect advice – start with the social network you like and use and where your target market is. She simple takes a snapshot, adds a price, and quick description of it. People can purchase the item right there by putting their Paypal address in the comment and the link to buy.
1. Post lifestyle rather than product shots.
Lifestyle pictures are better than just a picture of the product. So showing someone wearing a necklace with an outfit is better than showing a necklace by itself. Done this way it gives women ideas on what to wear with the necklace. They suggest outfits, ideas, colors to wear with. “Collages work well because we can show it in different looks and multiple colors (we have a necklace that comes in 4 different colors).”
2. Experiment with different times to find when is the best time to post.
For AModernBoutique that is in the morning and evening. “Women wake up, check email, instagram, and Facebook. Always around 4-5pm MST home from work, after dinner (7pm). A lot of fashion bloggers are on the east coast. We test this.” They also watch to see when their competitors post.
3. Use Apps
AModernBoutique suggests FrameUrLife and picstitch. Statigram is a great tool for finding brands and hashtags that relate to your brand. Simply enter the brand name or hashtag into the search box and click Search. Here’s a list of top apps on Instagram.
Instagram 150M Monthly Actives (Instagram was bought by Facebook in 2012 as they were trying to move towards mobile)
Pinterest: 70 m
Facebook 1.15 b
Here are some more stats about marketing with Instagram, including how to reach Instagrammers with large followings using InstaZebra.