There are now 800 million users on Instagram (up from 600 million last December). That’s more than 25 million active business profiles and two million advertisers. User engagement with brands on the platform is 10 times higher than Facebook, 54 times higher than Pinterest and 84 times higher than Twitter. Brands are spending more on Instagram than any other platform right now – Instagram made over $4.2 billion in mobile ads revenue last year.

So if you haven’t given Instagram a clearly defined role in your brand’s visual content strategy, it could be time to think again. (And if you’re not sure where to start, don’t worry, we can help.) Here are our top tips.

Use hashtags

A #hashtag is a symbol that is used on social media for labeling content. It helps others who are interested in a certain topic, quickly find similar content. They are crucial to building your business’ presence on Instagram, just a single hashtag can improve your post visibility by 13%.

Make the most of Insta Stories

Instagram Stories is feature that lets users share videos and images for just 24 hours – a bit like an integrated Snapchat. You’ll find them in small circles at the top of your homepage. They don’t appear in your grid or homepage feed, but over 400 million use Instagram Stories every day, and one third of the most-viewed Stories come from businesses.

Create high-quality content for your grid

Remember, great content less often is better than a barrage of poor content.

We’ve taken a leaf out of our own book, with a conscious effort to make our own Instagram feed a shining example – and we’ve got everyone involved. As it’s important to us to capture the atmosphere of the agency, and the personalities of the people who work here, we decided to show the interests of our team and what we are working on, rather than just another cup of coffee or office cake sale. Following a new schedule, the team take it in turns to takeover the feed (which sounds scarier than it is, and is highly recommended – being organised is only going to make your social media life easier). It’s important to make a style that is your own – as we mentioned in the tips above – and our other rule is to have fun with it. If you’re enjoying posting content, you’re more likely to put effort into it and remember to post. We now hold monthly competitions as to whose post gets the most likes – cue hash tagging.

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