Jenn Herman
April 23, 2014

30 Instagram Rules for Your Businesses

instagram for business

This is the fourth post in a 12 month series on the use of Instagram for businesses.

If you’re struggling with how to use Instagram as part of your marketing strategy, it might be because you don’t know what to do and what not to do.

To help you out, I’ve put together a list of my top 30 Instagram rules for businesses. Use these to help guide your strategy and help you see greater success using Instagram.

  1. Complete your bio with relevant information
  2. Include your full business name (or your real name) in your bio
  3. Include your website in the bio – this is the only place where you can include a hyperlink
  4. Upload a profile pic, ideally the same one you use on other platforms
  5. Make sure your posts are PUBLIC – uncheck “Posts are Private” on the Edit Profile page
  6. Do NOT share every Instagram post to Facebook or Twitter. Give people a reason to follow you here.
  7. Ensure you receive notifications for likes, comments, and contacts
  8. Determine which filters you like best and which represent your brand
  9. Actively post to your account
  10. Use a variety of posts that showcase you, your brand, your customers, your products, etc.
  11. Use Instagram to advertise sales or provide exclusive discount codes
  12. Never leave your post comments blank – take advantage of the post comments to ask questions or provide details
  13. Use the @name to respond to followers comments (otherwise, they won’t see your response)
  14. Thank and engage with those who comment on your posts
  15. Comment on and like others’ posts
  16. Use relevant hashtags to boost reach
  17. Don’t overuse hashtags – more than 10 per post is excessive
  18. Don’t use popular hashtags, if unrelated, just to get exposure
  19. Unless your account is about food, we don’t need to see your every meal
  20. Space out your posts – don’t crowd the feed with your posts
  21. If you use someone else’s photo, you must give photo credit
  22. Follow other industry leaders
  23. Follow your competitors
  24. Don’t follow someone to get them to follow you, and then unfollow them – it’s just rude
  25. Don’t buy followers
  26. Do not follow everyone that follows you – follow only those with similar interests or engagement
  27. Check your notifications regularly. Instagram only shows you your last 75 interactions
  28. Monitor and analyze your stats and engagement (I recommend
  29. Know which days and which times are the best to share your posts
  30. Be you – be authentic


And there you have it! 30 Instagram rules to help you succeed with this part of your marketing strategy!

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Jenn Herman is a social media strategist and Instagram advocate who writes a blog focused on understanding trends in social media management. She provides tips, resources, and training for small to medium sized businesses that need to structure their social media strategies for success. Her business background includes Administration, Sales, Human Resources, and Marketing. If you would like to learn more about how to use Instagram, you can download "The Ultimate Beginner's Guide to Instagram" here.