5 Steps to Growing Your Mailing List with Instagram

Instagram currently boasts over 500 million active monthly users, making it a social platform to be reckoned with. But finding an audience within the sea of Instagram users is one thing—turning that audience into an engaged consumer base is something else entirely. It’s easy to get caught up in your follower count, but it’s how you engage with those followers that really matters.

One excellent way to take advantage of Instagram as a marketing tool is to use it to grow your mailing list. Having lots of social followers is great, but nothing beats having your deals and information sent directly to their inbox. Here are 5 easy steps you can take to help make that happen:

Step 1: Switch to an Instagram Business Account

Instagram recently rolled out business accounts, which offer a number of tools to help your business market successfully on Instagram. These tools include consumer insights, promotional posts, and contact access. Converting to a business account is the very first thing you’ll need to do in order to really take advantage of the platform and all it has to offer your business.

Step 2: Maintain a Branded Theme

The second thing you need to do is ensure your Instagram profile is properly branded. Are you posting high quality photos? Are all of your posts curated to your audience’s needs and interests? When you look at your profile is it visually consistent?

Visitors should be able to get a feel for your brand’s personality and what it has to offer just from glancing at your Instagram profile. Zevia—a zero-calorie soda drink company—offers an excellent example:

instagram theme branding

Zevia’s branding is one that mixes health with high-energy fun, and it’s Instagram reflects that tone. All of the photos are well lit and brightly colored–creating a visually coherent branded profile that enables visitors to understand what kind of lifestyle the brand is promoting. Like Zevia, you want to ensure your Instagram account is just as successful at communicating the tone and feel of your brand as well.

Step 3: Identify Your Instagram Audience

This may seem obvious, but it is absolutely crucial that you have a good understanding of who exactly your Instagram followers are. Take the time to consider what you are offering and what that says about the needs and interests of the people following you. Instagram business analytics can help fill in a few more blanks by breaking your followers down by age, gender, location, and the days/times they are most likely to be active on Instagram.

Take it a step further by determining which of your posts receive the most positive feedback and engagement—what can they tell you about your audience and what it finds useful and valuable?

Take your time with this process. Be thorough. The success of any targeted campaign relies on an understanding of the audience being targeted.

Step 4: Create a Relevant Opt-In

Your followers are not likely to sign up for your mailing list just because you asked nicely. Offering them something useful in exchange for signing up, however, will get you results.

Take everything you learned about your followers in Step 3 and use that information to create an opt-in offer that will encourage them to click that sign up link in your bio. It could be a coupon, a free e-book, an e-course or anything else that would entice your followers to sign up for your mailing list.

Here are 7 examples of effective opt-ins to get your wheels turning.

Step 5: Call Your Followers to Action

Finally, it is time to call your followers to action. The best way to do this on Instagram is to include a link to your sign up landing page, with both calls to action in your bio and the captions of relevant posts.

But don’t forget, how you phrase your call to action matters. It’s ineffective to plainly ask your customers to “sign up below,” you need to tell them why. Entice them. Show them why they will benefit from giving you their email. Here are 75 excellent examples of effective calls to action.