When it comes to leveraging the power of competition, Facebook Inc. is currently the reigning champion, and Pinterest is their latest victim. In case you haven’t heard, Instagram’s latest update dropped late last month with a new Pinterest-style feature called, “Collections.” First Snapchat Stories, and now Pinterest Boards? Watch your back Twitter; you may be next!
So here’s the back-story:
For a few months now Instagram has allowed users to save posts, which is stored within a tab on your profile. This feature makes posts easily accessible when you want to revisit them at a later time. The Collections feature gives users the opportunity to sort those saved tabs within categories. Going on vacation? Create a travel collection. Looking for interior design inspiration? No problem, create an interior design board…oops, we mean collection.
So here’s how you can use it for your business:
- Keep Tabs on Your Competition
- Take a few cues from Facebook and leverage the strengths of your competition. You obviously don’t want to send competitors a request, so start gathering their posts that resonate with you instead. This is not so you can steal their pictures or ideas, but rather for you to always be in the know. We’re all aware of the ‘keep your enemies closer philosophy.’ Studying your competitor’s strategy will help you formulate your own to get ahead. It’s all about leveling up.
- Create a Vision Board Collection (Last time, we promise)
- Use collections to gather inspiration for your company, whether it’s to upgrade your social media or your store layout. Save posts related to your business goals and they will act as a constant reminder to go after them. Sourcing content from non-competing businesses that share your audience is a good way to keep your audience interested. Keep a collection of pictures you’d like to pictures you’d like to repost later—with image credits of course.
- Network, Network, Network
- Last week we showed you how to network with your followers to expand your audience. But Collections gives you the chance to network with relevant businesses and potential customers without having to worry about your following-follower ratio. As superficial as it is, people pay attention to this ratio to decide whether to follow you, so it’s best to keep your following count significantly lower than your number of followers. Rather than following 200 people and businesses, store their posts in a networking collection and visit their page a few times a week to interact. This method keeps all the people you’d like to network within one area, so it’s faster and easier to sprinkle your brand name all around Instagram.
While we won’t be abandoning Pinterest boards any time soon, we can’t ignore the benefits that Collections has to offer. Who says you can’t pin your design inspiration and collect it too?