Lead generation

How to get more leads with Instagram

  • 13 Minutes
All your followers are potential prospects - here are winning campaign ideas that turn your Instagram feed into a sales machine!

With over 1 billion users, we understand that Instagram is one of the most popular platforms out there and undoubtedly one of the most influential, too.

For many companies, Instagram is a communication channel that allows them to connect with their audience. zzzz

Additionally, it can play a significant role in turning a company’s audience into customers.

In this guide, we’ll be discussing what Instagram lead generation is and how your company can use Instagram efficiently to generate leads.

In more detail, we’ll be discussing the following ways of generating leads on Instagram:

  • Create engaging content
  • Use Instagram Reels
  • Create compelling videos and graphics

To mention a few.

The Instagram lead generation guide starts now.

What is Instagram Lead Generation?

Lead generation is all about creating and building interest in the services and products your company is offering.

Additionally, after having completed the step of creating interest in your offerings, generating leads is about trying to approach members of your audience and turn them into fully-fledged customers.

Before we get into more detail about how you could use your Instagram account to get more leads for your business, let’s have a look at a simple and concise definition of lead generation that basically says what we’ve already discussed in different words:

Instagram lead generation means using Instagram to warm up users' interest in a brand. The goal of this is to turn prospects into customers.

Image Source: SendPulse

That’s pretty straightforward, isn’t it?

In terms of Instagram lead generation, we can simply say that it’s basically the process of enticing potential customers through one of the most popular social media platforms, Instagram.

So far so good, but “is Instagram the right platform for generating leads?” you may ask.

Let’s get into it.

Is Instagram a good place to generate leads?

Instagram is definitely a good place to generate leads for your business – but only if you do it the right way.

First of all, Instagram has proven to be a very effective tool when it comes to raising awareness and promoting your brand in a way that people will be prompted to take action.

More specifically, two out of three people asked for the “Project Instagram” survey in 2018 said that the platform enables them to interact with brands.

What’s more, a huge number of companies are using Instagram to not only grow their audience and gain more followers, but also to turn prospective customers into real buying customers.

Wanna see an example?

We’ve got one from popular British fashion brand, Pepe Jeans.

What the company did is that they used their Instagram profile to launch a new campaign and to, as Instagram puts it, “rejuvenate its brand using Instagram Stories”.

Pepe Jeans Instagram Campaign

Image Source: Instagram

As we can see, the campaign reached 5 million people and gave the fashion brand a five-point lift in brand familiarity.

Even though Pepe Jeans is undoubtedly a popular brand already, this doesn’t mean that smaller brands with smaller budgets can’t find similar success on Instagram.

It simply means that this is only one out of endless examples of brands that are using the power of Instagram lead generation.

Let’s now dive deeper into six things you can do to generate leads, without having to use lead generation software, just by using Instagram and its most prominent features.

Tactic #1: Create Engaging Content that Prompts Users to Take Action

The very first thing we advise you to do in order to maximize your chances of generating leads through using Instagram is to consistently create engaging content that prompts users to engage and take action.

Whether it’s aesthetically pleasing posts, well-made videos, or interesting and informative Instagram live streams, creating engaging content is a tactic that can definitely help place your brand among the favorite brands of your audience.

In fact, according to the State of Marketing Report by HubSpot, creating content is a task 53% of marketers prioritize.

The following example will help us illustrate this.

Example: Clinique

The first example we want to show you is American skincare and cosmetics manufacturer, Clinique.

One might think that an old and popular company like Clinique wouldn’t have to invest in creating modern and compelling content on Instagram.

However, with around 3.3 million followers on Instagram, we understand that the company is definitely not counting exclusively on its over 50-year presence in the skincare industry.

C;inique's Instagram profile

Image Source: Instagram

Quite the contrary; the Clinique team has created a truly modern and inclusive Instagram account that almost always invites users to engage with the products and become part of the Clinique family.

From long IGTV videos

Women holding Clinique products in thumbnails of IGTV series

Image Source: Instagram

…to user-generated content…

Clinique customer holding foundation product next to her face

Image Source: Instagram

…and guides that feature all sorts of Clinique products…

Clinique Instagram Guides on anti-aging, foundation favourites, and Game of Thrones star Emelia Clarke's favourite products

Image Source: Instagram

…the well-known company does all they can to come closer to their audience, raise awareness of their products, and, ultimately, turn prospective customers into clients.

After having discussed the importance of a thoughtful and curated visual marketing strategy through an example we’re ready to move forward.

Tactic #2: Use Instagram Ads

Next up, using Instagram ads is yet another efficient way to generate leads for your business.

The “Project Instagram” survey, that we mentioned a little further up in this post, showed that 50% of respondents are more interested in a brand after they’ve seen ads for it on Instagram.

Subsequently, we can confidently say that using Instagram ads can significantly help companies generate more leads and turn members of their audience into customers.

Example: Chantelle Lingerie

Our example here comes from a Parisian lingerie brand established in 1876, Chantelle Lingerie.

With the brand’s long history and tradition in mind, the company partnered with an agency and created a very successful Instagram and Facebook ad campaign in order to raise awareness and generate leads.

How did they do that exactly?

To be more specific, the brand wanted to promote their SoftStretch underwear collection in the United States.

They used video ads in Instagram feeds as well as Instagram Stories, promoting their collection to a targeted audience.

Woman in lingerie on her knees bending backwards with her head on the ground, showing impressive flexibility

Image Source: Instagram

The campaign brought amazing results for the brand.

Have a look:

Results for Chantelle Lingerie ad campaign showing a 7.3 point lift in brand awareness, 5.4 lift in unaided brand awarenss, and two times sales

Image Source: Instagram

Between March and June 2019, the campaign resulted in a significant lift of 7.3 points in brand awareness and a 2x increase in online sales for the SoftStretch collection.

Tactic #3: Use Instagram Reels

The third tactic we have for you is to use one of the most prominent and popular Instagram features out there, Instagram Reels.

Instagram Reels are undoubtedly one of the most influential features since the launch of the product in the US in August 2020.

Even though it’s a relatively new feature, more and more companies, influencers, and individuals are using the Reels feature to create bite-sized content and engage their online audiences as part of their visual marketing strategy.

Additionally, Reels are being used by brands to educate their audience, highlight their differences from their competitors, and also feature the company values, among other things.

Let’s get right into an example of an eCommerce website that uses Reels to keep their Instagram audience engaged.

Example: ASOS

We couldn’t miss mentioning the example of eCommerce well-known company, ASOS.

Why?

Because when it comes to successful social media marketing strategies, companies like ASOS are definitely hitting the mark.

First things first, we can see that ASOS has an impressively huge Instagram audience.

With 11.5 million followers, we can only assume that they must be creating content worth sharing on social media.

ASOS profile highlighting their 11.5million followers

Image Source: Instagram

As you can see, the ASOS Instagram Reels that we’ve grabbed below are getting very high numbers of views:

ASOS Instagram Reels series with thousands of views

Image Source: Instagram

More specifically, out of twelve Reels shown above, six have got over 1 million views, from which four have got over 2 million views.

We can clearly see just how engaging this type of content can be in bringing people closer to your brand, thus increasing your chances of seeing a lift in your sales numbers too.

However, engaging content doesn’t necessarily mean that users will then visit your website in case of an eCommerce, or your physical store.

That’s why ASOS is making sure to mention their website in a Reel caption.

Have a look:

Image Source: Instagram

On this super successful reel that’s got over 75,500 likes in three days, ASOS is giving users a hint on where they could find the products featured in the Reel on the website.

As simple as that!

After having talked about Reels and Instagram ads, let’s get to the next way of generating leads on Instagram.

Tactic #4: Create Videos and Graphics

As we’re moving towards the end of our Instagram lead generation guide, we definitely need to talk to you about the importance of creating videos and graphics for your audience.

The number of users that consume – and are expected to consume – video content in the US between 2018 and 2022 increases at a steady rate.

Have a look:

Stats of video views from 2018 to an estimate of views in 2022

Image Source: Statista

With over 244 million video users in 2021, we understand that video content is definitely one of the most prominent content formats.

In other words, given the level of engagement that video gets, creating videos and sharing them on Instagram can potentially make people want to engage more with your brand, thus increasing the chances of generating leads.

Similarly, creating graphics for social media is yet another way of sharing engaging and thoughtful content that can be easily consumed and make users want to see more of your content and brand.

However, you need to keep in mind that graphics might be a more difficult-to-digest type of content for some audience members, so make sure to not overdo it and always invest in creating light content for your audience.

Let’s jump right into an example of a company using video content to reach a wider audience.

Example: SharbatlyFruit

SharbatlyFruit is a leading fresh produce brand based in Saudi Arabia.

Interestingly, what the company did is create an Instagram video ad campaign to reach a wider audience and make sure their content would be seen by a greater number of people.

Put another way, the company wanted to increase awareness and emotionally connect with its audience through Instagram video content.

The 2020 campaign achieved the following impressive results:

  • 2.8 million people reached
  • 3.8 million video views over the course of three days

That’s an amazing number if you consider the company’s niche as well as the number of followers it has:

Sharbatly fruit Instagram profile with 17k followers highlighted

Image Source: Instagram

17,000 followers for a fruit and vegetable company sounds like a big deal, right?

We can therefore assume that the company’s video campaign has definitely boosted engagement and helped expand the brand’s reach, thus opening the road for generating leads through Instagram.

Let’s get to the next tactic.

Tactic #5: Partner Up With Influencers

The burning question here is:

Can partnering up with influencers help a brand get more exposure and generate more leads?

Oh yes, absolutely!

However, every brand needs to find the right influencer for each campaign considering the industry they’re in as well as the goal of the particular campaign.

In other words, make sure that you’re reaching out to influencers that fit within your brand’s social media goals and do indeed have some influence over your target audience.

Let’s have a look at an interesting example.

Example: Heinz

The ever-popular American food processing company, Heinz, needed to redefine their connection with their audience and boost engagement with their new product, the new Saucy Sauce.

They did so by launching an influencer marketing campaign.

More specifically, they used advanced audience demographics that were reached with help from six different influencers.

Naturally, the influencers were matched up to the company’s key demographics.

Have a look at the screenshot below:

Heinz influencers YouTube screenshot

Image Source: YouTube

The influencers that participated in the campaign created authentic, engaging content on their feed and Instagram Stories featuring the company’s new Saucy Sauce.

Influencers squeezing Heinz saucy sauce bottle

Image Source: YouTube

The influencer marketing campaign on Instagram led to increased engagement and impressions.

What’s more, it brought viral follower interaction with the new Heinz product on social media.

Keep reading to find out more about the final way to generate leads on Instagram we have for you.

Tactic #6: Try Something New

The final way – and a tip! – we want to share with you when it comes to Instagram lead generation is to try something new.

The reason for this is quite simple.

Fresh content and new techniques can possibly help you reach a wider audience or redefine your connection with your current audience.

Additionally, given the crazy amounts of content that’s being published every second across the internet, we realize that it’s absolutely necessary for business owners to experiment with new types of content, interactive campaigns, and generally share thoughtful pieces of content.

Influencer marketing campaigns, community-driven campaigns, informational Instagram posts, and high-quality content are only a few of the most creative ways of increasing engagement and ultimately generating leads.

Without further ado, we’re going to share an example.

Example: IKEA

Furniture giant, IKEA, tried something new back in 2014.

The company partnered with a Russian ad agency and tried to build a website as an Instagram account in order to tell people about the new IKEA PS collection which consisted of 34 pieces of furniture.

To be more precise, they established the IKEA_PS_2014 Instagram account:

IKEA PS Instagram profile

Image Source: Mashable

It included a wide range of product categories, as can be seen in the screenshot below:

IKEA PS categories, including benches, tables and storage

Image Source: Mashable

Each item was clickable and was leading to personal Instagram accounts entirely dedicated to single items of the collection.

That’s definitely an unconventional way of building a website and asking users to engage with your products.

Moreover, users could also add photos from their own IKEA products and tag the products’ personal accounts on Instagram, thus establishing a rather unique relationship with the company’s products and a fresh way of engaging with them.

The news about this particular website spread across media in the tech and design industries and also led to increased engagement.

Before we close this up, let’s just say that going beyond the usual and making the most out of Instagram’s functionalities can help companies achieve great results.

Now Over to You

Last but not least, keep in mind that creating interactive, valuable content for your audience and maintaining a consistent social media schedule can help you remain among their favorite brands.

Guest author

Payman Taei is UI/UX designer and the founder of Visme, an all-in-one visual communication platform empowering everyone to create and share beautiful interactive presentations, infographics, and other forms of engaging content with no design skills. He is also the co-founder of Respona, the all-in-one PR, and link building tool that combines personalization with productivity.

Photo of Kyra GoodmanKyra Goodman

Kyra is a Junior Marketing Manager and "Spicy Meme Master" at Sked Social who loves to create content. Born and raised in Hawaii, her favorite things are traveling, yoga, beaching, coffee and baseball. Connect with her on twitter at @kyra_n_goodman.

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