It’s 5 p.m. on a Friday night after a long week in July. What are you doing?

If you’re like us, you’re totally freaking out because you’ve just seen something that will change the way you operate every day.

That’s right. On a Friday night just a couple of weeks before this writing — when many working professionals were headed to happy hour — we were embarking on a happy hour of our own: setting up our new Instagram business profile. (It took far less than an hour, by the way!)

As you read in our previous post, Instagram announced in June that it would introduce new features for businesses by the end of the year. Only weeks after their announcement, we opened up our Instagram and saw a pop-up notification that we were eligible to switch to a business profile.

Wondering how to switch your account to a business profile? Follow our steps to find out:

Instagram is slowly rolling out the new features to accounts. Don’t worry if you don’t have the option yet! It’s random, and it’s coming. We promise! When you’re able to switch, you’ll see a popup notification like the blue one above when you open Instagram…

Instagram Notification

Wondering if you missed the notification? Click the gear icon in the top right of your screen to be taken to your account options. If you see the “Switch to business profile >” option, you’re ready to rock ‘n roll!

Instagram Options

When it’s your time to shine, Instagram will take you through a brief tutorial of the new features for business accounts. Browse through them – we’re most excited about the Insights after using it! – then click the bottom blue button “Continue as _________” to connect your Facebook Page to your Instagram profile.

Select the Facebook Page that you want to connect to your Instagram profile. Instagram will automatically migrate some info from Facebook to your new business profile. Edit or delete any information that shouldn’t appear on your Instagram profile. (For instance, if you have a PO Box address, don’t include it as your location on your Instagram, as the information is used to assist users in navigating to your location in their maps app with one tap.)

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Congratulations! You now have an Instagram business profile. You’ll immediately notice the new user-friendly features, such as the one-tap contact button and location navigational assistance (if you have a brick-andmortar location).

Click through to an image on your profile to see options to “Promote” or “View Insights” for any given post.

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Click the bar graph icon at the top of your profile to access Insights such as:

  • your top posts from the last 7 days to 2 years
  • the gender, age range and top locations of your followers
  • the hours and says your followers are most active on Instagram

Another cool feature – you can promote your posts directly from inside the app. Simply click ‘Promote Post’ to open the menu. Then choose your action button from Learn More, Watch More, Shop Now, Book Now, Sign Up and Contact Us. Your action button will click to whatever web address you input.

Next you choose your audience. Instagram offers a ‘Quick Audience’ option where Instagram determines the best audience for your post or you can create your own audience similar to creating an audience in Facebook Ads Manager.

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Finally you choose the budget you want to spend on your ad and the duration you want to run it.

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The thing to remember about this is that it is NOT like a boosted post on Facebook. When you promote your post on Instagram, it creates a whole new post with your call to action button and runs it separately from your original post. That means that any comments or likes you get on your promoted post won’t show up on the original post. We have our fingers crossed that Insta will roll out something more similar to boosted posts to give you the option to simply increase reach and engagement on individual posts, but until then we are happy enough with the promoted posts option.


Got questions?

We’ve got answers!

Since making the switch, we’ve been asked if we’ve noticed a drop in engagement. In other words, people are wondering if switching to a business profile is a good idea. In truth, we’ve seen a significant increase in engagement, and we’ve enjoyed insights into our followers that we’ve previously had to pay for as well as the ability to promote a post from within the Instagram app rather than through Facebook’s ads manager.

Long story short… We say go for it as soon as you’re eligible. If history repeats itself (and it usually does), this initial offering for businesses on Instagram will mirror Facebook’s business offerings, which means there will soon be more and more tools that are only available to business profiles to promote your posts.

The algorithm is already in effect and affecting your reach, so you may as well use the resources available to increase your reach. As we always say, “Don’t hate the player. Play the game.” And by playing this game, you’ll have a headstart at winning on Instagram. That’s right… Winstagram!!


This article originally appeared in the July issue of WORK//BOOK™, our monthly e-magazine for WORK//SHOP™ members. WORK//SHOPAHOLICS™ can read the entire edition in the members’ area of www.retailerworkshop.com.

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