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    Expert Column: Will Instagram Be the Golden Ticket for Grocers in 2015?

    Social platform presents unique opps for grocers

    By Bill Sussman , Collective Bias

    Instagram recently surpassed Twitter with more than 300 million active users and is now valued at $35 billion. While food sharing and “foodspotting” quickly became popular after the platform’s inception in 2010, the recent domination of Instagram presents a unique opportunity for grocers today. The following are four ways grocers can capitalize on the power of Instagram to engage and inspire their current and potential shoppers.

    Integrate Your Products With Recipes & Party Planning Tips

    Use Instagram for what it was made for: This social tool’s emphasis is entirely visual. Employ the platform to show off visually pleasing recipes and party spreads using products that can be found in your store aisles. For example, post a high-quality photo of a birthday party spread or a Thanksgiving stuffing recipe fully executed. But where do you put tips and instructions without overloading mobile consumers with text they likely won’t read? The app currently doesn’t have the capability of clickable links in captions.

    However, there are a few ways around this. Within your profile is a place for a website URL that can be edited anytime. If the recipes and tips you are referencing can all be found on a single company blog, link to it in your bio. If the recipes are on different blogs or websites, change the bio URL with each post and include “Full recipe link in profile” in your photo caption. This is a simple way to drive traffic to your new online food content.

    If you do put a link in the caption, keep it short. Share these recipe posts on other networks like Facebook and Twitter where links are live and clickable. Whole Foods Market exemplifies this in their feed by posting unique dishes with a prompt for followers to check out the recipe link in their profile.

    Maximize The Potential Of Short-form Video

    Exhibit the various services within your stores through the power of video. Instagram videos have a maximum length of 15 seconds – meaning your content will be “snackable” enough for consumers to consume while scrolling through their feed. Hosting a special in-store event like a wine tasting or cooking class? Record and post a video to drive traffic to future experiences and demonstrate to your followers what makes your stores stand out from other grocers.

    By Bill Sussman , Collective Bias
    • About Bill Sussman Bill Sussman is president and CEO of Collective Bias, a shopper social media company that drives sales for brands and retailers by working with a community of expert bloggers who create social content consumers actively seek out and trust. Sussman has deep experience in digital marketing, retail and media industries, and has previously held leadership positions at Nickelodeon, Walmart, Triad Retail Media and Ringling Bros. [email protected]

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