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Introduction

If your property wants to be hip, hop and happening, catering to the front runners and beautiful people, you need a good Instagram presence. Even if the Instagram people are a small percentage of your clientele, do not forget about them.

Not everybody is a rock star, but they all want a backstage pass.

Use hashtags

We know you heard it before, it is old, but never disappoints. Sometimes hitching a ride on trending hashtags can do wonders. Follow the local or regional tourism office’s Instagram account, and include some in your posts. That way when people look for #winefestival, they will find posts to places to stay (yours of course). You can post up to ten hashtags, and that is ten times you can be relevant.

Do not use obscure hashtags unless you want to make a joke, because those hashtags will not appear on anybody else’s radar.

For more information on how to use hashtags, you can read this article written about the use of hashtags to promote bed and breakfasts.

Reshare pictures

Encourage guests to share pictures of their stay with you, that way you give love to your guests, and both of you get more exposure.

Don’t talk about just one thing.

Yes, it is good to mention the award you won from time to time, but don’t let that be the only thing you post about.

Try to engage people by talking about real things they can identify with, not just solely promotional topics. People follow you because they like what you do, not to get the same promotional speech over and over.

Promote your Instagram channel on Facebook

This seems strange, but because Facebook is the easiest way to engage with people, it is the best place to promote your Instagram page which is a lot more visual, and more appealing to the hip hop and happening crowd.

Publish relevant content

If a new topic is trending, or there is a new meme making the rounds, adapt it to fit your property. Look at how good Nando’s is in capitalising on current affairs.

Post when people are more active

Most people will not look at their Instagram during the workday. Post around lunchtime or after five.

Over the weekend post around 11:00 in the morning, and around 19:00 in the evening.

Create beautiful pictures

If you want to edit pictures yourself please follow this tutorial.

Another source of picture templates that you can edit is Crello and Canva. Both work extremely well, and you get hooked and would even consider paying for the service. Both offer ready-made templates for several different social media formats, and you can add your own photos.

If you ever need stock pictures to illustrate something, or to use as a backdrop for a quite you should consider:

Rawpixel

Unsplash

Freepik

These three sites have the best selection of free stock images. If you do not want to pay you might be limited to the number of free images that you can use, but for free the pictures are of great value.

Schedule your posts

The next step would be to use scheduling tools like Hootsuite or Buffer.

For a video about Buffer please watch this video.

For a video about Hootsuite watch this video

Check your spelling and grammar

Not all of us are grammar Nazis, but obvious mistakes can leave you red-faced. Consider getting at least the free version of Grammarly. It helps you check your spelling and grammar online. There is no South African English language option, but British English is fine. Grammarly still saves you from a lot of embarrassment.

How to post Instagram posts from your desktop

Please follow this tutorial.

“Basically”, you open Instagram in Chrome, go to the three dots at the top right, click on Developer Tools, and then go to Toggle Device Toolbar, then press F5. This makes it a lot easier to regularly post Instagram posts from your computer.