5-minute read

Instagram is a thriving network with over 700 million monthly active users tapping away on their screens worldwide (source: Statista). What’s more, only 36% of marketers are using Instagram for business, compared to the 93% who use Facebook (source: selfstartr).

Just consider how oversaturated and competitive Twitter or Facebook is (not to mention the necessity to invest in ads or algorithms). Instagram, on the other hand, presents marketers with the opportunity to push through the clutter.

Hence why we thought we’d show you the ropes of how to set up an Instagram account, so you too can take advantage of this social media channel. But first things first, you will need an Instagram account.

 

Setting up a Business Profile on Instagram

Before you create a new account (or decide it’s time to refresh your old one), ensure you’ve defined how Instagram will serve your business. This social media network can support a range of business objectives, but to truly succeed, you will need to narrow your focus. Keep in mind that both, high-quality content and consistency, are essential.

When you switch to a business account, it’s possible to add more information to your profile, including opening hours, a business address or a phone number. You’ll also be able to do paid advertising and gain real-time insights into how well your posts and stories are performing.

If you already have an Instagram account, skip to Step 3.

It’s quick and easy to set up an Instagram Business Profile:

  • Step 1: Download and launch the app (the Instagram app is available on iOS, Android and Windows). Open it once it has been downloaded.
  • Step 2: Tap “Sign up” and enter your email address or phone number to register. Alternatively, tap “Sign in” with Facebook. Choose your username and complete the registration. Then, sign into the Instagram app on your mobile device.
  • Step 3: Visit your profile (main page) and tap the cogwheel icon at the top right corner of your screen. Then, find the “Switch to Business Profile” option in the “Settings” list menu.
  • Step 4: Tap “Continue” until you arrive at the “Connect the Facebook Page” screen.
  • Step 5: Select the Facebook Page of your business to link it to your Instagram profile. Note that you’ll only see the pages you’re currently an admin of, and only Facebook Business Pages can be linked.
  • Step 6: Fill out your profile, start posting (see tips below) and analyzing the success of your posts with the newly added analytics.

Watch the video below for an on-hands demonstration or visit Facebook’s support page for more information on how to convert a personal Instagram profile to a Business Profile.


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Define the purpose of your new channel

Ask yourself, what do I want to achieve on this social media network? Do I simply want to extend the reach of my brand, or create a place where customers could share photos of our products? It could also be that you want to highlight the more human side of your business and your company culture to attract new talent. That’s what we have chosen to do with our own Instagram account @sendiblesocial.

 

Create a scalable Instagram strategy

If you plan to take this social network seriously, you’ll need an Instagram marketing strategy. Our recent webinar explores why Instagram is the place to be for businesses, the features you need to know about and how you can build a scalable strategy that allows you to manage multiple clients at the same time.

 

Polish your profile

Make sure your username and the name of your account, match that of your business. Add a description, i.e. bio (up to 150 characters), to describe what you do and what the channel is for, be interesting and compact.

Note that links in individual posts don’t work, so make use of the one that does – located in your Bio section. Don’t waste it on your homepage. Update the link frequently, especially when running events, big product launches and special promotions.

Unlike most other social media networks, Instagram doesn’t have a custom cover photo to help with brand recognition. This means most of your branding will come from the content you publish (so, plan wisely).

Great example of an Instagram bio

Image source: GE’s Instagram account

Since Instagram introduced Business Profiles, businesses can now add additional contact information and enhanced analytics that let them better understand their followers. While the new Instagram Business Tools can definitely help businesses grow, not all have rushed in to switch. Switching to a business profile requires connecting to the business’ Facebook page, which some fear, might limit post visibility in the future. Scroll up for instructions on how to switch to a Business Profile for Instagram.

 

Create great content

Instagram is all about visuals, so it’s crucial you can create content that adds value to your audience and potential customers. Seek to inspire and entertain, not directly promote your product or service.

Images and videos (up to one minute) can be posted, preferably in Instagram’s signature square format, or Vertical with the introduction of Instagram stories. Uploading images and videos in landscape orientation is possible, but the preview will be cut off at the edges.

Accompany each image with a great caption and use hashtags sparingly to extend your reach. For more tips on how to use Instagram for business check out our blog post to help you indirectly showcase your products, build anticipation and collaborate with others.

Evernote's branded Instagram page

Image source: Evernote’s Instagram account

 

Engage with others and create relationships

Start by following relevant industry influencers and publications. Don’t forget about project collaborators and brands you have done business with. Instagram is great for showing your team spirit, so make sure to tag collaborators in captions and they might comment or even repost your post.

Take note that it’s best to have the perfect Bio and a few updates already posted in place before you start following lots of accounts. You wouldn’t want influencers to see an empty profile when they check who followed them recently – so don’t miss out.

 

Instagram + Sendible = ❤️

Sendible integrated Instagram into its social media management dashboard back in December 2012. Since then, we’ve continuously innovated to bring you the best solution possible. Our tool allows to monitor your Instagram home feed, read and respond to comments as well as search for specific hashtags. It’s also possible to schedule your posts in advance, but due to Instagram’s API restrictions that limit 3rd party app access, we had to create a workaround.

All content must be published via Instagram, thus forcing users to always upload their photos and videos via the original mobile app. Our newly developed Instagram scheduling tools make this scalable, even if you manage hundreds of client. All you have to do is schedule your post to Instagram via Sendible as you would for any other network and once it’s time to post, you’ll receive a push notification on your smartphone or tablet as well as an email along with the text, image and hashtags. Then you are only four taps away from publishing the post. Watch the video below to see how simple it is.

Automation tools and hashtag searches

One of the most recent additions to the Instagram app is the real-time hashtag search and the Instagram automation tools. We also added Instagram to our keyword monitoring apps, making it easier to pick up brand mentions on this network. The Sendible team is looking into implementing more exciting new features to Instagram fairly soon, in the meantime, you might also want to know more about how to manage your Instagram account with Sendible.

Veronika Baranovska

Veronika is a content marketing specialist at Sendible.com. As of today, she has five years of social media marketing experience under her belt as well as knowledge of SEO, e-commerce and email marketing. Veronika earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in media and cultural studies in 2013.

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  • lorraine

    I already have one instagram profile and can’t seem to set up another profile : I have one for my primary biz, now I want one for my part time biz. HELP

    • Thoams

      You only can have 1 account signed in at once. You can sign out of your primary one and create another for your part time biz. You just need to sign in and out of each account every time

  • http://www.arcanevault.com/blog Michael Ligot

    Just used this to set up a profile for our new site. Thank you very much!

  • http://slidehunter.com/ SlideHunter

    Hi Vishal,
    I want to setup a new profile for my website. However, I am wondering if there is any way to manage all this Instagram thing from the web, instead of requiring to download the app for the mobile.
    Also, any advice on how managing multiple Instagram accounts?

    • Sendible

      Hello there

      Thank you for your enquiry.

      In order to get the best out of Instagram, you will still need to use the application on your smartphone.

      You can definitely manage multiple Instagram accounts through our dashboard and we would be happy to tell you more.

      Send us an email at marketing@sendible.com with more details and let’s see how we can help you with your profiles.

      Kind regards
      Veronika

  • info indo

    Thank you for the information, a very good article, whether an instagram account can be interconnected in two facebook account ??

    cara daftar akun

    • Veronika Baranovska

      Hello there

      Thank you for your question.

      Unfortunately it’s only possible to link your Instagram account to only one Facebook account at a time.

      Kind regards
      Veronika

    • Sendible

      Heya, thanks for the comment. Each Instagram account can be connected to only one Facebook account. If you’d like to share posts from your Instagram account to the second Facebook account, you’ll need to share them manually :)

  • Charlie Reeder

    Is it possible to set up a business account on IG? I have noticed a few with a contact button as well as a follow button. HOw do you sign up for this?

    • Sendible

      Hi Charlie, thanks for asking. Instagram Business accounts are currently unavailable on Sendible, this is due to their closed API.

      We are holding our ear to the ground though, and will implement it as soon as it is possible.

      • Marijo Anković

        >Thanks guys a lot! That is the reason why I wanted to switch my private profile to bussiness profile, but I’m from Europe! :-)

        • Sendible

          No problem at all! I guess the rest of the world just have to wait – including us! :)

  • Danielle Ryan

    hello! we have one location that doubles as a Night club and a Restaurant so we have created an instagram account for each side of the business. Is there a way to have 2 business instagram accounts for the same location?

    • Sendible

      Hello Danielle, thank you for asking. It should be fine for a regular Instagram account. If you subscribe to the new Business profile however, Instagram might not let you if you only have one Facebook Business page.

      If you do have two Instagram accounts for the same business, make sure to put a note about it in the bio. Customers love it when it’s easy to mention or tag a place they like.

  • Isabel

    I was able to switch my personal to a business account and link to my FB Page; however, I’m not able to see the the “Insights” option. I’ve tried from ipad, iphone, android. I did get the most updated version of the app. Could be possible that some people could switch into Business Profile and not have access to Insights yet? What can I do to fix this?
    Thank you

    • Veronika Baranovska

      Hello Isabel, thanks for asking. Not quite sure why you don’t have access – Insights should be just on the left of the cog icon on your mobile app.

    • Sendible

      Hello Isabel, thanks for asking. The Insights button should be just on the left of the cog wheel on your Instagram app. If it doesn’t appear and you are certain that you have a Business profile, you might want to report it to Instagram. Hope this helps!

  • Zachary Mitri

    I’m confused! I have 3 accounts connected to my IG – I have my personal one, and two others. On my personal account, I didn’t have the switch to business profile option, but on the other two accounts I did? I’m really confused as to how those two have the option but my main page doesn’t.

    • Sendible

      Hello Zachary, thank you for the question. It’s hard to judge without seeing your profiles, but this could be because an Instagram Business profile requires a Facebook Fan / Business Page.

      In other words, your personal Instagram profile isn’t eligible because you have a personal Facebook page.

  • Colleen HJ

    Please help! I switched my instagram account from personal to business on Friday. Since then my profile has said it ‘can’t refresh feed’ and won’t load any images. This error message shows up when using ANY phone (I tried on different members of my family). The activity feed works, I get notifications, I can see others current posts but my personal profile has 0 images (there were 32 before the switch) and it hasn’t been able to refresh since Friday. Urgent help as we run ads and our customers are constantly looking at our profile. Any advice would be MUCH appreciated!

    • Sendible

      Hello Colleen, it could be a bug in the mobile app. Have you tried checking on a laptop or desktop PC?

  • Kimberlygreen

    Hey! I created a business account and everything was going really good for a couple of days… Then my account was disabled for “violating terms!” I didn’t violate anything. I went through all of the recover processes and never heard a word from Instagram. So I decided to start a new business account… Within 2-3hrs, my new account is disabled as well. How come this keeps happening to me?

    • Sendible

      Hello Kimberly, that’s really sad to hear.

      Since your Instagram Business Account is linked to your Facebook page, you need to make sure that you are not violating any terms of use on Facebook.

  • Piero Annoni

    I’m trying to switch to a business account ad suggested bi IG but it fails saying : can’t find a FB page, but I have a FB business page. What might be the problem?

  • Danielle Welling

    Every time i try to promote a post, everything goes well untill i click preview promotion and the app disappears. anyone else has this problem?

  • Jenny Rúriks

    I am an admin on FB but still can´t connect the accounts and switch to business profile, it says no Facebook Pages found, what might be the problem?

    • Sendible

      Difficult to say. It could be worth a try to link the FB account to your Instagram profile before attempting to switch to the business profile.

      • Jenny Rúriks

        Thank you for your reply! I have already done that but still does not work :/

    • Jan Caerels

      Hey Jenny, I had the same problem. If you haven’t found the answer by now, or if others have this problem: Just log out of your Instagram and log back in. Then go set up your IG business profile.

      • Jenný Maggý Rúriksdóttir

        Thank you, it worked!

      • Victor Dicky

        thanks, its work

  • Tameka Ellis

    I would like to have rights to our work IG page. How does this process work?

    • Sendible

      Hi Tameka. If I got your question right, you want to manage an Instagram account / page, right? For this, you will need the login details of the account. Then you can simply switch between all of the accounts you manage on your mobile device.

      To manage your Instagram account via Sendible, you need to set up the Instagram service. Hope this answers your question?

  • JustMe

    Hello,

    I have a personal instagram account. I just started working in a company and i need to set up a business profile for the specific company. I am the admin of the company’s facebook page. What is the right way to set it up? if i log in instagram with my credentials and switch to business profile, i select the fb page which i admin, but the instagram logo/ friends etc, are based on my private instagram profile. Am i doing somthing wrong?

    Thank you for your prompt reply.

    • Sendible

      Hi there, when you are on Instagram / Facebook, you need to make sure that you are logged into the correct account when you are making the change. Once that’s done, you should be able to do it.

  • Globalfreestyle

    Hi.
    I currently have a business account. It is a retail business. We are opening our 2nd location and I would like to add both addresses two out business locations – can I do this?

    • Sendible

      Hi, thanks for the question. The business location is linked to the address on your Facebook Page – so that’s the one that will display.

  • Charlie Wilson

    Hello, I’d like to know what do you think about special services and apps for gaining followers? if it finds real followers (not fake ones or bots) with the same interests that you can share? Because I think it’s good booster for businesses especially on the beginning of their path to the top. Well, you can say it’s cheating or “illegal” but I checked zen-promo (.com?) services and this is in terms of instagram rules. It’s totally clear. It’s handy tool for popularization of your instagram profile and then you can do whatever you want to hold them. Am I right? Thank you

    • Sendible

      Hi Charlie, thanks for your comment. Having a large follower base of engaged and like-minded users is really valuable on Instagram, but buying followers is definitely “illegal”. Automations that help like & engage should be fine as long as you mix it with engaging organically.

  • Christian Leone

    In terms of the legal aspects, is everthing legal when it comes to promoting your business on instagram or is there any specifications that limit the way you can market.

  • helinton

    Hi There,

    I have a personal Instagram and a business one also I have a personal Facebook page and a business Facebook page (Tessuti).
    Less then a month I used the feature “switch to business” Instagram account ( as I had not done before), since then all my posts that should be going to my business Facebook page (Tessuti) started going directly to my personal Facebook page, it is very frustrating because all settings are correct… showing the link to my business Facebook account (Tessuti).
    any idea?

    • http://www.sendible.com/ Sendible_Team

      Hello, thank you for the question! In theory, your Instagram posts (with the business profile) shouldn’t be going to the personal page since you can only link it to your Facebook Business page. Have you checked the linked account settings on Facebook?

      • helinton

        Thank you for the prompt reply.
        I have checked all but would be possible to do a step by step just so I make sure i have done it right.
        Thank you

        • http://www.sendible.com/ Sendible_Team

          We have found that the Instagram Help Centre is a great resource for troubleshoot. Check this link and look for the questions answered about linking other social media networks to your account: https://help.instagram.com/1173750949310136/?helpref=hc_fnav – hope this helps!

          • helinton

            I have gone through all of that and no answer for my problem.
            On my business instagram account it shows the correct facebook account that I want to share but when I post it, it goes autocratically to my personal facebook. I have tried to switch back to personal account and switch to business account and still the same problem.

          • http://www.sendible.com/ Sendible_Team

            Hmm, at this rate, it would be worth contacting Instagram directly – message them on their social media accounts and escalate if you haven’t had a reply.

          • Leah Pasteka

            I am having the exact same problem and have no idea what to do. I figured I could just share from my personal FB to my business FB, but it won’t let me do that either!

          • http://www.sendible.com/ Sendible_Team

            Hi Leah, sorry to hear that you’re having issues – have you tried reaching out to Instagram directly?

          • Leah Pasteka

            I have and no response from insta or facebook

          • http://www.sendible.com/ Sendible_Team

            That’s a shame – have you tried contacting them on social media as well?

  • Adam

    I was surprised to see this article doesn’t actually tell you how to create a business account.

    • http://www.sendible.com/ Sendible_Team

      Hi Adam, thanks for the comment – at the time this article was updated, Business profiles for Instagram were just being rolled out. We’ll update accordingly. Let us know if you have any questions!

      • Christina Carrasco

        You still haven’t showed us even with your response…

        • http://www.sendible.com/ Sendible_Team

          Hello Christina, our apologies for any inconvenience caused. We’ve just updated the blog with a step-by-step guide on how to set up a business profile and attached a video from Instagram.

  • Jake Zeppelin

    Just another article with zero information. Isn’t that content 101? Please tell us something my dead monkey doesn’t already know. No shit we need to create great content. No shit we need to engage. Worthless. Sendible, please get your shit together. CEO please get your shit together if you really care about your website and brand.

    • http://sendible.com Gavin Hammar

      Hi Jake, really sorry to hear that you feel this way. This article was aimed primarily at beginners who are either very new to Instagram or are yet to create an account. Maybe our article “7 Tips for Using Instagram for Business” would better suit you? It has real examples from brands that have great profiles: http://sendible.com/insights/7-tips-for-using-instagram-for-business

      If you have a specific topic in mind that you’d like to know more about, let us know!

      • Christina Carrasco

        We DID have a specific topic in mind… it was how to create a business account with Instagram. The TITLE of YOUR article. Too bad it didn’t tell us how to actually do it. You just tried to sell us something.

        • http://www.sendible.com/ Sendible_Team

          Hello, Christina. Once again, great apologies for the inconvenience caused. We originally wrote this article before the “Instagram for business” tools were rolled out. We’ve added a new step-by-step guide and embedded video, and we hope that’s helpful.

          Thank you for your feedback – please do let us know if there’s anything else we can do for you.

  • Hayley Galliott

    I can’t create a Business page for my Business on Instagram because they say it already exists. But all that actually exists is a page showing the location of my business. It’s really frustrating as I’ve tried every setting going to try to sort this/claim this as my page, but I have no idea why I can’t sort this. Has anyone come across this before and if so can you help as it’s driving me mad!

    • http://www.sendible.com/ Sendible_Team

      Hi Hayley, thank you for getting in touch. We haven’t come across this, but you may find this support page useful: https://www.facebook.com/business/help/897631030335607

      In order for you to get access to the business tools for Instagram, you need to be an admin of an active (published) Facebook Business page. Hope you get this sorted.

  • Jan Caerels

    When I set this business account up & I was finished suddenly my business profile showed all the content of my personal profile (bio & photos) but it listed me as a food company (because the company is indeed for food). However my name, profile pic and all photos from my personal account display… Huh wtf? Is this normal? I want to have a community in person with my personal friends, but also a business page on instagram, is this not possible or what? Because I cannot switch between the two, there’s just one with my name on it… Very frustrating

    • http://www.sendible.com/ Sendible_Team

      Hi Jan, thanks for asking.

      On Instagram, your profile can be either personal or business. So, if you’d like to have a separate business account, you need to create a new Instagram account with a different name and then link it to your Facebook Business page.

      If you’ve already switched to the Business profile on your personal Instagram – don’t worry, it’s easy to switch back in the Settings menu. Let us know if you’ve any more questions!

  • Jeff Rizkallah

    hi I clicked on not a business by accident what do I do?

    • http://www.sendible.com/ Sendible_Team

      Hi Jeff, could you give some more details so we can help with this? You can switch between a Business profile and a Personal profile as much as you like on Instagram,

  • yash meher

    I set up a business account and at the end of (the company’s food is really because) all of a sudden my business is my personal profile (bio and profile picture), but the entire contents of which referred to me as a food company. However, my personal account in my name, profile photo and display all the photos … Huh WTF? Is this normal? And it is possible or not, Instagram my friends own community, but also want to have a business page? I can not switch between the two, because it is the only one with my name … Very sad
    website design and development companies

    • http://www.sendible.com/ Sendible_Team

      Hello Yash, we’re sad to hear that you’re having issues with Instagram. You can set up two different accounts (one would be for personal use and the other would be for your business) as long as they have different names.

      If you’re using the same account for personal and business use, creating the business profile will be tricky as that will link to your Facebook business Page. Hope this clears it up for you.