When it comes to making people fall in love with your brand, you have to make them believe in your company. An effective way to accomplish this goal is to tell a visual story about your business.

According to WishPond, 90 percent of information transmitted to the brain is visual making Instagram an effective social network for customer engagement because brands can tell their unique story through photos and videos.

Additionally a study by Digital Insights shows that there are 200 million active monthly users on Instagram. In fact, 50 million users have signed up for Instagram just within the six months, further proving the social network to be a great opportunity for brands to share their story and build loyal customers.

If you haven’t started using Instagram as a way to build your brand, it’s time to get started. Below are 10 simple ways to use Instagram to make people fall in love with your brand.

Tell a Story

Hard work is hard to ignore. #justdoit Most people aren’t ready for the fall. It sneaks up on them and leaves them wondering how summer went by so fast. They’re not ready for the air to get crisp, or the leaves to turn, or to go back to school, or for vacation to be over. But for @OU_Football, the opposite is the case, because there was no vacation, and they’ve been in school all summer and when the leaves turn, it means it’s their turn.

A photo posted by nike (@nike) on Aug 8, 2014 at 11:00am PDT

Storytelling is a great way to connect with your target audience on an emotional level and get them to care about your brand beyond its rational benefits.

Humans are powered by emotion, not by reason. Emotion, intuition, long-term memories and unconscious motivations. They control as much as 85% of our decision-making process. That leaves just 15% for logic to battle over,” as stated by Kevin Roberts, CEO of Saatchi & Saatchi. 

By telling your brand’s story, you’ll be able to engage with more people and build stronger customer relationships. Posting photos that reflect the mission and culture of your brand, giving a behind the scenes look or using fan photos are just a few of the many ways you can use Instagram to tell your brand’s story.

Create Videos

Signing team balls for charity this morning before practice. A video posted by Los Angeles Lakers (@lakers) on Nov 11, 2014 at 11:37am PST

Videos are an excellent way to engage your Instagram followers and further tell your brand’s story. You want to create a memorable video that will captivate viewers and give your fans a sense of exclusivity. A few ideas to try:

  • Get your company’s team involved. Shine a spotlight on the people who make your organization great!
  • Give a tour or behind the scenes look. Do a walkthrough of your company’s headquarters, event space or warehouse.
  • Make your office pet the star.  Film the office pet’s antics while the rest of the team is hard at work—you’re guaranteed to get adorable results.

For some added flair try using Hyperlapse, an app for Instagram, which enables users to create cinematic timelapse videos using just the camera and microphone on their phones.

Understand Your Target Audience
As you post content and engage with followers, always keep your target audience in mind. Pay attention to their interests, hobbies, and the types of content they share. To learn more about your target audience, follow hashtags that relate to your followers.

You can also look at who’s following your competitors and follow hashtags of industry events.

Find the Perfect Hashtag
Hashtags are a powerful feature on Instagram because they allow you to follow relevant conversations. You can also create a unique hashtag for followers to use when referencing your brand in their photos or during hashtag campaigns.

Use Photo Editing Apps to Enhance Photos
Although Instagram features a number of filters, brands should do their best to edit their photos prior to uploading to Instagram. Edited photos will allow your brand to share beautiful photos that resonate with your target audience and help to increase fan engagement.

Use apps such as Afterlight and VSCOcam to create stunning images to share on Instagram. These apps allow you to edit the lighting, clarity, and other elements of the image.

Use the Right Filter
Speaking of photo editing, it’s especially important to choose the right filter for your photos. According to a study published by TrackMaven, the type of filter you use may influence overall likes and comments.

The filters that received the most interaction according to the study were the Mayfair filter, using no filter, or the Inkwell filter.

However, everyone’s audience is different so try experimenting with the different filters that Instagram offers to see which resonates the most with your fans.

Feature Customers in a Campaign

We gave ourselves a little photo assignment: Capture the stories and unique relationships of people in cafes from around the world. All this week, we’ll show you what we found—and invite you to join. #HowWeMet   A video posted by Starbucks Coffee ☕ (@starbucks) on Oct 10, 2014 at 8:14pm PDT

The best way to make people fall in love with your brand is to make them feel like they’re a part of a community. To do this, invite your customers to share their photos with you and upload them to your account. You can also post interviews with customers or photos of how they used your product.

Reward Followers with Special Promotions
A great way to increase engagement and brand awareness is to reward your followers. For example, encourage followers to post a photo of one of your products in exchange for a discount on future purchases. This way, people feel like there’s an incentive to engaging with your brand on Instagram.

Benefit Cosmetics got fans to engage with them by asking people to submit photos of themselves on Instagram via #realsies using the company’s “they’re real!” mascara. In return, Benefit Cosmetics offered fans the opportunity to win a year’s supply of “they’re real!” mascara.

Follow Relevant Accounts in Your Niche
The only way you’ll grow your brand on Instagram is if you follow and interact with relevant accounts. As you follow other accounts, be sure to like and comment on photos featured on those accounts. This will help you grow your brand and increase engagement on your Instagram profile. 

Be Conversational

Purses are like friends; You can never have too many. Happy #NationalHandbagDay! What bag are you carrying today? #sdstyleonthego A photo posted by Stella & Dot (@stelladot) on Oct 10, 2014 at 9:42am PDT

When customers interact with a brand on social media, they want to feel like they’re talking to a person. As you post photos and videos on Instagram, include captions that will engage your followers. For example, you could ask a question about a photo or invite people to share their opinion on a specific topic.

Instagram is an amazing social network for interacting with customers and inspiring people through your brand’s story. By following these tips, you’ll create an Instagram account for your brand that’s engaging and builds awareness of your business.

Want to learn how you can use your Instagram feed as a sales channel without disrupting the user experience? Check out Soldsie’s Have2HaveIt which creates an instant catalog of your products on Instagram.