Updated: Mar 16
Instagram is a fantastic way to connect with people all around the world. While using the platform, I have found Insta-besties and clients from all across the country. I have made genuine connections with people half-way around the globe!
But what about finding local clients? As a designer, your services are restricted to a geographical location (unless you offer e-design, of course). So finding and building relationships with people in your area is critical. This article will show you how to get in front of your local audience.
Use local hashtags
Hashtags are imperative to any Instagram strategy. Using the right hashtags helps you get discovered by others on the platform. That is why using local hashtags will help you get in front of your local audience.
My sister found her hairstylist by using hashtags on Instagram. Clients have found me because of local hashtags that I use. You can get found too by using local hashtags, but it will take a little research.
The best way to research local hashtags is to type in a local hashtag. Let's say, for example, you are in Dallas. You could type in #dallasinteriordesign. When you type it in, a list of suggested hashtags that are similar will appear. If you see hashtags that you think will be a good fit for your brand, write them down or add them to your hashtag bank.
If you live in a smaller city, you may notice that these hashtags' size may be smaller, and that is perfectly fine. Try to find and use relevant hashtags that have a size of 5000 or more.
Another great way to get in front of your local audience is to use geotags on your posts and your stories. Geotags are when you add your location to your content. When people search for a particular place, any posts with geotags for that location will show up.
You can also include your location in Stories by using the "Location" sticker. When you add this sticker to your stories, you will show up on the Explorer page for those searching for that location.
Tag other local businesses
Another option for getting visible in your local market is to tag other businesses in your feed posts or in stories. Having lunch at your favorite restaurant? Tag that restaurant. Getting a little work done at a local coffee shop? Tag the coffee shop.
These businesses will love the exposure they are getting by you sharing and will most likely share that with their audience. Of course, you don't want to be spammy, so be sure to only tag businesses relevant to your posts.
Be sure to engage with other local businesses on their Instagram accounts. Take part in the conversations that are going on and start making connections with others that follow those accounts.
Include your location in your profile
If you think that nobody reads your profile information, you are wrong! An optimized profile can help drive traffic to your account. There are several searchable fields in your profile.
The first is the name field. Adding your location to the name field will help local people find your account. For example, if you are an interior designer in New York, your name field could read something like Name | NY Designer.
You can also make your location visible in your profile. Just click on "edit profile" and then scroll down to "contact options." From here, you can add your business address. You don't have to give a specific address. You can just include your city and state.
Host a giveaway with other local businesses
People love giveaways, and it's an excellent opportunity to get in front of a new audience. Reach out to a few other local businesses and see if they would be interested in collaborating with you to host a giveaway.
Hosting a giveaway with other local businesses gives you exposure to their audiences.
Including your location, wherever you can, is going to help increase exposure in your local market. Also, actively engaging with other local businesses will help get you more local attention.
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