1.7 seconds, 1080 px X 1080 px.

That is the amount of time and space you have to connect with your consumers on Instagram. It used to be easy for brands to buy fame and attention, but we today, we are a society whose purchase behavior is heavily influenced by those we choose to connect with online and the content they share.  Whether or not consumers pause their scroll is determined by whether the post creator and their content evoked an emotional response, such as an aspirational desire, self-affirmation, or some serious fomo.

More than a like or a comment, this is the type of response that transcends consumers’ feeds and phones, providing instant access to their thoughts and feelings. This is where you ultimately impact their purchase behavior and decision to buy. It is only when your brand lives in the mind and hearts of your consumers can you influence their actions.

Micro-influencers are effective on social media – Instagram in particular – because they are catalysts for consumers’ emotional response. In less than the instant it takes your consumers to scroll, micro-influencers evoke the recognition, trust, authenticity and desire that results in a hard stop.   What you do with the space you have matters just as much as who’s posting. There’s more to influencer marketing on Instagram than ‘eat, sleep, selfie – repeat”.

How are you going to make your brand and products stand out among the 4,000+ posts your consumers could scroll through in a given day? In no particular order, here are 10 ways to activate micro-influencers on Instagram proven to inspire consumers to action.  

1. The DIY / Tutorial / How-to Post

Best format: Gallery, Video Instagram’s newest post format is also among its most versatile. Instagram galleries and videos can be used for any step-by-step product posts, including beauty tutorials, DIY crafts, style guides, hacks (1 product, 5 ways), and recipes. Instruct micro-influencers to document their process in a series of step-by-step photos or videos.

Image Source: thistimeinmykitchen

2. The Before & After Post

Best format: Photo, Gallery Though most common among fitness influencers, ‘Before & After’ posts are the ultimate “show and tell” success stories that provide credible social proof. Everyone wants to know that their effort can yield results, and posts like these mitigate the risk in any buying decision. It’s also a way to build and amplify your DIY, tutorial, and how-to posts.

before after marksandfrantz

Image Source: marksandfrantz

3. The Shoppable Post

Best format: Photo, Gallery While Instagram still doesn’t link out to external sources, there are a number of ways for you to turn your micro-influencers’ posts into a shopping experience. From conversion-tracking links in bio to tools that share product details post-engagement, tracking your micro-influencers’ product posts through to sale is also a bonafide method of quantifying value and performance. Instagram’s new Gallery feature can also bring new life to daily hashtags. You can breakdown #LOTD, #OOTD, and #OOTW posts by product for more detail, share different options to style 1 product, or share a week’s worth of outfits.

ootd converse finnandlux

Image Source: finnandlux

4. The Timed Takeover

Best format: Photo Make the most of Instagram’s ‘Discovery’ feature around key holidays and events with a timed takeover. By instructing micro-influencers to share their post at a set date and time, you can create the enviable demand that accompanies “I’ve seen this product everywhere” impact. Ideal for holidays and new product launches, this type of post builds buzz and awareness quickly.

godiva takeover

Image Source: Mavrck

5. The Crowdsource Post

Best format: Photo, Gallery Looking for on demand product feedback or gauge purchase intent? Put the power in the hands of your own micro-influencers to tease a new product line and engage their friends & followers to voice their top picks in the comments. From recipes, restaurants, products, outfits, and workouts, micro-influencers can rock the vote and enable you to target niche industries, regions and demographics. Tip: With a pic for every product, Instagram galleries can go where photo layouts can’t.

crowdsource darlinginthecity glossier

Image Source: darlinginthecity

6. The Daily Hashtag

Best format: Photo, Video, Stories Few social networks have more power to make life’s everyday moments extraordinary. These in-the-moment posts showcase your product in the context of micro-influencers’ daily lives.  Leverage a popular hashtag already in play or create your own.

arielswan maajiswim

Image Source: arielswan

7. The Unboxing Post

Best format: Video, Stories Youtube’s most popular type of user-generated video can now be replicated on Instagram – in more ways than one. Video may be the standard, but galleries now provide micro-influencers with the ability to capture the finer packaging and product details and share their experience in greater depth.  

louisvuitton thechicdetail

Image Source: thechicdetail

9. The Promotional Post

Best format: Photo, Gallery It’s not a shameless self-brand promo when someone else is singing your praises. Tried and true, contests, sweepstakes and giveaways can inspire competition among micro-influencers and motivate your consumers to action. Want a new spin? Use Instagram’s ‘Bookmark’ feature to have your micro-influencers curate their top 9 looks / products from your latest campaign, launch or collection to share out to their fans and followers for a chance to win all products featured (more on this below). As always, make sure to follow Instagram’s promo guidelines.

promotion anthropologie ashleypletch3

Image Source: ashleypletch3

10. The Curated Post

Best format: Photo, Gallery Among Instagram’s newest features, the ability to bookmark posts enables your micro-influencers to curate any nine photos into their own Pinterest-like post. Use the feature to encourage cross-curation among your influencer community, themes, and content from your own brand feed. And because it’s designed to be a place where ‘only you can see what you’ve saved’ – a sneak peek at micro-influencers’ own saved cache provides insight into who and what inspires them, and a wealth of content ideas to go with it.

curated flopsylife

Image Source: flopsylife

Still feel the desire to be inspired? For more tips, check out our 10 most engaging questions to ask your Instagram followers and download our 7-Step Guide to Influencer Marketing Strategy.