How Selling on Instagram Can Save Your Holiday Season

Originally published by Charli at AgoraPulse , a leader in social media management tools and analytics.

The Holidays are coming! You know what that means — customers will be spending more time and money online. If you’re a savvy marketer, you’ll maximize your social networks to increase their turnover. One of the best social media channels to make money this holiday is Instagram.

Here are seven solid tips to improve your selling on Instagram this holiday season.

1.Create  Seasonal Images

Let’s not forget that Instagram is all about the images. If you really want to promote your product or sale, your images need to do the talking. Your image should be eye catching, seasonal, sharable and informative.

Because there are no tappable (clickable) URLs on Instagram, you need to promote one easy-to-remember address in your images — see the example below. Your images should contain a blend of festive branding and promotion. If your brand doesn’t have a Christmas promotion, why not simply rebrand an existing one as I have done here:

instagram selling


2.Use Video

Marketers are missing a trick if they don’t use video. Instagram videos create two-times more engagement than Instagram photos reports Simply Measured.

One of the best examples of holiday video marketing on Instagram is Coca-Cola who has nailed the short, seasonal clips complete with smart messaging. Take this video captioned:

“Drinkable place cards are a refreshing way to eliminate confusion”

cocacola video
Follow Coca-Cola’s example for holiday marketing

  • Keep your promotional videos short – maximum 15 seconds (the current limit allowed on Instagram)
  • Set a thumbnail which conveys your message clearly
  • Add a simple caption and memorable url

3.Remember To Socialize

Just because you’re trying to promote yourself, it doesn’t mean you can stop being sociable! You still need to comment on other photos within your niche, promote your Instagram channel via Facebook and Twitter, and respond to comments and interactions.

If your followers are adding photos of your products or tagging you in seasonal photos then you are winning… don’t ignore them! Give these followers a hearty thanks and consider using their photos (with permission) for an upcoming Instagram post!

Remember that with Agorapulse you can keep track of multiple Instagram mentions and interactions in one easy place plus you can measure the success of each image!

Instagram management tool Agorapulse

4. Keep It Simple

Photos on Instagram don’t need to be overly complicated. In fact, simple can be more effective. Check out Starbucks with its new Chestnut Praline Latte. With 242,000 likes and nearly 4,000 comments, this image is simplistic but it wins. Everything about this image screams cosy, warm, delicious and stylish and yes I have since gone and bought one!


Forget your tired corporate images. The holidays are a time to be creative and make your products completely irresistible!

5. Run A Contest

Running a seasonal contest is a great way to engage followers and grab new ones around the Christmas period. Stuck for ideas? Check out our post on good Instagram contest ideas.

If you are running a seasonal contest on Instagram, remember these golden rules:

  1. The picture must always steal the show.
  2. Follower actions must be measurable – eg likes, comments, entries or shares.
  3. Remember your contest hashtags.
  4. Offer winners a cool prize to increase entries.
  5. Maximize contest exposure on Twitter and Facebook.

If you don’t have tangible products to give away, then you will need to think outside the box. Last year singer Jason Mraz asked users to post photos to represent that his song “I Won’t Give Up.”  25 winners were selected and their photos were printed on 20” by 20” canvases and displayed at an art gallery event in New York City. How awesome is that!

6. Run Instagram Ads

If you haven’t yet discovered it, there’s a new feature on Facebook which allows you to cross advertise on your Instagram account. Instagram ads can now be purchased and managed through Facebook’s self-serve interface Ads Manager and Power Editor.

instagram ads on facebook

If your business has a Facebook and Instagram account then this is a “Must Try” for the holidays! For more information, read our recent post How To Create a Campaign With Facebook Power Editor.

7. Use Apps

If you are serious about your Instagram selling, then you should be exploring the wonderful world of apps. There are tons of cool apps to help you sell on Instagram but one of my favorites is Like2Buy.


Like2Buy makes Instagram images shoppable by driving clicks from your one live link to a grid of shoppable pictures. Like2Buy also presents your images to followers that sign in via their existing Instagram account. This means that if one of your followers likes an image it will be added to the followers “mylikes” tab. Nordstrom and Charlotte Russe are two brands who use Like2Buy and have noted impressive CTRs (click through rates) to their Like2Buy page. Other popular selling apps include Soldsie and Letsell.It and Shopseen.

So that’s it from me… eat, drink, be merry and go make money selling on Instagram this holiday!