How to Rock Instagram in 2024

February 14, 2024   |  Tracey Ellison

TheDiamondsGirl shares six strategies to help you shine on this lucrative social media platform.

In January 2020, just over four years ago, I wrote an article for Jewelry Connoisseur on “How to Shine on Instagram.” Of course, no one can see into the future, and little did we know that we were about to be hit by Covid-19, a surge in demand for lab-grown diamonds, and an increasing demand for transparency in the natural-diamond chain. Social media is no different — change is the only constant — and it’s therefore timely to revisit the subject and take a fresh look at how to rock it on Instagram.

When I wrote the initial article, I referenced research indicating that there were 1 billion active Instagram users. Four years later, there are 2.4 billion, and that number is growing at a rate of 100 million new users a month. On top of that, we have the explosion of TikTok, a social media platform that shows no sign of slowing down. While this is all very positive in that we now have so many eyeballs on our products, it also means we have so many more products in front of those eyeballs. The need for a strong and robust social media strategy is more critical than ever, and what used to be effective doesn’t necessarily grab attention these days. So, what to do? Here are six tips that will help get your products the attention they deserve. 

  1. Get to know Reels. Four years ago, Instagram prioritized photographs. It was largely a photo-sharing app, and while videos were popular, they had to be shared in Instagram’s preferred “square” format. To compete with the growing popularity of TikTok, Instagram changed its algorithm to prioritize Reels, a video format that includes music and eye-catching content. We no longer have the luxury of editing photos; Reels are raw and real, and they come with many features — including audio, text, and AI effects — that Instagram encourages you to use. The more you work with the tools Instagram offers, the higher the likelihood of your Reel appearing on the coveted “Explore” page, which shares content not only with your followers, but with every Instagram user.

  2. Optimize your posts for the “Explore” page. This is where Reels go viral, so jewelers need to have a number of strategies in place to get featured there. I call these strategies the four “Cs”:

    Content
    — Create great content! Put in the effort and think about how to film your piece so you are showcasing it to its best advantage.

    Consistency
    — Post regularly! Minimum four times a week. I unfollow pages that don’t post regularly, because there are so many other pages that do post new content regularly.

    Collaborate
    — Work with jewelry influencers that already have large followings to make sure your brand is receiving exposure to a large audience. This should lead to an increase in followers on your page, and then, of course, it’s up to you to keep their attention and convert them into customers. Influencers should be able to create great content you can repost on your page. There is also an Instagram feature that allows the post to appear on multiple pages simultaneously, so you can have it on both your page and the influencer’s page.

    Creativity —
    Using the Instagram editing tools I mentioned in point 1 makes it easy for even the most uncreative of us to create eye-catching, appealing reels. Experiment with the different tools, or use video-editing apps that offer templates that will do the editing for you, such as Canva or Splice.

  3. Be distinctive. Some of the accounts I most enjoy following — for example, @paulwildgems — don’t have any finished jewelry pieces, but the way they showcase gems is so interesting and so different, I love watching their Reels. Others, such as @aarachminov_diamonds, include a ton of useful information on their posts, and I learn a lot from following their pages. My advice is always to be authentic: Find your own voice instead of copying or imitating others, and the followers will come.

  4. Make original content. Some things are essential for getting your account noticed. Originality is key. Create your own videos, using your own pieces. Don’t repost from other accounts — unless the video or post features one of your pieces and acknowledges it as such. A brand with videos I adore is @laurenbjewelry, whose videos are just so super cool. Another is @stephaniegottlieb, who not only shows her own jewelry, but provides essential guidelines for how to layer and wear it for different occasions. 

  5. Use multiple posting options. Reels, photographs and carousels are some of the options I’ve been using lately. Consider combining them with text, voice-overs and music. The options are endless; I believe Instagram likes it (and therefore favors the posts) when we use as many of their features as possible, so while I am a Reels fan, I make sure to use other features as well. Another important posting feature is Stories. These are great for showing behind-the-scenes images of your jewelry being made, or for sharing information about trunk shows, product launches and exhibitions.

  6. Provide a direct path to sales. I have seen many pages including the prices of items, and personally, I love it. Why not? Typically, this tends to be for fine jewelry and not high jewelry, but I would certainly encourage you to open an Instagram shop where you can link pieces that you’ve posted, and customers can see the price and purchase directly. I’ve bought several jewelry items, including a tennis necklace, directly from a jeweler on Instagram, and I’ve never regretted it. 

Lots to think about! I believe Instagram is going to remain an essential marketing tool for years to come, so players in the jewelry industry must have a carefully considered strategy in place.

I recommend considering TikTok as well. Influencers like @jewelswithjules are doing an incredible job talking about jewelry on TikTok, but there’s less content from jewelers themselves, which means there’s room to capture this market. Fashion and makeup brands are strong on TikTok, and it’s just a matter of time before jewelers follow suit. My advice is to be an early adopter. It’s a different platform that requires different content, but with 80% of TikTok users being between the ages of 16 and 34 (according to data directly from TikTok), it’s a sweet spot for the engagement-ring market.

Tracey Ellison is a leading jewelry influencer and blogger with 1.2 million Instagram followers on her @thediamondsgirl page, which showcases some of the world’s most dazzling diamonds, gems and jewelry.

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