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How to Use Instagram to Sell More Heavy-Duty Parts

Learn how you can leverage Instagram to sell more heavy-duty parts.

Episode 161: How do you sell more heavy-duty parts in a digital world? Or to go even further, can Instagram be used to help you sell more parts? In this episode, we talk about why Instagram is a social media channel you may want to give more attention to.

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Transcript of Episode:

Jamie Irvine:

You are listening to The Heavy Duty Parts Report. I’m your host, Jamie Irvine. And this is the show where you get expert advice about heavy-duty parts that keeps trucks and trailers on the road longer while lowering cost-per-mile.

So let’s talk a little bit about the social media platform that is Instagram. Instagram has grown in popularity, and it is certainly one of the most dominant social channels out there, but is it right for the trucking industry? Well, let’s first of all, talk a little bit about what you can do with Instagram and then we can get into how it applies to people in the trucking industry. So, first of all, Instagram is a very visual social media channel. The actual posts that people are sharing are all about that really great picture. And whereas Facebook and LinkedIn are longer form kind of content where you will put more words, let’s say in the actual copy of the post, you know, Instagram typically is more about the picture, less about the copy that you write underneath that picture. And so even the way that your profile shows all of your posts, it’s all about that board of pictures.

So it’s highly visual. And there are a lot of features that the Instagram social media channel has that really allows a content creator to become highly engaged with their audience. So for example, the Instagram social media channel, your Instagram account, not only can you have a personal account, you can set up a business account. And that leads us kind of back to our conversation about Facebook last week. So Facebook owns Instagram. They paid a lot of money, over a billion dollars, for this social media channel several years ago. And they have really developed it and integrated the business suite that manages your Facebook business account. And you can integrate that very seamlessly with your Instagram account as well. So your one business account can manage both your Facebook and your Instagram account. And this is very, very good for people who want to promote their company. Again though, the nature of the content that you share on Facebook is gonna be quite different than the nature of the content that you share on Instagram.

So with Instagram, you can post your pictures and you can put that to your board, but then you also have the opportunity of using Instagram stories. So the stories feature in Facebook and the stories feature in Instagram are virtually the same, short little clips. And really this is an opportunity for you to share behind the scenes things that are going on in your company. This is a great place to do that with Instagram stories. Now there’s also something called Instagram TV, IGTV. And this is for long form video content. So for example, at The Heavy-Duty Parts Report, my podcast about heavy-duty parts, I share stories on Instagram of little clips of the interviews that I do. I then put the entire interview all 25 or 30 minutes on IGTV. Now that actually shows up in my feed on my profile.

So when you do a long-form video on IGTV, it shows up with a little square, just like a picture does, and people can click on it and then it expands and they can watch the entire video. So if Instagram stories is all about the behind the scenes, then you can actually create a regular video program for your customers to learn about what you do, your products and service, and you can do long-form video and put it there. So I really appreciate the two kinds of video content that you can put on Instagram. Also, Instagram is capitalizing on the whole live movement and there is a more and more of that live content available. And Instagram wants to be part of that. So you can do Instagram lives and the way I kind of look at it, if Instagram stories is your behind the scenes and IGTV is your regular TV program, then Instagram live is your reality TV show.

And that’s kind of how you can think about the way that you want to create different kinds of content and then distribute it using Instagram. We’re gonna take a quick break. We’ll be right back. Having issues with your commercial equipment? You need ATA’s Technology and Maintenance Council also known as TMC. TMC develops recommended practices, addressing the most pressing technology and maintenance issues affecting commercial vehicle fleets. You can join TMC for just pennies a day. And when you do, you’ll get access to thousands of pages of technical information, and you can attend events like the upcoming 2022 Annual Meeting and Exhibition March 7th through 10th in Orlando, Florida. For more information, check out TMC at TMC trucking.org. Don’t have a heavy-duty part number and need to look up a part? Go to parts.diesellaptops.com or download the app on Apple or Android to create your free account.

Looking for high-quality fuel injection for heavy duty applications? Having one supplier for fuel injection allows you to better serve customers by providing them with a complete line, which increases your sales and profitability. Learn more at ambacinternational.com/aftermarket. Now is Instagram really ideally suited for people in the trucking industry selling heavy-duty parts? Well, I can say that my experience has been that there is a growing number of people in the trucking industry who are using Instagram. One of the things that we have to think about is when people are using a social media platform, they are in a very specific mindset. So when you are on LinkedIn, you’re thinking about business. That’s a B2B business social media platform. When you’re on Facebook, you know, you’re scrolling through your feed, your mindset is going to be maybe slightly different than when you’re on Instagram.

So when you’re on Instagram, you’re expecting highly visual content. And I think in the heavy-duty parts world, there is an opportunity to provide people with pictures, little video clips, long-form video content, and live content that will give them insight into the truck parts industry. And I think that’s the angle that you have to take. So one of the things that I do is yes, I post my long-form content. Yes, I post little short video clips, but I also like to throw in pictures of trucks. I like to throw in pictures of parts. And that way, people when they are scrolling and they see our posts, they are getting the kind of content that they’re looking for. Now, I can say that LinkedIn has been the social media channel that I built The Heavy-Duty Parts Report on and my consulting business on.

And I can say that Facebook is the place where I have seen a lot of growth in my audience. Instagram has been admittedly, a slow burn. We just kind of reorganized my personal profile and made it more personal to me and less about business. And we just launched The Heavy-Duty Parts Report business Instagram account. And we very quickly went from zero to 60 followers as of the recording and just a couple weeks. So there’s definitely people interested. And a lot of those people are diesel repair. That’s the business they’re in. And so they’re obviously using Instagram, they’re sharing pictures of the work that they’re doing. They are a perfect listener for me and a perfect customer for you. If you sell heavy-duty parts, the strategy behind the content I think is really, really important. And admittedly, I’m fully admitting that we are kind of in the early stages of our use of Instagram.

And so we’re still working on it and still figuring out the angles of and the kind of content that we wanna put there. But I do anticipate that LinkedIn will remain my primary source of really the social media channel that’s driving my business forward. Facebook and Instagram, I think are going to be very complimentary to what I’m doing on LinkedIn. They’re great for content creators like me, and they should be for marketers like you, who are trying to figure out how to sell heavy-duty parts in a digital world. So in my mind, I’m ranking the social media channels in a 1, 2, 3 punch, right? So one LinkedIn, that’s the big one, Facebook, Instagram, they’re great complimentary social sites and we’re seeing real growth there. So that is exciting. And I think that as Facebook and Instagram continue to evolve, they really are the place that is just perfect for making content and the ability to use the one business account and to create advertisement campaigns, to create, you know, different types of paid and sponsored content to get a growing and, and larger reach is really, really something that I’m enjoying going down that road and figuring out, and as I’ve been figuring it out, and as I’ve been leveraging it for my business, I’m starting to see how it can be used for businesses like yours.

If you’d like to work with me on your social media or marketing, then please reach out to me on any one of the social platforms that you’re watching this video on, or email me directly, [email protected].

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