Instagram is not just for selfies anymore.

With more than 200 million active users, Instagram is becoming a go-to hub for marketers to promote their brands on social media, and it’s no surprise that apartment companies are getting in on the action.

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Companies such as Reside Living and Contemporary Management Concepts have already scoped out Instagram’s potential and what it can do to showcase not only their apartments, but their brand and neighborhoods.

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So your apartment company has an Instagram account— now what?

It’s easy to throw a Valencia filter on a photo of one of your apartment buildings and call it a day, but is that really what people want to see? Instagram is an opportunity to take people behind the doors of your community and give them a look at life through the eyes of your residents.

If your company prides itself on upholding specific brand values, Instagram is the perfect place to show that. Do your staff and residents participate in community service? Are you focused on supporting local businesses? Let your followers see that passion through your photos.

For example, our client Reside Living uses some of their Instagram posts to advocate healthy living.

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Finding and posting engaging content doesn’t have to be a daunting task. Photo opps can be found just about anywhere: events, contests, and cool new additions to your buildings, just to name a few.

Sometimes the best pieces of content come straight from a wonderful source called “your residents.” A little bit of photo treasure hunting can lead to content gold you never even knew existed.

Tools like Worldcam, powered by the ever-popular Foursquare, let you search Instagram photos based on location. Use this to look at what’s going on at your apartment buildings and the surrounding neighborhood.

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Hashtags are your friend.Try searching your apartment company name or your property name as a hashtag and you might be surprised at how many people are already using it.

If you find photos you think are worth sharing, there are a variety of re-posting tools that let you share it on your own page. Chances are, your followers will be excited that they are being featured, and will also feel encouraged to keep posting content.

No matter where you find content, you should always remember these universal tips before posting:

  • Post clear photos. Blurry pictures are not only an eyesore, they can potentially make your apartment company seem uninteresting and not worth following.
  • Don’t spam your followers. The beauty of Instagram is that you don’t have to post all the time. Set a schedule that is consistent but doesn’t overwhelm your followers with a flood of photos.

My final advice: Interact. Be human. Build a sense of community.

Don’t be afraid to follow your residents, local influencers and businesses, and “like” and comment on their photos.

Simply posting photos a few times a week just doesn’t cut it in the Instagram world, and if you do that you’ll miss out on some great opportunities to connect with current and potential followers.

Happy ‘gramming!