Christmas is just around the corner; it’s already Hanukkah, and the New Year is coming, too. That means if you’re running a toy store, it’s one of the most popular times of the year for toys to be bought. If you want to amp up your business as much as possible this season, it’s important to not only be in the know about what toys are trending but also how to best market your business online. There’s so much to think about, from your website’s SEO to your newsletter to your social media presence. And one of the most important social media platforms these days is Instagram. More and more people are getting on it, and it’s become almost as important Facebook.

Instagram has a lot of great features you can take advantage of as a business. It’s all about knowing how to reach your audience, according to ingramer, and using the best engagement tactics once you’ve got them interested in your toy store. Here’s how.

Do your research

If you really want your Instagram to get noticed by potential customers, you need to stand out from the crowd. Did you know that, in 2017, there were 25 million active business profiles on Instagram? And with the Christmas season in full gear, all the businesses on Instagram are upping their engagement online, so you need to be noticed even when there’s so much competition. Speaking of competition–seeing what your competitors are doing is a good story. Especially successful toy stores know all about what color schemes are appealing to young and older parents (and grandparents!), as well as font and image and text content. This will help you get a start.

Once you’ve checked out your competitors, do some research about your customers. Get on Pinterest, Facebook, and Instagram to see what kind of gifts they’re looking for. According to Iconosquare, some strategies you can use to learn more about your customers is by creating marketing personas, stalking followers who’ve liked and commented on your posts, sending followers DMs and asking about what content interests them, using Instagram polls, and understanding your follower demographics (an Instagram for Business Account helps with this, which we’ll get to in a second).

Once you’ve completed all this research, you’ll know what kind of content to post, what fonts to use, what tone your captions should have, and which hashtags draw in the most users. And if you need additional help with engaging with your followers so you have time to focus on content, think about using a service like Social Gone Viral.

Switch to an Instagram for Business Profile

Now that your Instagram is the best it can be because of research, it’s time to start posting. But before you do, switch to an Instagram for Business Profile. The second you switch, by connecting your business’s Facebook account to Instagram, you’ll get tons of benefits. Automatically, you’ll have more followers because you’ll show up on more feeds. Additionally, you can include a website and bio, and contact information such as your email, phone number, and address. If you’re running a brick-and-mortar based business, this will up your SEO because Local SEO is one of the most powerful ways to get people interested in your business and walking through your door. If you’re an online store like Jizels, SEO will still drive traffic to your site to get more sales.

An Instagram for Business Profile also gives you access to free information about your followers via the Insights feature. You’ll learn about which posts are the most effective, and you’ll also get information such as location, age, and gender about followers. The more you post, the more information you’ll have, which means you can adjust your buyer personas and content to reflect this, and then improve your engagement. Considering that more than 40 billion photos have been shared on Instagram, this is one of the best ways for you to stand out among the competition.

Use Instagram Stories

One of the most exciting features on Instagram these days is Instagram Stories. This feature, which was introduced in 2016, was originally used because Instagram was losing many followers to Snapchat. By using it, Instagrammers could now share short, temporary videos about their day-to-day experiences. For a business, this is especially useful, because you can do fast videos showing how your products are made or do daily flash sales to get shoppers flocking to your store for now-or-never deals.

Think about this: Instagram is growing steadily and is expected to cross 2 billion active users by 2023. So using this feature will make a huge difference for your toy store business as the platform grows.

These are some of the best ways to market your toy store on Instagram. What other strategies are effective for marketing your toy store on social media?