Business vs. Personal vs. Creator Profile - Which is best for your business or brand?
If you are well versed when it comes to Instagram then you probably know there are (read: were) two types of profiles; a business profile and a personal profile. No this doesn’t refer to what you use Instagram for but instead what you have selected in your settings and told the app what you use it for. So yes you can have a Personal Profile that you technically use for your business, or a can have a Business Profile where you don’t actually sell anything.
Just recently there has been is a whole new type of profile tossed into the mix and that is Instagram’s Creator Profile. These profiles are designed for Influencers, artists and producers but those aren’t the only people who might benefit from the new set up.
I’m going to take you through the details of each profile so you can decided what’s best for your brand or business!
Business profiles come with a few really neat features including the
Call to Action Buttons - you can choose to have Call, Email and/or Direction buttons on your profile right under your bio which can definitely be effective for brick and mortar stores, or bookings
Analytics - the analytics features is definitely not something to underestimate. You have access to numbers such as how much reach your post gets, how many people viewed your post from your hashtags and some accounts even have access to which specific hashtags are bringing in traffic. That’s hugely valuable! I am not one of those accounts and I am very jealous. Then there is the demographic portion of the analytics which will give you a breakdown of your audience including male vs. female percentages, age, what cities they live in, and when they are most active on Instagram during the day.
Ads - If you’ve ever switched over to a business account you probably noticed a little ‘Boost’ or ‘Promote’ button show up under each of your posts. Through a business profile you can easily run a mini ad to your Instagram audience. If you select Promote within the IG app and link your account to facebook you can easily run an ad.
Pro Tip: In my experience you get a better bang for your buck but setting up your ads through Facebook itself even if you are running them on IG. Of course that takes more work and there is a pretty steep learning curve for FB ads! I’d ONLY PROMOTE A POST if the content of that post is prime content that really shows off your brand so just keep that in mind.
Selling Feature - only business profiles are able to use the sell-within-the-app buttons. You know when you see a little icon on a photo and you tap it to see the price of the item? Yup only business accounts can do this. SO if you are a ecommerce business with or without a store front this is SUPER valuable to you and with this feature alone your decision has pretty much been made. I’m not sure if the shoppable option is available to EVERY account just yet as Instagram tends to roll these things out in batches but it is coming to you so I’d look into it asap!
So personal profiles definitely don’t have all the bells and whistles that a business account does but they definitely still have their perks. For one privacy - you can’t be a private account on a business profile. However, if you are using a personal profile for business then I wouldn’t recommend being private anyway.
The second benefit of having a personal profile is that Instagram doesn’t know you are a business. Here’s why this matters. A few years ago Facebook became a very obvious pay-to-play site which meant that Facebook was forcing businesses to spend money on ads in order to get their content seen. Well Instagram is owned by Facebook so we would definitely need to assume that Instagram is headed in the same direction. Users have definitely noticed and discussed a drop in reach after switching from a personal to a business account.
Now you might be thinking, “omg I don’t want to run ads anyway so I’m going to switch back from Business Profile to Personal”. But hold your horses there. Rumour has it if you have ever been listed as a business account you will be stuck with the same setbacks in reach even if you do switch back. However, I actually did switch back and noticed a jump in engagement. SO it’s clearly all just speculation.
I then ended up switching back to a business account because running ads was a big part of my course launch and email list building strategy.
Lastly is the shiny new creator profiles. These profiles were first rolled out to Influencers with substantial followings but the update is now slowly rolling out across the globe. It seems that everyone will eventually have to option to make the switch.
Let’s talk about some of the features of the creator profile:
Analytics - So the creator profile DOES have access to analytics just like a business profile however the analytics are a bit different. A Creator profile will still have access to the same demographics as a business profile allowing them to learn how to serve their audience better. however they will also be able to track follow/unfollow fluctuations.
Simplified DMs - As you can imagine a Influencer’s inbox is completely full of messages 24/7. Not just in their inbox but also the request. Did you know when your request box gets full it just says “99+”. That might seem wild to the average user but for an Influencer is commonplace to have a 99+ request inbox plus hundreds of DMs. What the Creator profile allows is for the user to segment messages and prioritize them, most likely it will be based on username or content of emails or time received which will help the Influencer sort out the messages vs. the spam.
No API Connection - A con is that with a creator profile you cannot use pre-scheduling tools. Which means you can’t connect Hootsuite, or Later.com, or Planoly and have these secondary apps driving traffic to your page.
Shopping - even though Influencers may not necessarily have a product line to sell they will be able to include shoppable links in their posts. I’m not sure just yet but this may be exclusive to paid or sponsored ads where they can only sell on posts if they link their post to a business account hosted by the brand they are working with. Time will tell on that one!
Ads - As far as ads go Creator profiles will be able to run them the same as Business profiles!
So now you’ve got all the deets on the Personal vs. Business vs. Creator profiles! Sadly I do not have access to the Creator Profile just yet however, when that day comes I think I will definitely be making the jump! I don’t use any pre-scheduling tools for my posts and I don’t have a physical product to sell which kind of knocks out the two biggest PROs of a Business Profile. Many of the other features overlap so since I am a Digital Creator I’d say the Creator Profile suits me best!
I’d love to know if you’re going to make a change after reading this blog! Did you learn something new?! Feel free to leave a comment below! If not..