Today, I’ll review how to use Instagram shoutouts for dropshipping.
One of the main requirements for dropshipping businesses is to get traffic to their store.
Using paid ads through Facebook is a great way to get traffic, but using influencer marketing can be even more profitable…
Influencer marketing is when you pay Instagram influencers directly for a shoutout post.
But… what are the best types of paid Instagram shoutouts?
How do you find Instagram influencers or shoutout pages?
Let’s find out in this guide on how to use Instagram shoutouts for dropshipping!
What Is An Instagram Shoutout?
An Instagram shoutout (IG shoutout) references a person, brand, product, or service via an Instagram post.
In the context of dropshipping, it is a social media marketing strategy that lets dropshippers utilize the influence of other social media users by allowing them to post their products while tagging their business page.
Instagram shoutouts are an effective form of marketing that lets you reach your target audience and potential customers. It provides an easy way for you as a dropshipper to achieve your business goals by placing your product in front of many relevant people.
Why Use Instagram Shoutouts for Dropshipping?
Instagram shoutouts are pretty different from traditional sponsored Ad posts. Instead of waiting on the platform’s algorithm to direct your ad to your potential audience, you take your products to them by leveraging Instagram influencers. Here are five ways influencer marketing can help your dropshipping business:
When it comes to social media, you can buy anything except credibility. With so many scam accounts flooding cyberspace, you’d want to let your potential customers know that you can be trusted by associating your business with a credible brand or Instagram influencer.
Establishing yourself as a trustworthy brand can be frustrating, especially as a new dropshipper. Instead of waiting for people to believe in your products eventually, you can get a little help from an Instagram influencer in the form of IG shoutouts.
For example, let’s say you started a dropshipping business in the beauty niche and need more followers on your Instagram account. You can reach out to trusted Instagram accounts in the beauty niche for a shoutout post, considering you share a similar audience.
If you’ve ever felt like Instagram’s algorithm favor big brands with a large following, you are not wrong. The more engagement on a post, the more the algorithm shows it to larger audiences.
If your Instagram profile is new, it can be challenging for your post to reach many people without a bit of help. This is where Instagram shoutouts and influencer marketing come in. A large Instagram account shoutout can boost your page’s followers and activities.
Distinguish Your Business From The Crowd
Your business is only one of the million other businesses in social media today. According to Statista, over 91% of marketers in the United States use social media for their business. However, great shoutouts from reputable Instagram accounts can distinguish your business from the crowd (dropshippers in the same niche). This factor and excellent service can quickly promote you to a household name in that dropshipping niche.
Get More Results on a Small Budget
Instagram shoutouts are a relatively cheaper form of social media marketing. If you are a new dropshipper looking to improvise visibility but with a small budget, you can hop on the Instagram shoutout train! You can use micro-influencers to get Instagram shoutouts for relatively cheap (< $50).
Instagram shoutouts are not limited to only getting more followers… Many dropshippers will use influencer marketing to get sales on their Shopify store. To increase your chances of this happening, you can utilize landing pages, special links, discount sales, and other strategies to convert followers into customers.
Types of Instagram Shoutouts
Instagram usage has gone beyond posting fun selfies and vacation pictures. It is now a powerful marketing tool, with 75% of its users admitting to using the social platform for product research.
As you scroll through your Instagram feeds, you’d find four types of Instagram shoutouts which are shoutouts for shoutouts, paid shoutouts, voluntary shoutouts, and affiliate shoutouts.
Before delving into some examples of Instagram shoutouts for dropshipping businesses, let’s take a look at the four types of IG shoutouts and when to use them:
Shoutout For Shoutout (S4S)
As the name implies, S4S means trading shoutouts for shoutouts. Due to its symbiotic nature, it is the best form of marketing for businesses in vaguely similar niches to help each other grow.
To better understand how an S4S works, let’s say you run a dropshipping business focusing on high-end kitchen islands. You can enter a Shoutout for shoutout agreement with a kitchen lighting bulb dropshipper since you both share a similar audience. One of you then offers a shoutout in hopes that the other party does the same.
Paid Instagram shoutouts are a very effective form of influencer marketing. It involves you offering cash, free products, or services to an Instagram influencer in exchange for a shoutout.
Why should you pay for something as simple as a shoutout? That’s because paying for a shoutout, as compared to free shoutouts, offers more quality results. You also get to tap into the fanbase of the Instagram influencer in question and subsequently acquire more customers.
Essentially, you’re paying for the attention of a certain amount of Instagram users.
Let’s face it; some people will prefer to buy a product based on the recommendation of an everyday person like them rather than buy it just because an influencer posted it.
Hence, nothing beats a genuine and voluntary shoutout from a satisfied customer. Instead of paying to get your product on an influencer’s page, a happy customer does that for free. This strategy is referred to as the holy grail of Instagram shoutouts, as it tends to have a persuasive effect on fellow Instagram users.
Affiliate marketing shoutouts are similar to paid shoutouts, but this time, the Instagram influencer only gets paid when their audience purchases the product.
An affiliate link is added to the shoutout post alongside a Call to Action for people to purchase that product. A certain percentage of the profit from each sale goes to the influencer. This type of shoutout is a favorite amongst new businesses and growing influencers as it puts both parties in a win-win situation.
5 Instagram Shoutout Examples
Instagram shoutouts can be in different formats depending on your goal, budget, and niche. It also depends on the size and age of your own Instagram account. Here are five examples of Instagram shoutouts you can use for your dropshipping store.
1. Shoutout Post With Product Picture
Source: Getting Growth
This is the most popular format for making a shoutout on Instagram. Here the account making the shoutout uploads an image of your product alongside a fun caption and @ your page. If it is a paid shoutout, it will go further to include a call to action (CTA) and a hashtag signifying that it’s an ad (#ad).
In this Instagram shoutout example, the influencer (@brihallofficial) gives a shout-out to a cereal brand (@specialk) in a creative way. In the post, it was signified that it is a paid partnership which means the brand paid in cash or products.
2. Shoutout Post Without Product Picture
Source: Flock Social
Depending on the kind of product, it is possible to get an Instagram shoutout without having the picture of the item included in the post.
The Instagram shoutout by the Instagram user (@amrezy) above features several beauty brands like (@glossier, @diormakeup, etc.). However, none of these products were featured in the photo, but we can see their possible results. Since the post does not have a #Ad, it is most likely a voluntary shoutout.
3. Shoutout For More Followers
You must have come across big brands making a shout-out to a smaller account on the platform of promoting their products while also giving the smaller account an avenue to increase their followers.
According to the picture above, the camera brand (@canonaustralia) made a shoutout to the photographer (@Jocairdphoto) during their #canontakeover campaign. The photos in the shoutout are the ones taken using a Canon camera. This form of a shout-out is a win-win situation for both parties.
4. Instagram Story Shoutout
Source: Hopper HQ
Instagram stories offer a fun and creative way for people to give a shoutout. Influencers can use photos, videos, and graphics in their ad campaigns.
In the above Instagram story shoutout, the Instagram user made a post tagging (@bailythestylist and @belowhairstudio) in what looks like a voluntary shoutout.
Paying for an Instagram story shoutout is excellent because the post will stay up for 24 hours. This gives Instagram users multiple chances to see the shoutout.
5. Affiliate Instagram Shoutouts
The Instagram shoutout above is a sample of an Affiliate IG shoutout. Here, the influencer posted video content about the product and added a unique coupon code (affiliate) and a persuasive CTA.
How To Find Instagram Influencers & Shoutout Pages
There are two ways to find the best shoutout pages for your Instagram shoutout. Here they are…
For an Instagram shoutout, you need to use industry-specific hashtags to find top influencers in your niche. You can use any free or paid tools to access some trending hashtags in your niche.
For example, let’s say you run a home decor dropshipping business. You’d want to check out the top hashtags in that niche, like:
#homedecoration #homedecor #interiordesign and more…
As you conduct this research, you’d find posts and influencers related to these hashtags. You can then contact them for a paid shoutout or shoutout-for-shoutout agreement.
Instagram Shoutout Apps
If you have a great marketing budget and no time to waste, you can skip the entire research process and pay for software like Shoutcart, which specializes in connecting brands and influencers. You’d be provided industry-specific keywords to find the perfect influencer for your unique dropshipping product.
Best Practices for Instagram Shoutouts
Before paying for an Instagram shoutout or entering an S4S agreement, you must have a well-defined set of goals you hope to achieve at the end of the shoutout. With these goals in mind, you can find the right account to help you achieve them.
Note that there is no right way to go about getting an Instagram shoutout but below are some best practices to implement to get the best results:
Research The Influencer
The result your shoutout post produces is strongly determined by the type of influencer you use. You must look past the number of followers and check if the influencer fits your brand.
One thing to pay attention to in your search for a shoutout page is the tone and feel of their content. It can be in the same niche, yet your product or brand may not resonate well with its audience.
Let’s say you are in the home decor niche but focus more on budget-friendly decor for new moms; it would be futile to use a luxury interior decor influencer for an Instagram shoutout as your brand may not resonate with their audience.
Additionally, you’d want to keep an extra eye out for fake followers. Many Instagram users result in buying followers to achieve “influencer status.” You should be wary of an Instagram account with 500k followers but only has 100 comments on average.
Another sign of fake followers is the presence of too many spammy and irrelevant comments on the page. A great way to analyze Instagram accounts is by using a spy tool like Minea.
Make Choices Based On your Budget
Your marketing budget determines the type of influencer you use for your IG shoutout. You can opt for big names in your niche if you have a large budget. But if you don’t, stick with micro-influencers with a handful of followers.
In some cases, smaller followers yield the best result, considering the page is somewhat of a community at that point. This influencer marketing has less risk because you’re spending less money.
Nevertheless, it is advisable to request shoutouts from multiple accounts with different ranges of followers to get the best results for your Shopify store. You can use the template below:
Shoutout 1: 2,000–5,000
Shoutout 2: 5,000–10,000
Shoutout 3: 10,000–25,000
Shoutout 4: 25,000–50,000
Shoutout 5: 50,000–100,000
Shoutout 6: 100,000+
Relationship Before Business
Social media marketing is built on a “give and take” strategy where you first have to offer some form of value to a page before requesting that they do the same. As a rule of thumb, you must have some form of genuine interaction with an Instagram page before asking for the shoutout.
You can start by leaving relevant comments on their posts, subscribing to their blog, and following them on other social media platforms like Twitter. You can’t go overboard and come off desperate to get Instagram shoutouts.
Send a Friendly & Thoughtful Message
Whether you are asking for a shoutout or paying for one, be sure to be thoughtful in your approach, as that can determine the quality of service you get. Ensure not to leave spammy comments requesting a shoutout on the Influencer’s Instagram post but send a well-written direct message or email stating your intentions.
Here is an email template for requesting an S4S agreement:
Hello [Name of Influencer],
I’m [Your Name] from [Business name]. I’ve been following your IG page for a while, and I love/enjoy/admire/appreciate your [Add personalized compliments about their content or brand].
I think my followers will enjoy your content. Likewise, I think your followers will enjoy mine. Would you mind trading a shoutout for a shoutout on your feed or story?
If you are interested, let me know which you’d prefer, and let’s work on the details. I look forward to hearing from you.
The email template above goes through three essential steps: an introduction, stating your offer, and prompting them to take the next step. An email like this gives you a better chance of being considered and establishes you as professional and serious-minded. You could also message the influencer through a platform like Shoutcart.
Instagram Shoutouts: FAQ
Do Instagram shoutouts actually work?
When applied correctly, an Instagram shoutout from a reputable account can increase your followers, boost engagement, give your brand more recognition and ultimately improve sales.
How do you ask an influencer for a shoutout?
The most ethical way to ask for a shoutout is to reach out to the influencer via direct message or email. If you receive no response, wait for some days to go by before sending a follow-up message.
How much does it cost for a shoutout on Instagram?
An Instagram shoutout can cost anywhere from $50 to $100,000+, depending on the influencer’s fanbase. Massive Instagram accounts like Kim Kardashian or Kylie Jenner can charge million for shoutouts because they have so many followers.
Is it legal to sell and buy Instagram shoutouts?
An Instagram shoutout is a form of influencer marketing and has been around for a while. It is 100% legal and safe when carried out with proper disclosure.
Is Instagram the only platform that has shoutout pages?
No. Some other platforms that have influencers are TikTok (the best alternative to Instagram) and Twitter. TikTok might be the best place to get a shoutout if your product requires a video instead of an image.
Conclusion – Should You Use Paid Instagram Shoutouts?
After being in the dropshipping trenches for 5+ years, it’s clear that influencer marketing can be very lucrative.
While nothing beats the organic growth that stems from genuine shoutouts, that can take months or even years to happen…
Paying for a shoutout can be a great alternative if you follow the right approach.
You must get Instagram shoutouts from the right influencer and use the correct type of shoutout post.
Of course, you want to increase your followers, but you should also aim for building a loyal customer base founded on trust and integrity.
For analyzing and finding influencers, you should use Minea.
And for transacting with influencers, use Shoutcart.