Businesses, both big and small, need to consider Instagram as a part of their marketing campaigns.
Instagram has several benefits: the ability to gather insights, stream live videos, interact with your customers, and even sell products. You can advertise, communicate with your audience, and post professional-looking photos that entice non-customers into taking a second look.
You may be wondering how to boost engagement on Instagram though. Perhaps you already have an account, and it’s not flourishing as you thought it would. No matter the words in your caption or fancy filters getting used, people just aren’t interested.
If this sounds like you, we can help you change that! Keep reading for some top tips for improving Instagram engagement.
1. Make Your Bio Accurate
This step is the first to make your Instagram a place for finding reliable information about your business. If your bio has the room for it, consider posting your hours and location, as well as contact information. If your business has an email account, link to it.
If something like your hours or operation status changes (due to things like COVID-19), make sure it’s obvious and transparent so current and future customers know what to expect.
2. Consider Making a ‘Business’ Account
Taking your IG account from ‘regular’ to ‘business’ does wonder for your username’s professional look and feel.
A business Instagram lets you link to your location in your bio (which brings users to their version of Maps), customize your niche beneath your username, and add a Contact button.
It also lets you have access to metrics such as your audience, reaches, and impressions, so you can see what’s working, and what’s not.
Additionally, if you post a product in your Instagram stories, you can also have a ‘Swipe Up’ link that lets users buy something easily and conveniently.
These are a few of many reasons to make the switch to a business account!
3. Utilize Hashtags (Correctly)
Every Instagram post allows up to 30 hashtags; every story allows up to three hashtags. However, that doesn’t mean your hashtags shouldn’t have some thought behind them.
Various experts have differing advice. But in general, some guidelines are as follows:
- Use three to five “popular” hashtags, i.e., hashtags with anywhere from 300,000 to 1 million (or more) interactions
- Choose a handful of moderately-used hashtags
- Pick a handful of esoteric hashtags, i.e., ones that are very niche-specific
- If you have any, use branded hashtags (another good practice to consider!)
Choosing popular hashtags may increase your odds of getting extra exposure, but those highly-specific, targeted keywords are fantastic for reaching your audience.
If possible, create a branded hashtag—one that’s currently unused by a competitor in your industry—and encourage your customers to use that hashtag if posting about your product or service.
4. Respond to DMs and Comments
Doing so provides that human contact that is so valuable to your audience.
If you’re not receiving as many comments or DMs as you’d like, you can prompt your readers to do so. Ask questions in your captions, encourage your users or customers to post pictures of themselves with your product, and answer any inquiries in your direct messages.
You should even respond to untoward comments, using the opportunity to make things better with that person. This gesture shows the level of care and attention that comes with your business.
5. Have a Theme to Your Posts
The more consistent your posting is, the more of a branded image you’re conveying. Your Instagram is your opportunity to tell a story. If your visuals are scattered, with no common themes, filters, or focus, it’ll look like several different people are posting under one name.
Instead, have your Instagram be a part of your brand. You can download Instagram pictures to your computer and then repost them across your other pages too, offering a sense of cohesion between your platforms. You want your page to be undeniably, memorably you.
6. Repost User-Generated Content
User-generated content (UGC) is any photo, post, or text that’s created by users.
This type of content is essentially free marketing. You can repurpose it on your own page, showing new and current customers how well-loved your product or service is to others.
If someone tags your brand in a post, make sure to repost it to your story, thank them, and maybe even link to that same product within your post.
7. Use Faces in Photos
A 2014 study of 1 million Instagram posts showed that photographs with faces in them received up to 38% more likes and 32% more comments.
The study also found that any face will do; age and gender didn’t have much sway.
Who’s the face behind your business? Who are your valued employees? Who are your customers?
Consider making posts that answer these questions: employee shout-outs, customer shout-outs, the owner’s biography, etc. This human touch allows your audience to become that much more familiar with your authentic brand.
8. Perform Regular Instagram Audits
What good are Instagram metrics if you never take stock of them?
Within your Instagram marketing plan, set aside time to conduct regular Instagram audits. Are you reaching new users? Are you getting the engagement you hoped for after some calculated efforts?
If yes, you’ll know you’re doing something right, and you can double down on your tactics. If not, you should reevaluate what you’re posting and see how you can make it more interactive.
Now You Know How to Boost Engagement on Instagram: Get to Posting
It doesn’t have to be complicated.
Improving your Instagram’s engagement is as simple as following the above tips. While some factors are more unpredictable than others, using these guidelines in tandem should have your rankings soaring much quicker than your current strategy allows.
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