Instagram is a hugely popular social platform, and is increasingly being used for branding and business promotion. However, to be successful on this platform, you need to focus on the things that you are posting as well as make people engage with each post. Instagram campaigns thrive on comments and likes, and you have to make constant efforts to boost your engagement to be a successful Instagrammer.
Here are 9 ways to boost your content popularity and user engagement on Instagram.
1. Use the right hashtags
Hashtags are bigger on Instagram than on Twitter. When you use relevant and proper hashtags, you can be assured of getting lots of ‘Like’ within a few minutes of posting new images on Instagram. There is major potential, given that the platform lets you use as many as 30 varied hashtags for each post. You simply have to know how to use them to the hilt.
Begin with your own branded Instagram hashtag, which can promote your brand over Instagram and make it grow.
2. Use Instagram Insights and other analytics tools
It is important to use analytics tools, and learn something from them. Analytics tools like Instagram Insights are very useful, and can give you a better understanding of what kind of content drives better engagement with your audience. It can also let you know when the audience is online on Instagram.
With regular analytics checks, you can find out about the likes and dislikes of the audience, and fine-tune your posts to ensure higher level of engagement.
3. Post better photos
The quality of images posted also matters a lot on Instagram. With better looking images, you can have more people noticing them in their feed. It can stop them on their tracks. Use one of the numerous photo-editing and enhancing tools to improve the quality of the pictures before you post them.
It will make a huge difference to the kind of experience that users can get from your Instagram profile.
A perfect example of this can be seen with the content that Gary Vaynerchuk posts to his Instagram account. It’s not the highest of quality, but it grabs the attention of his audience and makes them engage!
4. Use UGC (User Generated Content) for more involvement
User generated content is loved by the audience, and can give a more human appearance to your brand. It can aid in building a higher level of trust with the audience. You can:
- Re-post the images of others
- Repost content from your own followers
- Re-post from locations associated to your own business
You can use tools such as Instmap or Worldcam to explore various locations, and get good videos / images to repost.
This type of user-generate content has also worked extremely well for restaurant grand opening promotions, as it brings in new audiences and exposure to users on social media who might not have known about the launch of a new local business or eating spot.
5. Engage! Engage! Engage!
If you want more engagement, engage! Focus on your own subscribers / followers, and also other people who could be your potential audience. Begin with your followers. Browse through the newest images posted by your followers and engage with the same.
You can repost the best videos / photos with other images, and leave comments and likes under them for higher involvement.
6. Use location, always!
Hashtags can help people find your content and business on Instagram. However, you also need to tag your videos and images with your own location, to be able to reach even more number of people.
When you use locations within the content that you post, you can get more audience and successfully have more engagement.
Also, location hashtags aren’t just about the town, city or state you are currently in. As pointed out by Best-Hashtags, there are many different components to geographic location when using hashtags and trying to target a local audience.
7. Use various captions and experiment
As a social platform, Instagram is extremely visual. That said, you should not ignore the text aspect completely.
Use the caption space, and write down an attractive call to action message. Ask people to ‘Like’ or comment about your content. Encourage them to visit your ecommerce store or act in any other way that you wish.
8. Make your updates more diverse
There are varied features on Instagram that you may use:
- Rewind – Allows you to make reverse-playing videos
- Hashtag stickers – Add them to make your posts outstanding
Take a look at any of the most popular influencers on Instagram, and you are going to see that most of them have a unique content creation and posting style.
However, this is also a reminder that no specific method works best. You need to try testing with what you like, while also seeing how your audience reacts to each.
9. Post at proper times
Few people know that the days and times when you post updates on Instagram can have a major effect on their engagement and reach. The working days, Monday – Friday, are the best days to publish posts here. It is during the morning that people check their profile on Instagram, quite possibly while going to work and while being stuck in traffic.
You can also post around 5 pm, which is possibly for the reason that people are going back to their homes around this time. There is also a surge in Instagram activity during the afternoon, at 2 am – when people have meals and have some free time to check their profile.
However, it can be a good idea to make some of your own experiments and test when it is best to publish your posts. Try to post updates at various times of the day and night, and find out when you can typically get maximum user engagement. You may also use Instagram Insights and find out when your subscribers are most active.
How to Get the Most Out of Your Instagram Efforts
As you can see, when it comes to IG and growing your reach and audience through social media, there is a lot you can do. If you start to find yourself getting spread too thin, it’s important to realize that each of these methods can be implemented over time, outsourced or even better managed through the use of social media marketing tools and auto-scheduling solutions.
In order to get the most out of your time, money and effort, it’s important to track your progress and split test your results over time.
To get started, run through the list again and see which methods you are already doing, and which you can start adding into your day to day content creation and marketing efforts. If you get started today, you might be looking at some really good results by the end of next month!