Instagram is by far my favourite social media platform to use for brands. There are a multitude of different ways that you can engage your audience, and deliver them valuable content.
Here are four tips to get better Instagram engagement for your personal brand, or brand that you currently manage!
If there is one simple tip I can give you, it would be this one! Pick a posting date, and an accompanying posting time, and stick to it. Your followers want consistent, reliable content, and if you’re all over the place with what you’re delivering, your engagement is constantly going to be all over the place as well.
When you’re first starting out on a new account, it is important to first test out different posts that align with your brand, and test different days and times to see what gives you the best engagement. Using your Instagram Insights tool to guide these decisions is an essential step because it will show you what times and days your audience is most active, and thus more inclined to engage with your posts.
If you find that posting on Tuesdays at 3pm gives you the most likes, make that one of your staple posting times. Think about developing content pillars. Tuesday might be a day where you throw up an inspiring graphic, while Wednesdays might be when you post compelling photography. Make sure you have content pillars to pull from, and then stick to what you decide for your Instagram strategy.
Do hashtag research and mix it up
If you’re not already using hashtags on your Instagram posts, it’s time to start. Hashtags allow you to expand your reach beyond your followers. That being said, you need to invest time in hashtag research and be open to using different ones on different posts, and continue to experiment with what hashtag combinations work best.
I am all for using the maximum amount of 30 hashtags, if they are well curated. You want to use a mix of highly used hashtags, and more moderately used ones. For example, having a bunch of hashtags that have more than 1 million uses (stuff like #love #inspire, etc.), might work, but your post will also be easily buried among the 1 million+ other posts using the same hashtags.
Aim to find hashtags that have less than 1 million, but more than 100,000 uses to pair with ones that do. This allows you to organically target your niche in a much more focused way.
If you’re a wellness brand, you’re competing with more than 24 million posts when you use the #wellness tag. But, when you use a more targeted hashtag like #wellnesslifestyle, you’re competing with just over 86,000 tags, and have a better chance of being seen. So, the hashtags #wellness and #wellnesslifestyle would be two hashtags you can include in your hashtag group. Build off of these ideas of mixing different hashtags, and aiming for more niche ones!
Create different hashtag groups ranging from 20-30 hashtags each and then test them. See what preforms the best, gets you the most engagement, and then repeat on other posts.
PRO TIP: rather than include all of your hashtags in your caption, add them to your comments. It keeps your caption section clean!
Use Instastories religiously
I am a huge advocate for Instastories, and I find them more valuable than the Instagram grid itself. It’s a great way to get organic traffic, and reach more people by:
- Adding hashtags to your story
- Tagging other brands in your story
- Using engaging GIFs, questions, polls, etc. in your story
- Utilizing the Swipe Up feature in 95% of your posts if your brand has over 10K followers
Get in the habit of creating ritual content on your stories (this is consistent content that your audience will eventually come to expect). For example, if you’re a lifestyle brand that offers weekly horoscopes every Monday create an engaging Instastories’ graphic (I use Canva because it’s simple, fast and if you know how to use it well, it’s easy to create stunning graphics) and schedule it every for every Monday.
Writing daily blogs? Get that on your Instastories! Going behind-the-scenes on a project? Instastories. As I mentioned in my first tip, being consistent here is important, but feel free to go “off the cuff” a bit.
There is no limit in regards to what you can do here, so experiment with what feels right for your brand. If you’re creating graphics, make sure you’re utilizing the brand’s font and colors.
Ask your audience what they want
This sounds simple, but it’s something not many brands do. Instastories is a great way to do this, especially with the poll and question feature. I love interacting with people in this type of way, and it provides two major benefits:
- More engagement
- Important data
Why not ask your audience what they want to read on your blog? Or what type of products they’re interested in? One thing I often ask is what type of content they want to see posted for a certain day (i.e. “do you want to take a quiz today, or read a blog?), and then deliver exactly what they ask for.
Your audience will appreciate that you’re asking them what they want here and there, rather than blindly posting. Additionally, this will help create a super engaged community!
What are some ways that you get your audience engaged on Instagram? Let me know!