Increase Instagram Engagement - Top 3 Tips!
Are you struggling to get the engagement you want from Instagram?
Finding it hard to reach your target audience?
Starting a new Instagram account can sometimes be a time consuming and challenging task. You post, use hashtags and tags awaiting good results, but you get nothing in return. Why is this? We're going to give you our personal top 3 tips every Instagrammer should utilise when creating a new account.
(1) Complete your profile fully, with useful information.
And we mean fully. Don’t just fill out your email address and password - provide useful and interesting information within the bio. Having a profile with a good biography can be the reason people leave your page or go on to browse further.
Start off by giving yourself an appropriate username. Don’t go for something too complicated as this will discourage people from remembering your username. More importantly, your name needs to be relevant to what you specialise in or have to offer. For example, if you want to showcase your nature paintings to the public, you'll want to find a username such as “kates.nature.paintings” or even ”kates.paintings”, if available. Having a username such as “katie1241” does not give any information on what your page specialises in and is likely to be ignored or forgotten.
The next step is selecting an appropriate profile picture that represents you and your offerings. So sticking with the same example above, an ideal profile picture would be an image of a painting or perhaps yourself painting. Users will know what to expect when clicking on a profile called “kates.paintings” with a relevant profile picture. It also makes it easy for people that are looking for a specific page via the Explore page. Very simple, but this could make all the difference.
Another important point is to ensure that you include a call-to-action. If someone is interested in buying your paintings, having clear, super easy instructions on how to buy will greatly benefit you.
Lastly, verify your email address and phone number and ensure that you have access to them for recovery purposes. Be sure not to use a fake email address. We heard of an account that had over 30K followers, gained by years of hard work. There was a suspicious login attempt that triggered a recovery email from Instagram. This email was sent to a fake email address for which the user had no means of gaining access to - meaning they never got back into their Instagram account again. Moral of the story - use a real email address and verify it. It’s better to be safe than sorry!
(2) Put together a list of hashtags that are relevant to your profile
A lot of people are unaware of this but, Instagram has a hashtag limit. Each post you publish can have a maximum of 30 hashtags and no more, so make the most of this allowance. We strongly advise against using hashtags such as #Like4Like or #Follow4Follow as these are spammy tags and the engagement gained from these tags are very unlikely to be real people who are interested in your work. Again, sticking to the painting example from before, I would use tags such as #Artist, #Painting, #Nature, #PaintingoftheDay etc. Users that find you via these tags will be genuinely interested in painting, and are much more likely to engage in liking, commenting or even contacting. If you’re struggling to find hashtags for your posts, check out the handy step-by-step guide we’ve put together below:
Using the search feature on Instagram, search for a hashtag that is relevant to you and your offerings.
You’ll either come across thousands (or sometimes millions) of posts if this is an exceptionally popular tag, or you’ll not find many at all, making this more of a niche hashtag. You can filter the results by “Recent” at the top of the page next to “Top”.
3. Once you’ve filtered by “Recent”, you can begin to look through the most recent posts to get an idea of popular and unpopular hashtags, some of which you might want to use yourself.
Some may be relevant to you, others useless. I’d spend a good 15 minutes to half an hour looking through these hashtags and creating a list of your own. Remember, you can only have a maximum of 30 hashtags so make the most of them.
One thing to take note of is that sometimes it can look messy having hashtags in the titles of the post. Posting the hashtags in the comment section is a great way to improve the way others see your post from the offset. Above is an example of tags in the caption and below is an example of tags in the comments - which do you prefer the look of?
The final and the most crucial stage is posting. I will split this stage in to sections as there is a fair bit to cover here.
Firstly, make sure that the image you’re posting is of the highest possible quality. We often see low-quality images with the smallest text on the discover feed, which in our opinion, doesn't look great. The goal is to have people clicking on your photos, not swiping past them, so make them attractive. We've provided a screenshot below on what the discover feed and hashtag search looks like for posts.
Now, before you post, you’ll need to make sure that the caption you’re using for the photo isn’t too long, keep things simple and to the point. For example, if you’re offering users a discount, announce it straight away at the beginning of the text - you don’t want users to miss this vital information.
The above image is an excellent example of a brief, but effective caption. The picture itself isn’t the greatest example, but if you were to add “10%” in one of the top corners, it’s very likely to attract attention. You’ll start converting visitors in no time!
Tagging other, relevant pages that focus on the same topic as you can help boost your online following. You can search for similar pages using the hashtag search we previously mentioned, but instead of noting down hashtags, note down their username for future use. It’s likely that you’ll come across ‘share’ pages who simply showcase users work. You may need to use their hashtag or tag them in the post to get their attention but some also accept submissions through direct messages or even emails, so be sure to check their bio.
Lastly, and an important one. Be sure to tag locations of relevant events/places of interest you attend. Using the above example again, if you’ve recently attended an art exhibition, make sure to tag the location. You’ll have the option to add this information just before you publish (note: you can always go back and add this if you forget!) When others search the location, your post will be included in what they find.
So that’s it! I hope you were able to take a thing or two away from this blog post. We would love to hear your thoughts on these tips so feel free to get in touch with us! If you’re thinking of starting on Instagram, but don’t have the time to manage the account then get in touch with our digital marketing team who would be more than happy to help.
Why not also check out the other digital marketing services we offer!