Read more to learn some essential yet simple ways to boost your Instagram engagement and build better relationships with your followers.
Let’s face it, Instagram is no longer as simple as it used to be… it’s gone from posting cute pictures for likes to heavily engagement-focused content. If you’re wanting to connect with your target audience without any engagement, you might as well quit while you’re ahead. Keeping an eye on your engagement allows you to build deeper connections with your audience, and for small businesses, this could be the one key process that puts you on the map.
Sidenote: It’s worth us explaining Instagram engagement briefly just in case you’re not entirely sure what we mean. Engagement is much more than just your follower count, it translates into how your audience is interacting with your content. Engagement could be, likes, comments, saves, shares, all the way down to direct messages, link clicks/swipe-ups and hashtag usage.
Engagement is one of the most high-ranking agents for Instagram’s algorithm. In short, the more people engage with your content, the more other’s are likely to be shown it due to Instagram assuming it’s what people want to see.
We could sit here all day and justify the difference between good and bad engagement, but it’s pointless. As a business, you need to think about what engagement means for you. For example, giveaway posts are essential to boosting some brands' engagement, however, for others, they may do well on engagement but provide no other use, such as driving sales. Once you have realised what works best for your Instagram, you can continue to use this as data to create the best content that is most likely to work best for your audience.
To give you a helping hand along the way to engagement greatness, we’ve put together five of the best tips that will help you gauge what does best with your audience and how you can tailor your content towards them more effectively.
1. Utilising multiple content forms
Instagram allows you to post in multiple forms, from single-image posts to videos, reels and IGTV’s. By utilising each one of its formats, you are most likely able to see which does best with your audience and you can then keep this in mind when making future content.
For example, if you were a food company, aesthetically pleasing images of your food may appeal to your audience a lot more than a lengthy recipe video, it’s all about testing the different formats to suit your business.
2. Reading between the likes
Although likes and follows used to be the way content was measured, sadly this is no longer the case. We scroll aimlessly through our feeds and tap away without giving much thought, right!? Today, comments, shares and saves show that we care a lot more as they take more time and effort to perform.
Even though saves and shares are not something everyone can see on your posts, it doesn’t mean they’re worthless. Not only do these metrics give you important data about your content, i.e. what type of content your audience interacts with the most, it tells Instagram that people like your content too. If Instagram sees your content is doing well, you’re more likely to rank higher in the algorithm, thus, more people will see your content and your reach and engagement will blossom.
3. Interaction is key
In the words of Hootsuite ‘to reap the rewards, you don’t just need an audience: you need engagement’. In other words, it’s useless just throwing out content to your audience and just expecting them to engage with it because it’s simply pleasing to the eye.
To boost engagements such as comments, try using questions and enticing CTA’s to get your audience talking.
However, a key element of interaction is engaging back. Don’t let your audience’s reactions fall on deaf ears, always make sure you respond to comments and messages as you would if it was someone calling your business; professional and prompt.
4. Sticking with Instagram’s features
Instagram stickers are great for encouraging even more engagement with your content, most of these features such as polls, quizzes and sliding scales, take seconds to complete, thus your followers are highly likely to complete such simple yet effective interactive features.
We all love a quick vote on an Instagram poll on our lunch break right? So why aren’t you taking full advantage of quickly interacting with your followers to gain super helpful metrics?
5. Consistent. Consistent. Consistent
Instagram’s algorithm ranks those who are consistent in their posting, much higher than those who post erratically. So you should always make sure you’re planning far ahead to maintain a consistent and engaging strategy.
Sidenote: Try changing around your schedule now and again to see which times your audience interacts the most.
It’s no secret that if someone follows your page, they want to see your content, so don’t leave them waiting and inevitably losing interest, keep your content flowing.
Consistency is one factor that you can guarantee will set you apart from your competitors, weak, erratic strategies are bound to leave you behind, so keep consistent and you can’t go wrong.
Now that we’ve been through the best ways to track and boost engagement on Instagram, it’s clear just how important interacting with your followers is to ensure you stand out from your competitors and successfully rise up the Instagram algorithm.
Start interacting with your followers today and you’re bound to take your Instagram to the next level.
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