Did you see that statistic? That’s a lot of people on Instagram! So if you’re not using Instagram to promote your business or build your brand, then you’re probably leaving a lot on the table, wouldn’t you say? So here’s a few tips to help you BYBonIG!
Saveable versus Shareable – Instagram is not meant to have a lot of shareable content, that is why it’s not “easy” to just share it. The goal is to create meaningful content that your audience will want to save and come back to. Everytime someone “saves” your post, your engagement is boosted.
#Hashtags – Use them. Stick to about 10-20 hashtags in your post, stay away from common hashtags like #picoftheday, #dogsofig, #cutepicsofIG, etc. For one, people won’t see them and for two, these pics are often shadowed (see add-ons below) and are hidden from other’s feeds. Keep your hashtags in the actual post, versus your comments (they do you no good there)
Filters – The funny thing about Instagram (and Facebook and Snapchat) is that they actually want you to use the tools they create. Shocker right? So use their IG filters at least once per week. Nine times out of 10, if you aren’t using a professional photo, their filters will actually enhance the product you are presenting, so no harm there!
Tell Your Story – Tell it once a week. Seem like too much? No, remember you are continually attracting NEW people to your IG community (that’s the whole point right?) so they may not have scrolled down far enough to see the last time you presented your story. Plus, not everyone sees your posts when you post them, even if they are already part of your community. Let them get to know you, your why, and your passion.
Story – Use your Instagram story to show cool behind the scenes, unedited, fun parts of your life and brand. There are a ton of Instagram story users out there waiting to see the real you.
Giveaways – If you are going to a do a Giveaway, make it have impact and think about partnering up with someone who fits with your niche. This is a great way to share followers. However, make sure you have some demands of a great partnership. This might include:
- Going half-way on the giveaway (share the cost equally)
- A post (or multiple posts) on each other’s main IG page (and other social media)
- An Instagram Story takeover day, where you are providing the valuable content for their IG story (and vice versa to yours) so followers can get to know your brand and have reason to want to follow and engage with you
- Make sure that it is well thought out and that all parties are “all-in”!
Engaging with Others
Don’t act like a Bot – When you like more than 10 of someone’s posts at once, Instagram thinks you are either spamming or that you may be a bot. Play it safe, max out at liking 5 of someone’s posts and then just come back later and further engage or like additional posts.
It Goes Down in the DM – No seriously, engage via Direct Message those people who fit your target audience or those that you desire engagement from. Instagram will automatically give feed preference to those who are engaging with you in direct messages.
Niche – Look for people in your niche, create a conversation, start threads, get personal, partner with them.
Act like a Celebrity – Fake it til you make it right? No, that’s not what I’m saying. What I mean is, treat your audience like REAL fans. Have you seen the look people have when they meet their celebrity crush for the first time? Or if they are retweeted or commented on by a celebrity? It’s like gold! Well, you may not be there yet, but let’s take it back to high school. If you were the cool kid (or maybe you weren’t but you remember how this feels) and you walked down the hall and gave a compliment to an underclassmen or someone who may not have been as cool, did you see their eyes light up like it was a big deal?!
- Same thing goes on social media, if someone loves your content and consistently provide likes and comments, then consider them a super-fan. Surprise one of your followers once a day by sending a personalized note, video, or shout-out.
- Follow your super fans, appreciate and respond to those who follow you.
Be Off-Brand Sometimes – Post off-brand memes and trending topics sometimes. This may seem counter-intuitive to what you are trying to accomplish but it’s really not. Because of a few reasons. For one, you will attract new followers and new engagements. The second reason is, you will actually archive the content after a few days to keep your Instagram gallery clean while also keeping the new followers and engagement algorithm.
Applications & Add-Ons
Email – As we stated already, Instagram wants you to use their functions so use the email button versus taking up precious space in your bio for it.
LinkTree – One of my favorite add-ons for Instagram is LinkTree which gives you a new link for your bio that you can add multiple links to (i.e. your blog, your Facebook info, your store, etc.). It is a godsend for anyone using multiple platforms. You can also turn the links on and off as needed as well as track them and the number of clicks. There are other features you can use that are paid (including a function that gathers email addresses).
Google Photos – Back up your photos on the cloud versus in your phone or laptop.
Iconosquare – You can use this app for networking and collaborating with other influencers on Instagram.
Darkroom – Use for editing your photos on Instagram.
Later – Use this app in order to plan your IG posts, while also laying our your gallery to view how it will look as it is posted. Great time saver for those who have other things to do versus babysitting their IG page all day. Set it and forget it!
That’s all for now! Check back in the future for more tips! Have your own tip? Drop it in the comments.
Do It for the ‘Gram,
Nerissa, the BizEMillenial
About the author:
Nerissa is a wife and mom of 4. Originally from Virginia, she now resides in Louisiana. She enjoys traveling, reading, writing, mentoring others, and helping others find the find the beauty within their stories.