With an audience of more than 500 million active users, Instagram now boasts over 200 million more users than Twitter, and it’s a number that’s growing at a mind-boggling rate. Not surprisingly, more and more businesses are jumping on the photo-sharing bandwagon and using IG to tap into the incredible opportunity it presents for increasing brand awareness and achieving growth. But it takes more than just setting up an account and posting a few pictures. It takes ongoing engagement. Not sure how to get more interaction on your IG page? Here are a few expert pointers.
Share quality content on a consistent basis. The goal is not just to get more followers, but to keep them coming back for more. The best way to do this is by sharing quality images and video clips and sticking to a schedule of regular posting. Consistency will help you establish trust with your audience and they’ll reward you by helping to build and promote your presence.
Remember to reciprocate. The more love you give on Instagram, the more you’ll receive in return, so start engaging with others by commenting, liking and re-sharing their images (giving proper credit, of course). Reciprocity will help you gain more traction and get greater visibility for your brand, which will naturally lead to more organic followers.
Leverage relevant hashtags. Your level of engagement on Instagram is proportionate to how easily your content can be found, so don’t forget to include relevant hashtags in all of your posts. There are a number of ways you can determine which tags are best, including a search of your competitors. You can also use online tools, like Top-Hashtags.com to narrow down your options.
Use calls to action. Don’t just sit back and wait for your audience to interact with your IG posts. Prompt them to do so by including strong and clear calls to action in your descriptions. Don’t be afraid to ask for likes, invite comments and encourage re-shares. You may be surprised at how effective something so simple truly can be.
Host contests and other interactive promotions. One of the biggest reasons people choose to follow a brand on Instagram is because they feel they’ll get something of value in return. Capitalize on this by using your account to share exclusive deals, IG-only promos and fun, engaging contests. Ask your followers to help promote your content by tagging you in their own posts. This will increase your exposure and improve engagement levels, so it’s a win-win!
Use geo-tags. A geo-tag is a feature that allows users to include a location with the content share. Not only is this incredibly effective for attracting more local prospects, but it’s also been proven to increase the chances of getting your audience to respond to your posts (statistics show that posts containing geo-tags receive 79% more engagement).
Measure results and adjust accordingly. Lastly, but perhaps most important, you can’t expect to achieve ongoing improvement without routinely measuring your results and making adjustments where necessary. For instance, using tools like Iconosquare, you can track everything from which types of images perform best to what day and time you are most likely to achieve the greatest level of engagement.
Instagram boasts a brand engagement level that is 10 times higher than Facebook, 54 times higher than Pinterest, and 84 times higher than Twitter. So, if you’re not yet using this dynamic marketing tool to reach and connect with your target audience, you’re leaving money on the table. By implementing the above strategies, you can not only establish a solid presence on IG, but you can optimize its performance for the best possible results.
To learn more about small business statistics and marketing trends for 2017, click here.