Instagram is one of the most talked about platforms when it comes to blogging. We all know how hard it is to grow on Instagram with the algorithm and people using bots to cheat the system. Despite the challenge it brings, it is also one of the most fun and creative social media channels you can use for your blog or business.
One of my favourite things about Instagram is the engagement side of things. I love talking to people and starting discussions around similar interests. But how can you encourage engagement with your audience? Here are my top 8 ways to improve your engagement on Instagram!
1. Always respond back to comments – It can be hard to keep up with comments, but it is super important that you try to. Whether it’s taking five minutes out of your lunch break or in the midst of cooking dinner later on in the day, spare yourself some time to get back to your audience.
Acknowledging comments left on your posts gives your audience the impression that you appreciate their support and therefore over time this helps to build your relationship with them. The next time you post, your audience will be more likely to engage again because of your previous interaction.
Even if you find it hard to know what you can say when responding back, even just leaving a simple emoji relating to their comment or a promise to get back to them later can be better than nothing at all. People will be grateful that you’ve taken the time to at least notice them.
2. Comment on other peoples photos – I can not express this one enough!!! Have you ever complained that you’re not getting any engagement on your posts, but have failed to even engage with anybody else? Yeah, I’m guilty of that too.
Remember that Instagram is a social media platform which means you have to be social in order to get the most out of it. Show your support for others in your industry or your audience by leaving them a genuine comment on their latest post. Nine times out of ten, when you support someone, they will do the same back.
3. Be active – As I mentioned, Instagram is a social platform, so to be social you need to be active regularly. I’m a big believer in taking a break from social media, so it’s completely fine to do so, but I have definitely noticed a change in my engagement when I’ve gone a few days without posting.
When I get into the routine of posting once a day, I then notice huge benefits. People love active accounts that they can always see new and fresh content from. You don’t have to post every single day for this to be accounted for. You can make your own schedule and still feel the effects of an engaged audience.
Perhaps you’ve set yourself the goal of posting once every other day and once you fall into a routine of doing this for a long period of time, your audience will know when to expect a new post from you and won’t think anything different on the days you miss.
Don’t forget that it’s all about making it work for you.
4. Use Instagram stories – Instagram introduced the Instagram stories feature back in the summer of 2016. Nowadays, I find myself checking out stories more than I do posts as they’re just so accessible and easy to watch. If you really want to connect with your audience and improve your engagement, then stories are the way forward.
Not only do stories build connections and get people being active, but also they give your audience the chance to see behind the scenes of your everyday life. Stories help to prompt responses from your audience, which can, therefore, spark discussions between the two of you. This overtime will build your relationships and double your views.
5. Get personal – Online we’re always warned about how much we share online. When you’re a blogger, you do have the tendency to overshare your life on Instagram. But getting personal and knowing your boundaries with your privacy, can be a great way for your audience to get to know you better.
They get to see the person behind the profile and get to know you for more than just an account. Instagram stories can help with this. There’s also the option of using your captions to create micro-stories that you share about your day. One way I like to spark up conversations with people is to ask questions, talk about current topics (aren’t bloggers so good at talking about the weather?) and promote a call to action.
6. Include a call to action – I like to include a call to action to get people to engage with specific content or to help entice my audience in. Call to actions are things like ‘click here’, ‘buy now’ or ‘tag a friend who…’. It get’s your audience curious and wanting to find out more. This can help drive traffic to your site too. When you ask a call to action question, you’re essentially getting people to promote responses. This can really help to get your audience to interact with you.
7. Get creative – With so many of us using Instagram, it can be hard to not all blend is as one. We all have our own individual style when it comes to our overall theme and photo style, so it’s always good to experiment and shake up your photos every so often.
Getting creative can show to your audience that your flexible and that they can always come over to your account to see a new style of photo. It can also get you to figure out what works best for you and your audience. Take note of what images you love shooting and which ones get the best response. This will help for future content creation.
8. Collaborate – Collaborations are something I rarely do, but once I do them, I find they’re so beneficial for both parties involved. You can collaborate with other bloggers or those in your industry. This can help build connections between the two of you and also the audiences associated with each account as they will be more engaged with the both of you.
How do you get your audience engaged?