When Instagram was first launched, it was considered an app for adding filters to your photos and sharing them with friends. Fast forward less than a decade, and it now has a suite of advanced features and over 700 million active users. It’s still simple to use, and you can share a photo or video with a couple of taps. However, as you begin to use it, you’ll realize that there a lot more you can do with the platform. Getting Instagram likes and maximum engagement has a lot more to it as well.
From making the most of filters and hashtags to learning to use the newly launched stories feature, here are some useful tips that can help.
Broadcast Live Videos
Using the Instagram stories feature you can do more than just upload content. You can also use it to broadcast videos live to your followers. Doing this is pretty simple. Tap the “create a new story” option and then swipe right to access the option to record live. To launch the broadcast, tap the start button. Some of your followers will get notified when you start a live video, and you can decide if you want the comments to be disabled or not when you’re broadcasting. While you can save your video to your phone, your broadcast won’t be visible to your audience once you’re done.
Use Instagram’s Apps
To help users get more creative, Instagram launched three standalone apps—Hyperlapse, Boomerang, and Layout. These are fun apps to experiment with. With Hyperlapse you can shoot a video and then shorten it into a time-lapse clip. It will also stabilize shaky footage. Boomerang is another great app that takes your photos and turns them into a looped video. It does this by taking a quick burst of 10 photos. It has become extremely popular among Instagrammers. Layout is a photo collage app that turns your photos into beautiful collages and offers a range of designs. Hyperlapse is iOS-only, but Boomerang and Layout are available for both iOS and Android.
Balance Brand Images with Fun Images
It’s a good idea to balance your business pictures with fun images. This will help you make your band more relatable and tell a cohesive story. Also, include photos of happy customers using your products. You can use your own images or repost pictures from your follower’s feeds. You can track the engagement levels of your photos to understand which of these resonate with your followers best.
Don’t Overuse Hashtags
Hashtags can help you improve reach and engagement on Instagram and will enable you to attract new followers. But some people use far too many hashtags on their posts. You’ve probably seen captions that are flooded with unnecessary hashtags, many of which may not even be relevant to the photo. When using hashtags make sure you keep them to a minimum and only use keywords that add value to your post.
Post Regularly to Keep Your Audience Interested
It’s an absolute must to post content on a regular basis if you want to keep your followers engaged. But it is essential to find the right balance. If you post ten photos a day, you’ll end up alienating your followers. Typically, one post a day or even every alternate day is sufficient to keep your followers interested. If you go for long periods without posting, your audience will lose interest and may even end up unfollowing you.
Interact with Your Audience
It is important to track the activity of your followers and understand why types of posts are grabbing their attention and interest. Respond to the comments and likes that loyal followers leave on your posts. Ignoring them is a sure-fire way to put people off. Do what you can to make your customers feel valued. Reply to comments and like the photos posted by your followers. Third-party apps such as Iconosquare can help you track comments and understand your user interactions.
Post at The Right Times
Whether you post content manually or schedule it, it is important to pick times when your audience is most active. The latest algorithm on Instagram ensures that posts with better engagement are prioritized. You’re more likely to receive comments and likes on your post if it goes up at a time that is popular with your audience. When your posts start receiving higher engagement, Instagram will automatically bump them up so that they are higher on users’ feeds. You can find the optimal times by testing out different time slots. You will be able to access this data quickly if you have a business account.
Experiment with Shout Outs
An effective way to tap into new followers is by doing a shout out with another account with a similar number of followers. While Interacting with your current followers is great, it is also necessary to reach out to as many people as possible. Two users collaborate and agree to mention each other on their own accounts. This is an excellent technique that many famous Instagrammers use.
Actively Use Instagram Stories
The new Instagram stories feature is a great way to boost engagement and reach out to your followers. Posting an Instagram story will also give you the chance to get featured on Instagram’s Explore Page. These stories are chosen based on the posts you like, the accounts you follow and stories that received a lot of engagement. To get featured, your stories will need to be precisely targeted and engaging.
Check What Other Brands Are Doing
Tracking other brands, especially your competitors on Instagram is wise. This will help you understand new ways to gain followers and make changes to your strategy if necessary. You can use tools like Statigram to find related brand and hashtags. All you need to do is enter the hashtag or brand name into the search box and click. It is a great way to find, research and follow your competitors on Instagram.
The next time you’re putting together your Instagram strategy, use some of the tips mentioned above. Focus on building engagement and your Instagram presence will grow exponentially in no time.