“Social media is here. It’s not going away; not a passing fad. Be where your customers are: in social media.”
This is the truth for the day. If you have to market your business, build relationships with people, and build your social presence, then you have to be on social media. No one can deny the fact that your social media pages define the character of your business. Make sure you are giving out the exact message and image that you and your brand stands for.
Instagram is undeniably one of the most important social media platform. Your followers on instagram will define the popularity of your brand among the younger generation. The millennials have moved towards instagram already. So if you want to build your social proof , here are a few tips and tricks you can use to gain more followers and engagement on Instagram.
If your target audience is between the age of 18 and 49, Instagram could be a great platform to reach your potential customers and engage your existing customers
1.Make sure you have a Business account.
Make sure your instagram account is a Business account and not a private one.. Business accounts on instagram have inbuilt analytics. Also you can incorporate a contact button so your followers can get in touch with you through 1 click.This will help you track the performance of your posts. You can also create advertisements through your business accounts. The conversion from personal account to business account is free and can be done in minutes.
Watch this video to see how to convert your personal account into a business account.
2. Connect your instagram account to your facebook Page.
This will help you in cross posting. If you connect the Facebook page to instagram, you can post on both platforms simultaneously. This saves you time. Also makes sure your engagement does not suffer. Also your followers from Facebook can be pulled to your instagram and vice versa.
Watch this video to connect your facebook page to your Instagram account.
3. Have a Public Account
Nobody wants to follow an account and wait for the approval before they start seeing your content. Even if you are not on a business account you can still make your account public. The whole purpose of a public account is to increase your reach. There is no point in restricting the viewers if you want visibility in the first place. Also people wouldnt want to follow an account without knowing what type of content an account is posting. Business account will activate your insights. Public Account will give you visibility.
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4. Post great content.
People on social media are spoilt with content. Give them a good reason to come back to you and stick to your account. Use the analytics to analyse which posts are performing better. Post more of those. Give people an insight into behind the scenes of your business. Content is capable of single handedly changing your instagram feed and following.
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Don’t be just a taker. Social media is all about giving. More value you create for people in any aspect, the more they would want you. Evaluate your content before hitting the post button. Engage genuinely on other peoples posts. Like their pictures, Comment on their posts. Make sure your comments are more than 4 words. Emojis and comments upto 4 words don’t count in instagram algorithm. If you are leaving Spammy comments like 1 word or 1 emoji, instagram will consider you a spammer or robot. Stay away from doubtful instagram behaviour as that will put you at a risk of getting yourself banned.Dedicate 1 day of the week just for engagement. Keep that day for giving back to the community. If you give valuable engagement to people they will return this favour.
“On engagement, we’re already seeing that mobile users are more likely to be daily active users than desktop users. They’re more likely to use Facebook six or seven days of the week.” – Mark Zuckerberg, Founder, Facebook
6. Try posting on different times of the day.
That way you hit a different target audience with every post. Try analysing the time of posting and the engagement received on a few posts. Repeat the pattern that works the best for you. According to a study there is no universal best time to post on instagram. But you can try different times and let the insights decode the best reach for you.
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7. Post at least 3 times a week. And up to once a day.
Nurturing your followers is very important. If you go absconding after opening an account people will unfollow you. Post regularly so you stay relevant in the minds of your audience. Posting once a day is ok if your content is going to be really great. If not you can post up to 3 times a day. But Make sure your posts are spaced out. People tend to unfollow accounts that spam their feeds with several posts at a time. People on Social media can often like the game of Less is more.
8. How to gain followers on Instagram?
★You can start by connecting Your instagram account to your facebook account. This will give you suggestions of your facebook friends who can be followed.
★You can map down 3 to 5 influencers in your industry or niche. Go to their accounts and follow their followers. Most of them tend to follow similar accounts as they are already Interested in your niche of work. Leave a meaningful and valuable comment on their content. If you stay engaged with the community that is already interested in your niche its easier for you to create your own community.
★You can send a private message to your followers introducing yourself. A short hello and introduction can go a long way. After all that’s the whole purpose of being on social media, make new connections.
★Follow back the public accounts that follow you if you would like to stay connected with them. This is a gesture of goodwill and builds a good rapport between brands.
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8. UnFollow app.
There are several apps that help you to determine who unfollows you. Just download one of them and start keeping a track of your unfollowers. One of the apps that works very well is the unfollowers for Instagram app. These apps prove helpful in the initial stages when you are trying to increase your follower base.
9. Restrict how many accounts you follow or how many posts you engage on at a time to avoid getting banned.
Instagram has a very strong spam detection. If you are performing one action at a very fast rate, you will get banned. Avoid liking, commenting or following accounts too fast. You will run a risk of getting your account banned for spamming.
10. Search for relevant # hashtags
Every time you are searching for potential followers, use relevant hashtags for searching. That way there is a greater chance of finding an account from the same niche as yours. That filters out a lot of uninterested accounts. Interested accounts or warm leads are more likely to engage on your content. And engagement is the name of the game
11. Use relevant # hashtags to be found and discovered.
Using relevant hashtags is very important for an instagram post to be discovered organically. Instagram allows use of 30 hashtags in one post. Try using a mix of very popular hashtags , hashtags with medium popularity and a set of unique hashtags for your brand. This gives you a greater chance of being discovered organically.
12 Understand that building a social following is a slow process. Don’t expect miracles.
A social following that is real and engaging takes a lot of effort and time. Don’t fall for tools that buy you followers. That could potentially get your account banned. Also real engagement will always come from the people genuinely interested in your content. Bots or bought followers will never engage with your content.
13. Mention your handles everywhere.
Make sure you mention your handles everywhere. If you are a content creator on any platform, make sure your instagram handle is mentioned clearly in your content. That way your followers can engage with you on different platforms. That way you are redirecting your followers to consume more content by you. Also since they already are your followers they will engage positively with your content. It’s a win win situation!
14. Use your caption wisely. Add call to action
The caption of Intstagram is one of the most misused spaces. That is a prime real estate on your account. Fill it up with strategic and interest generating text. Connect with your audience and let them know how valuable they are to you. Just writing a bunch of Hashtags in your captions is a waste of an opportunity of valuable interaction you can have with your followers. If you want to drive the traffic to any particular blog post or video from instagram, make sure you add a call to action in the caption. You cannot post clickable links in the instagram captions. But you can mention one link in your bio. And you can ask your followers to click on the link in bio. That is called a call to action. Ask your followers to click on that link.
15. Host a contest
Contests are a wonderful way of engaging your audience. The prizes and giveaways are a great way of giving back to your community for showing their love to you. Also you can encourage your followers to share your content or tag their friends in your content. These techniques usually give you a boost in visibility and profile visits. You will end up getting new followers through hosting interesting contests and giving away something valuable to your followers.
16. Tag people
Instagram is all about making connections. If you gain a follower or if you follow someone new, you can tag them in your pictures. This helps in giving you a chance of cross promotion. Both accounts can benefit from this visibility to each others followers. Use the tagging option wisely to avoid spamming.
17. Use your bio link to your advantage
Instagram allows only one clickable link in each account. That link can be posted in the bio of your account. Make use of this space wisely. You can change this link frequently. You can drive traffic to different places Every time you post. Make sure you include a call to action to “click the link in your bio” in your caption
18. Use photo editing apps to give your feed a consistent theme.
There are several in-depth photo editing apps that can be used to add a particular feel to your pictures. If you follow a particular theme for your gallery, these apps will help ypu give a consistent result. These apps have several editing options to give your pictures the extra kick and make them stand out.
19. Use instagram stories. Use polls from instagram stories.
Instagram stories is the latest feature of instagram. Stories last for 24 hours only. They get deleted automatically after 24 hours. Its always wise to assume that a new feature on any social media platform has maximum organic reach. Use your instagram stories creatively to engage ypur followers. Instagram stories now have a poll option. You can ask your followers to choose an option and keep them interested.
20 Use the location to reach the best possible audience
Instagram posts has a feature of adding a location to it. This will help you reach maximum number of people located closer to your business or account. If you have a local business or you want to engage with the audience from a particular region specifically, this feature geotagging helps you reach your target audience organically.
21. Do a live video on instagram.
Live videos are selling like hot cakes! Once you start a live video, all your followers get notified. Also it give your followers to see the human side of a brand.
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