You may be one of the tens of millions of people who have a love/hate relationship with one of the world’s top social media sites.
Every time you think you have finally gotten to a place where you “understand” the algorithm, Instagram (well Facebook), decides that they are just going to switch things up…once again!
If you find yourself becoming frustrated daily with low engagement numbers, shadow ban talks, and people who follow/unfollow; well let me reassure you, that unfortunately, it’s just part of the game. We all are dealing with it.
I know, it’s not the best thing to hear. But it’s the hard truth. Unless you are one of the world’s top celebrities, you aren’t just going to have millions of people flocking to your page on a daily basis.
As a blogger, creative or entrepreneur, Instagram is one of the main keys to success that we all use. For many, Instagram was their blog, before their blog was their blog (that made sense right?).
The key to winning at Instagram and for working with brands is not only numbers, but it’s also engagement. Brands like to see that people are interacting on your page and that you are interacting with your followers.
It doesn’t matter if you have 100,000 followers; if out of those 100,000 only 100 like your photos or even worse, no one EVER comments on your post, then, needless to say, your followers were amassed in vain.
So how do you rock Instagram enough to where you are seeing actual engagement? Keep reading and I will tell you!
5 Tactics to Boost Your Instagram Engagement
Build Your Community
There are more than 300 million active users on Instagram. Needless to say, this little fact alone should make it easy for you to find a community to engage in.
You community doesn’t necessarily have to only be people in your nice. They can be anyone who interacts with you via the social networking site. If people are commenting on your post, be sure to comment back.
I often notice that I have people liking my photos, even if they aren’t following me, I will like theirs as well (if they have a public profile). This often results in converting likes to followers.
Also if you have not started using the 5-5-5 rule you need to start immediately. For five minutes continuously like photos that are related to hashtags that you use. Then stop for five minutes. The the last five minutes comment on photos related to those hashtags.
Some people only like to do 5 photos in each of those time frames, however, I prefer to do as many as possible. I find that this will also create and even open up a conversation between me and other Instagram users.
I actually have been able to develop a few great friendships by doing this as well.
Never Post In Real Time
Simply put…when you take a photo wait to post it. I like to go by the 24-hour rule. This gives me time to edit the photo as needed and to also ensure that I actually want that photo posted.
I have been switching to more a curated Instagram feed, so this allows me to go through various photos and find the “right” one to upload and share.
Also, I am terrible at writing captions. I mean I really suck at it. I normally pre-plan my captions. So this takes the pressure off of me some, by allowing me to make sure I have my thoughts together before I post.
This solution may not be ideal for those enjoy sharing instantaneous sharing. But if you want to increase your engagement, you will want to do this. Be intentional with everything you do.
Hashtag Like You Mean It
There is no secret that the key to getting seen on Instagram is through hashtags (you the pound symbol for us old heads). Hashtags only work on Instagram and Twitter; unlike Facebook and Pinterest where you have to play the game a tad bit differently to be noticed.
Instagram allows up to 30 hashtags to be used on a post. USE THEM. Now please don’t use 30 hashtags in your caption; that’s a big no. But you can use them in the comment section in your post. Take a look at how I add it to my post:
While it’s certainly easier to keep hashtags in the notes section on your phone and just copy/paste, you have to be careful. Instagram’s shadow ban seems to target users who frequently use the same tags over and over. Sounds silly right? Well it is. However, to be on the safe side, try and switch it up a bit. Make sure that you are posting content relevant for your followers and that your hashtags are relevant.
If you are looking to expand the tags that you use, you can always click on the tag and use the related tags that come up. This will help you remain intentional with your hashtag use, while still reaching your targeted audience and hopefully avoiding the pesky shadow ban.
Promote A Call To Action
A call to action tells your followers what you want them to do. Call to actions can be placed in the captions of each post. This can include things like; telling people to visit the link in your bio, double tapping a post to like or tagging a friend. Call to actions help to increase engagement because they require your followers to interact with you. Just be sure that you are interacting back with them.
If you want to gain followers and increase engagement on Instagram, you have to be active. We all get very busy, and when social media becomes your life because it’s your business, it is very easy to get overwhelmed and just not want to post.
But you can’t.
You have to post often. With Instagram, you don’t have to post four or five times a day like you do on other platforms. At least posting two to three times a week seems to be a sweet spot for many people.
Not only is posting important, but you have to remember to post at the optimal times. This goes not only for Instagram but all social media networks. For many posting between 5-6pm est, after 9 pm and between 6am-8am est (and if you are curious about the middle of the day times 3-4pm actually see the highest engagement period of all) will bring in optimal engagement.
Want to learn more about how I increased my follower account by 2,500 in 14 days?
Get the ‘Gram Like You Mean IT! eBook, and learn step by step how to perfectly curate a beautiful Instagram feed, and how to take your IG account to the next level! The eBook also includes a FREE Instagram audit guide and 1,000 of the best hashtags broken down by niche (for a limited time only). Click here to learn more!
Join my EXCLUSIVE blogging email list!
Do you want to start making thousands every month just by blogging and being active on social media? Let me show you how!