Whether you’re new to Instagram for business, or you’ve been using it for a while without much traction, check out the tips below to help you grow your account and keep your followers engaged.
1. Create a Clear & Concise Instagram Profile
Your Instagram profile is made up of your name (Business name), username (your Instagram user name), website and bio.
Make sure your bio clearly states what it is you do and how people can get in touch with you.
To edit your bio, click on the ‘Edit Profile’ button below your profile.
You can add one link to your Instagram profile, typically this is where you would put a link to your home page or contact page.
But what if you need to send visitors to a mixture of different links on your site? For example, you may have different call to actions in your Instagram posts.
In this case, you might want to try using Linktree so you can point users to more than one web page. There is a free account option for basic functionality, or you can do the paid monthly option (currently $6 USD) for extras such as integrations with other platforms, advanced analytics, and customisation.
2. Post Regularly on the Instagram Feed
Think about what time you have and how often you can post and try to be consistent over time.
The more you post, the more likely you are to build up more followers and reach.
However, you need to be engaging with other accounts as well (more on that later).
3. Use Hashtags in Your Posts
Why use hashtags? Hashtags are a great way to reach more people.
Users on Instagram can follow hashtags that interest them, so, for example, if you’re interested in fashion you might follow #sydneyfashion.
Research hashtags to check who else is using them and what they are being used for first.
Steps: click on the search icon on the bottom left of the screen. Type ‘#’ followed by your keyword to see a list of suggestions by number of posts. Or search for a specific hashtag.
Try not to use hashtags that are too generic, otherwise your post will likely get lost in the noise of the hundreds or thousands of other daily posts.
Likewise, you don’t want to use lots of hashtags with a very low number of posts as you won’t get much visibility outside your followers.
4. Create a Theme for Your Profile
A theme makes your profile look more professional and shows that your content is well-thought-out.
Use similar colours, filters, borders or patterns in your posts so that people recognise your brand and become familiar with the look and feel of your account.
Try to keep a consistent tone of voice in your posts that match your brand values.
5. Have Fun With Emoji’s
Use emoji’s and spacing to make your posts more readable, fun and eye-catching.
Instagram doesn’t need to be so serious!
6. Post to Your Story
Post stories at least once a week, this can be more relaxed or fun content in comparison to what appears in your feed.
Here are some ideas:
Do a quiz
Share something someone else has posted on Instagram
Tag other accounts you have been engaging with
Share tips or advice
Film some short video updates
Instagram is about being social and providing value to potential clients, rather than just selling.
It’s not to say that you shouldn’t pitch and sell your products or service, just don’t do it on every post otherwise your audience may switch off.
If your story has some great content or shows off what your business does, then you may want to add this as a highlight.
To add a story to a highlight click on the story and click on ‘highlight’ on the bottom right-hand corner of the screen.
Click on new to add a new highlight or click on an existing highlight.
7. Video Content
It’s not for everyone, but if you talk to the camera on a live video (aka ‘going live’), this will get you lots of extra engagement.
Acknowledge those who react to you or watch your Live to increase interaction.
Try IG TV for uploading longer videos, especially high-quality professional videos from 15 seconds to 10 minutes. Larger accounts can upload video up to 60 minutes length.
Or post shorter videos to your story or feed to help your followers understand your brand and what you offer.
8. Engage Every Day
Like and comment on posts and stories, so you can build rapport with others on Instagram.
By doing so you will get more engagement on your posts and you will get more visibility or organic reach.
9. Batch Your Content
Come up with a content plan: start by listing all the different types of content you could post on instagram.
Examples of different content types:
information about a new product or service
reshare a post from another account
Use a planning app such as Later to schedule your posts, for the week or even a month, to save time.
You can always make changes to the posts as things arise if you need to.
10. Use Instagram Insights to Plan Your Content
Insights provides analytical data on the interactions with your Instagram account, which is extremely useful for working out how to grow your engagement.
There are 3 main areas:
Content: this allows you to see how many people have viewed a particular post, story or promotion (advertisement)
Activity: provides information on reach by day of the week, as well as impressions and interactions
Audience: displays changes in accounts following or unfollowing you, your followers locations, age range, gender and the days and hours your followers are most active
This data can help you plan activities on Instagram, such as:
When to post: day of the week and time
Tailoring your posts to connect with your audience: this may impact the designs you choose, your wording and so on
Which types of content get the most engagement: so you can cull dud content and double down on the content that generates interest
How to Get Insights
To use Instagram Insights you need to connect your Facebook page with your account.
If you don’t have a Facebook (business) page you will need to set one up. You can do this by clicking the ‘create’ option which is on the top right hand corner of the screen on the blue horizontal menu. Then follow the prompts to set up your new page.
Navigate to the settings area on your Facebook page. This will appear on the top right hand corner of the screen, below the blue horizontal menu.
Next press the ‘Connect Account’ button under the ‘Connect to Instagram’ section.
Then press ‘Continue’.
Now take a look at your Instagram account. On your profile screen, click on the burger menu (three horizontal lines on the top right hand corner of the screen), then select ‘Insights’.
Use Insights to measure your performance over time. This can help you to keep track on whether your audience is engaged or otherwise, you have the visibility and knowledge to change things up if the interactions on your account are dwindling.
Want to get your posts shown to more people? Then consider advertising on Instagram to get more visibility. Now is a great time to advertise as there is less competition!
To get started with ads for Instagram go to your Facebook page, click on ‘Settings’, then ‘Instagram’ from the left hand navigation.
Scroll down and click on the ‘Get started’ link under ‘Create ads for Instagram on Facebook’.
In short; try to post regularly and plan content so that you keep your followers interested and the Instagram algorithm working in your favour.
Use the Instagram Insights function to make better decisions around the content you post and to keep on track of your goals.