With the highest engagement rate out of all social media platforms, Instagram boasts of more than 500 million account holders. If utilized to its ultimate potential, Instagram can prove to be the wardrobe to the Narnia of potential leads. Be it millennials or adults, consumers to suppliers – everyone uses Instagram as a gold mine for potential traffic. And with its latest feature of Shopping Stories, Instagram has become the apple of the eye of all marketers.
But easy as it may sound, driving followers and better engagement go beyond posting pictures with engaging captions. To make sure that you use the app correctly, I have enlisted 8 superb tricks that will help you drive in more followers for your business through your Instagram account.
8 WAYS TO GET THE BEST OUT OF INSTAGRAM
1. Play with the Images
To start with, you need to understand that Instagram is an app that is dedicated solely to pictures. So you need to play around with images and other visual content like info-graphics, etc. And since it is mostly about images, make sure that you post high-quality images only. Also, choose a theme, color or font and stick to it so that your users can connect the images with your brand. Edit the photos to make them interesting and vivid enough to grab the attention of your users. And when I say edit, I don’t mean call in for a professional photographer (although you can go for it if you have the budget). If you want to do it yourself, here are some pro hacks to take better photos. Just make sure that the background looks good, and you have got good lighting. For editing the images, you can fall back on Canva, and you’ll be good to go.
2. Run Contests
Customer engagement is the best way to drive more traffic to our site, which in turn can boost up your sales figures. To get your users to connect with you, you can run contests with freebies of your product or services as gifts. This will help you build more followers and create a positive impression of your brand. Contests for reposting photos can help you gain many followers. You can ask your followers to refer more followers to your page, and the person with the most references can win a free prize. “We asked students who have taken assignment help from us to tag their friends on our posts on Instagram and gave the lucky winner a 50% off voucher for their next order”, says Eric Cooper, the social media head for MyAssignmenthelp.com.
3. Use Stories and go Live
Taking a cue from the successful feature of Snapchat, Instagram came out with its version of Stories, allowing users to post minute-long videos. Lo and behold, business owners and marketers started using the feature to share their daily activities with their followers. As easy as it may sound, there are some things that you need to remember while uploading videos. You need to make sure that the videos are informative as well as entertaining. While using the “Live” option on the app, make sure that the videos are clear. Choose a well-lit spot and see it to it that the space isn’t shabby.
4. Tell and do not preach
Instagram is awash with mediocre tips, but no one tells you how to use Instagram as the ultimate ‘visual inspiration platform’. Although Instagram is all about the visuals – images and videos – you also need to ensure that your content is telling the story of your brand. It should go beyond preaching marketing missives and should offer ‘micro-stories’ through the captions and Instagram Stories. You can also use user-generated content that resonates with your brand. To master the art of storytelling through Instagram, you can follow the pages of Airbnb, Lego and Nike. You can also check these examples to usher in creativity in your writing.
5. Respond to Comments quickly
User engagement will never reach its zenith unless you make an effort to connect with your users as soon as they try to touch base with you. So whenever a follower comments on your post, make sure you get back to them ASAP. People are impatient, and they do not have all the time in the world to wait for your reply. So, if you do not want them to switch to one of your contending brands, try to respond within 24 hours. Even when it is a negative comment, address the issue politely and solve it. You can also hire a social media planner who can be responsible for connecting with your users (if you think it’s getting too taxing on you).
6. Use relevant Hashtags
Although the brainchild of Twitter, hashtags are synonymous with Instagram. If Instagram is the train to your goal, hashtags are the fuel that helps the train run faster, thus taking you closer to your goal faster. The more relevant your hashtags are, the better are your chances of driving more traffic to your site and deriving more user engagement out of it. If you are not sure of what hashtags to use, then you can use these tools to find the best hashtags related to your business. You can also check out the hashtags that your competitors are using or the leading brands in your industry are using and use them in your posts. In the end, make it a point not to overcrowd your posts with paragraph-long hashtags.
7. Use Influencer Marketing
Influence marketing is the go-to trend these days, and you will be missing out on a lot if you do not tap the potential that the option has to offer! Gone are those days when you could attract your customers with freebies. Your present customers are the “millennials”, and it takes more than samples to please them. They are more alert and aware of the world, and they need substantial evidence about the utility of the product. And the only way to do so is getting other users to promote your brand. You can use tools like Influence.co to reach out to influencers who are willing to collaborate with you.
8. Use the millennia lingo
The best part about the internet right now is the uber-cool language that the millennials use. You no longer have to express via words. All you need are emojis and emoticons to say what you want to say. You have probably seen abbreviations like LOL, ROFL and TBH doing the rounds on the social media circuit. This is your cue to be “LIT” like the present generation and to do so you need to talk in their lingo. Include the acronyms and emojis to connect with your young customers. You can also use “memes” and “gifs” to make your content more engaging for the young lot.
250 million users visit at least one business profile per day, which gives you a reason to optimize Instagram and boost your numbers. With the above tips, I am sure that you are going to up your game and add in millions to your follower’s base soon. In the end, remember that your marketing efforts should lead your customers back to your site. So do not forget to add a call to action button on your stories and posts to push your followers in the direction you want.
Good luck! May the minions of Zuckerberg be with you.
Mark Hales is the social media analyst of the assignment help brand MyAssignmenthelp.com. He is an active blogger and social media guru. Besides being a marketing man, he is also a voracious reader and a Beatles enthusiast.