How to Engage on Instagram and Why It Is So Important

Want to know a social media secret?

The Instagram algorithm loves engagement! That’s right - by increasing your engagement you are increasing your chances of your content being seen across a wider audience. This is why you should be working engagement into your Instagram strategy.

There are a few factors that you should consider when trying to increase your overall engagement.  Here are some tips and tricks that will help you increase your engagement organically.

Quality Content That’s Conversational
You’re going to want to grab the attention of those who are scrolling through their feed all day. So, make sure you’re posting a high quality image, fun and creative captions, and staying on theme with your brand. Now, when writing the caption remember to keep things conversational! Craft a longer caption if you can but make sure to use line breaks or emoji’s. This helps with flow and makes it easier for your audience to quickly read. A great strategy to use when writing captions is to keep it relatable and knowledgeable. Try to end with a question or request. For example, ask your audience how they feel about a certain topic or if your caption was pitching your services ask them to drop a specific emoji in the comments if they to know more. Always remember to keep it natural and remain genuine!

Use Hashtags
Please don’t skip out on this very important step. Hashtags help others find your account, grow your community, and share your content with those interested in a specific category or topic. Instagram gives you 30 hashtags to use for each post, so make them count and use between 20-30 for best results! (some find 11 is the sweet spot - test what works for your brand). For more information on hashtags read my blog post How to Use Hashtags.

Post Consistently
This is the number one tip I tell all of my clients: consistency is key when it comes to social media. The way the algorithm works, Instagram actually will “reward” those who post more consistently. On top of that, your posts will have a higher chance of being seen. Make sure your content agrees with your brand and stick to a posting schedule. Plan out your weeks or months ahead of time and use a scheduling app like Planoly to help guide you.

Comment and Reply
This is huge when it comes to engagement. Take 10-20 minutes each day to discover new accounts and post genuine comments on other’s posts. Think about it. We spend that amount of time scrolling through the app and mindlessly liking photos anyway… so, why not take that time and turn it into engagement?! Another thing to remember is always reply to comments or at least try to respond to as many as you can. This helps your audience feel more connected to you and your brand. Same goes for direct messages!

Make Friends Not Followers
Don’t get caught up in the number of followers that you have. It’s rumored that Instagram is starting to design their app differently, in small ways, to decrease the issue of vanity metrics. If the app is trying to rid of vanity metrics then you should try too! Support the followers you have now and they will support you back. Wouldn’t you rather have a close group of friends than a larger group who you don’t know you as well? Eventually, you’ll see your followers (friends) increase overtime.