What is Instagram Engagement?
Instagram engagement is the amount of Likes, comments, views, shares, saves, swipe ups and DMs on an individual Instagram post or all Instagram posts during an established period of time. It's the social involvement of the community with your posts.
With the new changes of the Instagram Algorithm, also come changes about how we understand what is actually included, what actually mean Instagram engagement. It's no longer just likes and comments on your posts, but about the engagement of your entire account.
Why Instagram Engagement is so important?
Total engagement gives you insight into how active your audience is and how well your Instagram strategy is working.
How to increase your engagement on Instagram?
Since the previous Instagram algorithm, more and more people are looking into bots to increase their engagement. Instagram recently went back to the old algorithm where your posts will be seen from more viewers which will increase the engagement on them.
Here are some ideas on how to actually increase your Instagram engagement:
1. Use call-to-action in every single post and Story that you post
A call-to-action is the text you’ll add in your posts that tell people what you’d like them to do next. here are few ideas for CTA:
Call-to-action gives you the chance to lead viewers off your Instagram account and send them to your website which will help you build your mail list or you can ask them questions to build a better profile of your ideal client.
What are the Call-to-actions you are using in your Instagram posts and Stories?
2. Post at the best time
Instagram Insights gives you information about the best time for you to post based on your audience. That's one reason why you should shift to a Business Instagram account.
Here is how to check the Insights for the best time for you to post:
1. Open your Instagram account
2. Click on the Insights indicator on the top right corner (the 4 vertical lines right next to the clock icon)
3. Click on Audience
4. Scroll down to Followers and you will see the best time for you to post by Hours and by Days
Now that you know exactly to post so you get the best visibility, there is more work to be done. The first 10 minutes since you publish your post are the most important when it comes to counting engagement. What should you do? Watch your Likes and engage with the accounts that Liked your post. Go to their account Like the last 3 of their posts and leave a meaningful comment on their last post. That is how you turn your Likes into followers.
3. Host a Giveaway or a Contest
Instagram loop giveaways are a great way to increase engagement on your posts and of course get more followers.
See if you can find some related accounts to collaborate with. You don't have to be competitors but rather businesses that have an audience with similar interests. For example, I teach entrepreneurs how to use Instagram for business. A good fit for me for businesses to collaborate with are graphic designers, web developers, business coaches, etc.
Here are some examples for businesses collaborations:
1. If you are a yoga trainer, you may want to consider collaboration with health and wellness coach, nutrition specialist, crystal shop, yoga clothing, etc.
2. If you are a garden center, you can collaborate with some local chefs (for some garden to table experience), a chiropractor (to teach your customers how to save their back while gardening), a brand that sells particular garden equipment, etc.
3. If you are an artist, a painter, you may choose to collaborate with a local art supply store or directly connect with the art supply brands, or a local frames shop.
The possibilities are endless.
Ready to increase your Instagram Engagement in 2018?
I have a solution for you - An Engagement Guide with 15 ideas for Instagram Engagement. Click the button if you want to download it.
Since the scandal with Cambridge Analytica, Facebook is making dramatic changes to their Instagram API in effort to protect your data and privacy. The company is now restricting app developers with a massive reduction in how much data they can pull from the Instagram API, shrinking the API limit from 5,000 to 200 calls per user per hour. Instagram has shut down their public API, which many apps currently depend on.
How will the new changes affect your business?
1. Bots will no longer work
If you are using any apps that help you figure out if your followers follow you back or interact with you, analyze your audiences or find relevant hashtags, gain likes for you, chances are the apps are no longer working or will stop working very soon.
App such as Reports+ charges $3.99 per month to give people analytics about their Instagram followers. Sensor Tower claims that the app company has grossed more than $18 million worldwide since October 2016 on the App Store and Google Play, and made more than $1.2 million last month alone.
Instagram might have understandably seen these apps as parasitic, charging users for unofficial functionality or encouraging audience growth hacking that can lead to spam. In January, Instagram announced it would shut down the old API over the next two years, starting with removing the ability to pull a user’s follower list and follow/ unfollow people on their behalf on July 31st.
2. No posting or commenting from any other platform than Instagram itself for personal accounts
The only way to go around that is to change into a Business account.
3. You can search only by hashtag
If you used an app to search through users and posts you likes, this option will no longer be available. You can now only search by hashtag.
Apps will have to be approved from Facebook and are allowed to pull only limited type of information from business accounts only.
So, if you had any intentions of buying apps to help you gain more Likes and Followers, don't waist your money. Instead, concentrate on building real relationships with your followers and viewers. Authenticity is the key for establishing meaningful relationships.
And speaking about authenticity and engagement, I have a solution for your problem : The Instagram Business Engagement Guide. It is a free PDF file that has 15 ideas about how to engage, get more followers and create meaningful relationships. Here is a link if you want to download it:
Share below if you've used any apps in relation to Instagram and if it affected your business with the latest API changes.
Instagram is a platform that introduces constant changes. And to some degree we are ok with that. However some of you may get confused and do not have a clear vision about how to imply these changes and make them work with their business accounts on Instagram.
Several days ago Instagram made the long craving changes in their algorithm to now show you the newest posts first in your Instagram feed.
According to the company, the goal is that “your feed will feel more fresh” by showing more relevant new pictures.
The company also said is was testing a "New posts" button so that users can refresh their feeds when they want to, rather than automatically being transported to the top in the middle of browsing.
So what can you do to take advantage of the new changes and improve the visibility of your Instagram posts?Here are some ideas:
1. Instagram algorithm rewards you for interacting with your followers:
The first 10 to 60 minutes from the time you post are the most important when it comes to the visibility of your post and for the chance to appear on the Explore page. Here some proven methods that will give you bigger chances your post to be shown on the Explore page:
2. Instagram algorithm rewards you for engagement and authenticity:
Use polls and videos of yourself in your Stories to better appeal to your audience. Invite them to interact with you, to answer your questions or to ask you questions, to send you DMs on the topics they are interested of. The more authentic you are, the better.
However, sometimes you may run out of ideas how to find the right accounts to engage with. Here are 15 ideas for you:
3. Instagram algorithm takes in consideration how quickly your audience engages with your content:
It's easy to see the Insights of your posts when you have Business account. Instagram will show you when is the best time and day of the week to post based on your unique audience. Take advantage of that and adjust your scheduled posts.
If you do not have a Business account, just test several different times and see which time gets you the best likes and comments and how quickly people respond to your new posts. For example, if I would to post at 2am I know that very few people will see and comment on my post. However, it's a completely different story when I post at 6am.
4. Instagram algorithm takes into consideration how long people stay on your Instagram account:
5. Instagram algorithm rewards you for using all of their features:
6. Instagram algorithm favors posts with specific relevant hashtags:
Use the analytics that Instagram provides you to optimize your Instagram content and grow your engagement by comparing which post types or photos are performing best, and apply what you've learned to your Instagram strategy! Always test to see what works and what can be improved. Create Excel spreadsheet and record the performance of your posts, Stories and Live every day.
Although the Instagram algorithm changes seem to be frequent and ever-changing, it’s possible to stay on top of them by better understanding how they work.
I hope this post gave you clarity about how the new Instagram algorithm works and what you can do to handle the new changes.
Share below what works best for your account.