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.
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.
It's hard when you start from ground zero. But you still gotta start from somewhere, yeah?
Starting on Instagram is no different than any other beginning. You just have to know what tools to utilize in order to make it work.
Here are some suggestions for you:
1. Start with engagement
That sounds easier than it is. You may think: "Eh, it's not that hard to go and comment on some 20-30 accounts per day." It's not. But that is not my point. You gotta find the right account accounts for that. You have to think strategically about that.
Do you want every single person on Instagram to follow you or people who are interested of your products and services? I am sure it's the second one...
So, what you need you to do is, find the top 10-20 accounts of the influencers in your industry. Go to their recent posts. Scroll down to the comments of the posts. These are the people you should engage with. You can even comment on their comments on the influencer post. There are so many influencers that don't even bother to respond to their comments. And that is a perfect opportunity for you to shine. Click on the link bellow to get more ideas about who to connect with and how to do it the right way:
With a little bit of research you can find some pods that are particularly created for Likes and comments. There are some that are created only for Power Likes.
So, I suggest you, join few of these and start bringing engagement to your posts. That will show to new accounts that come, that it's worth following you.
Just be aware that there are lots of people who join these pods for the sole purpose of gaining few more followers on their Instagram account and after that they leave the pod.
3. Create captivating and engaging Instagram Stories
You know I am a sucker for good Instagram Stories. That function on it's own is worth spending 1-2 hours a day. Some people take it really to the next level when it comes to creating their Stories.
In few words, you should create Stories that have a beginning, a middle and an end. Each of the components can be made of images, videos or a mix of both. There are plenty of apps that can help you to bring your Stories to the next level.
And if you want to learn how to create Stories like a pro, I have a solution for you. Take a look at the course I created that is specifically designed to teach you everything about Instagram Stories:
4. Use tag tools
Here are several tools that can help you find the right hashtags that you can use in the captions of your posts:
- Rite Tag
- Seek Metrics
Or you can just Google the top hashtags used in your industry.
Also check and see what hashtags your competitors are using in their posts. That should give you a pretty good idea of what hashtags you can start using.
Just keep in mind that it's in your best interest to change the hashtags you are using on a daily basis. Instagram is not a fan of accounts that use the same hashtags on every posts they publish.
5. Consider paying for influencers
There is nothing free in this world. And if you think that if you don't pay for ads or any type of marketing campaigns, you are all set, you are very wrong. The time you spent to research, figure out everything on your own and apply it by yourself, cost you even more than if you hired somebody who do this for a living.
There are many website and companies that offer influencers services depending on the industry you are in.
Here is one that was recommended to me:
Check it out and see if it works for you. For a small amount of money you can find somebody who will promote your account on their Instagram, either with posts and/ or Instagram Stories.
6. Use effectively the link in your bio
In best cases this link should lead to a landing page on your website. There you can offer them a freebie in the of e-book, Checklist, Cheat sheet, Blueprint, etc. You freebie needs to be something your audience will be interested of. So interested that are willing to give you their name and email address.
To accurately track clicks, I also recommend you use a custom link (from bit.ly or other services). You need to direct people to this link in your bio in order to really drive traffic – use calls-to-action in your post captions inviting people to click on the link in your bio to get them where you want them to go.
And don't forget that one of the newest options in Instagram is that now you can add hashtags and add another account in your bio. Use this opportunity the smart way. Create your own brand hashtags. They will come in use later. I promise :-)
So, yes, you can successfully drive traffic with Instagram. It takes a little more work than other sites, but I promise it’s worth it! I’ve seen my business grow and love using Instagram to create a truly engaged audience.