Over the last 5 years, Instagram has gone from being just a social network to the bread and butter of millions of people across the world. If you have seen several such success stories and felt inspired to find success on Instagram, but need a little guidance, this article is for you. Here’s a list of 12 tips to boost your Instagram journey further.
1. Prioritize Your Goals
If you are an influencer in the making, your goals could be more views and content interaction from an audience. Set practical targets and check your progress accordingly.
However, if you own a business, and your target is to sell your product, your ultimate goal is conversion and interest in your products. Do not waste your time chasing views and follows. There are several accounts with less than 5000 followers, but have a decent customer base.
2. Post Regularly and Consistently
I cannot stress this enough. Maintaining a content schedule and being consistent is going to take you places. When I say regularly, it doesn’t mean you have to post every single day. As an influencer, posting 3 or 4 times a week is a fair deal. While as a business account, posting twice a week works too.
But keep track of how often you are posting. You can assign specific days of the week to post. Instagram’s algorithm keeps a track of how often you are posting. If you post 5 videos a week and then disappear for 2 weeks straight, it will hamper your views. Don’t lose hope too soon and quit. Be consistent for at least 6 months to a year before you decide that it’s not working for you.
3. Hashtags = SEO
Hashtags are the SEO of Instagram. Using the right hashtags is the most obvious way of boosting your visibility. The right hashtags are not #fyp, #foryoupage, #likeforlike, etc. Use hashtags that define the content in the video or your page. If you are posting a video about fashion, use hashtags related to fashion. Spend time and perform your research for relevant hashtags for your content.
Instagram allows up to 30 hashtags per post. If you are talking about a branded product, use the brand hashtags. If your content applies to people in a certain location, use hashtags related to that location. For instance, if you run a fashion business that ships only in India, you can use #fashionindia, #indianootd, etc. This will give Instagram a cue that your video is for Indian audience and your video will be pushed to the Indian audience.
Another point to note while using hashtags is to use specific terms, rather than broad categories. If you are posting a video on sweatshirts, instead of choosing #fashion, choose #winterfashion instead. Using more specific hashtags will ensure that your content is being displayed to the right audience.
When you use a broad category or term as a hashtag, your video could still be in several people’s feeds. However, if the video is not relevant to the viewer, he will just scroll past your video. This will not benefit you at all.
4. Trends, But in Time
Instagrammers keep coming up with new trends every other week. Hopping onto trends is a great way of getting Instagram’s attention. Using sounds that are trending is also another way of getting noticed by the algorithm.
However, the timing matters. How many times do you watch a specific trend? When you see it the first time, you notice it. You find a few more people doing the same trend; you watch it. And then you are done with it. At this point, if you come across a video with the same trend, you scroll for the next video in a second. Because you have watched it way too many times and are fed up with it after a point.
That is exactly how it is for your audience as well. Try to hop onto the trend early. When there are already a million videos on the trend, you can give it a pass.
A quick tip: If a sound is trending on Instagram, you will see an upward arrow on the left side of the name of the sound, at the bottom of the screen.
5. Audience Engagement
Once you post your content, it is important to keep in touch with your audience. Interacting with them in the comment section, posting stories, sharing bits and pieces of your life with them, going live, doing Q&As, etc. are several ways of staying connected with your audience.
If you have a budget, doing giveaways is also a smart way of gaining eyes. We all love freebies. Decide something within your budget that will excite your target audience. Set rules that require them to tag and follow your account. That way more people will get to know your content. The people that were viewing your content but did not follow you will end up following you as well.
6. Be Active in Comment Section
You will be surprised to know how many people read the comments of a random audience. Hence, let’s use that to our advantage. Drop noticeable and meaningful comments under other influencer’s posts. If you are a meme page, writing something witty will get you noticed. If you are an artist, mentioning something short and noticeable about your artwork can help.
7. Get Professional Help
If you can afford to hire people for your account, do it. Take baby steps. Do not end up spending way more than you can recover. Stick to the budget and hire professionals to create better quality posts.
Good quality content requires good photography, videography, editing, management, etc. If you feel that there is an aspect that you aren’t able to do well enough, find someone professional to do it for you. It might look like an expense, but having a management, or an editor, saves your time while giving you better content. You will be able to invest your time into the other aspects.
Find someone you can collaborate with. Reach out to other creators and collaborate with them. Collaborations are great for gaining visibility. They can also be a pleasant change for your audience. You might also end up having a good time and learning a few tips and tricks from your peers.
9. Experiment and Evaluate
Try out different approaches, hashtags, content styles, etc. and see what works for you. Keep evaluating how your posts are performing. I wouldn’t advise you to keep looking up after every post. That can lead to an unhealthy pressure and stress. However, evaluating your Insights section every month, or every two weeks, can give you an idea of the performance.
Notice which content did better and what you did there. Figure out what worked for you and what didn’t work for you. If you cannot see the Insights in your account, convert your account into Professional Account from Settings. You will also have to fill in all the sections in the account details before you can view Insights.
10. Bio and Profile
Once a viewer comes across your content and decides to see more of you, the first step they take is to check your profile. That’s where your Bio comes into play. Your Bio is like a summarized description or depiction of your content. Make the most of that space and write something clear and short that will give the viewer an insight into what to expect from your account.
It is also important to complete your profile setup. From setting up a profile picture to linking your other socials, utilize every option you can. Instagram has also enabled a feature where you can choose to be contacted via email. Enable the feature, as brands find it more professional to communicate via email.
11. Be Visible
Irrespective of whether you run a business or promote someone else’s product, showing yourself to the audience helps immensely. It adds a face to the content. People find it easier to connect with and identify when they see the person behind the work. That is why actors are more famous than writers or directors.
If you are not comfortable posting your own pictures or videos, use a logo as your identity. Include it in every picture and video in some way. This will act as an ID for your content. People will recognize your content by the logo.
12. Be Original
There are thousands of creators and another thousand businesses on Instagram. If you want to stand out among them, the one thing that separates you from them is your own self. Therefore, try to be as authentic as you can. You don’t have to look like someone else or speak like a certain someone to be liked by the audience.
Remember that there are millions of people out there. Someone somewhere will relate with you or appreciate your content. If you try to do what someone else is doing, it will become hard to keep up with, eventually. Being authentic will get you the audience that truly connects with you. This will not only satisfy you but also make you unique.
Who is your favorite content creator? Mention in the comments section.