Three months ago, I realized that I had to do something to increase my engagement on Instagram. I had about 1K followers and I watched with dismay as that number started to taper off. I would say that only 1-2% of that number was actively engaging with my feed, which at the time consisted mainly of baby pictures of the Oldest Child and the Youngest Child. The problem was that I was not creating value for the audience, but merely posting pictures, albeit cute ones, for my own benefit.
With that said, I rebranded my Instagram, changing the handle from my name to my blog’s name. I also changed the type of content I would post. Instead of posting baby pictures, the focus would be on me, the writer of the blog. I decided that I would post three types of content everyday. The first post would be promotional, or created for the purpose of promoting a blog article. The second post would be inspirational, or designed to motivate the audience. And finally, the third post would be pictures of me in various stages of my life. By doing this, I hoped to create a feed that was engaging, inspiring, and captivating.
Once I had decided on what types of content to post everyday, the next step was engaging with my audience on Instagram. I used these 4 easy tips to increase engagement on Instagram.
4 Easy Tips on How To Increase Engagement on Instagram
- Always use a call-to-action
- Direct Message (DM) your followers
- Regularly post to IG stories
- Like, comment, and save
Always use a call-to-action
The primary purpose of creating content on Instagram is to elicit a response from your audience. You can do this by having a call-to-action at the end of every Instagram post. That post can be an action that you want your audience to do, or a question that you want them to answer. Of course, you must match the call-to-action to the type of content that you are posting.
For example, for my promotional posts, the call-to-action would be trying to get my audience to click on my blog link in my profile. For the inspirational posts, I may simply nudge them to double tap on the post if they agree. Or, I may pair the quotes with an inspiring story and ask the audience for their thoughts on the subject matter. By doing this, my audience is actively engaging with me, and that is what you want.
Direct message (DM) your followers
This is a feature that I didn’t really use previously, but lately I have started to see the inherent value in the DM feature on Instagram. The DM feature is the private messaging system on Instagram. You can message anyone on Instagram (regardless of whether they are following you or not) and have a one-on-one conversation. This opens up communication that is more personalized, tailored, and private. It is a great feature to use to get to know each of the people who follows you.
I use this feature from the beginning when I am first getting to know a follower on Instagram. I send them a quick DM, which consists of three parts: I thank them for following me, hope they like what they see, and then I say something positive about their content. This is to show that they aren’t just a number to me, but as someone I can create a professional relationship with that is mutually beneficial to us both.
Regularly post to IG stories
If the Instagram feed is like a polished magazine spread, then IG stories is where you can let the real, authentic you shine. In IG stories, you can post live videos, before and after pictures, shoutout a brand that you really like, share an Instagram post, or show the world what you are doing at any particular time of day. There is so much that you can do with Instagram stories to not only grow brand but to increase your engagement on Instagram. By consistently posting on Instagram stories, you keep yourself at the top of the Instagram page. In short, they are less likely to forget about you.
In addition to posting to Instagram stories, you should also view the stories of the people that you are following. Take a moment and browse through to see what’s going on. Most importantly, send them a comment in their DM when something in their story resonates with you in a particular way. Remember that you are likely to get what you put into Instagram. If you send a thoughtful comment to their DM via the stories feature, then you are likely to get one back.
Like, comment, and save it
Last but not least, we must never underestimate the importance of liking, commenting, and saving the actual content that shows up on the Instagram feed. Liking a post is fine. Saving a post is even better, as I believe it helps get your content seen by more people.
But if you want to up your engagement game, then write a comment. Write a thoughtful, sincere comment about something in the post. Share something about you. Ask them a question. This is the best way to get to know your followers.
After employing these 4 easy tips on how to increase engagement on Instagram, I found that it actually worked. Three months ago, my engagement was virtually non existent. Now, I would say that my engagement has went up by about 50%. So, be active on Instagram by commenting on posts, post on IG stories, use the DM feature, and always have a call-to-action. This is how you create a lasting engagement strategy on Instagram that actually works.