Ever since social media giant Facebook acquired Instagram in the year 2012, the engagement on the photo-sharing (and now video sharing) platform has soared manyfolds. Instagram, in the year 2021 has become one of the best tools for businesses to drive profitable traffic to their landing pages, grow an audience and even make sales.
With Instagram currently boasting a mammoth 1 billion active users every month, it is essential for every business to have a successful Instagram presence to capitalise on this opportunity. A brand can profit off of Instagram only when they garner an organic following that also engages with their content. To help you achieve the same, we have compiled a list of things you can try to increase your followers on Instagram for better returns:
1. Do Not Take The Lazy Way
To be successful on Instagram, your page must be organically followed by users that engage with your content. Both the organic and engaging distinctions in the previous sentence are equally important.
A lot of brands take the lazy route of buying bot likes and followers that bring nothing but a bigger number to their Facebook handles. Having a page boosted with bot accounts leads to a handle that is devoid of any engagement. The handle in that case looks like a deserted ghost town with millions of people that never actually show up. You also need to remember that the Instagram developers and algorithms are catching up, weeding out the paid likes and followers by the millions every day. Losing millions of followers in a single day might not be a result you may want for your brand’s Instagram handle.
What you need to be successful in this game is to strive for an organic following. People that are real, bring you business that is real. Not to mention the engagement and word of mouth that comes from local and international SEO can be beneficial for your brand in the long run.
2. Curate Your Presence With Extra Care
The first thing to do while setting up your brand’s Instagram is to optimize its presence. A rule of thumb is to maintain uniformity. Use extra care to curate your Instagram page’s bio, handle and even the captions on your images. Try to keep the tone of voice as uniform as possible. The tone you choose for your posts, stories and captions will be the tone in which your brand communicates with your potential customers, so it is essential to give this the time and thought that it warrants.
Another rule to follow is to go for an Instagram handle that is short, and quickly searchable. You want your potential customers to find you easily on Instagram, after all. Similarly, make sure your posts and stories are easily recognisable. We understand that it is difficult to be unique on a platform filled with billions of brands and people, but a little bit of consistency in your efforts goes a long way!
3. Consistency Is Key
With Instagram’s algorithm changing consistently, it becomes difficult for brands to show up on even their followers’ feeds regularly. The best way to combat this is to post consistently so that you reach the maximum number of followers and a few newer accounts. This does not mean that you spam your follower’s feed with hundreds of posts a day. A good mix of quality posts and stories throughout the day is sufficient to keep your brand in the public eye.
A good way to ensure a smooth flow of posts and stories is to plan out a calendar for your posts. Figure out the best hours where your posts get the most engagement and schedule your future posts to go live around that time. Sticking to a consistent flow of posts and stories will give your customers and followers a consistent experience resulting in higher returns.
4. Keep Your Hashtags Relevant
We’ve got news for you, both good and bad. The bad news is that the captions on your Instagram posts are not searchable. The good news is that you can bypass this hurdle by simply using hashtags. But make sure you use the hashtags that are relevant to your post or the brand as people will get to it by searching that specific hashtag.
Including relevant hashtags helps people find your posts or page after a quick search, or even after clicking on the hashtag from another post. Instagram users need not follow your handle to reach a specific post with that hashtag. Nowadays, users can even follow hashtags, so using relevant hashtags consistently can also fetch you people who follow a certain hashtag.
A word of caution: Instagram allows users to use upto 30 hashtags per post, but you should refrain from using more than 10. In the world of hashtags, less is always more. Try to be as relevant to your brand and posts to get the users that will truly engage with your content.
5. Experiment Is The Norm
With every new feature that Instagram introduces to its users, the possibilities of capitalising it increase. You should not shy from experimenting between different ways you can post your content. You can make regular posts, carousel posts, stories, make a new reel or an IGTV video and can even go live at the click of a button.
Each feature and content type has its own advantage. The IGTV videos for instance, are the longest format available and are displayed on a full screen. Reels are probably the best performing content type right now as it is the newest feature Instagram has released. Using reels also gives you an edge as they play in a bigger frame on the explore page, a feature used by more than 200 million active users everyday.
Examine the type of content that works best for you and capitalize on it, but don’t forget to experiment with the other content types on occasions. Your aim should be to go for a mix of most of these content types to reap the benefits out of all of them.
Developing an Instagram presence for your brand may seem like an exhausting process, but its results cannot be overlooked by any business looking to make it big through digital marketing. Being aware of the best practices and keeping up with the evolving medium are the two best ways to make your journey easier towards an Instagram handle that feels real and alive!