Before I started my career in social media management and Public relations, I wasn’t really an Instagram person. To put it frankly, I didn’t even understand what was going on there, I thought about it as a place where people just come to be vain since our parents have taken over Facebook. So my post there wasn’t more than five times in a year.
Fast forward to 2016 when I got my job as a social media manager, I fell in love with Instagram because this was the platform most of my clients were based. I still didn’t pay so much attention to Instagram until I started having difficulty growing the page. Then I found a quick way around it which is running Ads for the various brand that I manage.
Disclaimer: This is a long post with no photos but It is going to be something you’d love
But as I advanced in my career, I knew that growing the community of a brand on social media and Instagram, in particular, is more than just running Ads so my quest for knowledge began.
Then I came across Jazz Entrepreneur and The Larry Leo on Instagram and my perspective on Instagram engagement began to change. So when they eventually told me of their workshop titled “Unstuck Instagram” I immediately indicated my interest.
Enough of my long stories let me immediately dive into details and share with you five things nobody will tell you about Instagram engagement; The first thing you need to know is that people follow your page on Instagram for one of the following reasons;
Why People follow your Instagram account
- To get entertained
- To find inspiration
- To remain motivated
- Or to get informed or enlightened about a particular topic
Every time you get a new follower alert, the individual did that because of any of this and the truth is if you really look at all the people you are following at the moment, you’d see that you followed them for one or two of these reasons. Be intentional about your contents and the right followers would find you.
If you are as observant as I am, you’d know that engagement is everything on Instagram. Your daily upload doesn’t count until people can relate with you and comment on your post. If you want your post to also appear on the timeline of your follower you should also take time to engage with them by liking and commenting on their posts.
These are other ways you can engage with your followers
- Ask questions in your caption or request for information from them
- Join in your followers’ conversation and develop a relationship with them
- Like and comment genuinely on their post
- Your caption could also be in form of a story that your fans can relate to. The aim is to carry them along with your process. People engage with a post that they can relate to or looks like something that has happened to them before.
- DMs is a great way to build a relationship with a follower
Building Your Following
I’m still learning how to do this like a Pro but these were their recommendations;
- Follow active users of Instagram. Don’t just follow people because of their followers count. Follow people that are actually going to engage with your account.
- Use your explore button often to find people that are like you
- Explore relevant hashtags to find new followers i.e Type in a hashtag in the search button and find people with that hashtag.
- Minimize the use of popular hashtags because they would not bring you the reach that you want. Hashtags that are popular in your niche should be your focus. You’d notice that when you use very popular hashtags only white people would be liking your photos. So take time to research on hashtags that are peculiar to your niche and your location.
- Use hashtags that are Nigerian based to attract Nigerian followers and try to stick with hashtags that are within 50k so that your post can show up when searched.
- If you want to remain relevant on Instagram do more than selling to people
- You are not the only one doing what you are doing so make sure people are clear about what you do
- Your Bio should clearly state what your page is about and what you do
- Let your content be thorough and your photos clean
- Let whatever you post as content resonates with what you have on your bio. If you have indicated that you are a fashion blogger, your page should look, feel and smell like a boutique (I didn’t mean that literally)
The truth is that Instagram has shifted its high engagement algorithms from feeds to Instastory so if you have not embraced it you had better start doing that now. Whatever you post on your Instastory with relevant hashtags and location tagging has potentials of reaching more people and bringing your account to the faces of people that never knew you existed. In case you want inspirations on what to share on Instastory
- Your current location
- Your new finds
- Short DIY
- Inspirational talks
- Random pictures you don’t want to scatter your feed if you have a themed one
In conclusion, life is not so hard so is Instagram. As much as we are trying to make it as an avenue to push our businesses, remember to have fun and worry less about the numbers because those people that have the big numbers that you look at today were in your shoes too. In this my small sojourn in the Integrated Marketing Communication Industry, I have come to realize that Micro-influencing has a big way of pushing your brand to the right target audience. By Mirco-influencing I mean, having people with less influence talk about your brand would go a long way than having just 1 big influencer. (Please note that I’m not saying the Big influencers don’t deliver o I’m just trying to give you the encouragement on why you should not brood too much about the numbers of followers you have at the moment.
Plus the first reason you started blogging and Instagram is to have fun and talk about the things you are passionate about and not the money. Even though money is important, it should remain your secondary motive for blogging and engage on social media.
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