2018 has been an intriguing chapter in the story of social media.
The spotlight has remained on social media platforms and the wider role that they play in society while Instagram, however, has gone through the year relatively unscathed and gone from strength to strength.
In June the platform reached one billion users and in January its API was adjusted to allow Instagram Business Profiles to schedule posts using a host of third party platforms. This makes the platform far friendlier to businesses and came in response to the huge number of Instagram Business Profiles that are created each day.
As competition for attention heats up on the platform, businesses need to have a keen strategy and creative twist to stand out from the crowd.
Here are our three key tips that can help you to get more users than ever before engaging with your photos.
Plan Your Stories
Stories – the slideshow format which draws lots of inspiration from Snapchat – continues to be developed by the platform and most users find this is where engagement comes from. It’s little wonder that they’re so great for businesses:
– They offer behind-the-scenes content (which, as a bonus, doesn’t have to be so polished)
– Found at the top of the app, stories have the most prominent real estate
– Stories allow for tagging of other users which is great for engagement
– The disappearing nature of stories makes them fun and exclusive
Many businesses fail to capitalise on the format, though. They make a critical mistake: while it’s okay for the content itself to lack polish, the idea and execution can’t. Too many brands are quick to hit record without making the proper planning and this affects their engagement rate.
We recommend that you plan your brand’s stories for the week and dedicate each day to a particular theme. This will help take your stories from disjointed to engaging and attractive to your audience.
Always Look for Collaboration
With all of the awesome features on offer to users, it’s sometimes easy to forget that at the end of the day Instagram is a social media site that thrives upon connection. Video and photo editing within the app is so slick that it sometimes takes the driving seat.
But you should never lose sight of the fact that above all else, your Instagram account is there to engage users rather than just promote in a vacuum.
Instagram has a wide range of mechanisms to help you connect with collaborators and share customer success stories. Tagging accounts is a breeze and with the appropriate level of preparation they can be a very fruitful technique.
We recommend that business on Instagram should never be afraid to send messages and coordinate a “shout-out” before the fact. This can help the collaborator to prepare their response and leads to a smoother and more impressive relationship.
Analyse Your Success
It’s important that you give Instagram the appropriate level of respect that it deserves. Some businesses are all too happy to post the occasional photo and sometimes look at the number of likes it has received. There’s so much more to it.
There are a variety of social media management tools out there and each of them offers some manner of social media report. They vary in terms of their quality and focus so it’s important you find the right tool for you.
You’ll be able to get information on follow count, engagement rates and clicks to help you shape your strategy in response to the way that users view your account.
Make It Fun
Above all else, Instagram is a fantastic way to engage with your users in a casual way on a platform that they enjoy using. They love fun, so deliver if you can.
We hope these tips help your business to grow on Instagram!