Get More Instagram Engagement
Make Your Content Pop
Success can sometimes be found by chance but is more commonly reached through preparation. Concerning the saturated world of social media, maintaining any degree of lasting success can only be done through intentional effort and a solid game plan. Instagram is a platform that has capabilities most influencers are not taking full advantage of, meaning there are opportunities for you to seize low-hanging fruit and stand out to potential followers.
Instagram Stories provides a unique opportunity for you to provide special content that automatically feels exclusive because of its expiration date. Feeling special will not be enough to maintain interest if you do not approach the publishing process with the same level of care and planning you apply to your feed.
Think of it from your users’ perspective. Would you want to spend your time on a business that thinks they can get away with providing a subpar product?
To get the most from Stories treat your posts like a story. Great stories contain three parts: A beginning, middle, and end. Having these three parts will keep your audience engaged to the end, leading to a more consistent view rate instead of a spike at the beginning that fizzles out by the end.
Your intro might be the most integral part of the whole endeavor, so give crucial attention to it. If you have a hard time crafting an intro, approach the writing process like a mystery story. Star at the end and work backward. Knowing where the story will end makes it much easier to deliver a focused intro.
By scheduling in advance, you will also get the opportunity for quality assurance. Don’t end up in a fail compilation by having something embarrassing happen on screen without you initially noticing it. Take a moment to double-check everything you produce before finally publishing it.
Work The System
Algorithms rule the web and if you want to get anyone’s attention you’ll need to satisfy the needs of Instagram’s. Three key ways to do this are to only shoot video in portrait mode, use filters that maintain your brand aesthetic, and keep user watch times high.
Portrait mode is fairly straightforward. Most users are viewing through their phone screens, so tailor your content to make the mobile experience more pleasant.
Maintaining consistent filters is a difficult skill to master without overdoing it. It is considered a basic principle of branding to craft an image that is easily identifiable, but it is easier to apply to a business than an influencer. Your main takeaway from this section should be the importance of your personal brand. How can your posts be distinguishable from others in a feed just by sight?
If you take the planning stage seriously then you’ve already done a lot to improve the watch times of your videos. Aside from that, pay attention to your own analytics to see which of your posts get the longest views. Try to pinpoint what it is about those videos that increase engagement and replicate them in the future.
Applying these principles will go a long way towards getting your Stories posts featured.
Up Your Production Value
There are graphic design and data collecting tools integrated into the Instagram platform along with a number of free services that can take your production to higher levels. Stand out from the novices and the lazy by producing content that looks like you hired a production team (without increasing your expenses).
Within Instagram, utilize their free features to boost interest in your posts and create targeted content. There are a series of stickers that can be used to get direct answers without having to do the tedious work of scrolling through all messages on your posts.
Poll and question stickers both provide ways to get responses from users, but with different approaches. A Poll gets answers to a specific question like, which movie you should review next. It is ideal if you are indecisive or unsure of which idea will garner more interest.
Question stickers allow you to source ideas directly from the users you’re appealing to. It’s a great option if you are experiencing a bit of writer’s block and can result in loads of ideas in a short amount of time.
Countdown stickers give the opportunity for followers to opt-in for notifications regarding certain events that they don’t want to miss.
Quiz stickers can create a competition for prize giveaways, driving engagement, and new subscribers.
Off the platform, Canva makes it easy to create appealing graphics for updates that look better than something a high schooler will make in PowerPoint.
The Mojo and Over applications can be used to create animations that turn a boring text-based post into something eye-catching. Instagram also has gif stickers that can reduce the clutter of a text post by encouraging an action with an image.
Content posted to Stories, while still true to your brand, should be distinct from your feed, website, or other social media profiles. The temporary nature of Stories makes for a great excuse to experiment. Behind the scenes footage or tutorials offer different experiences to what your followers are used to and leads to a sense of genuineness in your persona.
Not every interaction needs to be canned. People have become much more skeptical about what they see on social media. By communicating organically with people, you show that you are who you claim to be. Respond to their messages. Comment on other people’s stories. Collaborate with others.
Don’t Forget The Science
Instagram provides a seven-day analytical record of engagement with your posts, known as Insights. Even this small timeframe can provide useful insights into your successes and failures. There are also outside sources available that can give you a longer timeframe to work with, but they normally cost money.
This information can be used to learn when your followers are most active via spikes in view rates. Making a post when they are online puts means you can get your content placed at the top of their queue instead of having it buried beneath everyone else’s.
Cross-promoting your content from Stories on your feed also acts as an advertisement. Followers will be better aware of what you are creating before it disappears.
Stay Up To Date
Social media is a competitive field which means there are advancements continuously being made. Staying informed as to the trends in practices and capabilities of technology is difficult. But to stay competitive, it is important to stay informed. Find sources you can trust that will do the legwork for you while providing accurate and useful information.