There are many reasons for marketers to love Instagram. The world’s favorite social media app designed exclusively for the smartphone generation is used by nothing less than one billion users across the globe who are active every month. The rate of engagement for Instagram is far more than that of the rest of social media; consequently, more than 25 million businesses, large and small, are present on this photo-centric social media platform vying with each other to attract the attention of customers.
However, as savvy marketers will testify, success on Instagram comes to only those who get their Instagram marketing strategy right, execute the tactics smartly, and avoid making common mistakes. Some tips from expert Instagram marketers on elevating your brand visibility on Instagram and growing your follower base:
Make Your Posts More Visible with the Right Hashtags
Since the only way of searching for content on Instagram is through hashtags, brand managers and marketers wishing to drive visibility should employ the right mix of popular as well as their business-specific hashtags. When more of your content is viewable by users, they will tend to follow your account if they like it and find it relevant and entertaining.
Remember not to use the most popular hashtags on Instagram blindly as they might not be relevant to your business or product at all. You need to research to identify the hashtags that not only describe your brand properly but also have a large enough search volume. The best way to discover relevant hashtags is to use one of the many available hashtag research tools online. You can also study the most popular ones being used by your competition and draw inspiration from them. Though Instagram restricts you from using more than 30 hashtags, studies reveal the optimum number to be between seven and eleven. Keep on updating your hashtag list to keep up with the search trends.
Choose the Right Filters and Use It Consistently
Even the best of photos can be improved for better Instagram user appeal, which is the reason why many account holders prefer to use filters. Another good reason to use a filter is to lend your photos a distinctive look that with consistent use will make them instantly recognizable and add to your effort to increase your brand awareness and memorability. While you can explore some of the most popular filters on Instagram, you can use any other filter; however, you need to establish that your audience likes it.
Post at the Optimum Times
You can help your brand to be more visible by posting at the times when your target audience is active on Instagram. While several studies are indicating the best days of the week and the best times to post on Instagram, the most effective way of establishing the time that works for you the best is to carry out your research by analyzing how your posts are performing in terms of engagement when you post them on different days and times. The job of analysis is not as tough as it may seem.
All you need to do is to use one of many available analytics tools to find out the engagement record of your previous posts. By using a scheduling tool, you can set a publishing schedule for your posts that will ensure that your content is automatically published without your having to manually to it at the desired times. If you find you are still not getting enough likes, you can spend a nominal amount to buy likes for IG from social media marketing agencies.
Attract the Followers of Your Competitors
Among the most effective tactics for growing your Instagram follower base is to identify the Instagram accounts of your main competitors and engage their followers. The reason why this works so well is that these people have already evinced interest in the kind of products you are selling and are likely to also follow you.
You can try to make them your followers by first following them, liking their photos, or commenting on their photos. It is a normal Instagram courtesy that if you follow someone, he will also reciprocate. Informal studies have revealed that the combination of all the three actions of following, liking, and commenting on a photo proved to be most effective.
Sponsor Posts by Influencers
While organic optimization of your Instagram account is great for attracting followers, it is admittedly a slow process and you can get results only by long and consistent effort, you can increase the brand awareness and add to your follower count more quickly by engaging influencers. Influencers are people who have a very large number of followers due to their celebrity status or because they are experts in their niches.
You need to identify accounts that have the right fit with your brand and enter into a dialog with them to find out if they are willing to endorse your brand. If you are a small business, you should talk with influencers whom you can afford. The rates charged by influencers depend on both the number of followers and the rate of engagement. Typically, the larger influencers have a lower rate of engagement compared to the ones with fewer followers.
The top guys in this game can charge a million dollars per post while micro-influencers with around 50,000 followers can charge around $10 per 1,000 followers. Before signing a contract, you should perform due diligence on the influencer account to ensure that the follower count or the rate of engagement has not been falsified, as fraud is rampant in this lucrative business. According to Forbes, in these times of uncertainty, influencers can help elevate the trust factor of brands.
To succeed in Instagram marketing, you need to constantly up your game and increase your follower count. It is important to understand that followers like to follow accounts that consistently post high-quality content. Making your posts more visible by using the right hashtags, including geotags for local search, the right filters, and by using influencers, you can ramp up your follower count very quickly.