Whether you’re new to Instagram or have been using the platform for a while, learning how to increase Instagram engagement can be tricky! Do I post too often? Do I not post enough? Did I use the right hashtags? How do I know what my readers like?! I’m not an expert, but I’ve been working on increasing my following and engagement on all platforms, and I’m going to share a few things that have worked for me!
How to Increase Instagram Engagement
Include a call to action. What do you want your followers to do? Whether you want a heart, a comment, or something else, make sure you have a clear call to action so everyone knows what you want them to do. If I like a photo, I’ll double-tap it. However, if the poster has asked me to leave a comment, I’m likely to do that as well. If you don’t ask, I won’t comment nearly as often.
Don’t ask for too much. On that same note, don’t ask for comments on every. Single. Image. That’s annoying, and people are going to stop seeing your call to action if you repeat it on every photo! If you want your followers to visit your blog, say so – but do so sparingly.
Mix it up. If you usually ask for likes, ask for a comment. If you usually ask for them to visit the blog, don’t ask for anything at all. Or, ask a question instead of asking for them to do something. “Which colour do you like best?” is a great question to ask, no matter which niche you’re in. You can post paint samples if you’re a DIY blogger, or nail polish if you’re a beauty blogger!
Be consistent. Just like with any other social platform, consistency on Instagram is key. Post regularly (a few times a day is fine), and interact with your followers! Respond to mentions and comments in a timely fashion. If you post daily and then don’t post for a while, a few of your followers might “forget” about you. Likewise, if you post 10 images in a two hour period when you usually only post once a day, they’re going to be annoyed.
Quality over quantity. This goes without saying, I think, but it’s worth mentioning briefly anyway. Just like with blogging, quality matters much more than quantity when it comes to posting on Instagram. Before you post, ask yourself: Does this deliver quality?
Stick to a theme. While you don’t have to box yourself in to posting about just one or two things, it’s nice to have a theme – and not just on Instagram, but across all social media platforms! While each platform is completely different, your brand remains the same and your posts should reflect that.
Be a friend. Mention friends in posts to try and boost their followers and engagement. They will most likely return the favour, but don’t expect it! Scroll through and “like” their images, and leave comments when you have time. Do not, under any circumstances, comment with things like “Great photo! Go like mine!” – or anything of the sort. That is spammy!
Hashtags, hashtags, hashtags. Use hashtags, but do so in a way that makes sense and is effective. For example, if you’re posting a picture of your morning run, would you simply hashtag it “#run”? No, of course not! You also wouldn’t want to add a caption like “Morning run!” with 32 hashtags after it.
I like using 5-10 hashtags, depending on the subject and the length of the caption. Using general hashtags like “#run” might seem like a good idea, but specific hashtags generally give you better results. Though you don’t want to get too specific (#earlymorningrunwithmydogsteve), hashtags like #morningrun, #runner, #iloverunning might work well.