So you’ve set your business Instagram up, attracted some followers and posted some stories. But are you getting the engagement you expected? If you struggle to get people actually liking and commenting on your stories, there are a few things you can do to get more engagement on Instagram, and anywhere else online.
Value the engagement you do get, and reciprocate
Respond to comments. Comment back. If someone likes one of your pictures, like three or four of theirs. Let people know that if they engage with you it won’t be a one-way street.
Try reaching out to everyone who follows you with a comment or DM, or even a voice message. Look at what they do. Make your comment personal to them. If you have a freebie or blog post they’d love, tell them about it via DM,in a low pressure, casual way. Make sure any recommendation you make is tailored to them and their business. Only recommend something if it’s free: either freely available content, or an opt-in freebie if it’s just perfect for them.
Before you post a new photo or story to Instagram engage with your current followers. This lets the Instagram algorithm know that you are closely connected to those followers and then they are more likely to see your content.
Using hashtags is still the quickest way to reach people not yet following you who are interested in the topics you post about. It’s OK to use all 30 hashtags (the most Instagram allows) in each post as long as they’re all relevant. A few of them can be a bit silly/funny but most of them should be popular ones. You can put hashtags in your caption or comments section, but you might want to experiment to see which your followers prefer.
Track your hashtags
Try and figure out which ones are actually bringing you engagement by testing different one. iPhone users can use the SmartHash App for this. Remember to mix up your hashtags. IG doesn’t like it if you just copy and paste the same ones every time.Take a look at what those successful in your niche are using.
Delete inactive followers
Go through your followers and check when they last posted. If it was years ago, they’re probably no longer using Instagram, or at least not using that account, which means they’ll never engage with your posts no matter what else you do! Deleting these followers will bring your follower count down, but it will bring your engagement rate up!
Post great content
The simplest but most important way to encourage engagement is to give people something worth engaging with, whether it’s a picture, video, story or caption. Post great content that’s highly relevant to your audience. You can use apps like WordSwag to create engaging quotes, and StoryArt to create professional looking Instagram stories.
I know of some great free resources, that I always mention in my posts about Instagram. If you haven’t checked them out yet, I recommend this FREE 7-day Instagram course from Alex Tooby, as well as this useful FREE download from CoachGlue that teaches you how to connect with potential clients on Instagram (it’s aimed at coaches, but the tips can be adapted to almost any service-based biz).
You might also want to check out this awesome Instagram training program from Alex Tooby. Alex really knows what she’s doing when it comes to growing your business with Instagram.
Have you joined our FREE resource library for solopreneurs? It’s packed full of free downloads, workbooks and guides to help you run your online business. You can get access here. You’ll also get a chance to grab The Busy Blogger’s Success Kit for half-price, and my monthly newsletter with tips, freebies, and special offers.