In just five years Instagram has a base of over 500 million monthly active users that are uploading more than 80 million photos per day, which are generating 3.5 billion likes per day. This has been largely due to the explosive growth of smartphones, for which Instagram has been designed, to take advantage of the click and upload feature.
Properly Explore Your KeywordsIn Instagram, virtually any word is converted into a keyword with the simple addition of a hashtag suffix. Potential customers will find it easier to search for your images if your hashtags accurately describe the images that have been posted. Only when the images have been found by your followers can you even think about engagement and conversion. To maximize the exposure potential of your Instagram images, you should ensure that your hashtags are relevant to the audience and are achieving the maximum volume of search.
You have the liberty of choosing what hashtags to use but you should ensure that they are relevant to the business and the customers, and not one that seems to be used by lots of other Instagram users. Finding unique as well as distinctive hashtags can be quite difficult and will usually entail a lot of research about the sector you are operating in and your competitor activity. You can use tools like Websta to find out the most popular one hundred hashtags that will give you a better idea of what’s happening. If you run a local business you can use Websta to find out what hashtags local users are employing so that you can join in the conversation.
Make the Content EngagingInstagram users are allergic to content that is overtly sales-oriented and pushy. This can be quite difficult to handle because as a business owner you main intention is to push sales and not entertain customers. However, you do need to disguise your sales pitch because Instagram users need to know your brand and you better. If the product or service strikes a chord they would like to know your story and would like that to be delivered in an entertaining and creative way.
Perhaps the best way of engaging users is using content that is diverse in nature. Use images, quotes or how-to videos or even glimpses of the inside of your business that customers do not get to usually see. Candid shots of your employees having fun or interacting with customers are also very good ways of bonding with customers. Run contests frequently as this gives customers a chance to interact with you and also get a sense of satisfaction that emanates from participation and perhaps winning once in a while.
Get the Timing RightAccording to Instagram data, there is so much traffic on the social media platform that close to 70% of the content is being missed out by the users. In this scenario, it is very important to get the time of your photo sharing and content uploads right as otherwise, your followers will miss out. As a business owner it might be very convenient to share content during business hours but according to studies, this is the very time that most users are busy and do not use their accounts.
It is a better idea to post in the morning hours before the rush to get to work starts, during the lunch break, as especially during the evening when users are relaxing and have the time to engage with their news feed. Even the day of the week matters. However, the matter of timing is not uniform across industries and sectors. You need to test out the days and the times at which you get your best engagement and use it consistently thereafter.
ConclusionInstagram user engagement is all about telling your story in the right way and using the available technology after properly understanding how you can make content relevant and interesting to your customers.
Author bio: Evans walsh is the owner of a small business retailing automotive detailing products. Evans has used the services of instamacro.com to raise the engagement levels with her customers significantly.