What makes Instagram engagement special for your businesses?
The #1 reason Instagram is HOT today is the Instagram engagement level. The engagement level on Instagram surpasses all the other social media networks today. That is huge.
Not only that, but Instagram has 1 billion users and ½ of them are active every single day on Instagram.
What does engagement really mean for you?
It means that people are spending more time on that social network connecting with others. They are not just strolling through the feed. They are commenting on their friends’ posts.
And they are messaging on Instagram. Businesses can message users as well. Many users who keep their profiles private use messenger only and never even post a thing to Instagram.The engagement level on Instagram surpasses all the other social media networks today. #InstagramClick To Tweet
Instagram as a marketing tool for your business
Instagram is a great marketing tool for expanding the presence and visibility of almost any business.
It can be beneficial for any company that has a visually appealing aspect of their business, such as home decor, clothing, lifestyle, travel, pets, and much more.
Instagram allows every kind of business, from publicly traded big businesses to local mom-and-pop shops, to reach a worldwide audience.
The smaller businesses need to position themselves to reach their niche.
Many local businesses use word of mouth for their marketing. Instagram is similar online to the old fashioned word-of mouth marketing done offline.
People are chatting and commenting on Instagram daily about the products and services they love.
Be sure to have a social media listening tool to monitor what’s being said about your business.People are chatting and commenting on Instagram daily about the products and services they love. #InstagramClick To Tweet
Where to start with Instagram engagement for your small business?
If you are not on this social network yet, it’s not too late to get started with Instagram.
Just be sure to fill out your bio completely and start with a nice profile picture.
Think about what link you will have in the bio as it’s your only link. (Unless you generate 10,000 followers!)
Then, make sure you have a business profile. You can have both a personal and a business or just a business profile on Instagram – unlike Facebook.
Lastly, this precious link in your bio can be changed as often as you want. It’s great to highlight a sale, promotion or new blog post.
Anything you are referring to in your Instagram post can say “see more in the bio above!”
Begin by sharing great images, photos and videos
Since Instagram is a visual social network, it’s important to really use your best photographs and images there.
Mix them up with video. Video does best on Instagram (as it does on all networks).
Remember, with video you have only 3-60 seconds on Instagram. (Stories can only be up to 15 seconds and IGTV up to an hour.)
Engage, engage and engage more
To really get noticed on Instagram you need to engage with others. You need more Instagram followers to reach your targeted audience and grow your Instagram profile.
Focus on your area and your niche. Follow those with like interests and in your area. (Unless you have an online store, then you can expand your area.)
Next, read their descriptions – some tell stories with their photos or videos. Then, respond and engage with them about the story, not only about the image.
Finally, use some emoji’s in your post description.Then, respond and engage with them about the story, not only about the image. #InstagramClick To Tweet
Hashtags help engagement on Instagram
If that isn’t enough, next you have Hashtags to use. There are many guides out there explaining how to find the best ones.
Use some that are very popular and mix with some not so popular because if you only use really popular hashtags you may not be found.
Do not use emoji’s in your hashtags – you could be shadow banned.
What is a shadow ban? It is a ban that renders your hashtags undiscoverable by the vibrant users.
Only your followers will be able to see your feed and not the entire Instagram community.
What can you do to prevent a shadow ban? Refrain from using the same hashtags repeatedly. Do not use third party tools to gain followers and likes and/or comments.
If all else fails, give Instagram a few days break and do nothing. It will help the algorithm there re-adjust!
I love the tool by Triberr to check for shadowbanning.
The tool allows you to review your last 10 posts on Instagram. If you find you have a post shadowbanned you can easily edit it.What is a shadowban? It is a ban that renders your hashtags undiscoverable by the vibrant users. #InstagramClick To Tweet
Instagram tools to help you
There are many tools for Instagram you can use to help you achieve more visibility as well.
There are tools and apps to create collages, others to create quotes with beautiful images and some that even repost for you.
A repost is when you share someone else’s Instagram post.
Use stories feature to increase engagement on Instagram
Stories are the rage today on Instagram and Facebook. They took a page from Snapchat and their stories disappear within 24 hours.
No one wants to miss out on their friends’ story!
These images are vertical, and you can use stickers and polls on them. Polls will increase your engagement level. Be sure to participate in others’ stories as well.
The stories feature can get you noticed more on the popular social network. They stand out on the feed and are easily scrollable.
Making money and shopping from Instagram
Many bloggers can make money from Instagram with influencer campaigns and sponsorships.
Niche bloggers can share products and tools for their audience and get paid at the same time.
Online businesses have shoppable grams available so people can shop right from your Instagram post to your product.
Yes, you can use Instagram Checkout now. Instagram Checkout is for United States businesses only to date.
Look for the SHOP icon under retailers’ Instagram profiles for this feature!
This saves Instagram users valuable time shopping and means less third-party payments for you.
Another way to shop is when someone clicks on the Instagram post and a shopping bag pops up describing the product.
You can save it to a wish list or make a purchase right from there. The saved items send people directly to the product page on the sellers’ websites to purchase.
This can be a little more time consuming for users than buying directly on Instagram.
Over to you
How are you increasing your engagement over on Instagram today? We’d love to know more in the comments below!
Originally published Jun 23, 2019; updated 9/16/21 to improve formatting for mobile devices.
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