Instagram is one of the fastest growing social platforms today! With over 700 million active users, the marketing potential is enormous! Our account is still quite young but this has given us the opportunity to really explore what works and what doesn’t. Here is what we have found so far that will turn you into an Instagram master:
1. Nail your Bio
The all-important bio! This is a truly essential element to encourage people to follow you. This is your opportunity to introduce yourself or your business to the world. That being said, this is not the place to write an essay about yourself.
Keep it short and snappy! Use relevant keywords to sum up what you and your account are all about and punctuate that with a few emoticons (but not too many, that will turn users away).
Most importantly, include a link to your website, newsletter, YouTube channel, another social account, etc.
This is what ours looks like at the moment:
2. Post regularly
Post every day. Yes, every single day! Try to post 1-2 times per day. Instagram users are more likely to follow accounts that are active and posting relevant content on a daily basis.
Posting too often in one day can seem very spammy, particularly if you don’t have many followers yet. Bigger accounts can post more often because they have a big follower base who are eager to see more content.
3. Like and comment
This is a way of making more people aware of your account in a positive and constructive way. Spend some time every day liking pictures and commenting (thoughtfully).
Search for hashtags related to your account and start the process. This will encourage relevant users to view your account. If they like what they see, they’ll follow you. You can also try following relevant users and see if they follow back, however this doesn’t work as well as it does on Twitter. See what works for you!
4. Use relevant hashtags
We covered this in a previous post here, but it’s worth another mention. Hashtags are the lifeblood of any Instagram master when building their following.
Instagram allows up to 30 hashtags per post and it is 100% acceptable to make use of the full 30. To avoid annoying your followers (and potential followers) put those hashtags in a comment. This has exactly the same effect and frees up your description for more relevant content.
For the most popular tags go to TagsforLikes and curate some hashtags for your account. If you’re an entrepreneur or own a business, here is a small tag cloud that you may find useful. Feel free to add more and fill it up to 30!
#Entrepreneur #entrepreneurlife #money #grind #work #business #businessman #businesswoman #businessowner #working #startup #entrepreneurship #cash #hardwork #passion #desire #startuplife #happiness
5. Follow relevant accounts
Ideally, follow accounts that are more successful that yours. The aim here is not to get them to follow back, but to study what they do.
• See which posts of theirs gain the most likes
• See how they encourage people to follow them
• What marketing strategies do they put into practice?
• What hashtags do they use?
• How is their bio structured?
Learning from a successful account will give you a blueprint to emulate on your own. It’s important to put your own spin on these strategies so that they are relevant to your message and your brand.
6. The right tools
While Instagram has their own photo editor, sometimes you need a little more. If you’re working only on your phone then VSCO is an app you cannot live without! Give your smartphone pics the professional treatment.
If you have a camera and are taking pictures the old-fashioned way then an amazing online tool to use is PicMonkey. Their range of photo editing tools is phenomenal and a large majority of them can be used with a free account!
If you’re more interested in posting quotes and similar images like we do on our account, then Canva is all you’ll ever need. Create a free account and you’ll have access to beautiful stock images, designer templates, and much more! Here is an example of what we created on Canva in less than 2 minutes:
Call-to-actions are very important in the world of social media marketing. People sometimes need a bit of a nudge when it comes to performing certain actions. An Instagram master uses the right CTA to increase likes and follows tremendously! Here are some of our favorite CTA’s to use on Instagram:
• Double tap if you agree!
• Tag a friend who needs to see this!
• Follow us for more [blank] @yourusernamehere (we DOUBLED our follower count in one post using this one)
• Click the link in our bio for [blank]!
• Comment below if [blank].
Fill in the blanks and test which one works best for you! Other CTAs include asking a question or even promoting another account (a shoutout).
8. Targeted Ads
If you have some cash to spare then this is a great way of promoting your content on Instagram. You can create a promotion on Instagram itself, or you can create one on Facebook and check the box “Run Promotion on Instagram”.
Be sure to specify your target audience well. This will give you a much higher return on investment (ROI). Target people for their age, interests, location, language, milestones, institutions, companies, and much more. Shopify has a great article about how the right targeting can increase your ROI by 2700%! Read it here!
9. Reach out to more successful accounts
Reaching out to more successful accounts for a shoutout is risky, but it can pay off in a big way!
My suggestion is don’t aim for the biggest accounts (1 million followers +) but rather aim a bit smaller (10 000 – 100 000 +). These accounts are more likely to be open to giving shoutouts, although they may charge you a small fee.
Alternatively, you can find “shoutout for shoutout” accounts (or s4s). The quality of these shoutouts and the reach they will have may be questionable so do this with caution. Only associate yourself with profiles that match your brand’s message!
10. Repost successful content (with credit)
Reposting successful content saves you time and provides you with a post you know people love already. We do not recommend doing this too often! The majority of your posts should be your own creation.
When you repost another image, be sure to give credit to the original poster in the description by tagging their profile. Besides it being good manners, it helps associate your account with theirs in the search results.
A great app to use is Regrann. It makes the process of reposting images and videos seamless and easy. Give it a try!
Thanks for reading! You are well on your way to becoming an Instagram master!
Please share if you found this useful! Post your IG account in the comments and let’s grow our accounts together!
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