Dear Brit: 'How Do You Get Your Instagram Followers Engaged?'
Five ways to get -- and keep -- your Instagram audience invested in what you're doing.
Brit Morin was 25 when she left Google to start Brit + Co, a lifestyle and education company aimed at helping women cultivate creative confidence. Now — 10 years, $50 million in funding and 1.2 billion pageviews later — Morin's passion is empowering more women to take the entrepreneurial leap. She's a managing partner at VC fund Offline Ventures, host of iHeartRadio podcast Teach Me Something New, creator of Selfmade, a 10-week start-your-own-business course for women founders, and most recently — Entrepreneur advice columnist. Find her here answering the most personal and pressing questions of women entrepreneurs.
Have a question for Brit? Email it to firstname.lastname@example.org, and she could answer it in an upcoming column!
How do you engage your followers on Instagram? What tips and tricks do you recommend?
Feeling out of sorts on the gram? You're not alone!
As the Instagram algorithm continues to change, users across the platform are experiencing lower numbers on carousel posts, single feed images and even in-feed videos. It can sometimes feel impossible to reach your followers, let alone have them engage with your content or attract new ones.
Staying on top of shifts in the Instagram platform can take time and often feels frustrating, but all is not lost in the world of social media! Pivoting your strategy has never been easier, and most importantly, there are no dancing videos required. Read on for my top five tips for refreshing your online engagement.
1. Share the love
Carving out your corner of the web and building a tribe is not a one-way street. If you are hoping to increase engagement on your own pages, you need to do the same for others first. Leave comments, follow like-minded businesses and throw those likes around like confetti. Not sure where to start? Respond to comments on your own posts and interact with followers of accounts most similar to yours.
2. Kick perfection to the curb
Gone are the days of perfectly curated Instagram grids and fully designed story sets. Instagram users are craving human connection in the form of behind-the-scenes looks, in-process videos and unfiltered reality. Showing your brand as human with real dreams, motivations and even a few mistakes creates relatability and a deeper connection with your audience. Take a few videos of a day at the office, share a project or product you are currently developing or pass off your account to a team member for a takeover. The best part of this strategy is it can be quick, easy and fun!
3. Get reel(s)
Reels are 15-60 second multi-clip videos meant to capture the short attention span of social media users and provide entertainment. With the ever-increasing popularity of TikTok and YouTube, Reels videos are an undeniably important part of the new Instagram algorithm. The key to succeeding in this space is to follow the trends, utilize popular music and build out your content on the platform rather than a third-party app. Searching hashtags to find trending videos in your industry is one of the best ways to find inspiration for your content. Pro-tip: Take advantage of Instagram's new "Use Template" feature to make Reels videos in a snap!
4. Tag, you're it!
With more than a billion users, finding your target demographic can feel like looking for a needle in a haystack. That's where tagging comes in! Tagging another account and adding hashtags and location are some of the oldest tricks to increasing reach and can often be overlooked. From the photographer who took the photo to the brands you collaborated with on a project, tagging their account allows them to reshare your content in stories and interact with it quickly through notifications. This increases both the engagement on your content and the reach to a new audience that might not have discovered your account otherwise.
5. Clean up your followers
Removing followers may seem counterproductive to your goals, but it may just be the most important part of this list. Your engagement rate on Instagram is a measure calculated by dividing your follower count by the actions you receive on a post. It is a widely used metric to determine just how effective your social media strategy is in creating an engaged community. So, if you find yourself with a large number of followers that are passing by your posts without interacting or spam accounts clogging your follower count, they could be doing more harm than good. I recommend taking a pass through your follower list at least once a month!
If it feels like this is a lot to think about, trust me, I hear you. In my @beselfmade program, we dig into all the nuts and bolts of social strategy: how to batch your content, define your voice and presence and create strategies across platforms that best set up your brand for success. Plus, you can always slide in my DMs for feedback! Find me at @brit, and let's get social.
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