In our previous blog post, we shared the second installment of our three part series on using Instagram for business. We discussed how hashtags work and how to develop a useful strategy for using them. In case you missed out, you can catch up here.
In our final installment, we will be explaining the importance of how you engage with other users on Instagram. You will need to consider how to communicate with them on your business’ page as well as on others’ pages. Engagement on your page creates a positive feedback cycle. The more of it there is, the more people will see your content and engage with it as well. The reason for this is twofold: First, the more engagement a post has, the more likely it is to appear in Top Posts. Top Posts is a prominent public section promoting the most popular posts for any given hashtag. Anyone searching a particular hashtag will see its Top Posts. Second, photos with higher amounts of engagement appear to have more credibility. In turn, this attracts even more interaction. Engagement is crucial for building a substantial audience on Instagram, so today we are going to break down how to create an effective engagement strategy.
The first category of interaction you need to consider is the communication that takes place on your own Instagram page. This includes the comments, likes, and follows you receive. This interaction comes from people who have found you based on your image hashtags or by your comments on other pages. By interacting with your account, they are expressing interest in your business. Though many of them may not be actual business leads, it is wise to treat them all as if they were. Be sure to engage with as many of them as possible by replying to their comments on your images and even commenting/liking on their pages as well. This will increase the chances of them following you if they haven’t already, and sticking around if they already have. Instagram followers are fickle. Just because someone decided to follow your page does not mean they will stick around. Keeping them engaged by interacting with them on both your page and theirs will encourage them to keep following you.
The next strategy to consider is how to find other Instagram accounts to engage with. When done correctly, this will bring traffic back to your page. There are a few ways of doing this. One method is to find an account similar to your own and look at who engages with them (users who follow, like, and comment). Since these people have interest in this account, they may like yours as well. Visit their Instagram pages and interact with them by liking and commenting. Many of them will decide to check out your account and may even follow. Another method is to search hashtags that are relevant to your business. For example, if you are a hairdresser, you could search #coloredhair, #curlyhair, #hairsalon, or #pixiecut. Then like and comment on the images that the search brings up. If you really like the content of a particular account, consider following them. A follow is the greatest compliment you can receive on Instagram, so they may be flattered into following you back. Since these Instagrammers post content similar to your own, they may be useful client or networking leads.
We hope that you enjoyed this series on using Instagram for business. The topics we have discussed will help you harness the power that this app offers. Building your Instagram platform certainly takes determination and hard work. It may seem rather daunting at first, but your strategy will quickly become second nature to you. Instagram places 400 million active users at your fingertips, and now you are armed with the skill set needed to reach them.