Of all the social media platforms, it sometimes seems like Instagram is a tricky one to get right with the constant updates to its ultra-sophisticated algorithm. On the other hand, it’s also a platform that when used correctly and effectively, can be an amazing way to market your brand online, gain an engaged following and build a community that supports your business. To help you maximise engagement on Instagram, here’s our top five tips:

Increase your use of hashtags

Hashtags are a great feature on Instagram that should really be made the most of. Per post, you can include up to 30 hashtags which can all help you to reach a wider audience. By including these in every post, you’ll soon find that your reach increases which is great for brand awareness and also engagement. The trick to using hashtags is to ensure they are relevant. Ultimately, when you incorporate a hashtag into your post, if this hashtag is searched by someone on Instagram your post will come up. This is why it’s really crucial that the hashtags you use are actually relatable to the post as if so, it will allow you to reach an audience who are genuinely interested in the content that you are sharing. This means they are much more likely to engage with it and also follow you and engage with further content that’s of interest to them.

Using hashtags on each Instagram post is a really effective way to boost engagement levels

Make sure you’re posting at optimal times

Across all social media platforms, there are times that work best to post when you are most likely to receive maximum engagement and the highest reach. This is of course dependent on your followers – such as when they’re most active, the country they’re in etc. so will be subject to change. However, generally speaking, it’s recommended by HubSpot that these are the best times to post for each day:

  • Monday: 11am-2pm
  • Tuesday: 7pm
  • Wednesday: 11am
  • Thursday: 11am
  • Friday: 11am-1pm and 2pm-4pm
  • Saturday: 9am-11am
  • Sunday: 10am-2pm

By scheduling your content to go live at these times, you’re likely to get the best results on your posts. Following these guidelines doesn’t mean you need a really structured plan that can’t be subject to change, of course you may not always have content you wish to share. But, it is of real importance that you follow a regular schedule pattern, post often and don’t upload too sporadically. The best advice is to make sure you’re posting consistently and when you do post, post at peak times as this will keep your followers engaged as they will expect content to be posted regularly. Not posting often enough and at random intervals will cause your followers to lose interest and be less engaged.

Be active on the platform

Instagram is all about being ‘instant’ – the clue is the name of the platform! So the key to making the most of it and achieve the best results is by being active and sharing content instantly. To do this, make the most of Instagram stories to share less polished and perfected content for people to see. This unique Instagram feature makes the platform fun, engaging and a great way to interact with your audience. Make the most of the features it provides and share polls and questions to your followers which will encourage engagement. This also helps your brand to be seen as relatable and interested in its audience – something that goes a long way in terms of reputation and brand awareness.
Also always make sure that you’re engaging with your audience too on a daily basis. Respond to comments, like people’s posts about your brand and actively participate in conversations. This is really appealing to potential new followers and customers as ultimately – an active page is much more eye catching and intriguing for people to follow and engage with. To boost your own engagement, it’s important that you’re actively engaging too.

Being active on Instagram is key to increasing your engagement levels

Have a clear theme on your feed

It goes without saying, but Instagram is the most visual of all social platforms so your content needs to look good and be visually appealing to increase the likelihood of it being engaged with. This doesn’t necessarily mean you need to spend thousands on professional photography or designed graphics, which can of course really help to boost the appeal of your feed. There are actually some really easy ways you can help your feed look better. The main one being, pick and theme and stick with it! This goes for the colour, filters and style of content that you share – ensure they are all intertwined and look good together. A great example of a brand who has nailed this is Aldi. Their impeccable Instagram feed is creative, engaging and flows beautifully meaning it’s really appealing to potential followers.

Ensure you are authentic and genuine 

When you scroll through any social media feed, it’s not too difficult to filter out the content that is non-genuine. This type of fake/forced content is really unappealing and all too easy to spot. The brands doing it best on social media are those that are relatable and authentic. Consumers are much more likely to engage with a brand that comes across authentically as it helps to establish trust. This level of trust is crucial for a brands reputation and helps to secure a good relationship with potential consumers. A golden rule to follow: always be authentic on Instagram (or any social channel!)
At Prohibition, we work with a range of brands in both B2C and B2B sectors to deliver engaging, creative and unique social media strategies that deliver real business results. Get in touch today to see how we could help you! Give us a bell on: 01134304160 or drop us an email: hello@prohibitionpr.co.uk.

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About Abbey Gray

Junior Account Manager at Prohibition PR. First class journalism graduate, passionate writer and novice baker! Based in Leeds.