Did you know that more than 70% of US marketers are expected to use Instagram in 2020? The platform, with its 1 billion monthly users and 500 million daily IG Stories users, is becoming a mainstay in online marketing strategies.
Why Instagram? The average IG post gets 23% more engagement than the average Facebook post— even though Facebook has twice as many monthly active users. Further, while only 11% of US social media users shop on Instagram, 81% use it earlier in the buying cycle to research services and products.
The problem is, as IG grows in popularity, it’s newsfeed is becoming more and more competitive. To grow your audience and inspire them to engage with your content, you will have to approach the platform with a strong strategy.
Not sure where to start? We’ve got your back. In this guide, learn the 3 of our top 10 ways to drive engagement on Instagram in 2020.
Hashtags are a must on Instagram.
A hashtag is the ‘#’ symbol followed by a word or phrase. It is used to organize content on the platform. For example, the hashtag #coffee would have a page with all of the posts that included the hashtag and would likely be a collage of coffee-related content.
When you add a hashtag to a post, your post is then added to a page for that hashtag. Then, people who follow the hashtag and visit the hashtag page will see your content even though they don’t follow you. In short, it puts your content in front of more eyes. Finding the best hashtags for your content requires some research but it’s a powerful way to get more visibility and engagement.
You can only have 30 hashtags and using the maximum number of hashtags over and over is discouraged. According to a recent study, the average Instagram post contains 10.7 hashtags. However, using more than six can actually decrease your engagement. So, as of now, it looks like the best strategy is to use five or six strategic hashtags that are relevant to your content and which lead you to your target audience.
Some of the most engaging hashtags from 2019 were #tbt, #hair, #dance, #amazing, #explore, #workout, #repost, #cute, and #gym.
A good way to find quality hashtags is to follow successful competitors in your industry to see what hashtags they use. Also, look up your keywords in the search page of the IG app and take note of hashtags with a high number of posts. Next, go look on the hashtag page to see if the posts are getting a lot of engagement.
Once you have a list of hashtags, start adding them to your posts and check how they perform. IG insights will tell you how many people saw your content as a result of the hashtags you choose.
Another way to get your content in front of more of the right eyes is through geotags. This is especially important if you are a local business.
A geotag means that you share a geographical location along with your post. You can add the location to a page post right below where you type your caption. You can also add your location using the location sticker in IG stories.
When you add a geotag, your content is published on a page for the tagged location. Users can search for content by location (remember the magnifying glass tab we mentioned above?). If they search an area you geotag, your content will show up and more eyes means more opportunities for engagement.
You can track how many views you get from geotags by checking your post insights. This will be especially useful for local brands. If you have a physical location, be sure to create a specific location tag for your business so people can check in.
Next up is tagging. When you create an Instagram post and you get to the last page where you create your caption, you will have the option to ‘Tag People.”
When you tag someone, they get a notification in their inbox that tells them they have been tagged. Often, on a personal page, you tag a friend when you post a picture with them to ensure they see it. So tagging users (personal and brands) can be an effective way to invite them to check out your content.
However, if you use this tactic in excess, it can be viewed as spammy. You’ll only want to tag profiles relevant to your post in some way and will want to limit your tags to three— max. For example, if you collaborated on a project, if you think someone can add a relevant comment on a topic, or if you are reposting someone else’s content.
Brands need to be on Instagram in 2020 but they also have to know how to use the platform to get engagement and reap the benefits. These 3 tips will get you started on the right track. Would you like to learn seven more tried-and-tested ways to further increase your engagement on the platform?
Do you want to grow your Instagram but don’t have the bandwidth to do it yourself? At Peak Integrated Marketing, we have an experienced team of social media pros who combine platform expertise with a personalized strategy to drive more engagement and customers to your brand.
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