If you haven’t heard me, or another Instagram expert ranting on and on about engaging with your audience on Instagram, let me re-cap why it's so important. Engaging authentically with your followers and the wider Instagram audience is essential to building your tribe, and your future opportunities.
Or even more simply:
No engagement = no tribe.
No tribe = no potential clients/customers.
Even though people know how important it is, often it’s the last thing that gets time or attention. So if you’re struggling with engagement, growth, or building your community on Instagram, and need some help, read on!
1. Explore accounts through hashtags and follow them. When you just scroll through your feed and engage with people you’ve been following for ages, even though it’s helpful for being present to your CURRENT audience, it’s not getting your account out there to prospective new followers. Find a hashtag that is specific to your business or niche and find accounts that use that hashtag to follow. Not only is it most likely they will follow you back, it will also fill your feed with fresh content and accounts!
2. Slide into DM’s! Sometimes this strategy gets a bad rap, but that’s because like any strategy it can get a bit abused. Don’t ever hit someone with a copy paste message to their DM’s that will be harmful to your brand. However, if you come across an account that you really like, or you really connect with, then you should definitely slide into their DM’s with a genuine introduction and compliment. I guarantee in most cases it will be the start of a beautiful insta-friendship!
3. Re-gram a photo. Re-graming, again, can be controversial so make sure you ALWAYS credit and if in doubt ask their permission before re-gramming. However, most accounts love the compliment of having their content shared, as well as the traction it gets their account by you tagging them! (Make sure that you choose to share content from like-brands or complimentary accounts so that you don't confuse your audience.)
4. View stories and get involved! Most stories will have an interactive element such as polls, questions or tags. Engaging with someone’s story content is like a virtual high-5, it gives them a little boost, and tells them that you’re interested in developing a relationship with them! Whenever I have clients book in with me, usually they’ve been following my stories and interacting with them, sometimes weeks before they become a client!
5. Share an account’s post to your stories. This is a fabulous, quick and easy feature that Instagram has designed. By clicking the little arrow on the bottom of someone’s post you can share it directly to your stories, and if any of your followers click on the post they will get taken straight to the original poster! Again, this is a great way to support people in your circles and build authentic Instagram connections. Note that the account won’t get a notification if you share directly to your stories using the arrow button, so you might also like to tag them in the post, so they get a warm fuzzy!
Instagram is an incredible platform and it’s transforming businesses. You owe it to yourself and your business to think smarter, not harder, with your approach to engaging with other accounts!
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