In our modern, digital times you run the risk of being left behind if you don’t build a strong online presence for your business. Indeed you’d be hard pressed to find a thriving, established brand that hasn’t taken advantage of social media and steered away from more traditional one-way marketing strategies in recent years.
Amongst the handful of truly effective social media platforms, Instagram is considered to be one of the best for promoting your business, with a focus on visuals that facilitates brand representation and makes it easy to capture audience attention. Additionally, statistics at Retail TouchPoints show that an incredible 72% of users now make purchasing decisions based on Instagram content. Given all of this, it’s clear that building and maintaining a healthy Instagram presence is now essential to business –– so we’re taking a look at some of the things you can do to gain a consistent following on the platform.
1. Setting Up
Prior to looking into ways to gain followers, it’s important to ensure that your Instagram page is fully optimized. It’s recommended that your chosen username be easily correlated to your business (and thus search-friendly), and not ambiguous in any way. Your bio, although short, must be a clear indicator of what your brand offers and what customers should expect. It should also be used as a call-to-action, directing users to your website or selling platform.
Instagram is all about aesthetics, so it’s advisable to keep your grid cohesive when choosing colors and formats. As highlighted in a previous article regarding branding an Instagram account, your style is what people see and notice first. Make it recognizable and memorable, and align it closely with what people will see on your website, or even your products. Concerning format, keep it uniform and use the same filters and editing rules on all your posts.
Consistency is crucial to maintaining engagement, so creating a posting schedule to adhere to will certainly help. Determine the best times to post for your particular business and demographic; you can visit accounts with larger followings that you would consider to be in the same market and identify patterns to build your schedule around. Typically you won’t post more than two or three times a day; some brands post only once a day. However, your schedule should evolve organically as you grow. Maintaining consistency is also easier if you create posts for the day or week in advance, as best you can.
4. Emotional Connection
Creating an emotional connection to users further helps to generate engagement. By establishing a personality to suit your brand, you can improve follower retention. As a post on increasing Instagram followers by AskMoney pointed out, using the “show, don’t tell” rule enables content creators to generate that connection. Demonstrate through your posts what your brand stands for, and remain consistent with that message through posts, hashtags, and the like. In time, followers will “get to know you,” making them more likely to stick around and possibly recommend your brand to others.
5. Promotions & Contests
Using Instagram promotions and running your own contests are sure-fire ways to gain followers. While there is a cost to both, these methods are often extremely successful. With Instagram promotions you can tailor an ad to target an audience based on location, demographics, and also interests; having that control will increase your chances of securing new followers. It’s worth considering running a contest as well, and if you can collaborate with suitable accounts (preferably with larger followings) you can curate an appealing giveaway. By asking those who enter to tag friends and follow you, you’re broadening exposure to your account, and thereby expanding your following.
6. Consumer Relationships
Just like word of mouth, sharing content helps increase the views and potential follows to your account. In order to manifest this, it’s imperative to forge relationships with your consumers and build loyalty. This was highlighted in a US Chamber post on Instagram engagement, wherein it was noted that all it really takes is personalized responses or direct answers to customers questions and comments. Adding that personable touch across posts, stories and reels will establish an inviting impression, and ultimately help you to form strong relationships.
We hope this goes some way to building and maintaining your Instagram following! Thanks for reading and please return for more useful tips soon.