We’re not talking about getting down on one knee with a diamond ring, we’re talking about Instagram engagement. In 2020, social media has been the most important tool – and sometimes, the only tool – for brands to communicate with their target audience throughout the pandemic. The importance of engagement on Instagram is crucial to the success of your posts and will make or break your content. 

So, you’ve built a following, but you haven’t been able to build a community or a relationship with your audience. Here are 4 Instagram tools that can be used to boost engagement.

1. Know Your Audience

This seems like a no-brainer, but it’s the perfect place to start. In order for your audience to interact with your brand on social media, it’s important that you are providing content geared toward them. For an Instagram business account, there is a great feature where you can view statistics/demographics of your followers: Instagram Insights. Insights can tell you the number of new followers you gain each week, the age range of all followers, gender, top locations and the top days and times your audience is most active.

Using Instagram Insights allows you to tailor content towards your target audience based on their demographics. Providing relevant content that will be interesting to them will increase the interaction on posts as well as knowing when to post. Knowing your audience is key. 

2. Engagement for Engagement

If engagement is your goal, you can’t expect your audience to do all the work. Posting content and letting it sit will not help increase engagement. After posting, do not put that phone down. Take note of the comments you’re receiving. In real time, as much as possible, you should reply to those comments. Making followers feel noticed and appreciated will not only increase engagement on Instagram, it will also help form an individual connection with that person. They are then more likely to interact in the future as well as respond to your call to action

Everyone likes to be heard and to feel noticed; your followers are no different. Taking time to respond to comments helps form a connection to your audience.

3. Stories

Question: How many times is too much to post on Instagram Stories?

Answer: The limit does not exist. 

via GIPHY

Instagram Stories is a quick and easy way to bring your brand to the top of followers’ minds (and their timelines). Not only will this put your account on their screen, but Instagram has made Stories extremely user-friendly to create content. Utilizing stickers on your Instagram Stories will encourage your followers to interact with your content. Stickers can be used for, but not limited to, polls, countdowns, asking questions, quizzes and more. 

Each of these features can be used and customized according to the type of content you want to create. For example, if there is a new product launch coming up, it makes sense to post a countdown to get your audience excited, whereas a quiz on the new product wouldn’t make as much sense. 

Giving your followers enticing and interactive content on stories will lead to an increase in profile views and, obviously, engagement. Once you start using Stories, we recommend you take note of the number of profile views each Story receives in order to customize Story content even further. 

4. IGTV

In 2018, Instagram launched IGTV. These videos will be posted on your Story, but there is also a tab on your profile where these “episodes” will live permanently. 

The difference between IGTV and Stories is that IGTV is catered towards longer, edited videos compared Stories’ short, laid-back style. Think YouTube-style videos. Because there is more production involved in IGTV, the content must be planned out and interesting in order to catch the attention of viewers. The title of your IGTV video is super important – just like a headline, that is what will get viewers to top on the video. 

IGTV can be extremely helpful in boosting engagement. Depending on the industry of your brand, IGTV can be used to share expertise with your audience. A beauty company can use this to share a tutorial of an eyeshadow look using their new palette, or on the other hand, a technology company can use IGTV to provide a quick and free demo on their new software. Informative, useful content will help build trust with your audience, and will often lead to audiences’ saving this content for reference, especially for tutorial-style videos. 

Instagram engagement can be difficult to build. It takes time and practice to really understand your audience and measure the type of content that they enjoy the most. In the long run, your social media presence and follower count means nothing if they don’t engage with your content.

To help build engagement, Dittoe Public Relations provides Social Media services including content creation, execution and campaigns. Interested in learning more about how Dittoe Public Relations can help build your social media presence? Contact Lauryn Gray at lauryn@dittoepr.com.