If you’re not taking advantage of Instagram for your business, now is the time to do so. The figures are impressive. Instagram ads are generating nearly $11 billion in revenue, it has over 1 billion active monthly users, and engagement is high compared to Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter.

However, many people are beginning to wonder if Instagram’s marketing days are over. It’s algorithmic timeline seems to be an enigma to many brands.

Never fear – there are still ways to increase engagement and get your content out there. Read on on for our best Instagram tips for business!

1. Post Consistently

In order to attract more followers and boost engagement with the ones you already have, you need to be active on the platform. This means posting to your timeline.

Various sources recommend to post a maximum of 1 to 2 times a day. However, you’ll find numerous different recommendations when it comes to what times you should post.

One way to discover this is to go under the Insights category in your Instagram business account. There, you’ll find a wealth of helpful analytics under Audience.

Besides learning the top locations, age range, and gender of your followers, the Insights section will also inform you of times when they’re most active. By using this information, your posts are more likely to appear in front of your followers’ eyes.

Hootsuite also breaks down the best times to post based on your industry. The majority of sites are in agreement that you should avoid the weekends and weekly work hours.

2. Utilize Hashtags

Adding hashtags to your posts is always recommended. Hashtags categorize your content and make it more discoverable when people search for specific terms. When people choose a hashtag a page opens, and how high your post appears depends on:

  • how often it’s used
  • how many likes and comments it has
  • how recent it is
  • how large and engaged your audience is

Instagram allows you to use a total of 30 hashtags per post, and 10 per Story. However, a TrackMaven analysis found that posts with nine hashtags receive more engagement.

You can place these hashtags in the caption or in a separate comment, but it’s far more important which hashtags you use rather than where you place them. Here are a few tips on how to determine the right hashtags to use.

  • Use specific hashtags – Hashtags should directly relate with your post and target audience.
  • Create a branded hashtag – Creating your own hashtag, particularly if you’re running a campaign, can help increase engagement.
  • Save hashtags – Utilize a notes app or an Instagram planning app to save your commonly used hashtags, then paste them when you’re crafting your caption.
  • Don’t be too repetitive – Instagram penalizes accounts that post the same content over and over. Make sure that your hashtag group varies somewhat depending on what you’re posting.

3. Use Video

Video is becoming more and more popular on Instagram, and its algorithm wants you to post long and engaging video content. How do you do this?

Use IGTV to create at least a 5-minute long video, or opt to go live. Think about the message you want to get across to your audience. You can utilize IGTV and Instagram live to:

  • promote a new event or product release
  • show a behind-the-scenes moment
  • answer common questions
  • announce a contest

4. Multiple Stories

Just like video, Instagram Stories have risen in popularity and are an incredibly simple and effective way to boost engagement. It’s recommended to post many Stories throughout the day in order to keep encouraging people to come back and interact with your profile.

Although videos will receive the most engagement, use a combination of images and videos to keep your content fresh. To encourage even more engagement, add polls, quizzes, questions, or a chat button. Instagram has added many ways to interact with your audience – it’s clear what they want you to do!

5. Engage

Although you should foster engagement, you should also engage yourself! Reply to every comment you receive in order to encourage discussion and increase rapport with your audience.

Just after you create a new post, spend at least a half an hour liking posts, leaving genuine comments, and engaging with people’s Stories. They’ll be more likely to check out your page and your newest post. Not only that, but they’ll also be more likely to come back and continue to engage.

Social networks are all about being social and networking with peers. If you’re just focusing on creating content, you’re only participating in half of what Instagram has to offer.

6. Partner with Influencers

Marketing through Instagram influencers is becoming more significant. Influencers are authoritative voices within their particular niche, with a large number of followers who trust them.

By aligning your brand and business with a business, you can add authenticity and authority to your messaging. However, make sure you choose an influencer that’s in the right niche, and who matches your brand’s personality.

Influencers are partners, so you should work with them individually on the best way to carry out their role effectively. You can also plan out a campaign that includes a short trial campaign to ensure the influencer is the right fit for your brand.

7. Quality Content

Last but not least, focus on quality. Take high-quality photographs, or find a professional brand photographer to take a batch of photos for you.

Notice that many high-end brands have Instagram grids that are thematic in terms of color, messaging, and imagery. There are third-party apps that enable you to plan out your Instagram grid before you post.

This is a great way to see how your content works together. For instance, you might find that you have too many portraits grouped together. You can break these up with text or graphic designs that add visual interest.

Instagram Tips for Business: Building Community

You’ll notice that many of these Instagram tips for business are about authenticity and building a sense of community with your followers. By implementing consistent strategies with your content and participation, your audience and engagement will naturally grow.

However, an increase in quantity doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll make more money. For that, book a meeting with Drive Social Media today! We’re a social media marketing agency that creates custom paid social media campaigns optimized for sales.