Instagram’s algorithm is constantly changing, it can be hard to get your head around why your photos suddenly aren’t receiving as many likes, or that you’ve been stuck on the same follower count for weeks. I’ve written some tips to help you be the boss of your Instagram in 2019. Teaching you how to gain more followers, boost your engagement and take the best photos to suit your account.
How to grow your engagement on Instagram
Engage with as many photos you can over a day, but make sure to spread out that engagement. Like and comment on every photo you can, and make sure your comment is relevant. But try not to spam hundreds of likes within an hour, or you’ll get put under a temporary ban. Not only is engaging with other user’s photos a great way to interact and invited users back to your account, but it’s also the best way to find new photos and users that you may want to follow!
How to use the Instagram Follow button to your advantage
Follow users you love, find new accounts and therefore new inspiration. The more people you follow, the more people who will follow you back. This is a great way to keep your Instagram feed fresh with posts from lots of different users. Similarly, it’s worth checking every so often if you are following any inactive accounts, especially if you started your account a few years ago. A little online spring clean is always a good idea.
Why you shouldn’t use a theme divider
If you’re starting a new theme on your account, don’t post up a theme divider. Lots of people use these to separate from their old theme, but did you know they’re significantly lowering your reach and engagement? Because the divider will usually be a fairly plain image, this will not receive as much interest on an Instagram feed, three of these photos in a row and you’re looking at three photos with low engagement. Now the better your photos do (e.g. more likes and comments etc), the more Instagram will push them, so if you have three theme divider images that don’t have a high engagement, Instagram is less likely to push your new theme’s photos as far initially.
Why Instagram captions are crucial
Make sure the captions you’re writing are interesting and engaging for your followers. Captions are now a place to share a story, talk about your day, share advise. Use this space to invite your followers to leave a comment, the best way to do this is to ask a daily question, something they’d be interested in answering.
Why you should choose a theme for your Instagram photos
Try and have a theme to unify your photos and your feed, a look that makes people think of your account. This can be easily achieved through a filter using an app such as VSCO. Something that applies to every photo you post will help you form more of an image for your account’s name and will look nicer to new users who come across your photos. I personally use my filter as my theme rather than a location setting for my photos or a camera effect. This is what works best for me, have a play around and see what fits for you.
Why having a posting schedule can help
Try to post daily if you can, or at least as often as you’re able to. I know Instagram can take up quite a lot of time, but if you’re able to post once a day you will see your engagement will be consistent and will improve over time. This also stops you become a inactive/ghost account that users will unfollow if they stop seeing content from.
How to take the best photos for your Instagram
Something to help with posting as often as you can, is to take your photos in bulk. I know this doesn’t work for everyone and you can’t always find inspiration. But having tried both, I prefer to have a photoshoot every few weeks to create some great content on my feed. This helps me when I don’t have the motivation to take more photos, when I’m posting later than usual and when I’m away from home. It’s a guarantee that I will always have content.
The perks of Instagram comment pods
Join a comment pod, this is a group chat on the app where users share their most recent photo with each other and you all exchange a comment and a like. This is a bid to beat the Instagram algorithm and get your post’s engagement up as quickly as possible. Plus you always know you’ll have a group of users who will get the interaction started on your posts. It’s also just nice to have a little community in these groups for somewhere to go for help and advice.
HAVE FUN! That’s my final tip. It’s easy to forget that you started your Instagram account as somewhere to have fun and be yourself. Be happy with every photo you post, or you’ll start to feel unmotivated and dislike your feed. The point of being on Instagram is to have fun with it and enjoy posting your photos and interacting with your followers. I take plenty of photos that I am mildly okay with that I end up scrapping because I didn’t love them. I want my feed to be somewhere I look at and feel proud. If you have passion for the content you’re sharing and enjoy to share it, then others will see that.
Share any tips you have in the comments below!