Instagram is quickly becoming the ruling Queen to Facebook’s king consort of Social Networks. Hopefully, you are already implementing an updated Instagram strategy for your business in 2019, but we want to share some additional tips for having your best year EVER on Instagram.
Tip One: Instagram Stories Should Be Your Top Priority
In case you didn’t notice in 2018, in-feed engagement on posts is decreasing, and will only continue to do so. That means you will receive fewer eyes (and therefore fewer likes and comments) on your posts. A majority of Instagram's daily active users are now showing up on IG Stories, leaving people less likely to scroll through their whole feed. So if you’re not posting daily on your story, you’re going to be left behind the curve.
Overall engagement isn’t decreasing, however. It’s simply moving from likes to stickers and replies to stories! Instead of spending hours crafting engaging posts, focus on creating engaging Instagram Stories that provide value to your followers (and make them want to converse with you!).
Tip Two: DMs are the Best Judge of Story Success
Thanks to the reply, tagging, and sharing features on Instagram Stories, it’s easier than ever to strike up a private conversation with someone on Instagram, and that includes businesses too! If you don’t have a story strategy in place that gets conversations with your followers going, you need one ASAP. Last year we saw a huge improvement to Instagram Direct Messages. Now it seems like people are not only actually using the feature, but it’s also becoming a popular alternative to Snapchat, Messenger and WhatsApp. Instagram users are leaning into the ability to have quick and easy conversations with businesses and brands through direct messages and you'll get so much further in the new year if you're taking it to the DM.
Tip Three: Use Hashtags More Strategically
We shouted this tip from the rooftops in 2018, but it’s going to be even more important for you to use hashtags in a strategic way in 2019. You can’t simply throw a few hashtags on a post and expect to gain passive followers. Instead, use hashtags as a gateway to communities-- a way to find and engage with new people, who will hopefully become followers. This may require spending more time on the app engaging with new users.
Tip Four: Use Micro Influencers to Your Brand’s Advantage
It’s a fulltime job being a huge influencer on Instagram and something that many folks with a following aspire to be. Use this to your advantage by targeting accounts with small, engaged followings to become affiliates and ambassadors for your brand! Keep a budget for larger influencer marketing campaigns, but include new, nano influencers in the mix (folks with 1k-8k followers). If these people are excited about your brand, they’re more likely to promote it to their friends with a simple free sample or gift card and get you a decent ROI as opposed to huge accounts who will ask for a hefty check for their stamp of approval.
Tip Five: Be Your Most Authentic EVER!
With diminishing engagement and emphasis on posts, it’s more important than ever to create content that cuts through the rest of the noise. Think about SM bosses like Jenna Kutcher and Hillary Rushford, brands like Eat Sleep Wear and celebrities like Chrissy Teigen-- they’ve all built their brands on (what seems like) total transparency and authenticity. Try taking the “real” route this year buy getting a little vulnerable with your followers and customers. It doesn’t mean you have to post sob stories about your personal life, just that everyone wants to buy from or support a person, not a mysterious, personality-less brand. Explore what that means for your company this year!
As always, if you’re not following us on social media- find us at @digitalbrandenvy, and find me at @ohhbee. Good luck, I can’t wait to see your success on Instagram this year!