There’s little doubt that Instagram is the platform du jour for influencers. With more than 600 million monthly users, Instagram has stayed at the forefront of social platforms, while Facebook and YouTube have battled issues of measurement and security.
We polled roughly 600 social influencers to better understand their opinions and preferences for certain social platforms, and Instagram rose to the top as a favorite platform.
Almost 80 percent of influencers are using Instagram Stories, an impressive usage rate for what has become Instagram’s primary answer to Snapchat. Another 50 percent indicated that they are using albums, a feature that allows users to upload and swipe through multiple pictures within the same post like a micro album. Around 20 percent are actively on Instagram Live, and we at Collective Bias anticipate that statistic to rise over time as the live video medium gains traction.
So, we thought we’d ask two of our top Social Fabric influencers what tips they would give to businesses or influencers looking to grow their social presence, engagement and followers on Instagram.
The Brilliant Balance is Amanda K. Waltman’s lifestyle brand on travel, beauty, health, home and more. Based in Austin, Texas, Amanda has more than 51,000 Instagram followers.
- Consistency is good, but quality is better: These days, it feels like we have to throw a picture out there to keep up with the algorithm. However, I’ve noticed that I get better engagement if I take the time to create a better photo to post, rather than throwing something mediocre onto my feed every day. Sometimes that might mean having a couple days between posts, but when I finally do post, the results are worth it.
- Stories are your strength: They keep you active even if you have a couple days where you haven’t shared a post, and they allow you to share that personality of yours and connect more deeply with your following.
- Stay genuine to your voice and show your real self: Not everything needs to be picture-perfect. Sure, we want our feed to be flawless, but if you’re having a completely ordinary day, it’s OK to share that in your Stories. And it’s OK to share what you’re feeling in post captions. If you’re feeling thoughtful and want to share a long and open caption, then go for it. If you have a day where you need to keep it short, that’s OK, too. We’re dynamic beings and it’s great to show that.
- Make use of the tools Instagram gives us for engagement: Polls, linking, tagging, location and the other Instagram tools definitely help people engage more and can also bring more exposure.
- Don’t stress so much about Instagram constantly changing: Focus on creating high-quality content and engaging with your loyal followers. It doesn’t do much good to stress about the people you aren’t reaching if it’s getting in the way of tending to the people who have already chosen to follow you.
Aimara Mayorca is a lifestyle influencer at Ways of Style, and she likes to express her thoughts and life experiences while wearing something stylish. She has more than 117,000 followers on Instagram. She had the following tips for growing your audience and engagement on Instagram:
- Go Live: Live stories help boost your posts because they are a top priority for the algorithm.
- Update hashtags frequently: Instagram is offering new analytics for business accounts to make it easier to identify which hashtags work and which don’t. It’s important to get the most out of these numbers. And make sure you use hashtags on Instagram Stories, since people can follow hashtags.
- Write thoughtful captions: People like to connect and be inspired. Write captions that will spark conversations. Also, it helps with the algorithm because people spend more time reading your post.
- Do more videos: One of the things that boosts the algorithm the most is how much time people spend interacting with your posts, and usually, people spend more time watching a video than a photo.
Whether you’re a business or an individual looking to grow your Instagram account, there’s no better place to start than with influencers.