Instagram: How to Build a Following That Will Care About Your Startup’s Content

With over 1
billion monthly active users
, it’s no surprise that many
startups wish to use Instagram to increase their online presence
and generate excitement for their growing business. The fact that
Instagram accounts generally have a much higher engagement rate
than their counterparts on Facebook or Twitter further adds to the
appeal.

But to create a strong account that actively
drives new customers
to your startup, you need to build a
following that actually cares about your content in the first
place. By utilizing a few key strategies, you can build an engaged
following that will strengthen your startup’s chances for
success.

1. Create Discoverable Content

As basic as it sounds, quality content is the foundation for any
effort to building a strong Instagram following for your startup.
Naturally, this means posting attractive, on-brand images that help
tell the story of your startup and the problem it seeks to
solve.

However, there are a few things you can do to make this content
more easily discoverable. Hashtags will allow your posts to show up
in searches — some reports indicate that using hashtags improves
post interaction
by 12 percent
. To help your target audience find you, use
specific niche hashtags rather than broad, extremely popular
hashtags.


Instagram Stories
can be another great way to give your
audience a steady stream of content. Because Stories generally
disappear after 24 hours, they don’t need to be as polished as
the rest of your posts. However, giving current fans a behind the
scenes look at your work or other exclusive content will keep them
coming back each day.

2. Build Excitement With Contests

If you’re looking to expand your current audience, few tactics
can prove more effective than a contest. As Instagram growth
platform Kicksta reveals in a
guide on follower growth in 2019
, “Instagram accounts that
hold contests can achieve 70 percent faster follower growth
compared to those that don’t hold contests. Hosting an Instagram
contest is a tried and true method to not only reward your loyal
followers, but also gain exposure and get new real followers on
Instagram.”

A quality contest will entice users to essentially promote your
brand on Instagram thanks to the promise of a free product or a
special offer on your services. Some of the most effective
Instagram contests include having followers tag friends in a
comment on one of your posts or having current fans create their
own posts featuring your brand (often including a branded
hashtag).

These giveaways essentially serve as a form of word of mouth
marketing for your startup. Current followers become more engaged
thanks to the possibility of winning a free prize, while also
introducing your brand to their friends who are likely to share
similar interests.

3. Partner With Niche Influencers

Influencer marketing is a popular buzzword these days, in large
part because it allows startups to connect their brand with
influential people within their market niche. Startups with a
relatively limited budget can find great success partnering with
micro-influencers, or influencers with somewhere between 1,000 and
100,000 followers.

For example, a Media Bistro
case study
noted how beauty brand Glossier partnered with a
college student who had 8,500 Instagram followers, paying her to
promote their moisturizing cream. The brand also partnered with a
beauty vlogger who had 47,000 YouTube subscribers.

Though such influencers have smaller audiences, their niche
following tends to be highly engaged, which increases the
likelihood of bringing quality traffic to your own Instagram
account. An on-brand partnership will help you attract followers
who are more likely to become dedicated fans of your brand.

4. Engage With Your Audience

The previously mentioned tactics might help you attract
followers, but a key part of Instagram success is keeping your
audience continually engaged with your content. Beyond posting on a
daily basis, you can further enhance audience loyalty by regularly
engaging with your followers — particularly in the comments
section.

As marketing blog Endless Aisles
explains
, “Replying to your followers on Instagram shows that
you care about your customers, that your business is up to date
with social media, and lets your customers and potential customers
know that you are there for them.”

This also fosters even greater engagement on your posts, which
will give your content a greater boost in Instagram’s algorithms.
This will make it that much easier for your posts to show up in
followers’ news feeds. Asking questions or hosting polls are easy
ways to get the conversation started.

5. Turn to Analytics to Improve Content

As with any other marketing endeavor, analytics are your friend
as you try to keep your following actively engaged with your
Instagram content. Are you posting at the right time of day? Should
you try a different call to action on your posts? Are certain types
of content resonating more with your audience than others?

Startups who use the Instagram Insights tool available through
their business account will more easily find answers to these
questions. This dashboard breaks down audience demographics as well
as engagement statistics for individual Posts and Stories. Adapting
your content to give your followers more of what they like will
keep them coming back for more.

Building an engaged, loyal following on Instagram isn’t always
easy, but it can yield big dividends for your startup. As you
prioritize the creation of quality content and follow best
practices for interacting with your audience, you will be able to
find the individuals most likely to benefit from your products or
services.

The post
Instagram: How to Build a Following That Will Care About Your
Startup’s Content
appeared first on Social Media Explorer.

Source: FS – Social Media Blogs 2
Instagram: How to Build a Following That Will Care About Your Startup’s Content