Photo Credit: https://www.pexels.com/photo/blur-display-electronics-hand-174938/ energepic.com
The Real Reason(s) why no one is liking your Instagram posts.
Are you a small business owner, entrepreneur or an enthusiastic Instagram selfie model and wonder why you just aren’t getting the likes and engagement you had hoped for? Ever noticed that the follow/unfollow numbers on your account go up and done like a yo-yo? Maybe you’re missing out on some basics that will help you raise your Insta Game. So what is The Real Reason why no one is liking your Instagram Posts.
So, what should you do and not do?
Is your Content Engaging?
What does that mean exactly, does your content give its audience a reason to comment or even to press the like button and not just scroll on past after viewing? Instagram is where you go for inspiration, people are looking for innovative, beautiful, humorous, engaging, relatable content. You need to ‘Move’ your audience in some genuine emotional way, so that they might actually move their digits to press the like button. Content is King!
Images, are they eye catching, inspiring, well thought out and your own? The use of Insta’s suite of tools to alter an image needs to be considered carefully. You don’t want to over saturate the colours of an image, or add and alter a picture with unnecessary filters, you’ll dilute its impact. Make it real or at least SEEM real as possible.
Picture Credit: Patrick Tomasso courtesy of Unsplash (patrick-tomasso-88398-unsplash)
If you indeed use Stock photos occasionally, like Shutterstock, Pexels etc, make it clear to your audience that they are not your own work. BBC recently reported on how Daryl Aiden Yow mislead his 104k followers into believing all his images were his own. This did not help his social credibility one iota and has even lead in some part to large corporations scrutinising the influencers they collaborate with for their own authenticity. (https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-44560852).
Use all available space when posting. Blacked-out areas created when importing horizontal images, is wasted space where you could be shouting out your message. You are losing out on valuable advertising space for you and essentially your brand.
The text used is also extremely important. Is it legible, can you read the font, the letters against the background image, do you need to highlight the words so they stand out? Otherwise you risk being scrolled past.
Utilize other Instagram tools, Boomerang, Hyperlapse, Stories and IGTV, video is fast becoming the medium of choice for social consumers and is estimated that 80% of all online content will be video by 2019.
Your audience has a sharp eye for detail, meaning overall appearance is also relevant to individual posts. When your profile is viewed in full, there should be a cohesive style throughout and with tools like 9 Grid, you can quickly and easily create this effect, otherwise it can look like a ‘Hot Mess’.
When searching online, people are looking for entertainment and knowledge, they want to know what they are looking at is worth their valuable time. So, make sure you brand identity and voice is consistent and shows off the personality you want to portray, with punchy bio details and a high-quality bio pic. There is little point in posting sarcastic comments and jokey images if you are wanting to convey a more business-like identity.
Where and When to post.
Location, Location, Location may seem strange when talking about Instagram, but it is true, Location of your posts is key. Are you posting regularly meaning your brand is constantly front and centre in your audiences’ eyes? Not posting every day? Well you need to start! The more frequent you post, the more likely your audience will engage and subsequently hit that like button or comment, which in turn helps to raise engagement.
Have you missed the boat?
There is a right time for everything and that is true for Instagram also. Certain times of the day and week are more relevant for particular niches, so think about who your ideal audience and research when they go online, posting then, helps to maximise the opportunity for you audience to view your well thought out content. To make sure you aren’t left standing on the side of the dock, use scheduling tools and with 28 Official Instagram brand partners to choose from (https://www.facebook.com/business/solutions-explorer/community_management/?filters[badges]=COMMUNITY_MANAGEMENT_IG),
it’s time to jump on board with posting regularly.
Join the conversation, what is going on in the world of fashion, sports, entertainment, politics (but be prepared for negative engagement) and join the story. People like nothing more than having their opinions heard and providing an outlet for this, is an open invitation for engagement. So, ask a question and entice people into a conversation about a specific topic and watch the lively debate continue and share on all your other platforms.
Privacy & Engagement
Do not make your account private, you cannot expect large engagement in your posts when they are not available to the wider public to view. It’s simple, let people in and see your great content, that’s why you are on Instagram in the first place after all.
There is conflicting advice out there about hashtags, Sprout Social and Social Media Today both stat that 5-10 Hashtags per post is optimum. Yet schedulers like Tailwind and other Social Media experts, Social Bee NI and Jenn Herman (Jennstrends.com) suggest 30 relevant hashtags for each post, also make then precise and, searchable. Where you place these hashtags is also hotly up for debate, but it seems there isn’t a right answer, in the image description or the first comment, it seems it is really up to you. However, they all agree on using highly relevant hashtags, don’t be vague. #Love, what do you love? #LoveNorthrenIreland #LoveFenderStratocaster be specific to reach the audience that are really looking for your content.
Engaged in other Instagram accounts, why not?
Engaging in others accounts and commenting on at least 3 posts per day in different accounts, will help drive engagement back to your own account. However, make sure these comments are over at least 5 words in sentence (for the algorithm to pick up it is being made by a genuine person) and that it is conversational. People will just ignore an obvious copied and pasted response that is ingenuine. Networking is also key to growing community and engagement in the online world as well as offline, after all, there is a person behind that account.
Therefore, you have to respond to comments made on your posts, demonstrating you’re also engaged, otherwise why would people bother to like your image in the first instance.
Picture Credit: Elijah O’Donell courtesy of Unsplash (elijah-o-donell-663102-unsplash)
To become Instagram savvy, think What, Where, When, Why and How. Using these pointers will help you lift the numbers of likes and raise interest in your account. Don’t forget to use Insights to see for yourself what is working, test posts out, play with the hashtags you use, mix up the content you post and when you find a winning formula, stick with these guidelines to create your brand. A Brand that people aspire and follow.
Try engaging with influencers, as they can give you page a valuable shout out to their own followers, opening up a much larger potential audience, but beware pick your influencer carefully. They need to align with your brand identity and message and have genuine and not bought followers.
But remember Insta likes aren’t everything, its regular engaged followers you really want, that way you can be sure your content is engaging, relevant, likeable and most of all, important to your target audience.