Instagram has become the fastest growing social media network in 2019 and it’s projected to retain its leadership role in 2020. In Nigeria, the photo and video sharing website has become the marketplace of choice for small businesses where sales of hundreds of millions are made. Some sellers have even created international businesses using Instagram. So how does one get started in an already saturated market place? Here are 8 tips sure to win the game for you on Instagram.
Regularity is everything. Take the habit of appearing daily with readers – it’s not necessary to write posts every day, but you need to appear in the “Stories”. So you will not let readers forget about you and will keep them informed of what is happening with you. If not, you’ll disappear and another blogger will appear who will take your place
Decide how often you want to write posts – at first, it’s hard to do it all the time, but the more you write, the easier it all goes.
I realized that inspiration is an extremely unreliable thing and when it comes to you, you will need to write it down immediately so you can use it in the coming days. The problem with the posts can be solved by drawing up a content plan – write down what you plan to write about in the coming week and prepare the posts. You can plan content for a week in advance:
You can use topics to plan posts – you can write about coffee houses a couple of times a week, create routes around the city, and in other posts, you can communicate with readers on abstract topics.
To organize a content plan for a week, you select photos, create posts with them and mark them with the necessary tags. I use the recommendations of the best time from Instagram – the best time is calculated based on data on audience activity. Closer to the publication date, you fill the post with text and everything is ready.
Do not forget about the promotion
When you put your profile in order and filled it with the first posts, you can wait for organic growth on Instagram, but this is unlikely, so you can pay for Instagram followers.
For whom are you writing? Make a portrait of your reader – it will be easier to start the promotion.
When you first started an Instagram page, it’s not necessary to invest tens of thousands in advertising, use free promotion methods or buy advertising from small pages.
Pay attention to such promotion tools as mutual PR and participation in SFS. I’ll tell you about each promotion method:
This is a way of promotion in which you advertise in your profile or the “Stories” of a blogger, and in return, he advertises you. What to look for:
- Account activity. It’s very easy to win an audience on Instagram, so before you agree on mutual PR, check if everything is in order with the activity in the profile. You can check the activity in two ways: ask the statistics from the “Stories” and the latest posts from the blogger himself or see the ratio of the number of followers to likes and comments on the last posts – it should be 6-10%.
- The audience. If you understand who your future reader is, you can easily determine whether you like the audience of the blogger or not. This will help to immediately eliminate the wrong options.
- Details of mutual PR. Discuss in advance how many posts and “Stories” you will be doing, at what time publications will be published, and whose layouts (text, pictures…) will be used. Also, find out in advance if the blogger is doing mutual PR with anyone else that day – when there is too much PR, the audience reacts worse.
Participation in SFS of major bloggers
SFS or Shoutout For Shoutout is a way that looks like mutual PR, but here are other conditions:
- The blogger arranges SFS and asks to tell your audience about his account;
- He selects from all SFS participants the profiles that he liked the most;
- Talks about these blogs in his feed or “Stories.”
If you win in SFS, then you get advertising in a major blog and new followers.
Buying ads on small accounts
Blog promotion can be started with advertising on small accounts. Advertising on small accounts is good value and audience trust: usually, the followers respond well to the recommendations of the blogger.
I advise you to record the results of each promotion – you will be able to analyze your records in the future and better choose a site for advertising.
A smart feed works so that the more your publications collect reader reactions (likes, comments, saves), the higher the posts are displayed in the feed.
The first posts may go unanswered by readers and this is normal. I understand that writing in the void is not particularly nice, but you need to go through it.
Each time you post, ask yourself: would I leave a comment here? It helps to take a critical look at your content.
There are several ways to increase follower engagement:
- Feel free to ask friends and acquaintances to comment on your post.
- Use activity chats when you start blogging.
- Reply and leave comments:
The fact that you need to respond to comments under your posts and communicate with readers is already understandable. But just in case: if you leave comments under posts unanswered, the likelihood that the reader will come back with a new comment is very small.
It is also important to appear in the comments of other bloggers – this is how you declare yourself. Do not be afraid to express your opinion in the comments of bloggers – they will notice your comment, go to the profile and click the “Follow” button.
- To start a blog, decide on a topic – choose the ones that interest you.
- Prepare a profile: come up with a nickname, select an avatar, fill out the profile bio and write the first post.
- Decorate your feed with publications and highlights with “Stories”.
- Remember that you need to keep posting regularly – appear in the “Stories”, write posts and do not let readers forget about you.
- Start promoting your blog. Use free promotion methods (mutual PR, participation in SFS) and buy advertising on small blogs.
- Remember to respond to readers’ comments and engage them in the conversation.
- Be active on Instagram – communicate in the comments of other bloggers. So your profile will be noticed and you will receive new followers.