There has been some upheaval in the Instagram world since mid-November 2019 when it declared that users would no longer see the total number of likes and views on videos and photos posted to Feed unless they own it. The development is significant because it is going to change how we measure Instagram engagement.
Since increasing engagement is always a top priority for those who use the platform for marketing, you must take note of the change that will influence your strategies for increasing Instagram engagement.
Have a re-look at Instagram engagement
Instagram is one of the chosen social media channels to build a community of followers who stay meaningfully engaged with the brand and allows reaching them and interacting at an individual level. But it can be quite challenging to figure out how your content is resonating with the audience, especially when there are multiple ways of measuring engagement.
Until November 14, 2019, when Instagram declared its plan to launch a test about hiding likes and views, the number of likes garnered by any content was a reliable indicator of its performance. A good content gathered more likes than inferior content. But now that likes and views would no more be visible it becomes tough to gauge the performance of posts. Your followers will not be able to see how many likes your posts have got.
More performance metrics to look at
To measure Instagram performance, users must now track other performance metrics like saves and comments, shares, Instagram stories and views, and even direct messages (DM). The shift in the manner of measuring performance will change the way we try to improve engagement in our feeds. With the change in approach to likes, you should review your decision about whether to buy automatic Instagram likes.
How you can create your strategies for improving Instagram engagement in 2020 will become clear ongoing through this article.
Create content that you can save on your feed
As likes would no longer move the needle during performance measurement, the focus will be much more on saves and comments. Going ahead, the best way to improve engagement is to create content that drives the audience to press the save button. The content quality must be so good that the audience would like to look at it again and again and save it.
You must begin by identifying what content would be essential and useful for the audience so that they find some value in it. This is applicable for any content, whether it is quotes, funny memes or infographics. Adding a call to action in the caption will remind the audience to save the post.
Use Instagram Stories stickers to start conversations
Instagram Stories abound 500 million Instagram accounts every day, and the number is like to rise this year. To encourage the trend, Instagram has been innovating ways for brands to engage with their followers by introducing different engagement stickers for stories. The stickers are a great way to motivate followers to start a conversation with you by chatting or sharing that paves the way for creating a loyal band of followers of the brand.
You can trigger a conversation by using question stickers or for a more interactive engagement use the quiz sticker that poses questions with multiple answers. To gain more traction with sales and your events, you can use the countdown sticker that spikes the interest of your followers.
Create a new type of content regularly
Experimenting with content is the best way to create the best content plans on Instagram. It is a daunting task to deviate from the set pattern of content that generates good engagement currently. But to build a stronger content strategy by staying ahead of the curve, you cannot help but start experimenting with different types of content and go through the cycle of trial and error to test its effectiveness. Besides trying out new content types like memes, user-generated content, quotes, selfie-styled videos, and small infographics, you can even experiment with video length on IGTV or Instagram Stories. Besides, you can try out different Instagram Stories filters to see how it improves engagement.
Add an element of humor
To get Instagram Stories right, it takes planning, time, and effort, but it does not mean that you cannot have some fun elements mixed to it. You will observe that more and more brands are adding elements of pop culture references and fun to their posts by using trending topics and memes to their posts or content. And this could be a fall out of the rise of TikTok in 2019, which is known for its informal and funny video style that has ushered in a trend that is now percolating into the Instagram platform. Consciously inject some fun in the Instagram Stories by adding Gifs and memes to Instagram Stories and adding AR filters to it that can push up the engagement rate.
Encourage sharing of Instagram Stories
Instagram is not much known for sharing content and posts like Facebook and other social media channels, but the fact is that it also has the feature of reposting a Feed post to your Instagram Stories.
This a great feature that your audience can use for sharing your content with their followers. This is a great way to expand your reach and create wider engagement while acquiring new followers without even lifting a finger.
How much sharing the content receives will depend upon your capability of creating content that the audience would like to repost.
Write longer captions
Since the length of caption impacts engagement and you can create captions up to 2,200 characters, you can utilize the opportunity to get up, close, and personal with your audience. Since the time spent on a post is the measure of Instagram performance, writing long captions will take more time to read and thus increase the time spent on the post which will have a bearing on the performance.
Being more open and candid with the audience about the brand and business generates more trust and improves engagement.