Several days ago I polled my followers on Instagram to see what their goals were for 2019 on Instagram. After reading through these, I saw some trends in how you answered, so I wanted to answer the most common questions that were asked.
Here are a few of my go-to best practices:
First, being consistent is the most important thing. I’d suggest posting at the same time every day for the best results (i.e., engagement). For me, I post @7:30/8:00 PM every night.
Use all 30 hashtags allowed per post. There are several that I recycle and use daily as well as, changing them up depending on the subject matter and season represented in the photo.
Share spaces that are ready for the current season. People look to you for inspiration for the upcoming season or holiday. This means you may need to decorate earlier than you have in the past, but sharing you home decorated for these times is a sure way to bring others to your feed.
Finally, a vertical, zoomed out image tends to do better than a close-up picture. This is one of the tips I learned from my friends Jodie and Julie over at the Design Twins blog. It truly was a game changer for my follower engagement.
Having a cohesive feed is important. Choose a preset from your camera and stick to it. Many bloggers/social influencers sell their presets, and you can choose to buy one of those, just use it every time you post to your feed. A while back, a friend of mine attended an event where @lizmariegalvan was speaking, and in her talk she shared that she used the A6 filter (on the app VSCO) to edit her photos. This is what I use, A6, then edit by working with the lighting, sharpness, and exposure. Lighting is something that takes some practice, but is so important.
Also, although the subcategories for my brand are faith, family, and farmhouse decor, my typical post will just have a view of our home (decor only, not people). It is through my captions, stories, and blog posts that I weave in faith and family. This keeps continuity on my feed. Be creative, stick to you brand, and focus on a cohesive look.
Captions are about meeting your followers where they are. It’s great to talk about the DIY that’s in your photo or how your day went, but you have to remember to connect the dots to bring value to your readers. How can you bring what you’ve shared into real life application for them? Can you guide them on something, encourage them, or create a safe-place for them to be transparent?
Engagement with your post is critical, especially within the first hour. Do your best to respond to the comments in that hour and then again at some point later on for the other comments that were made. My practice is to engage within the first hour then follow up with the remaining comments early the next morning.
And, take time every day to comment on others posts! Spread the love. You can read more about engagement here and here.
These are just some brief answers to some of the questions you’ve been curious about. I’m going to be doing more of this in the future, so stay tuned for more of your question being answered. I can’t wait!