With 1 billion monthly active users and counting, Instagram is an engagement magnet. So, why aren't your Instagram posts taking off? It all requires knowing where you went wrong and how to fix it. That's why I put together a comprehensive list to help you get it right:
1. Private Account
Private accounts are great for sharing exclusive content with a tight-knit group. But with a private account, you can't capitalize on your engagement opportunities. So, leave your Instagram privacy option public.
2. Missing Bio-Link
If you're not posting links in your account bio, you're missing out on a chance to lead your followers to your website. Instagram doesn't allow you to publish links in your posts, so it's important to include them where you can. You can easily fix this issue by adding a link to your website or landing page in your Instagram bio.
3. Not Leveraging UGC
User Generated Content (UGC) can drive conversation rates by 4.5 percent, so if you're not leveraging UGC, you're missing conversion opportunities. Ask followers to share images of your product and ask for the rights to post the content on your account.
4. Poor-Quality Images
If your images aren't in the right resolution, you'll drive your audience away. Fix this by ensuring your posting images shot in natural light and compress images to a 1280x1280 resolution for a high-quality look.
5. Captions Don't Match Content
When your captions don't match up to your images, you create confusion and disengage your followers. Change this by posting relevant content and ask a question to engage your followers.
6. Missing Profile Pic
A missing profile pic is a missed opportunity for brand recognition. So, make sure you fix this by including a profile pic of your logo or an image that represents your brand, so your followers know that they are looking at your official page.
7. Not Replying to Comments
You miss engagement opportunities when you don't reply to comments about your posts. Respond positively to comments to engage your audience.
8. Not Using Video
Video content drove 65 percent of Instagram ad impressions in 2016 and is expected to be the force behind 85 percent of search traffic in 2019. If you're not taking advantage, you're losing out to the competition. Include engaging video content in your posts.
9. Using Too Many Hashtags
Instagram allows you to use as many as 30 hashtags per post. But having too many hashtags doesn't improve your prospects. Instead, opt for 5-10 hashtags in one post.
10. Not Announcing Instagram Stories
If you're not using Instagram Stories in conjunction with your posts, you could be missing engagement opportunities. Use your posts to announce your next Instagram Story so your followers can know when to capture you live and get exclusive content.
11. Posting at the Wrong Times
If you're posting when your target audience is asleep, you're missing out on engagement opportunities. Measure the time your audience most frequently engages with Instagram and post during those times.
12. No Geo-Tags
Without geo-tagging your posts, your local followers won't know where your business is. Fix this by adding your location before sharing your post.
13. Leaving Out Emojis
Emojis help you express feelings that your audience may connect to without even knowing the language. So, take the opportunity to use emojis in your post when relevant.
14. Recycling Images
Reposting the same images can get old for some Instagram users. They want to see new pictures to keep them entertained. Be original and post new images that you own instead of stock photos.
15. Posting Too Much
Posting too frequently can turn your followers off. Instead of posting daily multiple times a day, gauge your posts to fit your audience's preferences. If your audience
16. No Feed Theme
A feed theme makes your Instagram posts look more visually cohesive, increases brand recognition and attracts followers. Leverage feed themes by choosing an aesthetic that fits your brand and sticking to it.
17. Inconsistent Posting
Randomly posting whenever you want to can put a wrench in your engagement opportunities. Instead, schedule your posts and be consistent, so your audience knows when to expect your content.
18. Lack of Authenticity
Today's digital audiences can spot a "fake" a mile away, including an advertisement disguised as a post. Be transparent and use the hashtags that identify sponsored content with #ad.
19. Posting Too Many Pictures at the Same Time
Posting several images at the same time can congest your followers' feeds and turn them off. Instead, post brand images at different times of the day instead of all at once.
20. Too Much Text
People are looking for images with brief text on Instagram. Instead of telling a story with words, let your image do most of the talking and keep your content brief.
21. Not Asking Questions
By not asking questions, you're missing opportunities to drive engagement. Ask your followers relevant questions that will get them communicating about your content.
22. Leaving Out CTAs
If you don't add a call-to-action (CTA), then your followers won't take any action. Include CTAs in your posts, such as telling followers to click your website link in the bio.
23. Hosting a Contest Without an Audience
If you're running a contest without an audience, you're doing it in vain. Build up your audience and then run a fun contest to boost engagement.
24. Not Rewarding Followers
When you don't give your followers something to look forward to, they may just leave. Reward your followers by offering occasional giveaways or discounts to increase engagement.
25. Liking Every Account
Following every account doesn't necessarily get you more followers. Use a better strategy by following similar accounts to increase engagement.
Instagram is a great place to attract and grow your audience. But you have to have a plan to avoid the mistakes that cause your Instagram posts to fail. By knowing what mistakes to avoid and how to fix them, you can help your Instagram posts take off, improve engagement and potentially increase your conversion rates.
Johnny is the CEO of Digital SuperCat, a full-service digital marketing agency headquartered in Long Beach California. His agency has helped early-stage to late-stage venture-backed startups, small and micro businesses, to Fortune 500 companies grow their revenues. He is also a serial entrepreneur with a passion for helping others build their own business.
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