5 ways to perk up your company’s Instagram

5 ways to perk up your company’s Instagram Romain Ouzeau is CEO of Iconosquare, the social media analytics company. Founded in Limoges, France, in 2011, Iconosquare offers statistical tools for brands and influencers who want to maximise their presence and growth on Instagram.

When you first set up an Instagram for your business, were you full of ideas for great content, but have now found that your creativity pipeline is drying up? It’s easy to create an innovative formula that at first works wonders for your follower count, but then as time goes on gets old and tired and starts to turn off your users.

Never fear. Even the most creative businesses run out of ideas when it comes to Instagram.

It’s so easy to get stuck in a rut, posting the same old content which might have worked when you first started, but is now turning off the followers. At the first signs of follower count plateauing, it’s time to start shaking things up a bit. Thankfully, it’s not difficult to inject life into a dull Instagram account.

I’ll talk you through some simple ways for both amateurs and pros to reinvigorate content and reengage users.

 1. Convert to a business profile

If you haven’t already converted to a business profile, do it now. I may be stating the obvious, but it’s really shocking how many businesses aren’t using business profiles – the clue’s in the name. All it takes is a quick visit to your settings in the Instagram app.

customers and prospective customers can contact you directly

The major advantage of converting to a business profile is that customers and prospective customers can contact you directly through the blue ‘contact’ button on your profile. This makes it much easier for them to engage with you and adds a simpler way to purchase your products.

One of the best things about a business profile is that it gives you access to Instagram Insights. This allows you to inspect how your latest posts have been performing by providing you with a small selection of post analytics.

2. Undertake a follower cull

Often you may be pleased to see that your posts are receiving huge numbers of positive comments telling that you’ve made a  ‘Great post!’ or that your images are ‘‘Beautiful’. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but these comments are probably fake, made by bots who spray comments over their whole news feed. According to an Iconosquare study, at least 40% of the comments business receive could be fake.

The issue here is not that you’re not getting attention, but that it’s the wrong kind of attention. This may seem counterintuitive but when this happens the best thing you can do is a follower cull. Think of your follower count like a plant: you have to prune the dead weight for it to thrive and grow.

There’s no easy way to cut out these automated accounts, however. You have to undergo the manual process of making a note of handles which look like they’re spamming, and then blocking these accounts from your follower list. This is a process you’ll have to do semi-regularly to ensure you aren’t overwhelmed by bots.

3. Harmonise and stylise

Instagram is a highly visual space, so it’s the perfect place to craft a brand image. As on any platform, digital or physical, however, it’s important that this image is consistent.

don’t be afraid to delete your old posts in order to maintain consistency

It makes sense to create a theme for your Instagram posts so that your feed is both enjoyable to look at but also doesn’t stray from the party line. Fashion instagrammers lead the way in this, so have a look at accounts like Stella Maria Baer or Happily Grey, whose aesthetics encourages a longer viewing time.

Don’t be afraid to delete your old posts in order to maintain consistency; in fact, it’s vital remove posts you regret posting as they are no longer relevant to your business or aren’t of a good enough quality for your feed. Just hit the delete button and your users will be none the wiser, or archive them if you’re not comfortable saying goodbye to your posts just yet.

4. Shake up your content

One of the easiest ways to add some interest to your feed is by varying the way you share your content, and, thankfully Instagram have launched a number of ways to do this.

The latest format to appear on the scene is Carousel posts, also known as albums and slideshows. These allow you to include up to ten photos and videos in a single Instagram post. Not only is there some evidence that the Instagram algorithm boosts the visibility of carousel posts, but they prove to be an excellent way to show off a number of your products in one post.

Boomerang is an Instagram-developed app that allows you to post short, GIF like videos that add some fun and vibrancy to your feed. Occasionally derided as unprofessional, they must be used correctly to create the right effect. Have a look at The Body Shop, who use Boomerang to create attention-grabbing posts in a well thought out way.

5. Go Live

Instagram Live, which lets you connect with your Instagram audience in real time, has been around for almost a year, but brands have been slow on the uptake when it comes to integrating it into their campaigns. This is perhaps because it relies on users giving their full attention to the live feed rather than scrolling past a single image or video, and brands don’t have the confidence that they can command this attention.

brands have been slow on the uptake when it comes to integrating it into their campaigns

However, it’s exactly because a user needs to stop scrolling to watch a Live video that makes it so positive for brands. Going Live automatically sends a push notification to your entire audience which means that your name appears on the screen of every follower. It also pushes your icon right to the front of the Stories lineup, meaning that your brand name is the first thing a user sees when they enter the app.

Having a bland account isn’t the end of the world and is easily remediable.You don’t need to be an Instagram professional to follow the tips on this list – all it takes is an awareness of the features – and maybe an eye for aesthetics. And if you implement them correctly, there’s no chance of your feed getting boring again.

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