Firstly, let me start this post by blatantly stating this:
IF YOU WANT TO BUY YOUR LIKES, FOLLOWERS, OR ENGAGEMENT – THIS POST IS NOT FOR YOU.
If you would rather create an engaged community of followers and fans in Instagram that turn in to clients, this post has got your name written ALL OVER IT!
Well, I guess we can start with the obvious that I’m sure most of you already know (and if you didn’t know, now you do): numbers don’t mean anything when your community doesn’t care about what you post.
Numbers don’t mean anything when they’re filled with bots, fake accounts, and indifference.
Increase Your Instagram Engagement Organically
Here’s the hard truth: your numbers end up feeding your “ego”.
Yes, I just called you out. Your ego (and your dang big head) is being fed with numbers.
Now here’s another hard truth: even if you have a high “follower count” how many of those people ACTUALLY care about what you’re saying, posting, sharing, or selling? How many of those people are attracted to your every word, are interested in your growth as a business and brand, or want to buy from you?
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Increasing Instagram engagement (ORGANICALLY) does not have to be difficult, but it does take patience, consistency, and time. These are quick tips to start implementing now to increase your engagement organically and with intention:
1. Give, give, give, and then ask
Give your community what they want and then give them even more! As a business (or a brand), people follow us for a specific reason. Why do people engage with or follow you and your social media channels?
Do you provide motivation, helpful tips, or inspiration? Think about what you can give to your audience to impact them emotionally.
For example, although I provide copywriting and content strategy services, a lot of my content also revolves around creating a lifestyle that I am proud of! I post photos of behind the scenes of my life as an expat and an entrepreneur on Instagram to inspire others who want to take the leap and do the same.
After sharing tips, advice, and other resources to pursue this type of lifestyle, I ask others to chime in! I want to learn about where people are on their journey in entrepreneurship/expat life. I want to know what they’re also struggling with and what they want to learn about because it creates a sense of belonging for me, too!
Give your audience great information, resources, and other opinions. Then ask them a question, too. This isn’t a one-way street – right?
2. Get to know your community
How many of you know the names of people in your Instagram community? Do you know their favorite color, where they’re based, what they’re doing, and more?
Get to know ALL members of your community – even the introverts and lurkers. I take this part of building a community as “hosting.” As being part of the “Pineappler Family,” I am hosting you and providing an experience for you while you’re here. I want to know what your favorite food is, what you’re looking for, etc. I want to know how I can make you feel comfortable, give you great appetizers, and create a space where you feel welcome.
Ask your community questions about themselves, how you can help them, what can you do to get them to the next step.
If someone feels comfortable and welcome in a community, I believe that they’re more likely to invite others and engage even more. Personally, when I feel taken care of (and someone is actually listening), I’m more likely to come back and share something with that person the next time.
3. Invite them in for a glass of wine
Wine, juice, water, a margarita – whatever it is, invite your community IN!
Inviting (or asking someone) if they’d like a glass of wine or water was instilled in me when I was a little girl. My parents taught me from day one that whenever we have a guest over, it’s OUR job to ask them if they’d like a glass of water or anything else.
If I forgot to ask guests if they’d like something to drink, my parents scolded me after our guests left. When they scolded me, it wasn’t because they were extremely angry, it was because they felt it was important to make someone feel comfortable in our home. Their hospitality as hosts and business owners has followed me ever since. I’ve adapted this same theory in how I interact with my audience members and increasing my engagement organically.
Now, I will always invite my audience in for a virtual coffee, glass of wine, or sangria! It makes me feel like I am welcoming someone into my circle and (I hope) helps my audience members know that I’m available to chat and want to be their friend (but really…). How are ways you can invite your audience in for a “glass of wine” and continue the conversation?
For more tips on increasing engagement and building a community through your personal brand, get your copy of the Your Soulful Branding workbook – a 100+ page workbook with tips, strategies, and best practices to build a soulful brand you’re proud of!
Remember, you’re the host!
To review, to increase Instagram engagement organically, it starts with you!
- Give great information (inspiration, motivation, resources, etc.)
- Take the initiative to get to know your community
- Invite them in to chat with you
It starts with YOU taking the step and extending a hand, first, and the rest will follow. This strategy to organically build engagement will take longer and will require a lot more consistency and work; but at the end of the day, the type of community you build will be more engaged and interested in what you produce.
If you’re willing to cut corners and “buy” followers, likes, etc, I don’t believe that this is a sustainable way to grow a community. Also, if you were going to ask about “follow/like threads” in Facebook Groups (yes, they exist), I am not fond of those either. I’ve also participated in them to quickly grow my numbers on social media channels. I learned that although they give results quickly, most of the time, the community and engagement wasn’t heartfelt.
Start with realizing that it’s your responsibility to put forth the effort to make people feel comfortable, FIRST.
Do you have any tips for increasing engagement organically? Share them in the comments below!
Want to get on a virtual coffee chat or wine date to chat all things messaging and content strategy? My door is always open! (; Schedule a call with me so we can get to know each other some more!
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