Are you disappointed with your lack of engagement on Instagram? Are you making an effort to talk to your online community using Instagram Story, but finding it difficult to get people to respond to polls or ask you questions?
In this article, we’ll explore four tactics that will help inspire your audience to engage with you in a meaningful way!
1. Create content your audience will want to screenshot.
Creating shareable content greatly increases your Instagram impressions. Folks who may not be in your niche audience become aware of your brand just because a friend shared your template or inspiration quote. So find your favorite design app and create content that your community can screenshot and share with their friends.
People love talking about themselves. Create branded surveys like MowoBlog’s does below. This type of content compels them to not only engage with you, but share details about themselves so they can connect with their community. (Don’t forget to have them tag you when they reshare!)
Or you can make it as simple as creating visually-stunning quote graphics like author Alex Elle. Her followers know her for her handwritten notes and simple quote graphics. Images like Alex’s create a positive emotion throughout her community and she’s made an entire business off of her writing which inspires self-love, self-reflection and motherhood.
2. Build trust by creating moments for a genuine conversation.
Last year, Instagram introduced the interactive “Question” sticker. This created an effortless way for celebrities and influencers to connect with their large audiences. But your followers aren’t flooding your DMs when you use the ‘Question’ sticker, right? Well that’s probably because they don’t know what you provide or understand what your expertise are.
You can build credibility many different ways on Instagram Story: curate content & provide your expert commentary, offer free tips on IGTV or share testimonies from your previous clients/customers.
You can also use the special “Question” function on Instagram Story.
Fake it ‘til you make it. Your audience may not understand what value you bring. You’ll need help to show them your area of expertise and build your credibility.
During your next “Ask Me Anything,” invite a few close friends to fire off a handful of questions in order to get the ball rolling. Make sure they are genuine, valuable questions. People can smell inauthenticity a mile away, and you’re still trying to earn your community’s trust.
Have your trusted group ask questions that prompt real and helpful responses. Once your audience sees you respond to a few questions, they’ll be more likely to engage as well.
Remember: No one wants to be the first person at the party.
Another helpful tip to create meaning dialogue? Create strategic questions (or polls) that inspire curiosity, urgency and anticipation.
Here’s a few sample question you might want to consider:
What stresses you out the most about x ? This is an opportunity for you to share your expertise on a topic, or an opportunity to understand your audiences’ pain points. Both invaluable to you at this time.
Ask me anything about x ? Instead of “Ask Me Anything” this question directs your audience to a specific topic which may make them more likely to engage and let’s them know the area in which you are an authority.
What do you want me to try next? Give your audience a poll which will let them vote on what you’ll do next. (ie: “What should I have for lunch? ‘Salad or Ice Cream’” or “What TV show should I start bingeing? ‘Game of Thrones’ or ‘Lost’”). This input helps your audience feel engaged with you throughout the day, it creates a sense of urgency (although light-hearted) and it’s fun!
(Important Note: I have only seen the previous executed successfully by a popular Instagram personality. But if you try this and have under 10k followers please let me know your results.)
3. Move the conversation off your page.
This is probably the most important tip on this list. Or at least where I provide the most value as a social media professional.
Since it’s a known fact that people love talking about themselves, we can be pretty certain that those same people like it when others listen to them.
Engage with your community on their Instagram stories, comment on their latest selfie, connect them with other people you believe align with their interests. This builds trust, a sense of community and familiarity.
Remember: It pays to be of service.
4. Use your words.
When talking into camera on Instagram, many viewers will click through if you don’t make your point straight away. In order to keep that dreaded “exit rate” low...
Write a brief summary about the point you’re making on that particular part of the video. If your written summary makes the viewer curious enough, they’ll want to hear what you have to say - rather than tapping through, or leaving altogether. I try to do this as often as possible when I’m talking to my friends and community on Instagram:
Creating an online community built on trust and value won’t happen overnight. So the name of the game will always be - consistency. The more your audience sees you and the more valuable your content, the more likely you are to get them to engage. Remember, whether you’re selling yourself, a product or a service - people engage with people.
How’d I do? Did I miss a marketing tactic you’ve found useful on Instagram Stories? Which of these online tactics work for your page? Please share your tips and tricks in the comments below or let me know on Instagram.