Engagement is an important metric to consider on Instagram — it shows that your followers are connecting with you and your content. Increasing and maintaining good engagement levels can be a difficult task, and you may be tempted to turn to third-party tools to artificially inflate your engagement. But instead of buying fake engagement, you should put in the time and effort to build organic Instagram engagement.
In this article, we explain why you shouldn’t purchase fake engagement, and we share several tactics you can utilize to increase your engagement in an authentic way.
Why you shouldn’t buy engagement on Instagram
Purchasing engagement is risky, and it’ll have negative consequences on you and your Instagram account. Here’s why:
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It makes you look deceptive and will damage your reputation
If you get caught buying Instagram engagement, you’ll lose your followers’ trust, and it’ll be difficult to regain.
As a brand, you may damage your chances of attracting potential consumers. Consumers are attracted to brands with good values. Fake engagement can turn them away from your brand, as you’ve shown them you’re not trustworthy.
As a creator, you may damage your chances of working with brands. If you buy fake engagement, you won’t be good collaboration partners, as your number of engagements won’t actually reflect your real performance.
Rather than purchasing likes from third-party tools, you should use the following tips and tactics to increase your engagement organically! By using these tactics daily, you’ll be able to see an improvement in your engagement on Instagram over time.
8 steps to increase organic Instagram engagement
Step 1: Post quality content regularly
Instagram is all about visual content. It’s important that you create aesthetically pleasing photos and videos to share on your profile regularly. Your photos should be:
- Representative of your unique style
You can post attention-grabbing photos by:
- Incorporating video posts into your profile. Auto-playing videos will surely grab your audience’s attention!
- Capturing yourself or people in your content. Photos with faces receive 38% more likes than photos without them.
- Creating a theme for your account. A consistent theme will make your profile look more appealing.
Writing engaging captions to share along with your photos and videos are a great way to stand out from the crowd. When you write captions that tell a great story and provides context to your content, your audience will want to interact with you. You can encourage engagement with your captions by:
- Thinking of fun ways for your followers to interact with your posts. You can pose a question or ask your followers to fill in a ______.
- Having your followers tag their friends or favorite accounts in posts they think they’ll enjoy! It’ll expose your profile to new users who may interact with your posts.
Relevant hashtags can help boost your posts’ visibility by making your content easily searchable. Users who follow hashtags can come across your posts, and if they like what they say, they’ll give you a like! You can create an effective hashtag strategy by:
- Researching what other creators or brands are doing. The accounts with great engagement will likely have a great hashtag strategy.
- Using hashtags that are relevant for the content you post. In order for hashtags to help your engagement, you should aim for your content to be seen by a relevant audience.
- Incorporating a mix of popular and niche hashtags. Popular hashtags will extend your reach, while niche and medium sized hashtags will get your content in front of a highly relevant audience. We’ve compiled a list of the 100 most popular hashtags on Instagram to make this even easier for you.
Step 4: Tag your location
You should always add a location to your Instagram post. This will help expose your content to users looking through different location tags, which will help increase your engagement. In fact, posts with location tags can get 79% higher engagement than posts that lack a location tag.
Step 5: Publish the post when your followers are on Instagram
Instagram Insights is a great tool to use to determine when you should post on Instagram. You’ll be able to easily see when your followers are most active, and you can aim to publish content during those times.
You should also try testing out several different posting times and keep an eye on your engagement. You’ll be able to see whether there’s a certain posting time where you get more engagement. This will be your best time to post on Instagram!
If you don’t have Instagram Insights already, you can easily upgrade to an Instagram Business account for free in Settings. Check out our post on the benefits of an Instagram business account.
You should post Instagram Stories about the new content you publish! This will help you direct your audience to your content. You can share your posts in your Instagram Stories by:
- Clicking on ‘See all comments’ on the post you want to share.
- Clicking on the arrow icon on the top right corner of the screen.
- Tapping ‘Create a Story with this post.’
You should try to keep some suspense about your content by only sharing a sneak peak of them on Instagram Stories. This way, your followers will be tempted to visit your profile to see your full post and engage with the content. You can keep your followers in suspense by using Instagram’s pen tool to hide parts of your post and direct them to your profile to see more!
Step 7: Engage with your followers
Reply to your followers’ comments on Instagram posts and stories to start genuine conversations. This will help you build relationships with your audience and gain their loyalty. They’ll likely start commenting on your posts and stories more, which will improve your Instagram engagement. Increased engagement with your followers will also help your profile show more in their Instagram feeds.
You can also connect with your audience on Instagram stories by using the Question, Quiz, or Poll stickers! You can use the stickers and get your followers to:
- Ask you something they want to learn from you
- Vote on a product they like more
- Answer questions that help you get to know them better
Step 8: Track your posts’ performance
Always measure your posts’ performance. With Instagram Insights, you’ll be able to see what type of posts your followers tend to interact with. If you notice that certain posts are receiving more engagements and impressions than other posts, try posting more of that type of content!