- Jan 16, 2020
- by Brad Litwin
Driving traffic to your website via Instagram can be a smart marketing strategy. Yet the process of building up a following and using it to promote leads to your website can seem hard to navigate at first glance, and even time consuming.
Thankfully, with the right plan of action, you can start gathering a strong following on this popular social media platform. Over time, this should enable you to use Instagram to increase your conversions and encourage repeat visits to your website.
In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the actions you can take to organically grow your Instagram following, and boost traffic to your website. Let’s get started!
Why Instagram Is a Platform Worth Targeting
With over a billion active members, it’s no surprise that Instagram is one of social media’s top contenders. Almost half of all brands in the United States have an account, and it’s important to understand why.
Instagram is a highly-accessible platform, enabling users to post images and stories of all types. What’s more, its hashtag system makes it much simpler to navigate niche markets and find fans. Most importantly, this platform is excellent at promoting engagement. On average, you’ll see 58 times more engagement per follower than on Facebook, and 150 times more engagement than on Twitter.
An Instagram account can increase your brand’s visibility, enable you to take advantage of visual marketing, boost engagement, and potentially increase your standing in search engines. Of course, all of this requires more than simply having a profile on this social media site – you’ll need to cultivate it carefully.
5 Tips for Building Up Your Website’s Instagram Audience
If you don’t know how to manage marketing on Instagram, the process can seem daunting at first. You need a solid plan to determine when peak posting times are, and understand how to use hashtags and create content that resonates. To give you a head start, here are five tips for attracting and keeping an audience on the platform.
1. Post at Optimal Times
No matter how high-quality your Instagram posts are, if you’re not putting them up at the right times then you may lose out on traffic. After all, you want your posts to attract the maximum engagement. Otherwise, your brand won’t get a boost, and you may not be able to grow your follower count as quickly.
As a general rule, posting between 9 AM and 6 PM will result in decent engagement levels. Of course, each day has unique peak posting times as well:
- Monday: 11am – 5pm
- Tuesday: 5am, 9am – 6pm
- Wednesday: 5am, 11am, 3pm
- Thursday: 5am, 11am, 3pm – 4pm
- Friday: 5am, 9am – 4pm
- Saturday: 11am
- Sunday: 10am – 2pm
Setting up a consistent schedule and posting at these times each week can help you build up your following. Of course, every audience is different. So it’s smart to keep an eye on the response to your posts, so you can identify if there are particular times of the day or week that are popular with your followers.
2. Harness Hashtags in Your Content
Hashtags on Instagram enable users to find specific content and organize their posts. Therefore, it’s vital to add relevant tags to your content if you want to market your brand.
On average, when you use at least one hashtag, you’ll get 12.6 percent more engagement than posting without including one. By using this feature, you can attract new users, boost your following, and generate more business:
You can think of hashtags as similar to keywords, as they play the same role in attracting a target audience. You’ll need to conduct research to determine which hashtags are most relevant and effective within your niche, and then monitor each one’s performance. It helps to explore both your audience’s and competitors’ content, and see what kinds of hashtags they’re using.
However, while it’s a good idea to use plenty of hashtags, you don’t want to come off as spammy. While you are allowed to use up to 30, it’s best to choose a handful of relevant, attention-grabbing hashtags for each post.
3. Make Connections and Grow Your Network
Another way to market effectively on Instagram is to network with relevant users and make genuine connections. Influencer culture is still relatively new, but is taking the world of social media advertising and marketing by storm:
Working with influencers doesn’t need to be intimidating, and it’s not difficult to get their attention. The first step is to find out which popular Instagram users will appeal to your audience. A makeup artist may crossover with the fashion industry, for example, but probably won’t help sell cleaning products.
Once you’ve found the right person, send them a direct message that is tailored to them. No one likes getting cookie-cutter messages, so take your time to research the influences and make it clear what benefit they’ll get out of the relationship. You can also make connections by using hashtags, tagging similar accounts, and leaving comments.
4. Consider Contests
If you’re looking to promote your Instagram account, one excellent strategy is to hold contests and giveaways:
While simply running a giveaway is often enough to increase your following, there are a few best practices that can provide an even larger boost to your brand awareness:
- Encourage contestants to share the post to earn more entries.
- Make being a follower of your account a prerequisite for winning the giveaway.
- Require all contestants to tag a certain number of friends in the post
Giving away something for free may be an expense, but it’s a small one that can earn itself back many times over. If you offer contests semi-regularly, you can also hold onto newly-gained followers more easily.
5. Curate High-Quality Content as Stories
Smartphones make taking photographs easier than ever, but Instagram is about more than just posting images. Often, it’s how you use Instagram that determines the number of views you attract.
Quality content can mean posting eye-catching pictures, but it may also mean working with influencers, holding contests, and uploading Instagram stories. On average, influencers report that roughly 6 to 10 percent of their followers open their stories each day:
Not only are stories popular, with users, but you can purchase ads to appear in between story posts. By placing a quality, well-written ad on popular stories, you can attract an audience and direct them to your website or products.
While managing an active Instagram account will take time and effort, the results can be worth all your hard work. After all, Instagram is an effective platform to attract followers, who you can then send to key pages on your website.
If you keep the following in mind, you’re much more likely to see success on Instagram:
- Post your content at the right time.
- Use the right hashtags to drive interest.
- Network with other accounts to drive traffic.
- Use contests to increase your following.
- Produce high-quality content and curate it into stories.
Image credit: Pixabay.