01.09-15 Mistakes You May Be Making on Instagram with host Jenna Redfield
Mistake 1. Using bots
I hate bots. Hate them. Yes they can help bring you followers, but most of the time the followers are empty and non-engaging.
Pro tip: The best way to bring organic followers is to actually interact!
Mistake 2. Not putting your location on your account
If you are a local based business or honestly any business, make sure to put your location on your instagram.
I run a local based business and I easily follow people who show that they are in the same location as me. If you don't list your city, you could be losing followers, even if you sell beyond your local market.
Pro Tip: Make sure to have a business account and add your city in the settings, this way it doesn't take up space in your description
Mistake 3. Not listing a website/link
Another thing I see many times is that people put no link to their business or facebook page and have nothing there. If you have a blog or anything, make sure to put
Pro Tip: Use www.linktr.ee as your link. You can add a bunch of calls to action in one link!
Mistake 4. Following more people than follow you
This is something I've heard from many people. Always follow less people than follow you. This comes off as more reputable and shows that you aren't desperate for followers.
Pro Tip: What I do is make a separate private account for the beauty bloggers, fashion bloggers and celebrities I want to follow but won't add to my following list. This way I'm only following people in my industry and can actually keep up.
Mistake 5. Not having a consistent looking feed
Instagram can be your portfolio and first impression of your business. If it's full of family pics, shot in low light on an iPhone, you may be losing customers.
By using the same consistent filters, and if you have graphics, using the same colors and fonts, you appear much more professional.
Mistake 6. Not using instagram stories
Because of instagram's algorithms changing, having an instagram story is so important because you are put on the top of everyone's feed and they won't miss your post/content. So double up!
Pro tip: Create a iphone sized graphic in canva.com! I'll hopefully be posting a tutorial soon!
Mistake 7. Not using Hashtags
Although there have been many posts recently about shadow bans (google it!) I still believe hashtags are an amazing way to find other instagram accounts as well as for accounts to follow you!
Mistake 8. Not engaging with others or replying to comments
If all you do on instagram is post pictures, you are really missing out! Instagram is a community and you need to treat it as such. Take some time, even if it's 5 minutes, each day, comment on posts, like pictures and respond to your commenters!
Mistake 9. Not refollowing/engaging with accounts you want to follow you back
One thing I've found that isn't super spammy and although it takes some time actually works, is getting the app Followers and tracking who isn't following you back. Every month I scroll to the bottom of the list and unfollow and refollow a few people. Then I comment on those peoples post. This helps people know about me and they may have missed me following the first time.
I wouldn't do this more than 2x so only do it for accounts you want to get the notice of.
Mistake 10. Not being consistent
Posting at least once a day is very important if you want to build a following. If you only post weekly, you are way less likely to build an audience quickly.
Pro tip: plan out your feed with a planning app, like plann or later.
Mistake 11. Not posting at the right time
Timing on instagram is super important. I usually post between 7am-9am or after 7pm. These are when the most people are online.
Pro tip: check your instagram analytics to see when the most people are online!
Mistake 12. Only using graphics
I usually don't follow accounts that only use graphics. It tends to look messy and none of them look alike. I prefer accounts that have photos and use clean graphics occasionally.
Mistake 13. Not coming up with original content
Unless your account is strictly a curated account (mine is for the Twin Cities Collective, a community group) you need to put out original images if you want to grow your account. I have never featured an image that isn't mine
Mistake 14. Not having pretty pictures
Instagram is truly a visual site. If your pictures are less than desirable, you may stall in terms of followers. One easy way to have pretty pictures is by using stock photos. Check out my stock shop for inexpensive photos you can use to make your instagram page look super professional!
Mistake 15. Not selling your products/services
One recent thing I've realized is that many of my followers don't realize what I actually do! Don't be afraid to promote your services but don't have every single post be self-promo. Mix it up! For every 3 posts, 1 should promote something, even if it's another social media account
Jenna Redfield is the leader of the Twin Cities Collective, the largest resource in the Twin Cities for bloggers, small business, entrepreneurs & creatives.
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