Let me break it to you at once. The keyword is engagement. We are not looking for just likes or comments. We are on the search for genuine human interaction. Just like in real life.
A lot of the problem with Instagram engagement in 2019, is that people are so tired of spam. Tired of comments like “hey I love your content, come check out mine!” I mean, who in the entire world would call your content content, after actually having a look at it.
The problem with the left comment below (on the picture) is that it is fairly clear they don’t care about what they’ve seen at all. It’s generic and crafted to get me to their page. I’m still looking for that genuine human connection.
The right bottom comment, on the other hand, is still generic, but it might be real. But as long as you don’t mention anything about what you’ve seen or read, how am I to know that there is an actual human being engaging with my Instagram account?
In this article we’ll explore how to get genuine human engagement – the pearl in the pig sty.
Engage with friends
We are in the phase of building up a new account from scratch. It is not big yet, but what we have had so far is a whole lot of fun, engaging conversations with our followers.
I firmly believe that engaging with the followers you already have is paramount. Don’t go chasing after new ones all the time. If new ones see that people have a good time at your Instagram account, they will be attracted, if they meet tumbleweed however, they’ll quickly abandon you.
Everyone wants to be seen – polls, questions and tagging
My favorite Instagram accounts are people that respond to comments, drop an emoji at my poor jokes, and generally take time to engage. So you feel that you were seen as a human being in spite of communicating across a phone.
We did two things that created a lot of laughter with our community. The first one was we took a friend’s comments over time, and created a timelapse in our Instagram story. This friend of ours has been with us, commenting on every single video except one since the beginning, so we made a story jokingly “honoring” his great commenting efforts – to which our followers (a.k.a. crew) responded with mirth. After it was ended, he went back and commented on the first video, and we all had a good laugh next time we saw each other irl.
The idea behind this is simply to show that we appreciate and see the ones who comments, likes and encourages our efforts. It is based in the extremely simple concept of gratitude.
I’ll wrap it up with the words of Rebecca Black. It was fun, fun, fun, fun.
Using stories right – the second thing we did for engagement
Stories is tailored for engagement. We recently posted the simple question “what tune currently inspires you?” and our friends started responding. After we shared their responses in the story with a tag and some fun, people we didn’t know started engaging as well, creating a lot of good old times human connection.
When two guys posted Baby Shark in a row, we thought it funny, and shared it in the community. That got us a lot of feedback, and the conversation grew we had fun (which is the most important part), but also, Instagram notices the burst of genuine engagement, and rewards you with more exposure. These stories got way more views than anything we’ve posted before.
That whole story ended with one of our followers getting a super ugly picture of a shark with a human face from us, and she told us she’ll airdrop it to random people on the train. Goal reached! Human engagement accomplished.
Stories can be ugly – they’re gonna disappear anyways – but they have to be fun. What question can you pose to your crew? A tip is to make it broad, so everyone can engage.
Enjoy + engage, or exit
I mentioned earlier that the most important part is fun. Some of you won’t agree with me, but if you don’t enjoy engaging your Instagram followers, find something else to do. I firmly believe that whatever you do in life there has to be enjoyment found along the way. Don’t get so set on the goal that you spend your money on ads and bots, and these kind of short cuts. Then you’re not going to reach the actual goal, which is an engaged community full of life and fun. And the fulfillment found in you living what you’re called to do.