So far, we have focused on how to get more engagement from your followers. However, it is equally important that you engage with your followers. Instagram should be a two-way platform for customers to connect with brands, and brands to connect with customers.
The unique advantage of social media in relation to any other form of marketing is that it allows consumers and brands to interact in a personal and instantaneous manner so that customers can directly interact with your brand and the people on your team wherever they are.
Engaging with your customers on social media is tremendously beneficial in that it allows consumers to see the human aspects of your brand by providing them the opportunity to engage with a real human being at your company in the same way that they engage with their friends or families.
If you use social media effectively, your brand’s reputation and the image will improve dramatically in the minds of your customers.
Brands that are the most successful on Instagram are ones that frequently engage with their followers and make them feel valuable, rather than simply posting content and expecting their followers to do 100% of the engagement.
Here are some ways that you can engage with your followers or fellow Instagram users:
1. Like your Follower’s photos
Like your customers’ photos to connect with them and show appreciation — particularly if they include your product or mention your brand check this one for more convenience.
2. Comment on Followers’ photos
Engage with your consumers by commenting on their own posts that relate to your product or brand.
3. Respond to comments on all your posts
If someone comments on your posts, respond to them. This is particularly important if someone asks a question and you can supply them with an answer. You should respond even if the comment contains something negative about your brand. For example, if a customer complains about their experience in a comment, you can respond by sincerely apologizing, asking for more details about their experience, and offering a solution.
4. @mention your customers
If applicable, @mention your followers, your customers, and any other user. For example, if an influential or celebrity Instagrammer mentions that they love your product, you can respond by @mentioning them in the caption of your post in a friendly shout-out.
For example, furniture brand West Elm posted a customer’s photo of their home that included one of the brand’s consoles with the caption, “Loving how you styled your new console, @andreacrofts!”
5. Embed followers’ photos
Instagram now enables you to embed Instagram photos on your website and other sites. Use this, like Starbucks, to show images of your brand and product from your Instagram followers by embedding the entire post. Make sure you tell them you’re showcasing their image and get their permission to use it.
If you’d like to enhance Instagram photos prior to (re)publishing them or change the format to post them on Facebook, you can use tools like Pixelhunter.
It is an AI image cropping tool created by Uploadcare – a famous file handling tool for developers. Apart from smart cropping, it gives you tips on how to increase engagement with the picture depending on its destination: IG post, story, or cover photo.
6. Use photo caption posts
A great way to get engagement for your post is to ask your followers to caption the post themselves. You can even turn it into a contest by offering a prize to the user who comes up with the best caption.
Also Read: Best Website To Buy Instagram Followers
7. Crowdsource photos
Ask followers to submit photos of how they use your product. This could help your business gain customer insight and future product development research. In order to entice users to post these photos and share them with you, you can run an Instagram photo contest and offer prizes for posting.
Finally, make sure to monitor your brand or campaign hashtags, as well as relevant content hashtags like location or products, in order to find content from your target customers and engage with their posts.
Engaging with your followers is a great way to make your followers feel appreciated and to show them the unique personality and human aspect of your brand.
It is important to note when communicating with your customers that while you should be warm, personable, and of course sound like a real human, you should also maintain professionalism. Don’t buy Instagram live views instead engage with your real customers in live feeds and impress them with your content creation.
Customer engagement can backfire if you or someone on your team does not portray the right attitude and image when communicating directly with your customers or followers.