We’re obsessed with Instagram. There’s no denying that. In the last two years, we have built a following of over 11,000 people on the social media app. Instagram has brought us more clients than all our other social media platforms combined.
We hustle everyday to research trending hashtags, create an aesthetically pleasing feed and attract new followers to our @moosestudio account. It isn’t easy, but we love it! We understand not everyone has time to do that, so today we will be sharing 13 Instagram hacks to increase your likes, comments and reposts.
Hack #1 Have An Interesting Life
This isn’t necessarily a hack, but let’s be real. Nobody cares about that poorly lit, grainy selfie you just posted. Take a look at all of the influencers that you’ve come to love. Why do you keep going back to like their content, again and again? The answer is simple – they are interesting. They travel, explore, and constantly try new things.
Even if you can’t afford to jet off to another country every month, you can surely find something interesting in your own city. Look at it from a tourists’ perspective, and find something new to do. People use Instagram on a daily basis to plan their travel destinations, so make your hometown look #instaworthy to inspire them to visit.
Hack #2 Add A Geotag To Your Photo
Speaking of travel…make sure to add a geotag to your photo. If you found a cool wall in your city, tag the location for other people to check it out too. Almost every inch of this planet has been photographed, so don’t think you are keeping places a secret by not sharing. The exposure you will gain from geotagging the location will far out way the loss of your ‘secret spot.’
However, please please please don’t geotag your home location. There have been numerous reports of burglaries and harassment to people who have done this. Stay safe, and geotag a general city instead.
Hack #3 Hashtag The Location Or Brand
Finding the perfect hashtags to use on your post is a struggle. But unfortunately, they are a necessary evil to get more likes, and comments. Hashtaging your location will drive more people that are interested in the same location to your photo. For example, if you just posted a photo of the Statue Of Liberty you could use the hashtags :
#statueofliberty #ellisisland #bigapple #newyorkcity #nyc
Or, if you know a brand has their own hashtag, then make sure to include it. For example, if you post a photo of an outfit or even your food – the brand may have a hashtag that they encourage others to use.
#hiddenhousecoffee #brandymelville #nike #adidas
To get the most engagement on your photo, you need to post your hashtags immediately into the first comment. This will attract people who are interested in the same brands as you. To learn how to hide those ugly hashtags, follow this tutorial to make sure they aren’t a distraction to your followers.
Hack #4 Write A Long Caption
Instagram is slowly becoming a microblogging platform. People are sharing longer captions, with updates about their life or business. Writing a long caption will help you connect more with your followers and add value to your feed. Instead of just viewing a pretty picture, people will understand what your intent was behind posting it.
Depending on your industry, it can be as simple as writing a mini tutorial, sharing a recipe or even starting a discussion on an important topic.
Hack #5 Use Line Breaks
If you’re going to start writing longer paragraphs, then you will need to use line breaks. Otherwise, people will be scared off by one giant block of text.
While typing the caption of a photo you’re about to post, tap on the 123 key in the lower left corner of the keyboard. Doing so will bring up the number keys, and more importantly – the Return key.
Once you’ve hit return to create a space, click on the symbol of your choice to create a break. We love using the underscore symbol, and press it twice to create a line.
Note : You can’t use emojis if you create line breaks. Hopefully this will change in the near future.
Hack #6 Tag A Brand In Your Caption And Photo
Tagging a brand/person in your caption and photo has been proven to increase engagement rates. Not only will it notify the people you tagged, but also expand the reach of the photo.
Chances are, the brand/person you tagged will want to repost the photo on their feed and tag YOU back! We’ve personally had photos liked by Kate Spade, Tilly’s and pretty much every coffee shop we’ve visited.
When you’re writing your caption, just typed the @ symbol followed by the brand/person’s Instagram username. To tag a brand/person in the photo, click the Tag People option. Click on a spot in the picture, the type the Instagram username of the company you want to tag.
Hack #7 Include A Call-To-Action In Your Caption
Ask a question and they will answer…most of the time. Start conversations to develop a highly engaged audience. People want to join in and feel like they are part of the discussion. The easier the question is to answer, the higher response you will get. This is called a Call To Action (CTA).
You have to get over that fear that they might not answer. By asking questions, it shows that you care about your audience, and they aren’t just numbers. Start posting a question at the end of every caption, and people will start to catch on.
Hack #8 Join A Comment Pod
According to Instagram, comments are currently weighted more than likes. The more comments you have, the more likely you will find your photo in the explore tab. Join or create a comment pod to ensure that every photo you post has immediate engagement on it.
The Rising Tide Society has an excellent post explaining what exactly a comment pod is, and how to join one.
Hack #9 Reply To Your Comments
Instagram is a SOCIAL media platform, therefore you must be social. The purpose of using Instagram is to engage and inform your followers. Ignoring comments makes it seem like you don’t appreciate their connection.
As you gain more followers, it becomes harder to reply to each comment. Often times people leave comments that are empty such as “nice” or “cool” and it doesn’t feel worth our time to reply. Even worse, it could be an automatic bot that leaves these comments.
However, it IS worth your time, only because they took the time to write it, and therefore you should reciprocate. If it was a bot that left the comment, you still will notify the person that left the comment forcing them to take a peek at your Instagram feed.
Respond to your comments and use the “@username (handle)” to tag them. This will encourage your followers to keep coming back to scroll through your feed.
Hack #10 Upload Your Snapchat Story To Instagram
Yes, you can totally do this! We love the lenses on Snapchat, and aren’t quite ready to let them go yet. They are super fun, and can put a unique twist on your Instagram Stories. We want you to get the most mileage out of your social media content, so hop on over to this post showing you how to upload your snapchat story to Instagram.
Then, you will get double the amount of exposure being on both platforms! Try it, it’s pretty amazing.
Hack #11 Tag Brand In Instagram Story
We are going to totally geek out for a minute and let you in on a little known secret. You can TAG a brand in your Instagram Story. This is gold. Once a brand or person is tagged, they will get a notification in their Direct Message Inbox. Then, the story is available for them to view. This will increase your engagement on your Instagram account, and result in more likes! We do it all the time and have gotten attention from some major companies.
Hack #12 Bluer Photos Perform Better
According to recent research, it has been found that blue photos perform better on Instagram. Mostly blue images receive an average of 24 percent more likes than photos with red and orange.
This actually makes a lot of sense if you think about it. Color theory suggests that blue is calming, peaceful and relaxing. People who use social media as an escape from reality or a way to blow off steam from a stressful day would most likely be attracted to this type of content.
Whether the photo has a slight blue filter to it, or is from a tropical setting it will most definitely stir up more engagement then others. We didn’t believe it at first, but 9/10 times our beach photos do the best out.
Hack #13 Share Your Instagram Post On Other Platforms
Once you post a photo to Instagram, you’re not done. Built right into the platform is the option to share to Facebook and Twitter – do it immediately. You never know who might be hanging out on one of the other platforms, and decide to come check out your latest post. Heck, they might even leave a comment!
The other way you can boost your followers is by using a service called Tailwind. It is a Pinterest scheduler that posts at optimal times throughout the day. Just recently, they released a new feature that allows you to post your Instagram photos to Pinterest. And if you don’t already know, Pinterest is a traffic powerhouse.
Overall, if you don’t have a solid Instagram strategy to follow, it can be overwhelming trying to grow your account.