1. Cross-promote your dedicated hashtag.
That’s nice that you created a #joesgarage hashtag for your company, but who knows to use it to share content about you? Make sure it’s in your profile, but take the game offline and have it printed on your receipts, in print ads, on signage in your store and at relevant events.
If you’re on radio and TV, direct people to use your hashtag. Integrate online and offline campaigns by ensuring it’s listed on your other social profiles, on your website, and in your email blasts. Don’t just hope people will find it.
2. Get creative with hashtagging.
When it comes to Instagram caption ideas, you need to look beyond the one-word, obvious hashtags. Sure, you want to use those, too, but mix it up and use hashtags to tell part of your story. Be funny, ironic, or outrageous–just don’t be BORING.
3. Participate in massively popular conversations.
For every post, use a mix of topically relevant hashtags such as #woodworking for a carpentry company, for example, as well as trending, super-popular hashtags wherever you can.
The really specific hashtags are like long-tail keywords in that they show more intent and help you find the right people, but the universally trending hashtags like #instagood, #tbt, #photooftheday or even plain old #fun get you in front of more people in general. You need both to make it on a social network as big and noisy as Instagram.
4. Make the most of your bio URL.
It’s prime real estate on your Instagram profile… do you really want your bio to only link to your website homepage, now and forever? Yawn. Change it up at least bi-weekly and use that clickable link in your bio to drive traffic to your newest or most popular content.
5. Get descriptive with your captions.
A picture is worth a thousand words, but you can’t skip the words entirely. National Geographic is fantastic at using storytelling alongside their Instagram photos to generate engagement and sharing. While traditional media brands have dropped like flies, NatGeo has thrived across digital and become one of the top brands on Instagram, with over 50 million followers.
Like the other Instagram hacks I’ve included here, this is something you’ll want to commit to working into your strategy over time, so don’t worry if it feels weird at first.
6. Go all in on influencer marketing.
Visit the profiles of each person you’ve identified as an influencer in your space and “Turn On Post Notifications” to be notified every time they share new content. You can then interact with them regularly and become one of their favorite people or brands.
7. Remove unwanted tagged photos of you from your profile.
If you only want to feature the best user-generated content about you or your brand on your Instagram profile, you can. Now, you can’t remove the tagged photos from the site entirely, by choosing “Edit Tags,” selecting the ones you want to remove and choosing “Hide from Profile” (you may need to confirm). It does the trick.