You’re probably already creating quality content on Instagram. But you’re not seeing the results you’re hoping for.
You want more people to organically see your content, follow your brand, and buy from you.
Now you’re wondering how to get there.
You’re in the right place.
In this guide, you’ll see actionable steps and tips that will help you achieve your desired organic reach on Instagram.
Let’s get right into it.
1. Know Your Niche and Your Hashtags
Instagram is like a marketplace with different things to sell and buy. People can only find your products if you speak their language. That’s what it means to know your niche.
Your niche is the market segment that your product or service falls under. Knowing your niche means finding out the kind of words and phrases that people who are likely to purchase from you use to search for products similar to yours.
So, to increase your organic reach, tailor your Instagram posts, Reels, and even Instagram Stories to your niche and target audience.
Here are some simple steps to finding your niche:
- Grab a piece of paper.
- Write down your product’s name in the middle of your white sheet.
- Think of five words that come into your mind when you think of your product or service.
- Write those words down, maybe in a flowchart or just beneath your products’ names.
- Think of five problems your product solves and write them down too.
- Research everything you’ve written down and find some more keywords.
- Pick out the recurring words or phrases that come up when you Google what you’ve written.
- Pick out the recurring market segments that Google categorizes your solution under.
- Choose the most suitable or fitting of the segments, and voila! You have your niche.
When you know your niche, the next thing is to find out the things people search for in that niche. This gives you an idea of the hashtags you should use for your posts.
A good hashtag strategy is your search optimization for Instagram. This is called social SEO. People search for keywords on social media just as they do on Google. The keywords on Instagram are hashtags.
Today, Instagram allows up to 30 hashtags; but about 3-5 hashtags are ideal for an Instagram post.
Use hashtags that are specific to your business rather than generalized.
For example, someone in Atlanta who wants to get beauty products would most likely search for #beautyproductsinatlanta, and someone who just wants to compare products may search for hashtags like #skincareandbeautyproducts.
Your hashtag strategy should include a good blend of general and specific hashtags. You should also choose some small-volume ones you can rank top for, especially if you’re a small business.
You can also have branded hashtags. However, these hashtags should include words that your audience is searching for. Keep a list of hashtags that you want to use so that you can copy and paste them to save time. However, be on the lookout for new hashtags that will broaden your audience.
Once you’ve ticked this step off your checklist, the next step is a walkover.
2. Set a Goal for Your Account
What is the purpose of your being active on Instagram? Do you want more sales? More followers? Increased brand awareness? All of the above?
The goal of your account will determine in which direction your posts should go—the type of information you’ll share and the type of CTA you should choose.
Let’s say a haircare eCommerce business has the goal of increasing their credibility and positioning themselves as the leading brand for hair products. This goal would determine the kind of carousels, Instagram Reels, and pictures they would share.
They would have to post a lot of reviews, customer feedback, high-quality photos, and educational posts to position themselves as an authority on haircare and hair products. They may even have to hop on an IG live to answer questions and put a face to the brand.
Your Instagram profile should give away the goal of the account in one glance. To do so, include your CTA in your bio.
Your goals can change as your brand evolves. However, your social media goals should align with your overall business and marketing strategy at all times.
After you’ve set a goal, it’s time to work towards achieving it.
3. Post Consistently
Consistency cannot be overemphasized when trying to increase your organic reach. The algorithm favors consistency. Consistency keeps you on your followers’ feeds.
You can create a content calendar ahead of time so that you don’t run out of content ideas and can consistently post content all through the month.
If you’re not sure what new content to put on, just post behind the scene (BTS) content. This may be packaging, your team members doing their work, sending out deliveries, or any other kind of BTS.
You can also collaborate with creators on platforms like Insense, who can give you authentic, creative content that suits your brand. That way, you never run out of what to post consistently.
Next, find out the best times to post. These are the times when your audience is the most active, and posting then can increase the immediate views on your profile.
The good thing is you don’t have to pay for analytics tools to help you find your best posting times.
Once you have an Instagram business account, you can get access to your Instagram analytics by clicking on the Insights tab or professional dashboard on your profile.
Scroll down to see the most active times after opening the audience tab, as shown in the image below.
Now you know the active times, what other effective tips are there?
Let’s see the next one.
4. Take Advantage of All Instagram Post Formats
Instagram has various post formats that appeal to different kinds of people.
The Instagram algorithm favors Instagram users who try out all post formats.
There are photo posts, graphics, IGTVs, Reels, Stories, and Live videos.
So, to increase your organic reach, you need to study how the algorithm works for these post formats and leverage them.
IG Stories last for 24 hours but can be used to create profile Highlights after they’re gone from the Stories.
Stories are a good place to post informal content, countdowns, and links to a landing page, and to repost other Story features.
You can post BTS on your Stories, shout-outs to favorite customers, and a countdown to your product launch. You can also collaborate with users for Story takeovers.
IGTVs and Reels are highly favored by the algorithm because of the high engagement on video content. They tend to have a very high reach and high page view time.
Using trending audios for your Reels significantly increases the reach. However, videos longer than 90 minutes cannot include audio from Instagram.
Long videos are good for tutorials, how-tos, DIYs featuring your product, and a day in the life of your team.
For instance, this unboxing video by ASOS was a good way to get their followers excited about their product and even reach new audiences.
You can also create teasers like this as photo posts or Stories.
We’re not done yet. There’s more.
5. Provide Value to Your Audience
No matter how good your strategy is, people will only follow you or stay on your Instagram page if you provide value.
They follow you because you entertain, educate, inform, or engage them with something that betters their lives.
A great way to find out what content provides value to your audience is to watch what type of content gets the most engagement rates from your followers.
Aside from judging using vanity metrics such as comments and likes, the number of shares and saves your content gets shows how valuable your content was.
Answer questions, and give tips and hacks on better ways to use your products to get your followers to interact with your posts.
For example, if you’re a fashion brand, you can talk about slow fashion and sustainable fashion materials or share fashion events. You can also review different fashion styles for a celebrity event.
That way, people who want to genuinely learn about fashion or love fashion will see you as a must-follow.
Use carousels to create how-tos that people can share. You could even ask on your Stories what topics followers would like you to talk about, and go ahead with those.
Give true and authentic information. One way to do that would be by partnering with creators on the Insense platform to provide high-quality content that suits your brand.
You can also collaborate with other experts in your industry to discuss new trends and answer questions.
Think about it for a second. What additional value can you add to the content you already post? Write down all your ideas.
Insightful content will help you get closer to your followers—which brings us to our next point.
6. Connect with Your Followers
Social media platforms like Instagram bring you closer to your followers. To leverage this closeness, find ways to connect with your followers.
For example, you can create relatable and engaging content. This shows that you understand their pain points and so, can solve their problems.
Your Instagram account is a channel where you can tell your brand story in a way that resonates with your audience.
Respond to comments—if you have lots of comments, you can hire a Social Media Manager to do it for you. Reply to DMs and engage with your followers’ posts in a way that isn't spammy.
You can also ask questions on your Story, get honest reviews from your followers, and implement their suggestions if they suit your brand goals.
Your brand tone should be less formal, and more friendly and warm on your social networks — especially on Instagram.
You can also include humor in your posts. Memes and GIFs can make your posts more relatable.
Another strategy that can help you connect with your followers is posting pictures of people. The engagement rate of photos with faces is almost 40% higher than those without faces.
Once your audience is engaged and connected to your brand, you can implement our next tip.
7. Encourage User-Generated Content
User-generated content (UGC) makes organic reach skyrocket.
It is an authentic, effective Instagram marketing strategy that performs even better than Instagram ads. UGC is simply content made by users of your brand or product.
UGC increases your reach as it is visible to the followers of all the users who create content about your product. UGC drives conversions because it improves brand trust and credibility, has a higher rate of user engagement, and is more creative than other content.
There are several ways to encourage UGC on Instagram.
You can start a hashtag trend. Hashtag campaigns are great drivers of UGC content. You can also organize UGC contests where users are encouraged to submit content in return for giveaways, Story reposts, or features.
You could also do a Story takeover and invite micro-influencers to take over your Stories for a day featuring how they use your products in their everyday lives.
Not sure how to find these micro-influencers for your UGC?
We’ve got you.
Insense is a platform that gives you access to lots of creators who can help you with user-generated content for Instagram. With Insense, you can easily find vetted creators that suit your brand.
Instagram offers many ways to collaborate with your users, more than other social media platforms. So you should take advantage of this to increase your organic reach.
You can collaborate with users on their posts. They can also tag you on posts featuring your products, and you can create Reels with them using the Reels remix feature on Instagram.
Another way is to create prompts that can provide ideas for your users to create content with.
Here’s an example of a stationery brand creating a daily prompt challenge and their own branded hashtags to encourage their Instagram followers to create UGC.
The seven methods discussed above are essential when developing your content strategy.
Drumrolls! You’ve seen the seven ways to increase your Instagram organic reach, and we bet you’re super pumped. Let’s wrap this up before you get started.
Level Up Your Instagram Game
As you have seen, you don’t really have to go the extra mile to increase your organic reach. With the simple steps explained above, you’re definitely on your way to getting the most out of Instagram.
For user-generated content, dip into the Insense pool of over 35K content creators native to Instagram who will create assets that perfectly fit your brand identity and requirements.
Wanna try out Insense? Sign up now.