Instagram has become a goldmine for many marketers. Nearly a third of American women and a quarter of American men currently use the site. It also provides many opportunities to reach customers in other parts of the world.
Unfortunately, many marketers struggle to use Instagram effectively. They often use overly aggressive tactics, appeal to the wrong users or don’t share relevant content. As a result, they have a hard time retaining followers.
If you are planning to create a sustainable Instagram marketing strategy, you need to find a way to retain your followers. Here are some mistakes that you need to avoid at all costs.
Focusing Too Much on Your Raw Follower Count
There are probably thousands of blog posts about boosting your Instagram follower count. It is easy to see why. People associate having a higher follower count with getting more exposure.
While that is true to a point, many of your followers may not have any interest in your industry. If you are sharing content that appeals to people outside your demographic to grow your follower base, you may be turning off people that are actually interested in the content you have to offer.
Unfortunately, it can be difficult to tell if you are losing relevant followers while boosting your overall follower count. Try to determine how engaged individual followers are. You can use the Simply Measured and Sprout Engagement tools to see how engaged individual followers are. If you are losing followers that were never engaged to begin with, then you probably don’t need to worry much. On the other hand, if you are losing more engaged followers, then you need to reflect on what you are doing.
Reposting Similar Content
Let’s say that you are following a poster on Instagram that shares the same picture every day. Your first reaction is probably to unfollow them. Your own followers will make the same decision if you share similar content all the time.
Unfortunately, you may not be sharing original content as much as you would like to think. You may have taken a number of different pictures of your products or workspaces. While each picture may be unique, the theme may seem too similar to your followers.
You really need to think outside the box. Try to come up with new content ideas to keep things fresh.
Not Sticking to the Promises in Your Bio
Every Instagram account is given a biography. You want to use this to the best of your advantage. A good biography tells other users what to expect when they follow your posts.
The problem si that many people don’t live up to the promises they lay out in their Instagram bios. Claire Diaz-Ortiz states that one of the biggest reasons she unfollows people is that their biographies aren’t in sync with the content they share.
“You’re not who I thought you were. Your bio, “fan of organic composting!” does not accurately reflect the fact that you only tweets about 49ers games and cheddar cheese.”
Posting at the Wrong Times
Maintaining user engagement is very important. According to one study, the best time to post is between 2 AM and 5 PM. Make sure that you know when your own audience is most active, so you can reach them.
Posting Too Often
You have probably heard lots of people argue that you should post more often. It is true that posting too infrequently will drive away followers. Nobody wants to follow an account that doesn’t post anything.
However, posting too frequently can have the same effect. People may not want to see too many posts in their feed. If you post too often, your images will start to blur together as a giant grid, which won’t look very appealing to people visiting your profile.
Many experts have found they retain followers better by posting 1-2 times a day, as opposed to three or more.