Not just anything with Instagram – we could go on for hours – or days – about all the things about Instagram!
What I wanted to share with you today is about how to boost your followers, get more people seeing your posts and how to leverage the platform for lead generation.
Instagram is has gone through some tremendous changes in 2018 and the old API is being completely phased out at the end of this year. The new API will be completely phased in in 2019.
This is a good thing! One of the major changes that Instagram has made is there a limiting who gets to use their API. A lot of third-party tools are huge time-savers and they can really help you utilize your account. BUT there’s also a lot of third-party apps that people are using that are just strictly for spamming. They create a lot of junk content on the platform that we would all love to get rid of.
For example, tools that do the mass following and unfollowing. I’m sure you guys have dealt with before! It’s where you have a random person you have no idea who they are and then all of a sudden they follow you and unfollow you. Then maybe a couple weeks later they follow you again and then unfollow you and you’re like what in the world is going on with this person??
This is the exact kind of behavior Instagram wants to weed out. The people that continue to use those strategies are going to be marked as spam and they’re not going to have as much visibility on the platform.
So this is a GOOD thing because it opens up a tremendous amount of opportunity for people who are genuinely using a platform to collaborate and connect with people.
One of the ways that you can jump ahead of the curve and stand out and become an “Instagram darling” that the algorithm will just love you is a strategy I like to call Radical Engagement.
It’s not complicated, it’s very simple. It does take a little bit more time than you might normally spend on an Instagram post, but it’s worth it.
The strategy starts with you sharing a post. It can be a regular post, a story or you can even do a live video.
Make sure you do it during an optimal time where people are going to be able to see the post. This is most commonly during the middle of the week during the daytime before 8pm – just not 2am, okay?
Then, whenever someone comments on that post immediately like it, comment back and then (this is the radical engagement part) go to their profile and like/comment on one of their posts.
When you go through this process, time is of the essence! You want to make sure you complete this entire strategy within 45 minutes of originally receiving the comment on your post.
What this trick does is tell Instagram, “Hey! I’m engaging with people! I know this person and this is of value to the feed. I’m honoring the system! I’m honoring the algorithm! Please reward by letting more people see my post.”
Follow this strategy every single time you post. Each time you do it it creates a snowball effect where Instagram is realizing “Wow, this person is using the platform exactly how we intended! This is a star Instagram user and we want to reward them. Let’s make sure everybody sees their post because they’re going to engage and they’re going to make this environment that we all want!”
Also, you can do this kind of the reverse way as well if you have someone that you follow and you’re really looking to get their attention.
For example, say they have a lot of followers and are considered media influencer in your area. In real estate, they might be an interior designer in your town that is always posting really great content.
Whenever they have a post that is relevant, make sure that you like it, comment and you can even tag somebody else in the comment or reference something on your own feed. Basically you want to provide a meaningful and engaging comment that is a conversation starter.
To help further the connection, you can even direct message. For example, “I saw you did a really nice remodel on a house in Tarrytown. I have a listing there, curious what your favorite thing about the neighborhood is?” Anything really to help build the the connection.
The results are two-fold. For starters, you’re going to get more visibility with that person. And secondly, you’re encouraging Instagram to make sure you see each other’s posts. You’re telling the algorithm, “We’re friends please keep us connected!”
Once this has happened a couple of times it becomes very natural to want to stay connected and collaborate in real life. Voila! The snowball effect once again.
Ultimately, you can help leverage each other’s audiences to grow your platform, grow your business and use Instagram for lead generation through cross-promotion.
My final 2 cents: Don’t hesitate to put yourself out there! Real estate is all about trust. When you share your unique personality you’re building your personal brand and showcasing your involvement in the community. In no time you’ll be turning followers into clients and then raving fans! You got this!
Let me know, did you try the strategy? How did it work for you?