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The Expert Panel was initially published at Forbes.
Our founder and managing partner, Terry Tateossian, gives her take on the subject as well. You could read her opinion under number 14. Get A Boost From Authority Accounts
Here comes the full article:
Social media algorithms make it so that the longer a post stays without interaction, the less likely it is to make it to prominence. The key then is making sure all posts are highly engaging in order to be noticed and shared.
If you’re using social media as a marketing channel, getting seen is precisely what you want. Engaging your followers to reply, like and repost can help skyrocket a post to the top of others’ feeds. These 15 contributors to Forbes Agency Council explain how to craft social media posts that engage followers and, as a result, remain at the top of their feeds for a longer time.
1. Be Authentic
When I reveal something personal or authentic, or share a real emotion or moment in my life, that’s when I get the most engagement. Make sure your posts are not overly promotional, the content is visual and interesting and authentically true. It is exciting when you see the impact over time and you can truly build a fan base that is invested in your stories and content. – Michelle Mekky, Mekky Media Relations, Inc.
2. Keep It Real
Though social media is flooded with memes, quotes and graphics, the posts we’ve seen get the most engagement are photos of real people. Although infographics especially have great value, photos of team members, customer photos with a review, user-created content, etc. have high engagement. Videos are similarly engaging. – JC Hite, Hite Digital
3. Speak To Them
Social platforms are about connecting. Some of the best posts, even from companies, are the ones that speak to those scrolling. While the art or photo can pull someone in, the copy is a chance to plug in. Instead of writing in first person or talking about your company or product, consider the viewer and authentically offer them up something that says “I see you.” This is true engagement. – Carm Lyman, Lyman Agency
4. Have A Pre-Engagement Strategy
Before posting a valuable piece of content on Instagram. I like to build anticipation for my post. The first thing I do is engage with related content from other bloggers, as well as content from my audiences, an hour before I post, which therefore helps build a large number of users who will reciprocate back engagement when I post. – Sam Founda, Social Connection
5. Understand Your Niche And Audience
Too often, companies go off track with their content strategy which can slow down the traction for their following or worse, cause people to leave. Don’t be all things to all people. Be smart, be clever and be compelling. If you are hoping to engage marketing and PR people then get them wanting to share your posts, your quotes, your compelling moments about the career, the successes and the craft. – Kathleen Lucente, Red Fan Communications
6. Use Emotional Triggers
If you want to now know “what John Smith/Jane Smith buys, you have to see the world through their eyes.” Instagram is an emotional machine, so your content needs to address the desires of others. If you create content that helps them feel better, they will even pay you. As David Ogilvy said, a good advertisement is one which sells the product without drawing attention to itself. – Qamar Zaman, KISSPR.COM
7. Engage With Great Content At The Right Time
Take advantage of all Instagram content opportunities — main feed, stories, video and live broadcast — to appeal to your followers. Engagement can only be bolstered when your consumer market is online, so optimize your content to post at times when end users are most likely to be active. This data is available on Instagram’s native analytics, but be sure to double-check location and time zones. – Carey Kirkpatrick, CKP
8. Make Them Interested
If you want to stay at the top of a user’s feed, there are no tricks or easy hacks. You just have to provide exactly what the algorithm is looking for: high-quality content to keep followers interested in what you post, a schedule that aligns with that of your user’s so that posts are timely, and engaging captions that strengthen your connection with the user and the user’s connection with you. – Dmitrii Kustov, Regex SEO
9. Offer Value
Unless you’re a celebrity, people don’t care what you have to say unless you are creating value in exchange for their attention. Instead of telling them about this week’s sale, show followers how to use your product or service in novel or unique ways, how to solve problems in their life, or ways to maximize your product’s benefits. This approach is especially powerful for video. – David Ward, Meticulosity
10. Get Story-Driven
Getting in the Instagram feed is both an art and a science. Art, because you must have seriously gorgeous images. Science, because you’re constantly trying to trick the algorithm to get noticed. Smart “grammers” get seriously story-driven and build out narrative tales there. Stories are real and rapid fire, and if you tell a great story, your viewers will be led back to your feed clamoring for more. – Danica Kombol, Everywhere Agency
11. Step Up Your Tagging And Hashtag Game
Beyond posting organic and visual content that doesn’t look or feel like an advertisement you should look to draft off of partners and trending topics that have a lot of engagement and eyeballs. Don’t forget this is a social platform, so step up your tagging and hashtag game and always look to include others in the conversation to increase exposure. – Marc Becker, The Tangent Agency
12. Jump On Platform Trends
While there’s no silver bullet for conquering social platform algorithms, you can make the most of observed trends. For instance, Instagram appears to be helping drive traffic to their IGTV feature by prioritizing IGTV previews in users’ main feed and putting IGTV videos in the “Explore” tab. Capitalize on this by experimenting with IGTV — that previewed video snippet is likely to stay top of feed. – Danielle Wiley, Sway Group
13. Know Your Metrics
One of the most important things to do is to make sure that you are looking at all of the options out there for understanding metrics. That means that you need to know what your competition is doing and know how to stay on top of the metrics. There are a few sites, such as SocialBlade.com, that can help you always know what they are doing. – Jon James, Ignited Results
Aside from creating content that resonates with your target audience, connecting with other similar accounts and having meaningful connections and relationships with your followers, one pro tip is to get a high-authority account to like or comment on your post within the first two hours of posting. We’ve found this boosts the overall visibility in your followers’ feeds and increases impressions. – Terry Tateossian, Socialfix Media
15. Leverage Clique-Based Marketing
It’s a trending influencer strategy right now to engage in “clique-based” or “group-based” marketing. Say one influencer is promoting a brand or product. Many of their followers most likely also follow other influencers within the same niche space. If those influencers post about that brand or product as well, you’ll have three times the visibility. There’s a definite power-in-numbers effect here. – Jeeyan Rostam-Abadi, Hawke Media LLC