3 Ways for Followers to Engage with You on Instagram

Are you tired of staring at your Instagram account and wondering why no one is leaving a comment? Do you want your followers to engage more?  I definitely do, so here’s three tips that’ve helped my engagement.

1.  The First 240 Characters of Your Caption Matter the Most

Instagram limits your caption to 2,200 characters, so while you can share in depth, it’s important to share the key point in the first three lines of text (about 85-100 characters), so followers can determine if they want to click on the “More” option.  Basically, you need to hook followers and draw them in…when that happens, they’re more likely to engage.  (This also applies to asking a question in a caption…make sure it happens in the first 85 characters so followers can respond, even if they don’t read the entire caption)

2.  Create connection

When I was in college, I worked at a steak house (ironic for a vegetarian, eh?), and when I struggled talking about the menu in an authentic way, my manager told me the following: “Sell the sizzle, not the steak!”  This means it’s important to tell a story, instead of describing what it is.  When it comes to Instagram, followers engage when they feel connected to you and this happens more frequently by way of storytelling.

Use your captions to showcase WHO you are, WHAT you do, and WHY you do it.  When followers understand that, they can’t help but engage with you.

3.  Fill in the Gaps

It’s going to be very hard to get followers to leave a comment if there’s no reason to.  Allow me to explain: Instagram captions should be conversation starters, not statements.  For example, if you post a photo of a croissant with a caption that reads, “I love croissants! #nomnomnom” or “Breakfast time is my favorite,” it doesn’t lend itself to a response.  You basically just wrote about what people are seeing: a croissant.

However, if you were to post a caption about what’s not shown in the photo, you have the chance to start a conversation in a different way.  For example:

  • “Last night I ran to the grocery store in sweat pants and flip-flops because of this craving…and I bought an extra croissant for this morning.  Wish I planned my life as well as I planned my carb-indulgences!”
  • “I studied abroad in France for a year and tried to make croissants on my own…let’s just say I’m better at buying them than making them.”
  • “I ran two miles to enjoy this breakfast, but who am I kidding? I should probably run another two miles for the second one I plan to eat!”

These are all silly captions, but they do add more than just what meets the eye.  Basically, you’re giving your followers another way to connect with you since you filled in the gaps, and personalized the post.

I hope these tips help and if you’d like to read more about using Instagram for your business, feel free to download this FREE Instagram Marketing Guide!

I’ll also be hosting a live Social Media Q+A on my Facebook page on Wednesday at 3pm (PST), so I’d love to see you there!