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Since the beginning of the social media era, individuals and businesses alike have embraced their online presence and shared their journeys for the world to see. However, 2017 proved a challenging year for many networks when several saw a decline in social use, especially among major players like Facebook and Twitter. Despite this trend, one social network has continue the climb upward: Instagram.
Now is the time to improve your Instagram presence and make the most of your opportunities as Instagram’s monthly active users increases and more attention is driven to the platform.
#Hashtag
Effective hashtag usage has a direct correlation with furthering your reach, impressions, and engagement organically. Even though a single post can include up to 30 hashtags, you don’t want to overdo it. Keep your hashtags relevant to the content by limiting it to 10 or 11 hashtags per post.
Instagram recently introduced a feature that allows users to follow specific hashtags, giving you another way to reach your audience. Creating branded hashtags and asking your followers to follow them is a great way to ensure they see the content you post.
Direct Messaging
Audiences would rather engage with people than brands. That’s why many brands are giving their social profiles a persona of its own and engaging with their followers on a personal level. Direct messaging is a perfect way to accomplish this.
For instance, if you notice a follower likes your listing’s posts and/or tags someone else in the comments, do some research; you might find that the person tagged is the spouse and they are searching for homes. By sending them a direct message rather than just commenting on the post, you open a direct line of communication that can lead to your next client.
Highlight Your Stories
In the past year, Instagram Stories has more than doubled in usage and surpassed its biggest competitor, Snapchat. The rapid growth and success of Stories has pushed Instagram to focus their time and attention on this feature; constantly rolling out new updates which you can leverage to increase your following and engagement.
The most recent update to Stories is the functionality to highlight your posts. This new feature allows you to save and display your Stories on your profile indefinitely. The highlight tool is perfect when you want to showcase a new listing. For instance, do a walkthrough of your listing on Stories, then save it on your profile, so anyone who goes to your profile can view the highlighted Stories until the listing is sold.
Go Live
Another Stories feature that should be part of your strategy is Instagram Live. What better way to engage and be conversational with your followers than going live and boosting your Instagram presence? In addition, your followers will receive a notification (unless they disable that setting) anytime you go live, driving viewers to your live stream.
Instagram Live provides you with an invaluable tool you can use to give tours of your listings and the surrounding community. The best part: you’re not just showing the listing to one person, but to everyone who follows you or happens to come across your video on Instagram.
Visually Appealing
Since the beginning, Instagram stood apart from its competitors in that it was (and still is) a visual channel. Creating a visual (design) strategy for your content will help you stand out in the stream of countless uploads to the newsfeed and will help you post content with consistency.
By using similar colors, filters, and text layovers on all your photos, you will start to create a noticeable theme. Your photos also need to be visually appealing to your audience; remember you are trying to sell your services and listings online. Try to avoid posting on the go and give your photos a professional look and you are sure to grab the attention of your audience.
Following these tips and constantly looking for new, innovative ways to implement Instagram’s features into your social media strategy will have your business right where you want it: in the eyes of future clients. Even with the decline in usage, Facebook is still an advertising powerhouse for Realtors® and should still be used to promote your brand. Let the experts of Homes.com’s Social Fuel create ads and post social content directly on your Facebook page to help you grow your online presence to connect you with buyers and sellers.