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Instagram in 2019 is Confusing, Here's my Best Tips & Tricks

The other morning I sat down and began going through my blog archives, mostly out of curiosity about what I had written several years ago, but also to see if there were any posts I could revamp and relaunch here in 2019. I was shocked when I found out that one of my most popular posts here on Northern Prepster was a post I shared back in 2017 where I shared my tips & tricks for growing your Instagram (click HERE to read the post!)

It's no secret that Instagram has changed a lot over the two years since that post was written and the same things we did to increase engagement and grow our social media presence back then doesn't really work today. For example, Instagram stories are HUGE nowadays and with the Instagram algorithm constantly changing, consistency is more important than ever.

I am far from figuring out how to work the current Instagram algorithm (if anyone has, kudos to you) but I have found ways to keep my engagement up and make the most of my account. I've compiled a list of 11 of my best tips & tricks to get the most out of your Instagram account.


This should be a given but if you want to grow on Instagram, you have to work towards consistently be putting out new content. These last few months I struggled to put new content out regularly because I was so busy with school and I saw a HUGE drop in my engagement. Now that I'm home for the summer and posting more often, I'm seeing my engagement climb back to where it used to be when I posted every day. I aim to post at least one photo per day and try to share at least 2-3 things on my story and have found that this seems to be the perfect amount of exposure each day for me.


Whenever a post I'm sharing has an applicable question that I can ask my followers, I ALWAYS ask them! This encourages them to engage with the post and it shows that you're interested in what they have to say. Especially with stories, simply posting that little question box and having people submit questions is a great way to interact with your audience. I started doing Monday Night Nine a couple of months ago and I've noticed a higher follower retention rate since I started engaging and answering questions, that they asked, consistently every week.


Instagram is a social media platform. The media part is easy, just share your favorite photos. Now the social aspect of it, this is the part that requires a little bit of time and effort. I spend 15 minutes every morning going through my feed and liking and commenting on posts. I'm picky about my comments though, I don't leave a comment just to leave a comment, I leave a comment when I have something genuine to say.

I've found that comments that are more personalized and are obvious that you really mean what you're typing, get more interaction and can oftentimes lead to them reciprocating the engagement. The same goes for replying to comments, the more personal the reply, the more likely they are to stick around because it shows that you actually took a minute to read their comment and think of a thoughtful response. I do my best to reply to every comment I get because I want people to make sure that I see the effort they're putting in and that I appreciate their support.


This is something that I just recently discovered myself. When you post multiple photos that allow people to swipe through them, Instagram will show the first photo on people's feeds first, and then the second time around, Instagram will show the second photo. By posting multiple photos, you're getting essentially double the exposure, on the same post!


This should go without saying but if you want to attract an audience that is genuinely interested in what you share, you need to be true to yourself. I've found that my posts that perform the best are the ones where I ramble on about my day and the picture is more of a candid photo (a real candid, not the staged candids that we're all probably guilty of taking, myself included) that showcases my personality.


If you're posting a photo and can tag the brand or company of the shirt or shoes you're wearing, tag them! This increases your chance that they'll see your post, engage with it, and potentially share it on their page. I'm a blogger, I know that LikeToKnowIt is big nowadays and I'm not saying don't use this, I'm just saying that maybe in addition to tagging LikeToKnowIt, tag those brands, too.


If your account is set up as a business account, you have the ability to see a bunch of analytics about your account. I use my analytics because it helps me gauge the best time to post each day. For maximum engagement, you want to post when the majority of your followers are scrolling through their feeds, this tool is a great way to pinpoint your best posting times.


I always make sure to go through my feed and engage with a lot of my followers and those I'm following prior to posting a photo, as well as after I post. This is an easy way to show that you're online and when people check to read the comment you left on their post, they're more likely to notice your new post, too.


Thanks to Instagram's confusing algorithm, your post may not show up on the feeds of all of your followers. Every time I post a new photo, I make sure to share it on my story and put a "tap here" gif on top of the photo so in case my photo didn't show up in their feed but they did view my story, all they have to do is tap on the photo and it will take them directly to my post.


The way you edit your photos is kind of like the branding of your page. You want your followers to be able to recognize one of your photos when they see it so having a cohesive theme is an easy way to do this. I also know that I'm more likely to follow an account if their page looks put together and I can tell they spend time thinking about the overall look of their page. It's also kind of fun to play around with editing and figure out what you like!


Your bio is the first thing people look at when they click on your profile. If you're an influencer, blogger, or business, I highly recommended having your e-mail in your bio. A decent bit of the companies I've partnered with have found me via Instagram and because I have my email in my bio, they can quickly figure out how to contact me. Your bio is also your place to quickly tell people who you are & what your page is all about, spend some time thinking about what you want people to know about your page, that fits into 150 characters or less.


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