Novice to Pro Series - Part 2
Understanding Engagement

Engagement – Engagement is the name of the game on social media – it’s even more important than the amount of followers you have

 

Breakthrough Digital

By Bradley Roth

Thanks for checking out part 2 of our Instagram Novice to Pro Series. (If you missed part 1, you can find it HERE)

 

You probably hear the term “engagement” all the time in when it comes to social media. (No, we’re not talking about your friends who just posted their proposal pics online.) Most people know that it has something to do with how many likes you get, but that’s usually about it.  We know from part 1 that engagement is super important when it comes to how Instagram’s algorithm works. It’s ALL centered around engagement. So what is engagement? Engagement is basically any way that someone can interact with and/or show interest in your content. Every platform has slightly different ways that people engage and pages engage with one another. We’re of course going to talk specifically about Instagram but keep in mind some of these principles can carry over to Facebook in particular. 

Engagement is basically any way that someone can interact with and/or show interest in your content. 

There are 5 main ways that people engage with one another on Instagram. Following a page is typically a pre-requisite to most engagement, so we’re going to leave that out of our 5 right now. Beyond getting new followers these are the 5 main types of engagement on Instagram. The obvious

 

  1. Views – Views are a form of engagement that apply to video posts as well as Instagram stories. A “view” on a video is counted every time someone watches for more than 3 seconds. The amount of views a video post has is public info, but the number of story views are only visible to the owner of the profile that posted.
  2. Likes – When we hear the word “engagement” this is the first thing that comes to mind. There are 3 different things that can be liked on Instagram
    • Photos/Videos – When someone likes your photo or video post they are saying “I like this content. Show me more like this”
    • Comments – If someone comments on a post of yours, you can like their comment. This shows that you appreciate their comment, making them more likely to engage with your posts again in the future
    • Direct Messages – You can like someone’s direct message to show that you liked what they sent and vice versa 
  3. Comments – Comments on posts counts a LOT towards those all-important engagement metrics that Instagram takes into account when determining post reach. The longer or more specific the comments are the better, as generic 1-2 word comments can sometimes look spammy or fake to Instagram. Instagram views comments as far more valuable than likes, so each time you post, think about how you can encourage viewers to comment on it. And better yet, if someone tags someone else in the comments, that counts even more! – Because if people want to show your content to their friends, it must be high quality. (Stayed tuned for more on how to do this in a later lesson) Also, if you want to help somebody increase their overall engagement and reach, leave them a nice, thoughtful comment or tag someone in the comments. They’ll also be more likely to do the same for you next time.
  4. Direct Messages – Direct messaging is a more personal way for 2 users to interact on Instagram. Direct messages can be sent directly to another user through their profile or through stories. Getting messages based off of stories almost counts like a comment on the post and will help boost reach of the story.
  5. Post Saves – Instagram’s new “save” feature lets you save your favorite posts from other profiles. This is like saying “I like this post so much I’m gonna save it for later.” Currently, Instagram doesn’t tell you when someone saves your post.

Instagram views comments as far more valuable than likes, so each time you post, think about how you can encourage viewers to comment on it.” 

Now that you have an understanding of different ways to give/get engagement, you’ll want to read the next post (Part 3) where I show you 5 things you do NOT want to do on Instagram that could crush your engagement levels. See you in the next one where we’ll go over 5 common Instagram mistakes that you do NOT want to do

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