Get the most out of Instagram – How?

Get the most out of Instagram - How?

Instagram can be a confusing and overwhelming beast. It has its own constantly changing algorithm and culture that separates it from any other social media. Getting Instagram to work for you takes time, effort, insight, and unfortunately: intuition. What do you need to get the most out of Instagram?

Being an Instagram pro requires knowledge of 3 things: its culture, its algorithm, and your own analytics of those 2 things. Understanding the culture and the algorithm don’t do you much good if that knowledge is disconnected from your own follower and user data.

Instagram Culture

The biggest thing to remember is that Instagram is not Facebook. Facebook is for information, Instagram is for connections. And Instagram’s user base is generally younger than its big brother Facebook. More than 50% of Instagram users are between 18-35, while more than 60% of Facebook’s user are over 35. Therefore, these users have grown up with social media, including Instagram, and have shaped its function and culture. (For example, by the time my friends and I were old enough to have social media, Facebook was already too big and felt like something elusively for our parents. For a long time, Instagram was the only social media any of us had.)

Although Instagram is great for showing off products, the thing it is best at is highlighting your brand’s culture and personality. It is not enough anymore to have a good product available anymore, your consumers need to feel connected to your brand. 56% of Gen Z consumers say that having shared passions and perspectives is a major factor when it comes to their engagement with a brand.

$ things to remember about Instagram's Culture

And 49% of young consumers say they will evangelize a brand they feel represents their values, likes, and personality.

Don’t be afraid of incorporating causes you care about into your brands personality! 72% of consumers want the brands they care about to be positive contributors to society. We’ve seen in recent years that many brands (especially smaller companies) connect their core brand to a charity or cause they care about. Younger consumers are 69% more likely to buy from a brand that contributes to a cause.

The Algorithm

According to Instagram, they decide to show your content based on 6 factors:

#1: Interest

#2: Relationship 

#3: Timeliness

#4: Frequency

#5: Following

#6: Usage

The first three are somewhat self-explanatory. Instagram shows you things based on what you’ve liked in the past. They highlight posts from people they’ve decided are close to you: people whose content you most engage with, the people who tag you, the people you DM etc. Instagram also cares about when you post. Keeping track of your analytics can give you a good idea about when the best times to post for you are.

#4 Frequency
Instagram Algorithm - Cat scrolling through Instagram

Frequency isn’t about how often you post but instead about how often interact with the app. The more often you check your Instagram feed the more likely your feed will be chronological because they are always trying to show you the newest content available. This is helpful to understand what type of Instagram users your followers are. If they don’t check the app that often, then it will be harder to have your posts seen. Building up the other 5 components to the algorithm will be all the more important.

#5 Following

Instagram assigns value to follower counts in a couple different ways. First, is simple: the more followers you have the more likely your posts will be highlighted in your follower’s feeds. However, they also look at your follower’s engagement levels. If you have a lot of ghost followers that don’t interact with you, then they could actually be hurting you. Another thing to consider, the more people your followers follow the more competition for space in their feed. Do your followers follow a lot of people? Understanding that can help you decide if you need to adjust where you focus your efforts.

#6 Usage

This is how Instagram qualifies the amount of time spent on the app. The more time spent on the app, the deeper into its catalogs they have to pull from to show content. You can use this to your advantage by using hashtags or developing content that matches with the interests of Instagram’s heavy users.

How do you get the most out of Instagram?

 
 

What Do You Need to Create a Successful Podcast?

Successful Podcast Featured

Nearly 51% of adult Americans listen to podcasts!  

Here’s the steps you need to create your own successful podcast!

Step One: Get Over Your Fear!

The first step to success is to just start! There’s a lot of fears people have about starting a podcast.

“My voice sounds weird.”

“I don’t have enough technical know-how.”

“The equipment is expensive.”

“A podcast is time consuming.”

Chances are that once you get started, those fears will dissipate!

Step Two: What Do Want To Say?

One of the most important things about starting a new venture, like podcasting, is to have a mission. For example, our podcast, BeGrowthDriven, was started because our mission as a company is to help business grow. We wanted to connect like-minded business and entrepreneurs to share advice and recourses. That goal informs all the decisions we make about the podcast.  

How to you want to help your audience or customers? What is the goal of your business? You can expand on that to create your podcast’s mission.

From our BeGrowthDriven Podcast, Episode #14: “the Fear of Podcasts”
There are many inexpensive tools available.

Step Three: Record Your First Episode

You don’t need expensive equipment to get started! (Though podcast mics start at like, $30 on Amazon.) Here’s what tools we have found to be helpful.

Part of recording your episode is the editing and mixing side of things. It’s totally up to you how much editing you want to do! It all depends on what you want the feel of your podcast to be.

Step Four: Publish Your Podcast

There are many directories to publish podcasts on. That big three are iTunes, Spotify, and Google Podcasts.

Doing well on iTunes/Apple Music is the goal. Around 70% of all podcast listens and downloads happen through Apple. It can be trickery to get monetarization on Apple than on Spotify or Google. So, having your podcast available on as many platforms as possible is good idea!

It’s also a good idea to publish three to five episodes at launch to give your new listeners something to listen to.

Step Five: Promote, Promote, Promote

Podcasting has been around for a long time so there are many recourses and tools available for promoting (or learning how to promote) your podcast. Here’s some tips and tricks

  1. Tap into your guest’s audience

Chances are if they are a good fit to be a guest on your podcast, there audience could also benefit form your content. Make it easy for your guest to share out pull quotes, images, and links from their episode.

A BeGrowthDriven promotion on Instagram
  1. Use social media.

This is kinda a no brainer. Podcasts can be slip into so many different types of content that is easy to post them across many different platforms. Pull quotes do great on Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn. Links can be shared on twitter and Facebook. Twitter also has a great SoundCloud integration you can use.

Social media can be used to promote the episode ahead of time as well as sharing past highlights. Social media also is great way to connect with fans and listeners one personal level and add another channel for them to interact with you.  

Step Six: Repurpose Content

Podcast content can be repurposed into many other different types of content. We’ve already talked about pull quotes and highlight clips, there’s way more things you can do. For one thing, it’s common place to film the recording of the podcast. That video can be put on YouTube. And video highlights can be put on social media. Putting the video on YouTube also gives you some accessibility features such as closed captioning. Since YouTube is owned by Google, videos on YouTube boost your overall brand SEO which as far-reaching benefits.

Another helpful way to repurpose podcast content is to have the podcast transcribed. If you don’t have time to do that yourself, (understandable: it’s time consuming) companies like Rev.com or Fiverr offer cheap transcription services. Once your podcast is transcribed, it can be used as blog content to make it accessible on another channel and boost SEO.  

Step Seven: Get Featured On Other Podcasts!

A great way to promote your podcasts and reach new audiences is to be a guest on other podcasts! The podcast community is well connected and worth tapping into.

Do you have a podcast? We want to hear all about it!


Data & The Instagram Algorithm

The Instagram algorithm is the bane of some people’s existence. And yes, it is confusing since they moved from a chronological feed. It’s important to know how to best leverage the Instagram algorithm to make sure your content is being seen!

Main instagram feed

According to Instagram, they decide to show your content based on 6 factors:

#1: Interest

#2: Relationship 

#3: Timeliness

#4: Frequency

#5: Following

#6: Usage

The first three are somewhat self-explanatory. Instagram shows you things based on what you’ve liked in the past. They highlight posts from people they’ve decided are close to you: people whose content you most engage with, the people who tag you, the people you DM etc. Instagram also cares about when you post. Keeping track of your analytics can give you a good idea about when the best times to post for you are.

Likes gif

#4 Frequency isn’t about how often you post but instead about how often interact with the app. The more often you check your Instagram feed the more likely your feed will be chronological because they are always trying to show you the newest content available. This is helpful to understand what type of Instagram users your followers are. If they don’t check the app that often, then it will be harder to have your posts seen. Building up the other 5 components to the algorithm will be all the more important.

#5 Following

Instagram assigns value to follower counts in a couple different ways. First, is simple: the more followers you have the more likely your posts will be highlighted in your follower’s feeds. However, they also look at your follower’s engagement levels. If you have a lot of ghost followers that don’t interact with you, then they could actually be hurting you. Another thing to consider, the more people your followers follow the more competition for space in their feed. Do your followers follow a lot of people? Understanding that can help you decide if you need to adjust where you focus your efforts.

Instagram scrolling
#6 Usage

This is how Instagram qualifies the amount of time spent on the app. The more time spent on the app, the deeper into its catalogs they have to pull from to show content. You can use this to your advantage by using hashtags or developing content that matches with the interests of Instagram’s heavy users.

What ways do you try to leverage the Instagram algorithm to work for you?