We’ve all heard of the “Instagram algorithm” but what’s the secret to getting your content seen?
Instagram has come a long way from chronological posts and friend-only feeds. And as the platform evolved, so has the algorithm. Understanding how to align your social strategy with the recent changes is crucial to growing your social media presence.
In order to understand how to beat the algorithm, it’s important to first understand how it works.
How does the Instagram algorithm work?
Instagram uses a number of different signals to determine what shows up in feed. The platform wants to show content that’s relevant so these signals give Instagram intel to what you might be interested in. The signals include:
- Information about the post: Are other users finding the post interesting? How many likes, comments, and saves does it have? Is there a location tagged? What category does the post fall under?
- Information about the poster: Do you follow them? Do you have a mutual follower? How often do people engage with their content?
- Your activity: What type of content do you interact with the most? Do you visit the Reel feed? Do you watch stories? How likely are you to engage with a story?
The Instagram algorithm is always changing, but heading into 2023 the key to success is engagement. That means likes, comments, shares, and profile activity are crucial to growing your presence. Instagram itself said, “The more likely you are to take an action, and the more heavily we weigh that action, the higher up you’ll see the post.”
If you want to make Instagram work for you, read on to learn the 5 steps to “hacking” the algorithm with engagement:
Video content has become one of the most popular features on social media. In fact, Meta announced that Reels make up 20% of the time that users spend on Instagram. And with a permanent Reel feed in the app – they’re here to stay.
Short-form videos work for one simple reason – they get users to stop scrolling. Reels allow for loops giving you more views and in return driving up your engagement. Since the algorithm ranks reels based on entertainment value, short, engaging reels tend to perform best. Not only that but Reels get placed in both the follower feed and Explore feed – giving you twice as much visibility.
When you post consistently, it signals to the algorithm that your content is worth prioritizing. However, it’s important to add value to your follower’s feed – so no need to overdo it. The key is to post high-quality content that not only attracts new followers but gives your current audience a reason to stay. The more content you produce, the more opportunity to expand your reach and increase your engagement rate.
Finding the right posting cadence will take some time, so don’t be afraid to experiment. As a rule of thumb, we recommend posting meaningful content 2-3 times a week.
Create Conversation in the Comments
Interactions are a key component of engagement and a strong ranking factor in the algorithm. Likes, comments, and shares go a long way in driving overall engagement to boost the algorithm. Writing a caption that encourages a response is a full-proof way to boost interactions. Encourage your followers to drop an emoji, tag a friend or share their thoughts in the comment section.
Drive Action on Stories
Beyond in-feed posts, stories provide built-in opportunities to create even more engagement. We love the sticker tools that allow you to invoke action right in a story. While there are lots of stickers to choose from, polls, question boxes and emoji sliders are some of the best at increasing engagement. The more interactions you get – the more the algorithm will continue to show your content.
Use Relevant Hashtags
When it comes to hashtags, it’s all about quality over quantity. Hashtags work for two reasons – expanding reach and categorizing your posts. Hashtags are searchable meaning users interested in the topics you’re promoting can easily find your profile. But they can also help crack the algorithm. If Instagram can understand what your post is about, they’re more likely to share it with people interested in that topic. All to say, it’s important that the tags you’re choosing are relevant.
Love it or hate it – social media algorithms are here to stay. Understanding how to crack the code is an important step to your social media strategy in 2023. If you’re looking to grow your social media presence in 2023, reach out to TribalVision!