An Instagram post's success is due to more than just the image you use, you need to consider a range of other factors to get your posts performing well
As a social media manager or digital marketing specialist, you want to be able to create the best Instagram post possible in order to entice your audience to buy from you and choose your brand over the competition.
You need to look at all the elements and Instagram features that an audience responds best to.
That’s exactly what a new study about Instagram content engagement set up to do. During this extensive study, over 7.4 million posts on Instagram were stripped apart and analyzed element by element, with the sole goal being to find the recipe for creating successful and engaging posts on this platform.
Let’s discover what makes the audience tick and how to create engaging Instagram content that truly converts.
1. Leverage the power of carousels
There is a whole debate as to which type of Instagram post works best. While some have said that images are the best, others believe that videos convert better. However, according to the data, carousel posts are actually getting the highest number of likes and comments on this platform. Carousels beat images and videos across all Instagram accounts, starting from accounts with less than 5,000 followers to accounts with over 100,000 followers.
In the case of large Instagram accounts, the median number of likes per post exceeded 5,670 for carousels and only 5,022 for videos and a low 4,172 for images. Thus, we recommend you leverage the power of carousels and use more of them in your posts.
2. Choose the right Instagram filters
In order to create a cohesive aspect of your Instagram page, it is imperative to use the right filters or themes. While you should use carousels in your posts, it is a must to ensure that your page uses the correct theme, so that people who land on your page will be enticed to find out more about you and connect with your company.
An Instagram theme is like a portfolio of images, videos and carousels, where your prospects can discover more about you. Having a correct theme in place and choosing the right filters can allow you to promote a unitary brand image to your prospects and increase the chances of conversion.
3. Choose the type of message most suited for Instagram
When creating Instagram posts, it is imperative to ensure that you are using the right type of message for your campaign. For example, if you want to organize an event, you need to create a message that spikes people’s interest. You might also want to drive people to your Facebook event page, which is much better than what Instagram has to offer in terms of event creation.
If you want to break new ground in your niche, you'll want to capitalize on the benefits offered by giveaways. As a matter of fact, the above-mentioned study shows that events, giveaways, contests, and DIYs work much better than regular messages. Out of all of these, customers appreciate giveaways the most, because they represent signs of appreciation from the brand.
The best engagement rates are for giveaways since these work extremely well for most people. However, we recommend that you to combine the types of messages you can use in posts in order to ensure that you stay relevant to what your target audience wants.
For example, if you have a lot of techies’ clients, offering them weekly DIY posts or tutorials is a great way to make them fall in love with your brand. On the other side, if you have a lot of avid shoppers, offering them giveaways, promotions or contests with real prizes can help you stay ahead of the competition and become the prime choice of your clients.
4. Set limits to your caption length
Again, the study revealed that the perfect captions are those of under ten words. More than that and you’re ruining your engagement rate, despite the temptation of writing something more elaborate. Of course, these ten words do not include hashtags.
Moreover, even if most brands include questions in the caption, that does not automatically translate into a higher engagement rate, as this doesn’t seem to entice your audience into interacting more with your posts.
In order to maximize your engagement rate, which can rise up to 3.13% if you use less than ten words, be extremely careful at the words you choose. It’s not imperative to use questions in the captions, but it’s important to be smart and entice your viewers into reading the post and acting on it.
5. Include emojis in your posts
Another excellent way to boost your Instagram engagement rate is to make sure you include emojis in your Instagram posts. The data clearly shows that emojis by themselves increase the engagement rate by up to 1.31%.
For example, if you add emojis in the caption of an image post, you get to enjoy an increase in engagement from 2.15% to 2.72%. In the case of videos, it goes up wildly from 1.88% to 3.20%. For carousels, the engagement grows by a slim margin of 0.54%, from 2.52% to 3.06%.
So how many emojis should you include in your post? The more the merrier! The best performing posts have proven to be the ones with between 20 and 25 emojis in total. You should use around 20 emojis in total, including a few in the caption. Using them allows you to showcase your personality and make your posts more human.
The heart-eyes emojis is by far the most popular on Instagram, followed by the heart, sparkles, and camera with flash. In case you need some inspiration in choosing the right type of emoji for your post, here are the top 10 best emojis to use in 2019:
6. Capitalize on the power of hashtags
When it comes to Instagram hashtags, the general rule is that less is more. The fewer hashtags you use, the more engaging your posts will be. You should use between two and eight hashtags in the caption and another four or five in the first comment.
As opposed to emojis, when it comes to hashtags, it’s best to keep it simple and use a few relevant hashtags for your brand and your audience.
7. Asking questions is not relevant anymore
You may be inclined to think that asking questions in your posts encourages the audience to answer, but that is not the case.
Another interesting aspect of Instagram content is that asking questions does not necessarily increase the engagement rate. On the contrary, the engagement rates are somewhat lower in the posts that include questions than the rest: 0.19% lower for carousel posts that include questions in the caption and 0.25% lower for video posts.
8. Consulting analytics to get inspired from old posts
Ultimately, in order to write the best and most engaging Instagram post, you need to look in the past. Study your analytics and try to determine which of your posts outperformed the others. This way, you’ll be able to better understand what your audience is expected from you.
Instagram analytics is key to your success. Inside the old analytics on Instagram, you can gain access to information like follower count, profile views, and website CTR. You can also determine the results of your stories by looking at reach, impressions, replies, next story, and live viewers.
You can easily study your content performance and find out what is the best strategy you can use to grow your business. This way, you can make the most out of this advanced social network.
Let’s sum up
Writing the best Instagram post is not as complicated as some marketers try to make us believe. All you need to do is to ensure that you follow the guidelines in the Socialinsider study and create high-quality, enticing content that captures the interest of your prospects and makes them stay engaged with you.
Start using more carousels, have a consistent theme for your page, use the right hashtags, leverage the power of emojis, choose the right type of message you want to share with your audience, do a lot of split testing and capitalize on the benefits offered by Instagram Analytics.