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Many bloggers, including myself have been stressing on “Improving Traffic” to your blog by various social media websites we are all aware of already. Once we publish our post, we make it a point to share it on all major social profiles like Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, StumbleUpon, Google+ and maybe a few more if you are really into social marketing.
Just today, I read an article on how to get traffic from Instagram for a blog and I was quite astonished at how effective it can be.
I have always know Instagram for sharing pictures and videos, and I do have a personal Instagram profile where I share my pics and family events. This acts as a good media for my friends and family back in India to know whats happening in my life here.
A Picture Says More Than a Paragraph
I have always been a visual person and I can comprehend a scenario more easily when represented by a picture than a lengthy paragraph.
I think this is also the reason why Infographics have increased so much among bloggers nowadays that everyone has one created for their products or services. I am yet to explore into that, so more later 🙂
How To Setup Instagram
So having been quite intrigued by how I can get the best out of another social media profile, I started out exploring. And found it quite easy and straightforward.
However, I did find one glitch if you use Instagram on Windows, and try to sign up for a new account, whatever username you provide, it gives an error and never creates it for you, so you are better off doing it from your smartphone.
Profile Pic: Make sure you use an eye-catching picture for your profile. Instagram is all about pictures and how you present yourself.
Username: Select a username that represents your blog or your service.
Website: Of course add your blog URL or your website URL
Bio: Do not add lengthy paragraph about yourself, leave it to your blog “About Me” section. Here, be straight forward and to the point. You want others to know what you are are really about in as little words as possible.
Link Instagram to Your Phone Contacts & Facebook
Make sure that you link your Instagram profile to your contacts on your phone. This will allow the app to suggest your existing contacts who are already on Instagram and who might be interested in reading what you may share.
The same applies to Facebook as well, make sure you link to your blog FB Profile so that you can easily follow other bloggers whom you already know on FB. This allows you to build your followers and thus give a better exposure to what you are about to share.
Note: I personally prefer NOT to make my blog Instagram profile as ‘Private Account’. By not marking it as private, I allow other users to follow me without me having to approve them. Of course you can always remove SPAM accounts later.
This was my first challenge, none of our “share services” like AddThis or ShareThis have Instagram option available on them.
So how am I supposed to share posts here?
Yes, it is a little bit of a manual effort, but I feel there is plenty to gain. So lets see what it takes.
Featured Image: First get the featured image for your blog post onto your smartphone camera library. You can do this by visiting your post and downloading it or you can place them on a cloud folder that you can access on your phone.
Make sure the image is of a good resolution since you are posting it onto Instagram where your pictures draw other users to see what you have to say.
Content: Instagram allows unlimited characters in your post, but try to keep it short, not the entire post, but I would suggest 50% of your post content. I just copy the content from my blog and paste it onto Instagram. A few edits might be required, but that doesn’t take much time.
Links: Instagram does not allow hyperlinks 🙁 I make it a point to add the URL to my post in the content. Interested users tend to copy and paste it in their browsers. To make this happen, you need to catch their attention with intelligent shares and pictures.
Hashtags: Use a lot of hashtags for you post. As a practice, I think it is better to add hashtags as a comment after sharing your content. This will allow your post to be clean and at the same time allow users to look you up using hashtags. These help in getting users who are searching for related content and your post will show up if you are used the right hashtag.
It is important for you to follow other similar users as with any other social media profile. It allows them to follow you back and see what you have to share. If a user likes your post and follows you, make sure you follow back unless it is a SPAM account. You can easily tell the difference I am sure.
Instagram is all about follows and likes and comments. Make sure you use proper judgement to do all these and stay engaged in the community. Make sure you re-use your hashtags to build strong followers and user base.
Live on Instagram
I am sure many of you are heavily using YouTube for your videos and sharing them on your blogs. Facebook Live is also making a mark among the video-bloggers by allowing them to publish instant live videos.
Instagram has a similar feature called ‘Instagram Live‘ and am sure a lot of you bloggers would want to explore this feature. I am not much into video-blogging and I will leave it at this. Would however love to hear from you if you already use the Live option.
If you are not sure of what hashtags will allow your post the maximum exposure, I have compiled a list of the most popular ones ever used today. This should give you a pretty good picture as to which ones are relevant to your post and which ones you would want to use. Click Here to see the Top 100 hashtags with the most posts assigned to them.
When I searched for “Blogger” keyword I got this result, so you may want to tag your posts with a few of these hashtags if you want to get noticed out there.
The below graph clearly shows how bloggers have started using Instagram posts with the hashtag #blogger. There is a constant upward trend in the number of posts from Jun of 2016 to Feb 2017.
Over To You
I know many of you are already using Instagram to promote your posts and market your services. I would like to hear from you what if anything differently that you are following as a good practice. Do you see a sudden change in your blog audience when you share your posts on Instagram? I would like to hear from you since even I am new to this social media. I created my profile today and shared a few of my posts. As you can see below I got quite a good number of follows and likes on the very first day. You can find me by the user name – @dailymcoffee and follow me.