What’s up with Instagram’s algorithm? My account doesn’t seem to be growing? I don’t get any engagement on my photos? I feel like I put all this time and effort into my account with no results. 

I hear these types of comments from followers all the time, and I get it. It can be very frustrating when you feel like you aren’t getting results that you feel you deserve, and Instagram is definitely not a platform that will provide results overnight. It takes a lot of time and effort to grow an engaging and successful profile. 

So what are the biggest mistakes that business owners are making on Instagram and how can we avoid them? Well in this article, I am going to share the 6 biggest mistakes that a lot of people are making, so you can make sure to avoid them. 

Before we get started to make sure to Free Instagram Bundle Below. This will give you all the resources needed to help you grow your account. 

You’re making a bad first impression

Just like in real life, a first impression is rather important. A user typically decides whether or not they want to follow your account within a few moments of viewing your profile.

The first things someone seems on your profile is your name, profile picture, and bio description. All of those elements are right at the top of the page. If there’s something off about any of them, a viewer will notice it right away. Your name should be identifiable. The viewer should be absolutely certain they are looking at the correct account for your brand.

Next, your profile picture should be clear and appealing. Profile pictures are circular, so keep that in mind when choosing a photo. People connect to faces so having a clear flattering image of a person might be the right choice here depending on your brand.

Lastly, your bio should be well-written, informative, and intriguing. Don’t settle for a dull, boring description. To learn more about creating the perfect bio make sure you check out this article here.

You aren’t using all of Instagram’s Features

Using Instagram effectively means taking advantage of all the tools the platform has to offer. Every photo should have a caption, a location marker, and applicable hashtags.

Your followers need to understand what your posting and how it relates to your products and services. This doesn’t mean that you are selling in every post, it means that your content is in context with your brand. You should also vary your media formats to keep things interesting and make your content more dynamic and engaging. So use all the different mediums that Instagram allows like Boomerang Videos, GIFS, and images.

If you’re not using Instagram Stories, you’re missing out. These are perfect for sharing behind the scenes info and encouraging your followers to check out your latest posts or offers. You can also use Instagram Lives to make announcements and hold Q&A sessions with your audience. In 2020, we have seen a big rise in Instagram Stories and their effectiveness in bringing in new followers and eyeballs to your profile. To learn more about using Instagram Stories, make sure you check out this article here.

You’re Inconsistent and all over the Place

So what does this mean, well, Instagram isn’t just about the value of each individual post. You need to be conscious of the overall appearance of your feed. Be aware of how each post flows into the next. If your feed seems to jump around too much, without any sense of coherence, then it might turn away viewers.

Also, not everything makes great Instagram content. So don’t just post anything that happens to be in your phone’s camera roll. 
It’s a matter of quality over quantity. Make sure your photos and videos are high resolution, clear and well-composed. If you are struggling to take photos of yourself there are quite a few great stock photography sites available like Unsplash.

You could be Promoting yourself too Much

Marketing on Instagram is all about building relationships. While you can post content promoting your products and services, the majority of your posts should be personal and entertaining. Relating back to your products and services in a way that isn’t “salesy”, you want to show your followers who you are and why they should trust you.

Let’s say you operate a bakery, if you post a photo of your favorite dessert on the menu and ask your followers to share their favorites, at least a few of your customers are likely to respond. However, if you post that same photo and tell followers that the dessert is on sale that week, your followers might not have the same incentive to reply. And lower engagement leads to decreased visibility. So make sure you always have a call to action at the end of every post to increase engagement. 

Excessive self-promotion causes other problems with Instagram’s algorithm as well. Instagram wants to keep people on the platform and penalizes content that attempts to lure users to other websites. Captions including trigger words like blog, workshop, free download, or “discount” signal that you’re trying to sell something without paying for advertising. Phrases like “buy my new book” or “tickets on sale now”, will temporarily decrease your reach, so keep this in mind and use them sparingly.

You might be using the wrong Hashtags

Hashtags link your photos to communities, topics, and keywords Instagram users follow. However, if you only use the most popular hashtags, the sheer volume of content will bury your own. Try to use hashtags that have an established following, but aren’t overly saturated.

Also, you want to avoid using the same hashtags on every post. Instead, have different sets of hashtags saved for different types of content and switch out at least three or four of those tags every time. In addition to building a collection of hashtags, make sure you are monitoring trends in your niche to keep your content fresh. To learn more about creating hashtags, check out this article here. 

Not Enough Engagement

Like I said before, Instagram is a ton of work. You want to make sure you are engaging with your followers on a daily basis. When followers comment on your posts, show them some love in return by responding as soon as possible.  By doing this you demonstrate that you care what your customers have to say and it shows Instagram that you are an active and relevant account.

Also, when commenting make sure you reply with a meaningful rely that furthers the conversation. Engaging with followers on your own account isn’t enough. To truly be successful, you need to build relationships with other accounts.

So there you have it, the 6 mistakes business owners make when trying to grow on Instagram. Now that you know what the mistakes are, you can take time to correct any things that may need some work in your own strategy.