Long gone are the days when IG was just a picture editing and posting platform without ads and sponsored messages. It’s now the land of ‘influencers’ and brands competing for your attention through both ephemeral content and long-term strategies.
SEO content writing services are often seen in the light of their website effectiveness but when it comes to social media, is there a right way to optimize your channels and what would that look like? Jump on board and let’s find out!
A Marketer’s Best Friend
Or why you should turn IG into an asset
Instagram is now seen as a crucial engagement tool used by marketers, which has given birth to social media optimization, actually. It presents them with a relatively cost-effective field for experimentation.
There are many strategies for success to try out: post at a certain time of the day, try curating viral content from other users, post single images vs. carousels (when you stack multiple images together).
Measuring the effectiveness of all these, the level of interaction and reach can be tricky. But they are a good way to start getting an insight into what your customers like. However, I think there’s a bigger benefit of social media optimization:
The co-creation aspect of the content.
If this was a regular marketing channel you’d just post out your ad or send out a message. And then, you’d wait. But the interactiveness of social media gives you the chance of receiving instant feedback. Which, in turn, helps you readjust and build the brand your customers want faster.
3 Ways to Optimize Your Instagram
A few practical tips to begin with
#1. Let’s begin with the ‘bio’ – setting up the voice of your brand
Maybe your description doesn’t have to be optimized with keywords or hit a specific word count as an SEO-friendly content creation rules suggest, but it has to be meaningful, catchy and in a way, it should give a reason for the visitor to stay and scroll down your feed.
That’s your first win. In social media content, the word ephemeral spins around a lot, coupled with the ever-so-popular ‘short attention span’. This means one thing only, everything has to be crafted and curated to win.
Look at how the big fish do it:
Minimal, straight to the point, grasped almost intuitively.
Or you can go about it in a different way:
Quite different, centered around being helpful and sparking engagement. Still good.
#2. Photo descriptions – the longer, the better
I know, so far I’ve been playing the ‘be short and concise’ song on repeat. Guess what, not when it comes to your Instagram photo descriptions. To reference Neil Patel, the more thorough your photo description is, the more people will be able to find your images. Yet again, we circle back to content creation. Much like with SEO, here you need a relevant text that will be location-specific in most cases, so take advantage of that.
In this case, using SEO content writing tools and traditional methods of finding keywords might not help. Neither will apps for identifying trending hashtags.
Unless your writers and image curators know how to make it all work together, of course.
#3. Hashtags, #makethemrelevant
IG is a platform dedicated to image content mostly, where, inevitably, words still matter. Hashtags are probably one of the most abused attention-gaining strategies. It sometimes hurts to go through the messy abundance of random words that come with a photo.
The rule of thumb here is “if you don’t need them, don’t put them”.
It’s not a must-have addition for each photo you publish. However, there is a ‘but’ here. If you see the opportunity to start a viral hashtag, be it a contest, a game, or just of people wearing your products for example, definitely take it. Even from an SEO standpoint, if there are some keywords or phrases that are associated with your brand, do use them as hashtags whenever possible. Refer to Nike’s #justdoit above.
Does Location Matter?
The power of Instagram’s geotag
Part of what makes SEO knowledge applicable to social media platforms, such as Instagram, is location-specific content. Creating your content with a place in mind will help you shrink the circle you are targeting, but also make it more effective. After all, the rule of thumb is that you can’t target everybody.
Segmenting by location is a great way to reach the audience you want to attract.
You can even use tools to determine what hashtags are popular in your area and apply this knowledge in your photo descriptions for even better results and more visibility.
IG & SEO: A Friendship to Last
I believe that social media optimization will gain even more attention and importance as businesses continue to tap into it more and more. Which means that if your brand wants to stay relevant and competitive, it will need to start identifying ways to use Instagram to its advantage. Hopefully, the ways I shared with you here will be a good start for that if you are at the beginning of that journey.
Have you experimented with any other techniques for Instagram optimization? Share your experience with us below, let’s learn from each other!