In “3 Instagram tips for auto shops,” we detailed how to attract followers to your company’s Instagram account and strengthen audience engagement by doing the following:
- Offering day-in-the-life snapshots to provide a unique view of the business
- Updating regularly – but taking care not to go overboard, a practice otherwise known as “Instaspamming”
- Tagging and geotagging posts to reach users all around the globe, as well as those right in your neighborhood
Adhering to the three behaviors outlined above is a good start, but they’re by no means the only ways to attract and retain Instagram followers. Check out these three tips for more inspiration:
1) Engage with your auto shop’s commenters and “follow back”
Social media is a great tool for businesses to use in terms of cultivating closer relationships with their consumers. With this in mind, if a user leaves a comment on one of your pictures, be sure to read it and respond to what was said – and, if applicable, answer any questions or concerns that the commenter voices.
In the same vein, if someone follows your account, you might want to reciprocate. Even if you don’t actually scroll through the Instagram timeline that displays posts from everyone you follow, the “follow back” gesture goes a long way in terms of casting the brand in a positive light, making your followers feel valued and in turn nurturing customer loyalty.
2) Timing can be everything on Instagram
Whether you’re promoting a special deal, getting the word out about an upcoming event or simply sharing your latest snap from the auto shop floor, the time at which you choose to post can have a significant effect on who sees the content. According to recent research from Latergramme, a service that allows users to manage and schedule Instagram posts, the ideal time to beam new Instagram content out into the world is 5 p.m. on Wednesdays.
In fact, 5 p.m. was identified as one of the best times to post on any day of the week “because less people are posting at that time and that more engaged users are using Instagram at that time,” explained Latergramme founder Matt Smith, as quoted by The Huffington Post. Also, people who are done with their work for the day and waiting for 5:30 to roll around so they can leave the office are often inclined to browse social media to pass the time. Who knows – seeing one of your well-timed posts might just inspire them to stop by your auto shop on their way home. (Check out our blog post on social timing to see when you should post on other networks for better engagement.)
3) Link to your other social networks
Is your auto shop’s social presence limited to Instagram? If so, you might want to consider expanding your reach, with Twitter and Facebook as your first ports of call. If you already have other social networking accounts, sync them with your Instagram account for maximum visibility. Whenever you post something on Instagram, the app gives you the option to share the content on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and Flickr, which is a great way of advertising your Instagram content to people who follow your other accounts but may not be aware you have an Instagram presence.
That being said, your posts on the different networks shouldn’t be carbon copies of each other. Remember that every social media site has its own characteristics – Twitter is great for short messages (140 characters or fewer), Facebook is ideal for longer posts, and Instagram is heavily image-based, although there’s room for a caption and hashtags underneath each image.