The Instagram algorithm: Often imitated, never duplicated. It’s more complex than giving medicine to a recalcitrant toddler (Which, trust me, is HARD). What’s the average creator, who doesn’t have their own SEO and analytics staff, to do? Read on for our best tips on beating Ye Olde Instagram Algorithm.
Post A TON To Instagram Stories
Instagram’s algorithm takes lots of different “engagement actions” into account, including posting to Instagram Stories, replying to someone else’s Story, or sending a Story to someone. The more engagement your posts have in general (likes, comments, shares), the more likely your posts are to show up in people’s feeds.
Encourage Subscriber Engagement
Try adding engagement features like Polls to your Stories, adding a leading Call To Action, such as:
- “Tell me your fave summer beauty tip in the comments!”
- “Hit the Like button if you want a tutorial on this hairdo!”
- “Tag a friend who LOVES a good smokey eye look!”
Using the Live Video option will also bump your video up higher in the Stories feed, and your subscribers will receive a notification if they’ve opted in on your Instagram homepage. Don’t forget to respond to comments, as that will encourage followers to keep commenting and engaging with your posts.
Plan Your Posts For Peak Hours
MagicLinks partner, Sprout Social, has some awesome, detailed stats on the best times of the day and days of the week for different niches on Instagram, but here’s the highest engagement times in a nutshell:
- Sundays: Between 10am-2pm
- Mondays: Between 11am-5pm
- Tuesdays: From 4am-6am and from 9am-6pm
- Wednesdays: From 4am-6am and from 9am-6pm, but especially between 11am-4pm
- Thursdays: From 4am-6am and from 9am-9pm, but especially from 11am-12pm and 3pm-5pm
- Fridays: From 4am-6am and from 9am-6pm, but especially from 9am-5pm
- Saturdays: From 10am-2pm
No fear: You can use a variety of services, like Sprout Social, to schedule your Instagram posts, so you don’t have to be waking up every Tuesday at 4am to post!
Cross Promote Your Content
The first hour after an Instagram post goes live is the most important: The more likes, comments, and shares you get during the first hour, the higher your post is ranked by the Instagram algorithm.
Plan Hashtags Carefully
Do your research on hashtags, and make sure the #s you use align with your content. #makeup will get you lost in a sea of millions of posts, but #summermakeup will help focus your content. Also, tag EVERY post you can with a hashtag that relates to your personal brand. The more times a hashtag is used, the better.
Refine Your Aesthetic
Look at the accounts of popular Instagrammers, like MagicLinks community members @xsparkage and @channonrose. There’s a cohesive color palette, filter, and aesthetic present that ties the accounts as a whole together, reinforcing their personal brands. The biggest thing to consider, though, is quality: Quality photography, photo editing, and videography are key.