5 Hidden Ways to Get Your Brand Noticed on Instagram



Hashtags, visual stories, memes, and CTAs – consider this your quick guide to Explore page discovery.


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It’s no secret Instagram has tremendous reach. More than one billion people use the app every month and 500 million engage with the platform daily. Of late, it’s evolved into a booming e-commerce hub for brands with 60 percent of Instagram users reporting they’ve learned of a product or service through the platform.

With over 25 million business profiles in existence, vying for attention is a perpetual obstacle. Fortunately, the Explore Tab, a section dedicated to curated content and branded accounts based on a user’s interest, offers some answers in terms of breaking through the noise.

According to recent research, 26 percent of Instagram users follow new brand accounts discovered via the Explore tab. When considering this stat with Instagram’s own numbers, specifically that more than half of its billion users visit this portion of the site every month, it becomes very transparent that the Explore page holds the potential to drive a significant amount of engagement for brands.

Here, we’ll look at five key tricks you can use to get your posts and Stories featured on the page to boost your exposure:

Use hashtags and tags

Both hashtags and tags are a great way to invite engagement and interaction, especially if you do your homework and research the right people and tags to incorporate into your captions.

From a partnership and collaboration standpoint, tagging companies or influencers or using the same hashtags can be mutually beneficial in that you each stand to gain exposure to audiences you otherwise would not cross paths with.

Audience-wise, hashtags are a staple in sifting through the body of posts that get uploaded to Instagram every day. You can include up to 30 hashtags on your post. Use these to your advantage to make the user experience simpler and more positive by categorizing your content. Operate on the assumption that if you don’t tag it, they can’t see it.

Avoid reposting

Algorithmically speaking, reposts are deprioritized when it comes to Instagram so the best rule of thumb to note is focusing on your own content.

Stick to other callouts if you want to shout another brand or individual out like hashtags, tags or custom captions that you craft yourself. Ensure its conveyed in a way that’s consistent with your brand’s tone and that will be received positively by your audience.

Get creative with visual stories

By 2022, online videos will make up more than 82 percent of all consumer internet traffic, which is 15 times higher than in 2017.

Indeed, more people share videos than ever before. Recognizing this, Instagram has prioritized visual content, ranking videos higher in the Explore algorithm. Why? Because they have a greater tendency to grab attention and hold it for a longer period of time than still photos. Visual content also fuels retention.

According to Forbes, 95 percent of viewers claim to retain the message of a video, versus just 10 percent of message retention with text only. Concerning calls-to-action, 95 percent are more likely to remember it after watching a video, versus just 10 percent when the CTA is delivered solely by text.

A quick tip: don’t overdo it with the length of your videos. Recent research from AdAge shows that after 30 seconds, 33 percent of viewers will stop watching a video, 45 percent before that one minute is up, and 60 percent of viewers will stop watching by two minutes.

If a video doesn’t quite fit for a particular post you’re envisioning, aim to incorporate some alternative form of motion. This can be achieved through a variety of features within the app including Boomerang, motion filters, animation, and more.

Use CTAs

Speaking of CTAs, you’ll want to be sure these are on every checklist before pushing a post live. They not only communicate what you want your audience to do as a response to your message but are a great incentive for engagement.

For example, ask a question that kicks off a conversation for followers. You can also use emojis and tags and language such as “Give this post a like if…” “tag a friend who needs this” or “comment below and tell us what you think” to naturally drive responses.

Don’t be above viral trends and memes

As much as it may feel counterproductive to getting your brand to stand out, an effective way to meet your followers where they are is by paying attention to topics that are already trending and gaining traction.

Strive to put your own twist on the conversation to illustrate what your brand has to offer them in a way that is meaningful and demonstrate your effort in capturing attention in a way that won’t come across as a time suck to them, rather a use of their time.

A highly popular and effective way of doing just this is using viral memes to illustrate a message.

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