Instagram is one of the most powerful social media platforms for brands to leverage to connect with their customers and grow their business. With that being said, building a strong relationship with your followers takes more than sharing valuable content. To build a loyal following of raving fans who not only like and trust you but also recommend you to all their peers, you must connect with them on a deeper level.
So, how exactly do you do this? Here are 6 proven strategies you can implement right away to build stronger relationships with your followers on Instagram and boost engagement and brand loyalty.
1. Show the face behind the brand
The first strategy is to show the face behind the business. Research shows that people are more likely to form an emotional connection with other people rather than with a brand or organisation. This is because, as humans, we are innately social beings who crave connection with others on a personal level. Recent studies have shown that 91.7% of ads featuring a person’s face attracted more attention than non-face ads. Furthermore, the effect was greater in cases where there was shorter exposure time, like on social media.
So how can you apply this on Instagram? Wherever possible, share more about yourself and let your unique personality shine. You can do this by showing up on stories and sharing the behind-the-scenes of the day-to-day life of running your business. You can share your thoughts and opinions in posts and you can also share personal stories that your followers can relate to. This humanizes your brand and makes you seem more approachable and trustworthy, both super important for building brand loyalty.
2. Respond to comments and DMs
The second strategy for building stronger relationships with your followers on Instagram is to respond to comments and messages. You should aim to respond to as many comments and messages on Instagram as possible. Unless you’re getting hundreds of comments and DMs every day this should be a priority if your goal is to build stronger relationships with your followers.
Taking the time to reply to your community shows you value and care about what they have to say. Try and respond in a personalized way, using your followers’ names where possible, and don’t shy away from letting your personality shine through. A great way to encourage further engagement is to respond with a question where relevant. Again this shows that you take interest in your followers and genuinely care about their thoughts and comments.
3. Actively engage with your follower’s content
The third strategy for building stronger relationships with your followers on Instagram is to actively engage with your followers’ content. Engagement is a two-way street on Instagram. Actively engaging with your followers’ posts and stories is a great way to build further rapport with them and create a sense of community and recognition. This is a great way to increase their brand loyalty because they feel that they have a genuine connection with you.
When engaging with your followers, keep your comments personalized and avoid trying to sell them something in your conversations. Focus instead on adding value and building trust because this is what will convert them into loyal paying customers and clients in the long term.
4. Shout out to your customers and clients by sharing user-generated content
The fourth strategy for building stronger relationships with your followers on Instagram is to shout out your customers and clients by sharing user-generated content. Another great way to create a sense of community and recognition is to acknowledge your customers publicly by sharing content they have created about your brand. This will help to strengthen your relationship as it shows you value their contributions and opinions about your brand.
Additionally, sharing user-generated content acts as an incredible form of social proof for your brand which boosts trust and credibility, increasing the chances that more people will buy from you. A great way to collect user-generated content is to ask your followers to tag you in their posts and stories. Alternatively, you can create a branded hashtag and encourage them to use that hashtag when they create content about your brand.
5. Share thoughtful content your followers want to consume
The fifth strategy for building stronger relationships with your followers on Instagram is to share thoughtful content that your followers want to consume. What better way to show your audience that you value them than to share content that they actually want to see and engage with? A great strategy for doing this is to simply ask your audience what type of content they want. I love to create polls on my Instagram stories asking my followers to vote on which topics they want to learn more about.
People love to share their opinions so make the most of interactive story stickers like the poll, quiz, and question stickers. Not only will this boost your engagement as people interact with these stickers but it will also provide you with incredible insights about the type of content your audience wants from you.
6. Host Instagram Live Videos
The sixth strategy for building stronger relationships with your followers on Instagram is to host Instagram live videos. Giving your followers the opportunity to engage with you in real-time via Instagram Live is the next best thing to having a face-to-face conversation with them. Going live with your audience creates a sense of intimacy and community, allowing you to chat with them directly in a more personal way.
Some examples of how you can use Instagram Lives to boost your brand loyalty and increase rapport with your followers include hosting Q&As, conducting product or service demonstrations, sharing behind the scenes of an event, hosting an interview, and even something as simple and casual as sharing a personal story. The point is, that you are giving your followers the chance to get to know and experience you on a more personal level which is going to increase their know, like, and trust factor with you, leading to stronger relationships and increased brand loyalty.
A brand that does this well is Danessa Myricks Beauty. Danessa goes live each Tuesday for “Teach Me Tuesday” where she hosts a live video showing how to use her makeup products in real time. She engages with her followers and answers their questions as she’s applying the makeup which creates a strong sense of community while adding value at the same time.
Building stronger relationships with your followers doesn’t happen overnight but is certainly worth it in the long run. By implementing these strategies, you can be sure to build a loyal following who not only engage with your brand but are also massive advocates for it.
If you found value in this post and want to learn more about how you can work 1:1 with me to master Instagram marketing so you can reach more dream clients and customers, without the overwhelm, click here to apply for a free strategy call with me where we can chat more about what it would look like to work together!
Click here to learn more about how to Master Instagram Sales in 2023: The 3 Core Fundamentals You Need to Know!