Instagram has been widely talked about as of lately. First, the new logo, that people seem to be having a love-hate relationship with. And now, after months of speculations, the company has confirmed (and brought to life in every account) that changes in the post algorithm are going to happen for sure, making the Instagram feed closer to Facebook in style. Users of the platform kept guessing what the updates are going to bring to their browsing experience, but they already have.
This also leaves marketers hanging, how do you cut through the science and make sure to appear in your followers’ feed? The answer is simple: be engaging and share content your followers will make followers mad if they miss. But how do you do that? Let’s turn for help to some true #InstaStars – celebrity chefs. They seem to have this entire #InstaGame down. Let’s examine the most stand-out examples:
Nigella Lawson – Embrace Content From Fellow Instagrammers
Social proof and personal recommendations are two very powerful tactics that Nigella Lawson uses in the #FollowOfTheDay post series. Each of the posts, feature an image from a fellow instagrammer that she recommends for her followers to follow.
She is giving her endorsement not only to accounts with a large audience, but also ones with a smaller follower base. This makes it authentic, personal, and a very nice thing to do for the community. Nigella embraces great content by giving it a push and recognizing the authors. The authors – in most cases – reciprocate by reposting and spreading the word about the fact that THE Nigella liked their content. This equals more exposure for Nigella. Using user generated content makes her entire feed more engaging. This is just Instagram Marketing 101.
A photo posted by Nigella (@nigellalawson) on May 19, 2016 at 10:59pm PDT
Gordon Ramsey – A Dash of Personal Branding. A Dash, I say.
Gordon Ramsey is probably in the top 3 of the most recognizable TV chefs on the planet. Everyone knows that he’s able to cut with words as good as he does with his knife, if not better. His brand is well known.
Ramsey’s Instagram feed is filled with a mix of personal posts, lifestyle content that followers dig, and promo posts related to his business endeavors. These include info on newest TV shows and restaurant endorsements, basically everything that helps him put food on the table (pun intended). Many brands struggle with the right self-promotional to lifestyle post ratio on Instagram, and it costs them followers. But not Gordon. A quick scroll through his posts shows that the proportion here is just right for people to be wanting more. Take a note, fellow marketers:
Gordon Ramsey’s Instagram feed, show exactly how not to overdo self-promotional content, while building engagement on Instagram.
Siba Mtongana – Community Is Everything
South African celebrity chef, Siba Mtongana has a very colorful and positive style – both in her TV shows and life. Her positive outlook and simplicity of the recipes make people love and follow her. On social media the most important thing is to be close to your community and to appreciate followers to keep them engaged. This gives you social proof and an influencer status. Siba is extremely authentic in sharing posts by her followers and appreciating her community. This gives a very powerful message: I am available for you, I love each and every one of you. And so, followers give back by being more engaged.
Repost from @paul.briers using @RepostRegramApp – So Siba spends whole week at Good Food & Wine show – interviews, TV spots etc…. But there she was this morning in Hillsong Gugulethu with the kids – Giving out to people in need. You’re the real thing @sibamtongana Earlier today at the @goodfoodsa #gfws2016 #OnTheBigStage #ChefsTable #SibasTable #ChefsTheatre #FoodieLife #workinghours #FoodEducation #FoodScience #SharingFoodKnowledge #FoodIsMyPassion #FoodBusiness #Foodprofession #CareerInFoods #MyTable #SibasCookbook #CulinaryArts ❤️
A photo posted by Siba (@sibamtongana) on May 29, 2016 at 9:45am PDT
Jamie Oliver – 15 Minutes for Visual Design
Standing out from a sea of visually unappealing posts, poorly rendered graphics, photos taken in bad lighting with awkward composition is something Jamie does very, very well. Experts say that good graphics can increase interest in your content by 80%. Jamie got it down to the very last detail: he gets thousands of likes and comments by perfecting his storytelling through stunning images. Through visually appealing content Jamie also encourages followers to join the discussion. His Instagram feed is so delicious it’s practically impossible to follow his work and not get hungry in the process.
Just take a look at Jamie Oliver’s Instagram posts above and follow him!
Anthony Bourdain – Pair-up With Influencers
Over the last year influencer marketing has been growing, according to predictions that it is going to be “the next big thing”- it really was and is. Anthony Bourdain has a strong personality, is a great chef, and is someone who knows that the right endorsements can help build awareness, no matter what the case is. Many brands are adding influencer relationships into their marketing strategy. The right cooperation brings awareness, helps increase traffic, and reaches broader audiences. Anthony got the right approach down: from famous musicians and politicians, to respected members of the community – including them in the feed not only makes it more interesting, but also makes it desirable to a new audience.
A photo posted by anthonybourdain (@anthonybourdain) on May 23, 2016 at 7:22am PDT
Martha Stewart – Mix and Stir
When thinking about Instagram, the first thing that comes to mind is: images. But another important Instagram ingredient is video. So important, in fact, that not a long time ago the company has extended length of the videos that can be shared with the followers. The queen of American Housewives wouldn’t be herself if she didn’t use all the ingredients that Instagram offers to cook up something really delish for her followers. With the use of video content, you too can engage your target groups, just like Martha does it by sharing personal messages or recipes.
The most important lesson here is: use the platform to its fullest like Martha Stewart does. Don’t neglect specific types of posts. If Facebook edge rank teaches us anything, it’s that the type of posts is an important part of calculating how they appear in followers’ newsfeeds. The fact that Instagram is owned by Facebook, and – like I mentioned earlier – that the feed algorithm has changed on Instagram, this may be crucial to keep followers engaged.
A video posted by Martha Stewart (@marthastewart) on Jun 3, 2016 at 7:23am PDT
George Calombaris – Why So Serious?
Australia’s Master Chef judge, George Calombaris, is one witty mate. Quick to joke and always ready to fit his communication style to whatever situation he may get into. Developing a signature messaging and communication style is very important, so that your story is bigger, bolder, and better than the competitors’. It is important, especially if you’re trying to build a personal brand on social media, to make sure that your image presents someone that is relatable and human (yes, even brands can be human and relatable). So, what better way to do it than with humor?
A photo posted by George Calombaris (@gcalombaris) on Apr 6, 2016 at 10:04am PDT
Here are the top Instagram tips from celebrity chefs to engage your audience on Instagram:
- Embrace and share great content created by other Instagrammers.
- Go easy on self-promotional posts.
- Give back to your community by including them in your communication.
- Create stunning imagery to instantly stand out from the crowd.
- Pair-up with Influencers.
- Use the advantage of video content.
- Insert personality and humor into your communication.
Do you have any favorite tips on how to keep followers engaged on Instagram? Share them in comments!
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