Instagram: Are You Making the Most of It?

Content From: HIV.govPublished: October 18, 20183 min read


A group of people take selfies against a purple background.
Photo credit: iStock

With over 1 BILLION users, it’s hard to ignore Instagram as a very useful communication tool!

“For HIV prevention methodologies to remain relevant and effective, we have to go where people’s attention is and fully engage. That includes Instagram.” — D. Rashaan Gilmore

Using visual content builds relationships, awareness, trust and loyalty from your audience/followers. Being creative and using your content in a way that promotes real two-way engagement expands your audience and lets them know you care about what they have to say. It also lets them know that there is more to you than a faceless account with a logo that just posts pictures or videos. If you want your audience to feel a connection with you, you should engage with your audience by replying to comments, liking posts, commenting on posts and responding to direct messages.

Importance of your #LinkInBio

While there are many exciting reasons to using Instagram, there are also a few downsides compared to other platforms. Instagram automatically translates your URL to general text. However, you can be a little more creative by adding a link in your bio. The link can be switched out with other content that you can use for many other reasons. You can switch it with an event link, volunteer sign-up, a fundraiser, or whatever else you might need. This is really important because it’s the first link your followers see. It’s also important because you can’t place a link in your Instagram Story if you have less than 10,000 followers. #Bummer

IG Stories? Say What?

Instagram Stories are another way to engage with your audience. With 400 million people using Stories each day, Stories could be your way to increase the reach of the message you’re putting out. Instagram Stories give you a chance to break away from your normal newsfeed and allow for more #BehindTheScenes content. If you have more than 10,000 followers, then you can even post links in your stories in addition to the standard hashtag and location feature.

If you’re under 10,000 followers, you can’t post a link. However, you can still take advantage of the hashtag and location to expand your reach. You can also play with polls in order to ask your followers questions directly.

What is this IGTV?

IGTV is the newest feature for Instagram. IGTV is a standalone vertical video application owned by Instagram made primarily for smartphones. The feature is great because it works the same way users use their phone: full screen and vertical. IGTV also has an extended video time of 60 minutes and comes on channels. Anyone can create videos in Instagram and start their own channel. Using IGTV will set you apart because it was just announced in June 2018. Make sure you document your progress!

I’m sure there are plenty of #IG questions out there - and we want to help you answer them. You can always schedule a time with our Virtual Office Hours team. There is no cost to you and the sessions are one-on-one. Book your appointment todayExit Disclaimer!