If Instagram is not on your radar you are doing something wrong. This platform has over 400 million active users with more than 80 million posts a day. Unlike Twitter, Instagram is 100% visual which bodes well for sports teams. Instagram also offers in-depth analytics for not only the impressions but comments as well.
I have scoured the web and put together a simple list of tips for making the most of an Instagram.
1. Focus on the Photos:
Instagram is visual, it isn’t necessarily about the words rather it is about the story the picture tells. Humans respond to visuals much more than to text. Therefore having the content all be visual automatically boosts the amount of engagement. The photos don’t have to have a lot of editing or filters either. In fact the lower the design element the better the response. Fans want to see organic photos that make them feel right there with the team.
2. Use Hashtags
Believe it or not, hashtags are not only for Twitter. In fact, the sweet spot for hashtags is 11, which, according to QuickSprout, can increase engagement by 80%. Using hashtags allows others to find your photos without searching your account. Use hashtags as a way to engage with your fans. Hashtags like #TopDeckThursday allows Dodgers fans share content that can then get repurposed for the main account. Some tips for hashtags is to put them as the first comment on a post and always, ALWAYS, check to make sure the hashtags aren’t being used for anything inappropriate.
3. Post Consistently
This is a general social media rule. How do you expect your fans to follow your content if it there is only one post per week? People are on their phones constantly and a lot of that time is taken up by social media. To build a loyal following there needs to be new content multiple times a day. Buffer Social found that most major brands post 1.5 times a day and that is not a maximum as long as posting is consistent.
4. Turn on Push Notifications for Players
Players are one of, if not the, most important part of your team. Each player has his or her own fan base and some of those fans may not be contected to the official team page and vice versa. By turning on notificiations, Instagram will inform you whenever your players post. This gives you the option to regram their posts, comment and definitely like it. If you have a standout player or fan favorite using the notifications and regram allows you to feature them.
5. Keep it Simple
With Instagram less is usually more. Don’t overcomplicate the story with a long caption or tons of design work on the photo. Sometimes the best posts are 100% organic and unplanned. With so much for people to process every day, simple posts tend to stand out. Have a strong picture? Use a very minimal caption. Have important information in the caption? Use a basic photo. When all else fails go back to the basics, remember fans want to see organic posts. They don’t want to always be reminded that you are a major league team, sometimes it’s best if they see your account as a friend.
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