5 Reasons Your Instagram Isn’t Getting Likes

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Okay. You have your posts on a perfectly timed schedule, your follower is comfortably climbing to a visible place, and your hashtag game is on point--but there’s one problem: you aren’t getting likes. So maybe you get a couple likes, on a good day 80 to 90, but you’re looking for the high triple digits, and they ain’t happening. Why is this? Here are three ideas.

 

You’re Confusing Your Audience

Your Instagram needs to stay on topic. What’s the topic, you ask? Your business. Your Instagram should tell the story of your brand. For example, if you’re selling products, your account should be product-based. If you’re a fashion blog, focus on fashion, and so on.

Most importantly, your feed should always be cohesive. Always. A way to build a cohesive Instagram is to have a specific aesthetic. If you use VSCO to edit all of your images (if you're not using the VSCO app, you should be!), don’t sneak in a new filter unless you have a good reason to. Your followers have expectations of your posts; they follow you because they like something about your routine. When you don’t have a clear story, you’re more likely to lose followers because you aren’t delivering what your followers want or expect.

"Your feed should always be cohesive. Always."

You’re Getting Too Personal

Baby pictures are cute--but not always. If your Instagram represents your business, you’ll want to make sure you keep it about your business. I’m not saying that intimate posts are inappropriate all the time, but you may want to keep them to a minimum. Your followers will love a BTS (behind the scenes) post, but, again, keep it about your business hustle. Personal posts, like selfies or pictures of your weekend excursion to the beach, do help to make your business relatable to your followers, but you should remember your posts are supposed to be representative of your brand, and sometimes a ‘gram of your breakfast just doesn’t fit. If you want to be personal, separate church and state - create two accounts, one for your personal pics, and one for your business. 

Make sure your bio states the purpose of your account. If it’s for business, your bio and feed should reflect that. If you’re dying to showcase pictures of your family and friends, you should use a separate handle. This way your fans can choose to see all of those goofy selfies if they want to. Problem solved, easy.

 

You’re Not Posting New Content

You know you can’t post the same photo over and over again, right? But you’d be surprised how many people do. If you have a new product, of course you’re going to want to show it off, but if you want to keep sharing it, you should make sure every post featuring the product is attractive and new.

If your brand comes out with a new iPhone case, don’t post the same picture of it every day. After the initial post, your followers will ask themselves, “Didn’t I already see that picture?” and they probably won’t hit the like button again. Yes, you want the world to know about your new iPhone case, but repeating content is boring.

So how do you promote without being monotonous? Mix it up! Show the product in different settings and scenes (using the same aesthetic of course--always be cohesive!). Or perhaps put your product out in the wild and see what happens. Do you have a lifestyle brand? Add in different modes of content. Maybe one day you sell something, another day you share an inspirational quote, and the next you have a behind-the-scenes video. Your followers will appreciate the variety.

 

You're Not posting At the Right Times

Yes, Instagram's algorithm has changed, which means you see posts that are curated for you, based on your engagement patterns (and the way people are engaging with your content). However, it's extremely important that you still post at the RIGHT times - which means posting only when your audience is engaged. I find that the built in Instagram Analytics that Instagram provides for you (for all of you who have switched over to a Business Account) are not 100% accurate. I prefer using an Instagram Analytics Software for the most detailed report on exactly when my audience is engaged, right down to the hour. You can sign up for an account right here - I use personally use Iconosquare for all of my celebrity, influencer, and brand accounts. It's my secret weapon for keeping all of my likes high.

 

Switch back to a personal account if you're not a business 

Here's the hard truth: Instagram is a tricky beast, and is following Facebook's footsteps with the gentle encouragement to "pay to play"  if you happen to be a business account. Here's what this looks like: if you're a business account, Instagram will encourage you to promote your posts by putting a little budget into the back end. If you've seen these prompts, you know what I'm talking about. However, you need to listen VERY CAREFULLY to your audience and study your analytics so you're seeing ROI on every cent you spend on Instagram promotion. If you're interested in promoting your posts and don't know exactly where to begin, give me a shout - you can schedule a one-on-one consultation with me and I'll point you in the right direction. This strategy is very effective, if done right! If not, it's a waste of your money (and we don't like that).  Book 30 minutes with me and we'll get you pointed in the right direction. 

Now ask yourself: if you're an influencer, authority, or expert, do you really need to be a business account? By switching back to a personal account, you will actually increase your likes (most clients I work with see almost double the likes on a personal vs. business account) without having to put in any budget on the back end. Yes, you won't have access to the "swipe up" feature with a personal account (which is not super fun, especially if you're a blogger, writer, or authority who crushes it in the digital PR department). But, your likes will be higher. If you covert back to a personal account, make sure to include your email in your bio (just paste it right in there - people might still want to contact you) and include a URL to your website in the link in bio (this acts as a good place to promote new blog posts, or all that nice press about you). 

What tricks have you used to up your likes? What has worked and what hasn't? Drop a comment below and let us know, aaaand if you know someone who might love to read this article, give it a share! 

Heather Catania