Blog > Instagram

Written by Amanda Webb

February 28, 2017 at 12:00 am

How To Manage Your Instagram Followers

manage your instagram followers

Instagram is a great tool for building connections with your audience but unless you have a plan to manage your Instagram followers you could be letting those relationships disappear.

Like Twitter, Instagram lets us reach out and interact with anyone who has an open account. You’ll find your customers, your advocates and the people who influence them there.

Unlike Twitter it’s not easy to manage your Instagram followers. Twitter gives us lists that filter our view to just the people we add to them. It’s a great way to keep in touch with the people who matter. There is no Instagram alternative.

Instead, we have an Instagram algorithm. This reorders our feed so we see the posts from the people we interact with the most first. It’s useful if we are interacting with the right people in the first place but in order to make sure we’re spending our limited time in the best way possible we need to have a plan to manage our Instagram followers.

In this post we’ll look at some of the ways you can hack Instagram to keep an eye on the people we want to interact with the most. We’re also going to look at some tools you can use to chose the right people to follow.

The Big Unfollow

If like many Instarammers, you got a bit follow happy when you started out you’ll probably find your feed is becoming cluttered with content from irrelevant people. Like any social network, it’s important to have a purge from time to time. Make that time now.

Depending how many people you are following this can be time consuming. To take the pain out of the process, write yourself a list of guidelines:

  • Who do you want to follow?
  • What qualities do they have?
  • Where do they live?
  • What sort of content do they share?

Try and match these guidelines as closely as you can to your ideal customer and the people who influence them.

Once you have a checklist in place you’ll find it easier to select the users you want to continue to follow and you’ll be able to make quick decisions about the people you chose to follow and interact with in the future. It’s the easiest way to manage your Instagram followers into the future.

Who is Influential?

Interacting with people on a one-on-one basis is important but building relationships with influencers can help you reach larger numbers of your target market at one time.

You’ll already know some of the people you want to follow and nurture on Instagram, you probably follow them on other social channels.

You can also find potentially influential people by searching hashtags related to your industry and customers. Whose posts are appearing in ‘top posts’? Is their content conversational? Are they getting real comments from their audience on their posts?

If you are looking for local influencers, search Instagram by location.

Search top posts in a local area to find influencers

Search top posts in a local area to find influencers

Find Influencers with Agorapulse

Agorapulse can help you monitor both Instagram hashtags and Instagram content posted in a geographic area. This is a timesaving way to manage your Instagram followers and it takes the pain out of having to search Instagram results every day.

To set up monitoring:

  • Navigate to your Instagram account from your dashboard.
  • Select the Monitoring tab.
  • Click ‘Monitoring’ on the right-hand side.
Find influencers on Instagram using the monitoring tab

Find influencers on Instagram using the monitoring tab

  • Click ‘New search’
Set up an monitoring search

Set up an monitoring search

  • Give your search a name.
  • Chose whether you want to monitor a location or hashtag.
  • Add your search term.
  • Click preview to see the sort of results you will get.
Monitor Instagram hashtags or locations

Monitor Instagram hashtags or locations

Now each time you log in, you’ll find the results under the ‘Monitoring tab’. Here are results from my saved search:

View your Instagram search results in the Monitoring tag

View your Instagram search results in the Monitoring tag

Use Whalar To Rank Influencers

Whalar is a good starting point when deciding if a user is influential. You can compare Instagram accounts by statistics like engagement rate, average likes per photo, average comments per photo and follower ratio.

As you can see Instagram legend Sue B Zimmerman is unsurprisingly far more influential than either me or Agorapulse.

Whalar helps you define influencers

Whalar helps you define influencers

These statistics will help you find engaged people on Instagram but you’ll need to look at their accounts to ensure these engagements are authentic.

You should also look at who is following the influencer to ensure they fall into your target audience.

Staying  In Touch With The People That Matter

So far you’ve cleaned up your feed and started finding and following the right people on Instagram. The next step is to make sure you are engaging with the people who matter most to you.

It’s nice to scroll through your Instagram feed liking and commenting on content as you go but there will always be some people that you want to ensure you are communicating with.

The more you engage with your target market and the people who influence the more likely you are to get new customers.

How can you do that?

Instagram management tool Agorapulse

Manage Your Instagram Followers With Instagram Save

Instagram recently introduced a ‘save’ function, similar to Facebook. You can use this to keep a list of the people you want to interact with the most.

If you save one post from each influencer or brand advocate you find on Instagram, you will in essence make a list of users you want to interact with.

To save a post:

  • Click the ribbon icon underneath it
  • You’ll find your saved posts on your profile page under the ribbon icon.
Use Instagram save to keep tabs on the users that matter

Use Instagram save to keep tabs on the users that matter

Tag Important People With Agorapulse

If you have more than one group of people you want to monitor on a regular basis it’s easier to use tagging in the Agorapulse interface.

Select the ‘Users’ tab.

You can filter users by those who have ‘Liked’ more than five of your posts (click the heart), commented on a post (click the speech bubble) or mentioned you in a search result (click the loud hailer).

You can tag people from this tab in the same way you might add them to Twitter lists.

  • Click on a post from the user you want to tag.
  • Hover your cursor over the result and a tag icon will appear.
Tag important Instagram users from the 'User' tab

Tag important Instagram users from the ‘User’ tab

  • Add a one-word tag or select from the tags you’ve already created.
Assign one word tags to the user in the same way you would assign them to Twitter lists

Assign one word tags to the user in the same way you would assign them to Twitter lists

  • Click ‘Update.’

To view the users you’ve tagged:

  • Click on the ‘Tags’ menu on the right-hand side of the ‘User’ window.
  • Select the tag you want to look at.
View the Instagram users you have tagged

View the Instagram users you have tagged

Using these hacks and tools will make it easier for you to interact with the people you need to on a regular basis on Instagram.

Now you have identified the right users and have a system for keeping tabs on their posts, make sure you are leave comments on their posts to build on those relationships.

What Do You Think?

Do you have a system for managing your Instagram followers or are you living with a cluttered feed? Have you any tips to share? I’d love to hear your hacks and ideas.

How to manage your Instagram followers
Amanda Webb

Amanda Webb is a social media speaker, trainer, consultant, blogger vlogger and podcaster at Spiderworking. She works with SME’s to help them develop social media strategies that save time and resources. Follow her on Twitter here.

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