How to Grow Your Instagram Audience

How to Grow Your Instagram Audience

Fun fact – more than 50% of Google search results end up with zero clicks. With the scrolling feeds of Social media on the other hand, there are no click-throughs (read: barriers) for users to engage with your content.

There are multiple techniques literally designed into the functionality of social media apps that increase visibility, maximise engagement and remove communication barriers.

One such platform used by small-to-large scale businesses successfully (for quite some time now) is Instagram. Using ‘the gram’ properly for your business can bring in higher conversions. But, the question on many marketer’s lips is how to grow that Instagram audience in the first place. 

Here are our top tips to get you an all-star, follow-worthy Instagram profile:

Use Your Biography Wisely

It’s the first thing Instagram users will read about you, so what better place to start? Yep, that’s right – it’s your description or biography. There’s only 150 characters to play with, to summarise your business AND offer enough value for them to hit that follow button. Choose them wisely!

  • Be straightforward and clear. Customers like to-the-point information; they want to know your profile’s purpose instantly and, more importantly, the topics you’ll discuss there. 
  • Consider a thought-out hashtag – it can help you reach even more users. 
  • The “Highlights” feature is a trick not to miss (and you can literally add 100 of them!) Divide them into distinct topics like Sales, About us and Fun.
  • Best of all, Instagram allows one direct clickable link so make sure your bio description utilises one already. But think carefully about the link because it has to be really important and relevant. It’s a real call to action and it has to be strong.

Your profile picture shows alongside the bio too. It’s worth noting that this circular picture (and your username) is the only thing most users will see of you, say, when you comment on a post, unless they choose to view your profile. 

Pick an image that captures the essence of your brand and feed. If you’re running a business, it’s recommended you choose your business logo or, for a personal account, pick a photo of you with clear graphics that stand out, even as a small icon.

Focus on the Aesthetics of the Feed

person holding smartphone taking picture of a bridge during daytime

Surprise surprise, Instagram is a visual platform… and yet Hubspot found that 72% of users have purchased something they’ve seen on the platform

Aesthetic sells. This applies to the feel of your page, as well as the individual posts, and your feed is the meat of your profile. It might sound obvious, but it has to look great; high-quality and consistent. The little squares making up your feed are the second thing customers instantly see when they go on to your page. 

Ideally, before even launching your account, consider the style and the theme you want to emulate (bold and colourful, black and white, pastel). 

Colour-coordinated themes make a cohesive and appealing Instagram feed. Make sure to incorporate your brand’s colour scheme into your feed and keep the same guidelines every time. 

Go for Catchy Content

So, what’s catchy? While there’s no definitive answer, there are rules of thumb you can follow: 

    • Prioritize quality instead of quantity
    • Make sure you know what you’re posting
    • Be smart and entertaining!

With IGTV, Instagram is tapping into Youtube’s longer-form video content potential. It’s the perfect platform to showcase a product or concept in greater detail. Keep in mind; the needs of your customers should be met with the content

Pick more topics and you’ll reach users from different walks of life, instead of posting into a vacuum. 

When it comes to creating compelling content, there’s a wide variety of tools you can utilise. A common favourite is Canva. To create animated GIFs there’s Giphy. If you want to get a bit more technical, there’s also Lumen5, Remove.BG, Pixlreditor, Adobe Lightroom… chances are, if you can dream it, there’s a tool to make it come true! 

The more a post is shared and engaged with, the higher priority it garners on the feed and the more audience it reaches, just like a social-media snowball.

This means, you should interact with your Instagram followers regularly. Ask for their feedback, reply to their queries and thank loyal customers. The more you chat with people on your feed, the more likely they are to bring business to you.

Give Back to People

person using a smartphone posting on instagram

Followers choose you for a reason. Besides your services or products, what else are you offering to your visitors? 

Organize lucky draws, opportunities and giveaways on your Instagram feed (being careful to follow the rules) This is a tried-and-tested way to promote your brand while increasing your Instagram following. The more people participate, the more recognition and audience you get. Win-win!

Giveaways are not all that hard to organize. Combine newly-launched products alongside some old bestsellers. Collaborate with other brands or influencers. Just make sure you aren’t giving away sub-par content or products. Show through your freebie how much value comes when paying you.

The Fun Stuff 

Instagram updates so much they have a blog dedicated to telling you about new features. If you’re thinking of growing on Instagram it’s worth keeping an eye on the ever-changing trends.

 Upload stories Every. Damn. Day. Yes, you got it right, daily is key! It shows your social availability and commitment and builds trust between you and your followers. Come up with innovative and unique story ideas such as conducting a Q&A session or creating a poll. 

Is it a video, is it a GIF, no, that’s a boomerang – and we all love a good one. Think up cheery boomerangs of your products or clients. What about a brief “How to” guide using boomerangs on your Instagram stories? 

It’s called social media for a reason. Make some friends and share the love with guest bloggers and influencers to collaborate and boost both parties. Influencer involvement is an organic way to essentially share visibility between several, like-minded accounts.

Finally: Consistency is Key

person holding smarthphone near laptop

While going viral is often the dream, the reality is that follower counts won’t quadruple overnight without the use of questionable automation or bot use. If you want legitimate followers, minus the risk of getting your account shadow-banned, it takes patience and time. 

Winging it with posting a single picture per week probably cut it either. Plan your content ahead of schedule. Is there a notable calendar date coming up? Prepare a photoshoot beforehand! With some effort, you’ll have content to spare, even on the days you’re not feeling inspired. 

Lastly, don’t give up if you haven’t yet reached your desired goal. Hang in there, keep actively engaging – all it takes is one big account to notice and repost you and the Instagram odds could begin shifting in your favour. 

Domain Authority, Why Does It Matter?

Domain Authority, Why Does It Matter?

Who doesn’t want to make the podium after participating in a contest? Do you hate feeling like a champion? For most of us, we love to come out on top, but the podium can’t accommodate all the participants… Can it? 

Competing for a place on a podium is similar to competition between websites. In the digital world, having top Domain Authority means you’re on top of the food chain. You get a lion’s share of visitors – a mouthful of high-quality traffic, and above all, a rock-solid Domain Authority. Your site is respected, easy to find and lucrative. 

But how do we know if a website is a winner? 

Domain Authority predicts how a website will rank and perform on search engines for various keywords. 

To begin with, Domain Authority (DA) is like a grade that every website gets. Primarily, it’s based on the quality of the content on the website. Other factors that influence your authority include:

  • Number of visits
  • Quality of visits
  • Relevancy of the content
  • User experience
  • Length of visit etc. 

How and Why was Domain Authority Coined?

tablet with trafic graphics

DA’s Launch

Domain Authority is a term first coined by Moz that has become the industry standard. It’s an assessment scale that gauges the quality and relevancy of a website against Google’s (seemingly complicated) ranking metrics, and gives it a numerical score. There’s a simple tool that evaluates every website, observing how these sites perform on search engines.

What it is

In simple words, Domain Authority is a grading scale with quality scores ranging from 1 to 100. Sites with the highest domain authorities have a numerical score close to 100. The higher the score, the better the website ranks on Google.  

For perspective, those nearing 100 are the big giants, Fortune 100, heck even Top Ten. We’re talking Facebook (DA 96), Amazon (DA 96), and Wikipedia (DA 86). 

New websites

One thing is clear; you can’t create a website from scratch thinking that it’ll get full marks as soon as you launch it. That doesn’t mean it’s necessarily an uphill struggle though.

Yes, new websites will most likely start with the lowest grade. But raising their Domain Authority is achievable for every site, and if done smartly may not be as difficult as it seems. All it takes is some consistency, adaptability and time. These are key. Another thing to note is that aiming for 100 isn’t always necessary!

As Hubspot quite rightly point out, it’s comparative authority to your peers that counts, and not necessarily overall, especially as the highest ranking sites can lower the scores of those lower down the list – it’s all relative, and it’s always changing.

The Scoring Criteria

Hang on! Let’s break down exactly how those ‘biggies’ have managed to score so high. Can you spot what Facebook, Amazon, and Wikipedia’s websites have in common? (Apart from enviable Domain Authority!)

Unimaginable space for content – massive content creation opportunities

  • Millions of online users and visitors
  • Loads of backlinks 

Actually, that’s not rocket science, is it? 

So, scoring depends a lot on these factors; content (& capacity), users and backlinks. But primarily, it has to do with the number and the quality of every visitor backlink connected to your domain. 

If you started your research into Domain Authority imagining a website that instantly scores 100 out of 100, the above points have dragged you back into the real world. That said, you can still get to a top position with consistent efforts. 

Basics of Getting the Best Domain Authority in Your Niche?

Content and Backlinks

For now, let’s stick to your industry, because that’ll give you a niche start. And there’s no better way to start than to align with the score of your competitors. You’ll soon find out that you can quickly improve by following the best practices:

  • Come up with high-quality content
  • Create opportunities for the users to generate backlinks

You know backlinks, don’t you? These are the links that are connected to other websites and linked to yours. No-one likes working in a silo.

Now, let’s move on to more technical aspects.

SEO, Traffic, Page Authority

Moz uses 40 factors to calculate DA – this includes SEO and the traffic that your website receives. It does so by calculating the authority of your webpages. The page authority, in turn, depends upon the quality of backlinks to a specific page on your website.

Now, let’s remove one myth right now!

If you think Domain Authority is the fix-all formula to rank your website (or webpages) on the first page of Google, well, you’re certainly optimistic! Google is known to use 200 factors to measure rank, alongside other search engines with similar approaches. However, Domain Authority is widely accepted to be a notable one.

It’s a smart – and most importantly, measurable – way to make sure you’re giving Google another good reason to rank your website. To keep tabs on your site’s DA, you can get an extension in chrome called MozBar

How to Improve Your Domain Authority

office people meeting

This is for all those website developers and owners who’ve been facing a hard time in getting quality traffic or acquiring more backlinks. Consider the following:

Your Domain’s Expiration Date

Okay, so this first one isn’t a big one, but it is a cheap and easy fix! Apart from all the other great reasons to watch your domain expiration date, the proximity of your domain to its server expiration date can affect your DA. It could be well worth the handful of dollars to make it last for the next 4-5 years and it’s arguably the least work-intensive way to improve the ranking.

Strong Link Profile

Having a high number of relevant PR links to and from your website will help you score better – it’s literally one of those 40 assessment requirements discussed earlier.

  • Adding links on a website improves it’s Domain Authority quality 
  • Make sure the website you’re linking to already has a high Domain Authority in its own right; otherwise, it won’t improve your score
  • More importantly, your website’s name should be mentioned and there must be a link at the back of it.

High-Quality Content

Content is king, and this applies within Domain Authority too. By consistently creating relevant, well-structured and thought out content on a website, the Domain Authority will rank in a higher place. 

Finally

In the end, much like SEO, Domain Authority is an ongoing practice. To be able to maintain a good DA score, ensure that:

  • Your website remains active and its domain is not expiring
  • It garners engagement, longer view times and activity through high-quality content
  • Visitors coming from other sites have sufficient backlinking opportunities
  • Above all, there should be a foolproof SEO strategy to keep supplying you with quality traffic every moment. 

If it sounds difficult, don’t panic. Buzz Factory can help you score better and keep performing well on SERP, making your site a high-ranking Domain Authority.

SEO, is it worth the cost?

SEO, is it worth the cost?

SEO Basics – why does your site need it?

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is used to improve a Website’s ranking on search engines like Google or Bing – and up to 93% of online experiences begin with searches on sites like these! (Search Engine Journal)

The better the SEO, the higher up the list of search results the site will come. 

Why does this matter? Well, according to Hubspot 75% of users never even scroll past the first page of those results.

So yes, having a compelling SEO strategy is absolutely crucial for any business Website to improve visibility, leads and sales.

SEO acts like a map

When a company’s Webseite is more visible on the internet, it’ll obviously improve the number of site visitors. This quality traffic, in turn, should help the business in several ways:

  • With lots of visitors coming to the Webseite, there are more chances of getting leads.
  • This gives an opportunity to convert those leads into customers. 
  • More customers means more sales!

Can you connect the dots now? SEO = Traffic = Leads = Customers = Sales!

SEO rings like a bell

At every stage of a customer’s journey, you’re going to need relevant content – this is a whole topic in and of itself, discussed in our other blogs. 

But did you know, great content also can support your SEO? In fact, it’s one of the top 3 ranking factors used by Google!

Putting these together, SEO works like a bell that draws your customer’s attention to your domain. Then, it’s up to your content to entice them enough to engage with – and buy – your product or services. 

SEO increases your brand awareness 

Believe it or not, SEO often facilitates the first point of contact for a user with your site. If they become aware you have what they’re looking for, the purpose of SEO is achieved… even if they don’t necessarily engage there and then. 

They will associate their search term, let’s say “Best Marketing Agency in Switzerland right now,” with your brand, and come back to you when a need for your offering arises.

If you understand the concept of SEO, let’s move on.

How much should SEO cost?

SEO written with scrabble pieces

OK, so we’ve established having a Search Engine Optimization strategy is important – but how much does SEO actually cost? What are the industry standards for SEO pricing? Let’s break it down:

Factors Determining the Price of SEO

The price for SEO varies from one business to another, depending on their needs and objectives. There are, however, essential elements of a good SEO strategy that don’t require paying a fortune. 

The main question here is: What exactly do you want to achieve through SEO? The answer is based on two factors: 

  • Duration
  • Challenges 

If you want to achieve challenging goals in a short time span, it will, unsurprisingly, cost more. Lower budgets = longer time to reach the targets- SEO is not a one-time effort. It needs to be sustained and nurtured over time. Any good SEO package worth it’s mettle will be a monthly – or at least an ongoing – package that updates with trends and the constant flow of new content.

Generally a minimum of four months is suggested, with an ideal package lasting 12. This gives time to test and tweak a strategy and establish lifetime value.

Freelance vs. Professional (or agency) SEO

people in marketing office

Frankly, if you find a freelancer who offers to carry out SEO tasks for a low price point (anything under $100 a month is a big no-no according to SEJ) chances are, you won’t get the desired results. Even worse, bad SEO practices can cause Google penalties to be applied to your site, totally wiping out online visibility and ultimately having the opposite to your desired effect.

Hourly fees charged by some freelancers may also cause a simple package to quickly spiral into higher price points with no definitive outcome.

On the other hand, a professional SEO campaign is usually based on different services, trickier to translate in terms of hours. It may seem initially expensive… BUT results are often solid, and as close to guaranteed as you can get in the Digital Marketing sphere. Services offered vary according to elements like the size of the Webseite, keyword competitiveness, third party partners and so forth.

Does a Higher Price Mean Better SEO?

Good news – not necessarily! Especially with Moz finding most SEO packages range between $1100 all the way up to $7500. Instead, depth of research, skill and clear objectives are a much better indication of a good value SEO package. Look for specialists with experience, who can show you which keywords they are ranking and how your competitors fare in comparison. Make sure they’re up-to-date with the latest trends. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. The best service would estimate the cost of SEO after coming up with the right proposal. 

An SEO proposal should provide the following:

  • Complete assessment of the strategy; it’s weaknesses as well as it’s strengths
  • How it can meet the company’s objectives 

Factors Affecting the Price of SEO

What are you actually paying for with SEO? The price generally includes: 

  • Planning
  • Strategy development 
  • Management of the project
  • Monthly implementation
  • Performance tracking

Location can also influence the pricing for SEO. Depending on where the Digital Marketing Agency is located the company will have passive outgoing costs like taxes and salaries which will affect the price of their SEO services. However, the main influencers for SEO pricing are still the business objectives and the timeframe fixed for the strategy. 

Is it Worth Paying For?

To see if an SEO service is worth the price, there is a little tool Small and Medium Enterprises can use. 

  • Firstly, look for quotes that will estimate how many hours the agency will put in to implement an efficient SEO strategy.
  • Secondly, consider how the SEO agency will go about improving the strategy over time, not just as a one-time deal.

Limited-time Packages

To be consistently top-ranking, Webseite content needs to be updated regularly. This is a near sure-fire way to stay looking fresh to search engines! However, the best solution is to invest in ‘SEO packages’ that digital agencies have on offer. 

 For instance, Buzz Factory recommends considering packages of at least 10 hours/month for a period of at least six months. You can also select smaller packages, but the results will take significantly longer to be seen. 

Conclusion

Opened laptop with Google search page

What we have learned about the value of SEO so far:

  • With a compelling SEO strategy, the company will improve its visibility and authority 
  • SEO is an efficient way to generate more traffic to a Webseite and reach a relevant audience
  • By enhancing SEO, a business will rank higher on search engines, and it will be easier for customers to find your products or services and you have a better opportunity to convert to sales.

Thinking About SEO? 

We established that SEO is not cheap. However, it’s value is proven again and again as it is often shown to be more effective than PPC in increasing the revenues of a company. 

  • You can’t get a successful lead generation process in place for your Webseite without investing in digital SEO tools. 
  • However, in isolation it’s not enough – other factors to consider in tandem with SEO are: building a brand, gaining customer loyalty, increasing engagement, growing customer base and more.

At Buzz Factory Agency, we don’t just offer effective SEO packages. Based on your objectives, we make customized SEO packages that align with your budget and needs whilst offering the assurance that you reap the benefits of your SEO investment in all aspects of your digital marketing.

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