Being authentic is important to attracting and retaining engaged followers, but in an ever-evolving and growing market, how does a photographer effectively plan and maximize Instagram engagement?

We cover what content you should be posting in our Photography SEO & Web Marketing Book in order to increase engagement, but what practices are best for sustaining it? Here are 2 apps to consider:

Focal Mark

The beauty of Instagram is that you can appeal to a multifaceted audience, but while you are creating and posting high-quality content, how do you ensure that it gets the play it deserves?

Focal Mark does a great job at collecting data from within your target area and niche market, making it easier than ever before to engage with your customers! By synthesizing the most explored and trending hashtags into an all-inclusive caption, up to 30 tags, you can gain an inside perspective to what your local market is searching.

Think of it this way: #photography is an over-saturated tag that is frequently updated so the chances an audience will see your posts at the top, or at all, are very slim. However, view a newer trending tag like #lostinLA and suddenly you’re at the forefront, able to interact with an evolving and growing audience.

Focalmark provides you with a single category or mixed categories of hashtags so you can choose to focus your customer engagement in one or two specified niche markets. The collection is consistent, updates regularly, and provides an evolving analytic to provide a more comprehensive view of your target market. Even though it seems like a dream, the phone/desktop based app does have a few downfalls.

Although we can select our region, we can’t specify our location. For example, SLR Lounge is located in Orange County, however, the closest area we can select is Los Angeles – more than 50 miles away. This will provide us with newer, trending tags like #losangelesgrammers but it may be too concentrated on our LA audience. On the flip side, by using these niche tags we can engage in some of the trendiest circles.

[REWIND: Use Instagram to Boost your Business]

When to Post

With a Business Profile, we gain a snapshot of who our customer can be based on location, interests or behaviors. But what about the followers we already have? Well, that’s where Instagram falls short and where WhenToPost picks up the slack.

Take this post from Lin & Jirsa (above), we can see a basic overview of our audience demographic: gender and age, location, etc. However, we’ve noticed instead of changing with the ebb and flow, the analytics are stagnant. WhenToPost provides invaluable information for each demographic based on your current audience.

Log-in and WhentoPost analyzes your Instagram followers for you, in exchange, you’ll get details as to when the largest amount of your followers are browsing their feeds. Not only have these real-time metrics helped us but with daily pop-up notifications, there’s more incentive to be spontaneous and still effectively engage the people we want to pay attention.

[REWIND: 10 Tips to Increase Instagram Followers]

Bonus Tip

Want to declutter your posts? Opt to paste Focal Mark’s hashtags into the first comment rather caption. This will hide the first comment allowing for a clean caption to follow your post.

Be a part of the SLR Premium community and gain access to our Photography SEO & Web Marketing Book. It’s an incredible resource available to help you navigate through the latest Instagram marketing tips and tricks to grow your business.