I love Instagram. It’s probably our fastest growing platform as a church (and it’s actually the fastest growing platform in general, surpassing Pinterest). Our congregation loves Instagram.
Recently, I’ve been reading numerous growth hacks for Instagram, trying to get our following up to at least 1,000 by the end of 2015. It should be easy to do. I think we (Brentwood Baptist, you can follow us if you want ?) started off the year around 600 and we’re up to 968 today (August 27, 2015).
We have a couple of strategies that we implement. We try to consistently quote our pastor, share worship moments, and show some church members faces. I wrote about that in this post on ChurchMag.
But what I’d like to talk about today is how I managed to lose followers while just trying to nurture the followers that we do have–whoops!
To be honest, at the moment, I’ve only managed to lose 4 followers, but I mean that hurt. Let me tell you what I did so that maybe you won’t do it. It doesn’t work. Trust me.
Here’s What Doesn’t Work
I decided it would be nice if I liked a post from a couple hundred of our followers. If anything, I really believed it would just show them that the church cared about them. However, I think what was conveyed was, “My church is creeping on me. I have a picture of insert some kind of sin but probably not really a sin on there! Unfollow! Private account!”
So while engagement is nice, and totally necessary for personal accounts to grow. It doesn’t work for churches.
Here’s What Does Work
- Engage when the church is engaged.
Someone posts a photo of the church or a church event, or tags the church in a post. Then by all means, engage that post. Comment and like and share emojis all day.
- Post consistently.
Try to post once daily. This is actually pretty hard to do, but with some reminders like Hootsuite or ScheduGram then it’s easier. I wrote a review about ScheduGram for ChurchMag before.
- “Double tap to agree” or get users to tag friends.
These are easy because your simply asking them to do something. Here’s 10 musts from a previous ChurchMag post.
Ok, I know it’s look crazy to have 50 hashtags, but it does work. Download an app like Tagomatic and generate a list of tags for things like #worship or #yourcity and tag away. Try to only tag in the comments and not the description though.
- So what’s not working in Instagram for you?
- What is working?
- Have you found that posting on a certain day or time is better than others?
Let us know in the comments below!