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How to Get on the Instagram Explore Page

You’re a brand new baby business and you’ve set up the most aesthetically pleasing, engaging, valuable Instagram feed. But with only a few hundred followers, you’re not getting your message out very far. And, as much as we love mom’s support, we need a whole lot more engagement on our posts.

So, what’s the secret? How can a brand build a big social media following? Unfortunately, money is the driving force of most social media, and many brands churn out the big bucks in exchange for targeted ads. But luckily, there are still ways to improve your organic reach (i.e. how many people your content appears for without you having to pay for it). Enter: the Instagram ‘Explore’ page.

Instagram’s ‘Explore’ page uses a complicated algorithm to show IG users content that they might be interested in from accounts they don’t already follow—that means it’s unique for each individual user. It includes recommended photos, videos, reels, and even stories. According to Hootsuite, this algorithm is based on:

  • The accounts you already follow

  • The content that people you follow like

  • The types of posts you engage with often

  • Posts with high engagement

How does one get on Instagram’s coveted ‘Explore’ page? Here are a few strategies to make it happen:

  • Hone in on your target market - You need to go beyond the audience that already follows you. What are the demographics and psychographics of the market you want to target? Use your own brand’s “Explore” page to see similar content. What do you notice about the content, captions, reels, tone, and aesthetic of the posts? What does all of that tell you about who the content is being created for? You can use this newfound knowledge to better tailor your own content to reach people beyond your current following.

  • Make your content engaging - Your content shouldn’t just be there. What are you asking the viewer to do? You should either have a clear CTA (call to action) like “Click the link in bio” or “BOGO by 8/31” or inspire your followers to like, comment, share, or engage with the post another way. And, engagement is a 2-way street. Make sure you’re responding to comments and DMs, answering questions, and getting involved in your brand’s online conversation.

  • Switch up your content - Instagram is now so much more than just photos. Now, the app enables you to share photos, videos, and stories. Mixing up your content is not only more engaging for your followers, it’ll get you more ‘points’ when it comes to the algorithm.

  • Figure out ‘Best Time to Post’ - Many social media management applications will amalgamate your account’s ‘best time to post’ (meaning, the day and time that your content typically receives the most engagement). This can be based on factors including your core audience’s demographics and psychographics, your brand’s particular products and services, and what kind of content you’re producing. Posting at this ‘optimal’ hour will boost the eyeballs on your posts and maximize your engagement.

  • Optimize tagging - You don’t have to go overboard, but you do have to be strategic when it comes to tags. Tags should be relevant whether they’re hashtags (#), geotags (location), or account tags. Appropriate tags help for both discovery and categorization when it comes to the algorithm for the ‘Explore’ page. We’re of the belief that a mix of broad (#socialmedia) and niche hashtags (#explorepageoptimization) will yield the best results.

  • Collaborate with others - Partnering with other brands and influencers is a great way to build awareness and have a better chance at landing your post on the ‘Explore’ page. You can even create a joint post that will appear identically on both your accounts.

At the end of the day, it is all a crazy complex algorithm and, however much we want to try to hack it, we’re all somewhat slaves to the machine. But, implementing the above strategies will go beyond upping your chances of landing on the ‘Explore’ page. They’ll boost your brand awareness, build stronger relationships with your current followers, and challenge you to come up with creative new ideas to share your brand with the world.

Want someone to walk this path alongside you? That’s what we live for! Click here to schedule a discovery session with Media À La Carte and find out how we can help you make the most of your social media marketing journey.

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