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How To Fix Low Instagram Engagement Using Carousels

Have you ever made a post, packed full of valuable information, just for it to be ignored?

I have. It can be very discouraging. Luckily I have made over 100 Instagram carousels in the last few months and I'm about to tell you the secret formula to high performing posts.

Creating content that goes viral on Instagram doesn't involve a hack. It doesn't involve a secret about the algorithm that only the gurus know. In fact it's actually quite simple.

Good content.

I know, that term is used a lot. You might of heard it from hundreds of Instagram teachers, but still not really understand it.

Before we get into the tips, this video from Dave Talas explains Instagram carousels in more detail:

In this post you'll learn exactly what makes content 'good' in 3 simple steps.

Let's get into the tips!

Step 1: Creating the right kind of content

Recently Instagram has been flooded with low quality carousel posts, in hope of hitting the algorithm and going viral.

Luckily for you that doesn't happen, and instead these posts are lost in a sea of failed accounts.

To diagnose the reasons behind Instagram's confusing ranking system, let's take a look at what the algothm is designed to do:

The Instagram algorithm is designed to keep users on the platform.

It's that simple.

So how does the algorithm keep users on the platform longer?

This is the easiest way of understanding how it works:

The algorithm is monitoring your interests all the time, so that it can show you content it believes you will like — naturally this makes you want to spend more time on the platform. It does this for all 1+ billion users on Instagram.

Think of it like this:

If you see content that suddenly isn’t interesting, your attention is lost and you move on to something else. Therefore, Instagram’s algorithm is always analyzing your behaviour, and every other individual users behaviour too.

And then it shows you what it believes you’re interested in.

Using this information, we can work out what goes viral and what gets lost at the bottom of explore.

How to understand the Instagram algorithm in 2020 by Squared Academy
The Instagram algorithm is always changing

This is the most important factor to keep in mind when creating viral Instagram posts.

Content tip 01: Make your Instagram post swipe-able



Make your Instagram post go viral by Squared academy

Instagram measures how long users spend looking at your post, this is an important ranking factor to hitting the explore page.

That's also why carousels perform better than regular images.

Your number one goal should be keeping users on your content for as long as possible.

That means using all 10 slides, keeping the text on each slide very brief, incoporating arrows and diagrams, etc...

Test your carousel by swiping through, checking if the information can easily consumed in 1-3 seconds.

So, you've finally finished creating your Instagram post.

You've crafted a catchy headline, a meaningful message, and a clear call-to-action. What's next?

A quick and easy way of levelling up your content game, is adding text highlights.

Content tip 02: Add text highlights

Instagram growth course by Squared Academy

Your goal when making instagram carousels should be to try provide as much value as quickly as possible.

This means making it easier for people to read is crucial.

We've found that adding text highlights is the most effect method.

Underlining key phases. Making words bold and italic. Changing the colour of important information.

This will allow people to quickly read through and gather the main points.

Content tip 03: Slim down your post

People scroll through hundreds of Instagram posts everyday.

Overloading your post with information can actually do more harm than good.

This is because people are lazy. They don't like reading.

While your post may include valuable information, nobody is going to read it unless you make it super simple.

One way of achieving this, is every time you need to put a comma in your post, use a new slide. Users should be able to read through each slide in 1-3 seconds.

Another way of slimming down your post is to try to fit all the information in your carousel into one slide, if it fits you're good to go.

If it doesn't fit try removing some text and adding images or diagrams.

We wanted to test this. So we conducted an experiment.

After posting 3 different posts, all in one week. We could analyse the performance based on how many words we included.

The results were shocking.

How to increase your Instagram carousel engagement
How to increase engagement on Instagram

The number of words was directly proportional to the engagement!

So, what's the key takeaways from all this?

- Your goal should be keeping people on your post for as long as possible

- Create your posts so that it encourages users to keep swiping

- Include text highlights to make reading your post easier

- Slim down your post, the less words the better.

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