Today, we’re going to be talking about a highly requested topic: how to get on the Instagram Explore Page! Contrary to common belief, there are no secret hashtags to improve your chances, and you definitely don’t need a humongous following or a blue checkmark next to your name.
First, we should cover what the Explore Page is before getting into strategies to show up there (and why it can help you gain more leads). The Instagram Explore Page is a feature page that aggregates content based on what the algorithm believes your interests are. The content shown is from accounts you don’t already follow, so you can explore what else is out there — and that’s the real purpose of it! A page to help you find new pages.
So I just mentioned the algorithm, and you’ve probably heard about how frustrating and confusing it is. And I won’t sugarcoat it — the algorithm is a hassle because it can change without notice, and Instagram has never confirmed how it works. However, the current data demonstrate that the Explore Page algorithm figures out what kind of content you are interested in based on the type of content you interact with. So if you interact with content about wedding day hacks, for example, you’ll likely see a lot of wedding posts on your Explore Page. Or in my and Ira’s (my wonderful husband and business partner) case, I see a lot of baby videos and he sees a lot of ‘fail’ videos because that’s what we interact with and search on Instagram.
Knowing how it works, you can probably guess by now that the reason people want to get on the Explore Page is to increase their reach! And the higher your reach, the greater your chances are for gaining leads, who can then turn into paying clients.
Now that we know what the Explore Page is and how it works, let’s get into the three hacks to increase your chances of getting on the most coveted page on Instagram!
1. Know your audience (and speak to them)
This first hack doubles as a prerequisite to creating Reels because you need to know your audience before dabbling in any other strategy. There are a couple of parts to figuring out who your audience is: demographics and psychoanalysis. Knowing these two aspects can dramatically increase your chances of getting on the Explore Page because when you can speak to your audience, they’re much more likely to stay engaged. Engagement tells the algorithm that your content is useful, and that’s what gets pushed to the Explore Page.
So what are your audience’s demographics? This one is fairly straightforward to figure out. Simply go to your Instagram profile, click the hamburger menu in the top right-hand corner, and tap on statistics. From there, you can readily see what time your audience is most active, what age range they’re in, whether they’re male or female, what cities they live in, etc.
Next is knowing your audience’s psychographics, which requires a bit more in-depth research. Psychographics tell you the motivations and underlying goals of your audience. For example, do you know what your audience’s pain points are? Are there pieces of information you know but they don’t know? How can you add value to their lives? What tips, tricks, and hacks do they want to know to make their lives easier? The answers to these questions take longer to figure out than the first aspect, but it’s well worth the digging so you can speak to their interests.
Of course, this requires you to do some digging into your brand to find out who you want your ideal client to be. But for the sake of this blog post, we won’t go into too much detail about that. However, if you still want to learn how to find your ideal client, you’ll love this podcast episode about defining your brand with Wendy Goelz Kopasz!
2. Use Reels consistently!
Are you tired of me talking about Reels yet? No? Good! Because they are still the easiest way to get seen on Instagram by people who don’t already follow you. And you all already know that I wouldn’t preach so much about a strategy that doesn’t get you a real (pun totally intended) return on your investment.
It’s a brilliant strategy because Reels is still a fairly new tool and Instagram is prioritizing accounts that use it to spread its use. As little as two Reels per week into your overall content can exponentially grow your engagement, reach, and ideal followers.
Maybe right now you’re thinking, “Brandee, aren’t Reels about being super creative, and don’t you have to dance? I can’t do that!” Let me be the first to tell you that you don’t have to dance or even move on screen! I created a guide, the Reel Traffic Toolkit, as a one-stop-shop for everything you need to start creating Instagram Reels. This includes how to make Reels, how to batch a month’s worth of content in an hour (we like efficiency here), content hacking, how to repurpose Reels, and more! Access it by clicking here.
3. Use relevant hashtags
The final tip is to use relevant hashtags. I know hashtags can feel like the most tedious task in the world, which is why I suggest creating a group of hashtags, leaving room for five or six hashtags you can add later that are more specific. With a group, you take the manual labor out of it because you can easily copy and paste it onto any post while still keeping your post relevant.
So what do you fill in the other five or six spots with? One hashtag can be location-based. For example, my wedding planning company, Blush, is in Orlando so I could include the hashtag #orlandoweddingplanner. You can also add two to three hashtags that are very niche for the content you’re posting. For example, maybe a wedding venue you’re working at has a hashtag, or the bride and groom have a hashtag.
Pro-tip: Keep this process simple and don’t overthink it! The key to hashtags is using words your customers are searching for, so simple is best.
Go out there and hack the Instagram Explore Page!
Now you should feel prepared to go out there and hack your way into the Instagram Explore Page! Is there anything you found most surprising? Or is there anything you learned from this post? I’d love to know, so screenshot this blog post and tag me on Instagram stories with all your thoughts!