Engagement rate: What is it and why is it so important? An Instagram engagement rate (ER) is calculated by the sum of likes and comments divided by total followers, multiplied by 100. It validates a real and interested audience, which is crucial in these days of follower fraud.
Whether you’re a brand or a content creator, a strong engagement rate is a sign that you’re doing something right.
“Aside from proving that a piece of content is resonating with the audience, engagement rate also signals that followers feel comfortable speaking directly with an influencer — communicating with them more as a friend and creating a true relationship,” explains Social Studies Brand Experience Manager Vienna Hintze.
Hintze notes that the team looks for a baseline of 2% when researching content partners. But there are outliers: College creators are known for sky-high rates, and our recent research indicates that the drag queen community is very, very engaged.
Here, a few content creators let us in on how they maintain healthy rates, with useful tips to implement into your own strategy. Note: Engagement rates listed below are 30-day averages.
Put the Time In
“On average I like to spend around 2-4 hours [a day] with my followers, either replying to messages or doing a live stream to engage my following. It builds a sense of community and friendship.” —
, drag queen creator, 7% engagement rate
“It’s important to be a real person and engage, so I usually won’t post a photo unless I have at least an hour to respond to comments, answer questions and like and comment on my followers’ latest posts right back–it’s always fun to return the love.” — @farahpink , lifestyle creator, 9% engagement rate
Get To Know Your Audience
“I really strive to make genuine connections and friends through the content I post. It doesn’t matter if you’re young or old, living down the street from me or on the other side of the world—if you regularly interact with my posts, chances are, I know you by username (at the very least), and we’re probably on a first name basis.” —
, college creator, 22% engagement rate
Be of Service
“Long before engagement became such an important metric, I always tried to be informative. I posted recipes, makeup reviews, hair tutorials etc. and from it, my page started to be more of a community than anything else.” — @farahpink