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Social Media: Best Practices: Getting Engagement

Advice and best practices for library social media use

Acquiring Followers

Here are some ways you can acquire followers for your account:

  • Follow as many campus organizations as possible. These students want their content to be viewed just as much as you do. If you engage with the organization, it is likely that some students from the organization will engage with you as well.
  • Follow faculty and staff.
  • Ask your student workers if they'd be willing to follow you and engage with your content.
  • See if you can take over the main campus Instagram for a day. Instagram takeovers are a great way to promote your account.
  • Follow all the hashtags for your library. When someone mentions you, add the post to your story, repost the post, or comment on the post, as appropriate.
    • To follow a hashtag, click on a hashtag from a post and click the blue follow button.
    • Reposting: You'll need a special app to repost posts into your feed, but not to post them to your stories. There are a variety of apps available for both Apple and Android. These apps will walk you through the process of reposting.
  • You can follow other libraries, bookstores and other such organizations and they will likely follow you back. However, consider what the goal of your Instagram account is. Your target audience is probably not these people. However, more followers who engage with your content will encourage Instagram to show it to more people. So you should aim for a healthy balance here.
  • Want to follow other PALNI libraries? Here is a list of PALNI libraries on instagram:


Once you convert your Instagram account to a Professional account, you will have access to statistics about your account, called Insights. You can access these by going to your profile and clicking the Insights button. This will show you information about the people who are viewing and engaging with your posts. One metric to look for here is that your audience age matches the age of your students. This will be solid evidence that you are reaching your target demographic.