Written by Holly Phillips

March 14, 2022

Instagram comments can be a double-edged sword. While it’s great to have an open line of communication with followers, it can also be challenging to remain consistently responsive. When you ignore social media comments, it can send the wrong impression to Instagram followers and affect your reputation on the platform. 

As a result, many businesses have turned to Instagram Automation by ManyChat to stay engaged with comments. In this article, we’ll explore the benefits of Automation, how to set up automatic comments, and other areas of Instagram you can automate.

How can automated comments help boost engagement?

At ManyChat, we know that responding to Instagram comments can be a hassle and a significant time commitment, so we created the Comments Automation feature to help. 

Comments Automation is one of the most powerful features in Instagram DM Automation. It allows you to extend customer engagement beyond just “hearting” every user comment without manual effort. 

Comments Automation automatically sends an Instagram direct message to a user who leaves a comment on one of your posts. This feature is a great way to pull Instagram users into your ManyChat flows and CRM. 

Use Comments Automation to control which posts receive an automated response, the words or phrases in a post that will trigger a response comment, and, of course, the message or conversation to send via a DM. 

How to set up Comments Automation

There are two ways to set up Comments Automation once you have a ManyChat account. If you need to set up the flow, head to Growth Tools in ManyChat’s dashboard. From Growth Tools, click New Growth Tool, scroll to the bottom, and click Instagram Comments.

If you already have an established flow you want to use, you can set up Comments Automation from the flow itself. The Instagram comment serves as the starting step for the flow, and you can create a giveaway or another flow from there. 

Once your Comments Automation is set up, look at our best practices and pro tips. To learn even more, take our free Instagram Automation video course

Other benefits of automated comments on Instagram

Implementing automated comments will make your digital marketing efforts more efficient and adds additional benefits. 

Satisfying the Instagram algorithm

Instagram’s algorithm determines what content users will see in the app. One factor the algorithm uses to prioritize content is engagement (i.e., how many people interact with your post by liking, sharing, or commenting on it). 

When you respond to an Instagram comment, you not only show customers you care, but you also send positive signals to the algorithm. 

Showing customer appreciation

Replying to Instagram comments shows that you appreciate your followers (who may also be your customers). 

It’s important to understand this, because when people visit your Instagram profile they’ll see that you respond to comments and that you’re active on the app. This can come in handy when customers have a question or a customer service issue. Engagement also sends a positive message to prospective customers, because they know if they encounter an issue with your product, they’ll have an easy way to contact you.

Other actions you can automate on Instagram

At ManyChat, we’ve created several Automation features for Instagram that keep users and brands engaged. Some of these features include:

Keywords

Keywords are words and phrases that trigger specific actions or responses to users in Instagram DM Automation. You can trigger messages and entire conversations when an Instagram (IG) user messages you with a specific predetermined keyword or phrase. Use a call to action (CTA) to encourage conversations from IG Stories or give users a way to initiate your Automation, e.g., “Type ‘help!’ if you want to speak to a team member right away.”

Say you’re running an Instagram promotion for an ebook download. If you use a CTA such as “DM us the word ‘ebook’ to get this free download,” interested viewers can type “ebook” into Instagram Messenger, and ManyChat will automatically send it to them.

Story Mention Replies

This Automation is triggered every time a user mentions your account in an Instagram Story, so keep it simple or personalize it to your liking. 

For example, you could set your Story Mention Reply to say, “Thanks for the mention!” If you want your message to be varied among recipients, set up a Randomizer block that shuffles through different types of thank you messages (or any type of message) to a chosen percentage of your audience. 

Our advice is to personalize your Story Mention Replies by using the information you’ve collected from your customers. Say you’ve tagged customers as “dog” or “cat” people and you’re running a promotion, but only want to offer it to “dog” people.

In your Story Mention Reply (located in Flow Builder), your very first step is to select a Condition, which checks ManyChat’s CRM to see if someone is tagged as a “dog” person. If they are, it will send just the “dog” people a coupon. 

You can choose not to send a message or say “Thanks for the mention” to the “cat” people. 

Conversation Starters

Conversation Starters are pre-filled, customizable buttons that appear to Instagram users who have never chatted with your business. Users don’t even have to send a message; when they open the message window, the buttons appear. Then they can tap one of the buttons to receive your predefined response.

Because they only appear to new customers, Conversation Starters are great for answering frequently asked questions (FAQs) and giving customers immediate answers. 

Buy Button 

With the Buy Button, you can show customers your products/offerings and give them the ability to purchase directly within the IG conversation without going to a website. 

Integrate with a payment gateway in a few easy steps using Stripe or Paypal and watch the sales come in. 

Instagram Live Comments trigger

The Instagram Live Comments trigger allows brands to send an automated DM reply when viewers comment during an Instagram Live.

You can now quickly start a DM conversation with viewers who actively engage during your Live in real time and at scale, nurturing your audience via automated DM funnels to convert them into customers.

Automation is a solution for anyone looking to manage Instagram comments, boost engagement, and increase ROI within the app. Even smaller Instagram accounts can benefit from Automation, thanks to improved account efficiency that leads to increased growth. 

Ready to get started with Comments Automation?

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The contents of this blog were independently prepared and are for informational purposes only. The opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of ManyChat or any other party. Individual results may vary.