Opening that can of spam: How to handle junk comments on Instagram

by | Oct 25, 2022 | Branding, Digital Marketing, Entrepreneurship, Instagram, Marketing, Media, Need to Know, Optimization, Social Media, Social Media Engagement, Social Media Strategy

There are only three unavoidable things in life: death, taxes, and spam. I can’t help you much with the first two, but I can give you some pointers on the last one!

If you’ve spent much time on social media (which let’s face it, if you’re reading this, you totally have), you’ve probably seen the dozens of low-quality emoji and “DM to promote” comments on popular posts. There’s probably a ton of similar “let’s collaborate” spam in your inbox. 

The problem is that spam isn’t just annoying. It inflates your metrics so that you get misleading info about follows and engagement. A post with 20+ comments seems 🔥 🔥 🔥, but not so much if every one of those comments is just from a bot trying to get eyeballs on someone else’s page. Not only is it a bad experience for your fans, but a ton of spammy comments can actually be a red flag to the algorithm – which might tag your post as spam and bury it. 

There’s no foolproof way to solve spam entirely, but here are some ways to reduce it.

– Delete and block. If you’re a small account and the spam comments are relatively manageable, you can flag the comments as they appear and hit the “delete and block user” option. 

– Use hidden words. Head to your Instagram profile, select “Settings” > “Privacy” > “Hidden words”. Add the words that frequently show up in your spam comments, and voila! They’ll no longer appear on your posts.

– Be selective about hashtags. Certain hashtags invite spam. Narrow down your hashtags to just a few strategic ones on each post to reduce spam and get more solid, authentic engagement. Yes, your overall reach might be lower, but you’ll get better feedback (and the kind of views that might even lead to going viral)

– Set your “tags” to private. If you have a bunch of people tagging you in posts, head to the privacy section of your profile and toggle the “tags” setting so that only people you follow can tag you – or so that you have to approve each tag. 

– Close your inbox. If you’re receiving a ton of DM requests to promote, collaborate or partner, try adjusting your privacy setting so that only people you’re following can message you. Worried about losing leads? Make sure you’re using your CTAs and profile to drive people to your website or newsletter!

Spam happens – it’s a sad and frustrating fact of life. But there are definite ways to nip it in the bud so that your account doesn’t turn into a spammer’s wonderland. Want to see me take on the spammers? Follow me on Instagram and let’s go!