Instagram can be a highly targeted, visual marketing tool for your brand, as well as a way to establish a devoted following that grows alongside your company.
Over 500 million people use Instagram every day, making it one of the most popular social media platforms.
However, much like any other social media platform, there are appropriate, inappropriate, and creative ways to utilize your Instagram presence.
We'll teach you how to develop your Instagram profile and enhance interaction while building a large following over time—one that's made up of real fans, not bots or phony followers—in this post.
How to get more followers on Instagram
There are 17 strategies that will help you obtain more Instagram followers consistently:
Let's take a closer look at how to use each strategy to increase your Instagram followers.
1- Incorporate Reels into your content mix
Reels are short videos that you may share with your Instagram followers. Audio, effects and creative tools are all available. To reach new audiences, you may post them on your feed and publicly through Explore.
For brands, reels are uncharted terrain. Kristie Dash, Instagram's beauty partnerships manager, said in a Glossy forum that Reels are still a new method to publish content and that there is no one-size-fits-all approach for success. However, she recommends that the following suggestions acquire traction:
Keep content unique and trend drive: Identify Instagram and TikTok trends and put your twist on them. This improves the likelihood that your Reels will go viral and be seen by a larger audience.
Make content relatable and simple: Every Reel does not have to be a production. Videos of lower quality can perform as well as, if not better than, professionally made Reels.
Educate your audience: In your Reels, strike a balance between instruction and fun.
Right now, reels should be a top focus for you. It's ideal real estate for new fans to discover your brand.Kristen Dash, Beauty Partnerships Manager, Instagram
TBS Marketing's Trilce Jirón Garro, the proprietor of a social media marketing business, agrees. “Don't rely on Reels content to sell your items. Facts should be shared. Advice about the industry you work in. “Entertain the audience,” she says.
Trilce recommends that both new and established firms use interesting Reels as part of their Instagram strategy. “Reels provide everyone with the potential to reach out to new audiences.” Because Reels material is lo-fi, there is no learning curve. Creators may also create community-driven content that earns trust, following, and purchases over time.”
Trilce also likes the Instagram Insights Tool that Reels has offered. “Reels are now an essential aspect of any Instagram marketing plan. Reels analytics solutions have made it simple to collect metrics and analyze data to determine whether or not your Reels are effective. Now you know exactly what your audience loves and hates when it comes to posting Reels and what calls to action they respond to.”
You can discover patterns and understand distinct surges in engagement that impact your exposure on the platform using Reels Insights. As a result, you'll be able to produce higher-quality material that will attract even more interaction and followers.
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2- Cross-promote content
Posting comparable information across many social media networks is known as cross-promotion. It's a time- and resource-saving strategy. It's also a good way to raise brand exposure and develop an Instagram audience.
Users are spending more time with video and entertainment apps on their mobile devices, with video content on social media platforms accounting for the most growth. You want to increase the reach of your Instagram content, whether it's a short video or a long instructional.
The Christmas dance challenge by Justin Bieber is a superb example of excellent cross-posting. The Canadian artist shared the same dance challenge on TikTok and Instagram over the 2020 holiday season. His video short earned 9.8 million likes on TikTok. On Instagram, the identical post earned 4.8 million likes. By sharing the same video on two distinct sites, he was able to reach a larger audience.
TikTok organically cross-pollinates with Instagram and YouTube, according to Nadya Okamoto, founder of the lifestyle period brand August. “As we've expanded on TikTok since August, we've also grown to 175,000 followers on Instagram,” she explains in an interview with Modern Retail. Using several channels to actively post has “influenced our total cost of acquisitions to be incredibly effective,” allowing the business to move away from paid marketing as the primary acquisition channel.
Cross-posting on TikTok isn't the only option. YouTube Shorts and Pinterest Stories both work nicely with the Instagram Reels format. It's worth noting that Reels with a TikTok watermark will not be promoted by Instagram's algorithm. If you're going to cross-post material from Instagram to other platforms, make sure it's of good quality and doesn't use watermarks to promote a rival site.
3- Curate your profile grid
The majority of your followers will stick with you not because of what you've posted in the past, but because of what you've promised to post in the future. Your audience is curious about what they'll get if they click the Follow button.
Having a feed with a regular theme and publishing schedule may help you create a following just as much as any of the other growth tactics we've discussed so far. Even a basic pattern can captivate new followers if it's communicated to anybody who comes on your page at first sight.
Consider your Instagram bio and the previous nine posts as your initial Instagram impression. Do they use personality, filters, colors, or layout to effectively portray some kind of consistency? Does the clickable link always take users to the same homepage? Or are you also connecting to interesting and enjoyable content?
The grid layout is an often overlooked approach to being creative with the looks of your feed while also giving a rhythm and consistency to your publishing strategy that's worth pursuing.
By concentrating on turning visitors into followers, producing text graphics or other material with a faster turnaround, and simplifying the entire production of their Instagram content, many accounts who use this method can spend less time developing content.
You can easily plan out and arrange the appearance and structure of your feed using a service like Later. Letterfolk is just one example of how creative some firms can be with their Instagram page design.
Your Instagram account acts as a billboard for your business. It's a customer's initial point of contact with you, and it encapsulates your brand's soul.Trilce Jiron, TBS Marketing
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4- Work with brand ambassadors
You don't want to pay a celebrity influencer a lot of money to promote your brand? Works with brand ambassadors that have a few hundred to a few thousand followers on social media. Ambassadors are people that sincerely believe in your company and will spread the word to their friends.
Sarah Flint, a luxury shoe company, says its brand ambassador program, which includes over 500 women, has been a success. Each ambassador gets a unique discount code that, after five new customers, entitles them to a free pair of Sarah Flint shoes.
Ambassadors such as HollyChollon vouch for the brand's quality and comfort. Sarah Flint's customers will recognize her postings as genuine and real. This aids in the growth of the brand's Instagram following and sales.
5- Get follows from your loyalty program
Retailers are increasingly creating loyalty programs to entice customers to shop with their brand over that of a competitor. Brands like Sephora and Blume have benefited from it. Brands are using loyalty programs to reward consumers who follow them on Instagram, for example.
When Rebecca Minkoff started her rewards program, RM Rewards, she provided customers the option of earning points by following the business on Instagram. Blume, for example, sees the usefulness in rewarding Instagram followers. Blume Bucks may be earned by making a friend on Instagram rather than Facebook or Twitter.
6- Market through your personal Instagram account
Growing your account and becoming an influencer is another popular approach to boosting your Instagram following. Increase brand awareness, follower numbers, and sales by utilizing both the corporate and your accounts. Pro tip: You can use this strategy to enhance your numbers on TikTok as well.
For fashion label ANINE BING, it's a winning strategy. In addition to the brand's Instagram profile, the company's creator uses her personal Instagram page, which has over one million followers, to generate interaction and visibility.
Anine brings her fans into her design office, walks them through the design process, and even solicits comments from them during the process. Anine also talks about her personal life and major achievements, offering fans a glimpse behind the scenes of their favorite designer's life.
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7- Get on feature accounts
Instagram feature accounts are pages dedicated to curating the greatest content on a certain topic. They're like an industry's “best of” photo diaries. Some of the featured accounts have a sizable audience. It is possible that if you are placed on the account, you will gain new Instagram followers.
Every genre has its feature account: travel, fashion, photography, and so on. For example, with over 6.1 million followers, @discoverearth curates exciting travel material from throughout the world.
8- Use the right hashtags
Your Instagram objective is to connect with your present audience regularly while also increasing the number of actual followers you have. The first condition may be met by posting new, intriguing, and engaging photographs, but hashtagging your photos will help you expand quickly. Hashtagging allows users looking for certain phrases to quickly locate your photographs.
So, how do you choose which hashtags to use? Users on Instagram, as on Twitter and other social media platforms, prefer certain hashtags over others. You're significantly more likely to reach new people and get noticed if you include popular Instagram hashtags in your images.
These were the top 20 Instagram hashtags at the time of writing:
You're probably accurate if you look at this list and say, “But none of those relate to my products or brand.”
Using hashtags is one thing, using the right tags is completely different.
Popular tags, such as the ones listed above, will almost certainly result in more engagement and likes. They will not, however, result in more long-term engagement, new interested followers, or, most crucially, sales.
You'll need to identify and utilize the most relevant hashtags if you want to correctly tag your photographs. This entails conducting thorough research to ensure that you're choosing hashtags that not only define your business but are also popular on Instagram.
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To begin, utilize a free online tool like IconoSquare or Webstagram to locate relevant hashtags.
By looking for essential hashtags closely linked to my brand on Webstagram, I was able to locate relevant, related, and popular hashtags for my men's accessories business.
I was able to get the following list of additional keyword hashtags along with the number of times they have been used by Googling the hashtag #MensFashion (i.e., their popularity).
If you search for any of your target keywords directly in the Instagram app, you may see more relevant hashtags and their popularity.
You'll want to repeat this activity, experimenting with various phrases that represent your business and items and expanding your hashtag keyword list as you go.
Keep in mind that each Instagram post is limited to 30 hashtags. Furthermore, the most popular phrases may vary over time, so check your hashtag keywords every few months to ensure you're utilizing the most relevant ones.
You may also borrow hashtag ideas from rivals or comparable accounts with the sort of following you desire, but in the end, you'll want to come up with hashtag groupings that are relevant to your account.
Pro-tip #1: Here's a strategy I employ in my e-commerce ventures. I've analyzed the most popular associated Instagram hashtags for each product and product category in my businesses. I created 15 to 20 popular hashtags for each product category I sell, as well as a foundation of five to ten popular tags that reflect my brand and product offering. Finally, I compiled a list of prominent local-specific hashtags relevant to my business.
Brand keyword hashtags:
HT: #mybrandname #mensfashion #mensaccessories #mensgoods #fashion #mensstyle #instafashion #menswear
Product category keyword hashtags:
HT: #bugatchisocks #happysocks #corgisocks #socks #sockswag #socksoftheday #sockgame #sockswagg #socksofinstagram #happysockday #sockwars #funsocks #happysockday
Location-specific keyword hashtags:
HT: #Toronto #TorontoFashion #TorontoFashionBloggers
On Evernote, all of these keyword hashtag groups are saved on a page. When I'm on the road, I can quickly and easily publish a fresh Instagram photograph that is optimized for the most relevant keywords.
To share with each photo, simply open my Evernote and copy my regular brand-, product-, and location-specific hashtags. You can store caption templates for saving hashtag groupings in several Instagram scheduling apps.
Researching, sorting, and preserving the most relevant and popular hashtags ahead of time will save you time in the long run, enhance your interaction, and help you get new followers.
Pro-tip #2: If you've been using Instagram for a long and feel like you've been missing out on all of these possibilities to grow your following with keyword hashtags, don't worry. You may still leave a remark with your fresh hashtag keyword lists and wait for the likes and followers to come in.
Using hashtags in Instagram stories
Hashtagging Instagram posts is a given, but you should also utilize hashtags in your Instagram Stories to increase the likelihood of being noticed by those who follow that hashtag.
For a chance to be included in a hashtag story, you may use hashtag stickers (available in the Instagram Stickers option when creating a Story) or just hashtag directly in your descriptions.
Now that hashtags can be followed, your Instagram Stories may be seen by both those who are following the hashtag and those who are simply checking it out.
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9- Post at the right times
To obtain more Instagram followers, you need to think about the timing of your posts in addition to employing the right hashtags and filters.
A focused strategy entails examining what has and has not worked in the past for you. You may receive a full analysis of your posting history vs engagement by going to IconoSquare's optimization area. The ideal times of the day and days of the week to post will also be highlighted in this report.
When you generally post media, the black rings show such. When your community has interacted, light grey rings appear. The light grey circles with the largest diameters signify the optimum times for you to submit.
Instagram analytics for business accounts, available under the Followers column, may also provide a wealth of information for free.
You might want to use a social media scheduling service to automatically publish your content at times when your audience is most active.
10- Steal your competitors’ followers
Visiting your closest rivals' Instagram accounts and connecting with their audiences is one of the finest strategies to find and acquire new followers. Simply by following your rivals, these folks have already expressed an interest in the things you provide.
So, how can you efficiently steal the followers of your competitors? By talking to them. You may communicate with Instagram users in a variety of ways, and the more effort you put in, the more followers and repeat engagement you'll get.
On Instagram, there are three categories of engagement:
- Follow a user
- Like a photo
- Comment on a photo
If you want to add some personality to your content, don't be scared to include a few emojis.
11- Pay for sponsored posts and product reviews
All of your optimized Instagram postings are wonderful, but if you want to grow your Instagram following, you need to use influencer marketing to expose your business to a larger audience.
So, how do you go about doing that? To begin with, unlike the other methods for increasing Instagram followers discussed above, this one is typically not free. It is, nonetheless, valuable if done appropriately.
To get started, establish a list of influential accounts in your niche. If you offer beauty items, for example, you'll want to target significant accounts from beauty bloggers.
If you're not currently following these accounts, you'll need to do so. One of the best approaches is to utilize Webstagram (as previously mentioned) and search for some of the closest hashtag keywords you found at the start of this piece. When you search for your keywords on Instagram, it will not only display you relevant terms, but also the top Instagram accounts that use those keywords.
There are a couple of things to look for in the profiles results:
- A large following—usually 20,000 to 200,000
- An email address in the profile
If the profile has an email address, the account is likely accessible to sponsored posts or shoutouts in sponsored Stories.
You should send them an email to inquire about their sponsored post price. In general, depending on the size of the following, I've discovered that the average fee is roughly $20 to $50 for every post.
If you're offering a one-of-a-kind or unique product, you might want to try sending it to the influencer for review and posting. The stronger the engagement and response, the more natural and less advertisement-like the image.
To gain more Instagram followers, you don't necessarily need influencers with a large following, but rather ones with a high engagement rate (likes and comments relative to follower count), which several influencer markets may give.
12- Use geotags to boost local discovery
You can also make your Instagram posts and Stories more discoverable by identifying your location—either the city you're in or the area where the photo or video was taken—instead of using hashtags.
Locations have their own Instagram feed, as well as a Story and hashtags, which you can add to by using the location sticker in your own Stories.
Local companies should maximize the use of location tags by routinely adding to these feeds and connecting with postings from potential consumers who are physically in the area.
13- Organize your Stories into Highlights
When a potential follower comes on your company profile, you just have a few seconds to persuade them to become a follower.
Using your profile's Highlights feature to organize your Instagram Stories in a way that expresses what your account is about is one approach to achieve this.
Highlights may be utilized to give Stories a second life and motivate people to follow you so they don't miss out on future Stories because Stories have a 24-hour lifespan.
To increase your Instagram followers, use Story Highlights to:
- Creating trailers that give a taste of your account's content
- Organizing your Stories into topics (for example, travel narratives, places you've visited)
- Using photos and videos to explain your offerings
14- Ask for more followers
It may seem self-evident, but it bears repeating: don't be hesitant to urge your audience to follow you on occasion.
You may invite viewers to follow you for more material in the same way that YouTubers urge their viewers to follow them at the conclusion of their videos.
People may like what you post on Instagram but need a little shove before they follow you.
You can do the same thing in your Instagram captions and include it into your content by selling what your audience will get if they follow you or hinting at upcoming stuff they won't want to miss.
15- Run a giveaway
When a user tags a friend, it's one of the finest sorts of comments you can get on any social media post, not just Instagram. Not only do these comments boost your post's engagement, which helps it rank higher in the Instagram algorithm, but each tag introduces you to a new audience member who found you through a suggestion and might become a follower.
Posting relevant information that calls for 1:1 sharing is one approach to foster this behavior (e.g., a gym meme that asks you to tag a friend who skips leg day). However, offering a giveaway that encourages your audience to tag a friend and follow your account is a more dependable method.
Follow Instagram's promotion standards as well as any legal restrictions in your country of operation for hosting an Instagram contest.
For ideas, consider Philip Kingsley's popular product giveaway, which encourages consumers to follow its account and tag a friend for a chance to win a collection.
16- Share user-generated content
User-generated content (UGC) is any sort of material that you curate from your fans or followers, such as videos, images, reviews, audio, and more. It's a must-have in your marketing arsenal if you want to grow your Instagram following. UGC humanizes your business by showcasing real people with genuine experiences that demonstrate how your product works in the real world, resulting in a more trustworthy relationship with potential buyers.
Not only do your followers enjoy their 15 minutes of fame on your Instagram feed, but highlighting them also helps your online business sell more. Consumers are 56 percent more inclined to buy something after seeing a photo of the product posted by other customers, according to an Olapic study.
Take, for example, Fashion Nova. The Instagram account of the online shop mainly relies on user-generated material.
Fashion Nova's user-generated content offers it access to thousands of photos from across the world to share with its audience—photos that both demonstrate the brand's principles and encourage followers to connect with its posts and buy the outfits that real people are wearing.
Start by encouraging consumers to share their best experiences and photographs with your items when it comes to developing user-generated content for your online business via:
- Creating a branded hashtag feed for consumers to share their photos
- Including a call to action in your Instagram bio is a good idea.
- Organizing a competition
- contacting key decision-makers
- Incorporate a request for user-generated material into your packaging.
Remember, the purpose of user-generated content is to convey an authentic perspective on your items. Don't be hesitant to use lower-quality photographs sent by consumers that nonetheless emphasize the greatest characteristics of your merchandise.
17- Use Instagram Live
On any social media platform, live video is essential for a successful marketing plan. Instagram Live allows you to stream videos to your followers and interact with them in real-time.
When your company launches a live video stream, a ring appears around your profile image on Instagram Stories, letting followers know they can watch it. When you start a live video, your followers will be notified. You may submit your Livestream to your Story 24 hours after you've finished it.
Keep in mind that Instagram Live is a two-way conversation. While you're live, your followers are likely to leave comments, so attempt to respond to them and find methods to get them involved.
Some ways to gain more followers when using Instagram Live include:
- Influencer takeovers
- Hosting an AMA (ask me anything) or Q&A
- Teasing a product launch or update
- Hosting a talk show
- Going behind the scenes on your operations
- Sharing a current event
- Running product tutorials
Building an Instagram growth strategy to drive your business
We discussed the most successful strategies to utilize Instagram to grow a focused following in this piece, but it isn't always a numbers game. The most successful content approach, as with any social network, is, to be honest, and sociable.
Instagram can be a fantastic home for your products and brand if you focus on interaction rather than just the number of followers. It can also lead to a healthy stream of money for your e-commerce firm if you focus on engagement rather than just the number of followers. Check out our post on how to earn money on Instagram for additional information on how to transform this social media site into a profitable channel.
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