One of the most common questions I get from other bloggers and small business owners is How do I get more followers on Instagram? And while your goal may be to increase your number of followers, there are other benefits to growing your account organically, namely that you will have an engaged audience who truly cares about what you have to say. Learn how to get real, organic followers on Instagram with these seven strategies!
1) Choose an interesting subject
It’s not enough just to say follow me. You have to connect with your audience and that starts with a subject they care about—that they will be engaged by. Otherwise you’ll get no engagement and zero followers.
How do you find your niche? First figure out who you are by asking yourself questions like what kind of content am I most comfortable sharing? or what issues make me want to share my thoughts with others? Then ask those same questions of your intended audience.
Ask for feedback from your friends about what type of content makes them follow you and then once you’ve found something that seems promising, go ahead and give it a try!
2) Use authentic hashtags
Organically growing a following isn’t easy. But one of the simplest ways to start is by adding hashtags that are already being used by others in your niche. If you can make your account look more like a real account and less like a robot (using #accountname#), you’ll have a better chance of people following you back or simply taking notice of your content.
Start with trending tags related to your industry or target market, but then try using random tags that fit with your brand. Just be sure not to go overboard! You don’t want people seeing what seems like an odd collection of unrelated words and thinking that something is fishy about your account.
3) Post at times when people are active
As much as it might be tempting to schedule your posts at a time that makes sense for you, take into account when your followers are likely to be active. According to Sprout Social’s research , people tend to interact with their social media accounts early in the morning and late at night.
In addition, about 27% of users log into their accounts between 9am and 10am. To get real organic followers on instagram try posting during these peak times—though keep in mind that different platforms have different peak times for engagement; see below for details. You can use Apps like Snaptrends or Iconosquare analytics tool will give you live reports of your post performance and engagement.
4) Participate in relevant Instagram events
Hosts for these events curate a list of people interested in attending and each attendee agrees to post one photo from a designated hashtag at least once during an event period. If you participate well, you’ll be exposed to new accounts that could become your future customers or brand advocates.
You’ll also likely end up following some accounts that do engage with others in their posts. Even if there isn’t an official event going on when you first join Instagram, there will probably be something later down the line so keep an eye out and jump into any relevant conversations as they happen. As with everything else in marketing: participation is key!
5) Run a giveaway campaign
When you’re just starting out with your company’s presence on social media (or really any platform), you need to be doing everything you can to establish a solid base of followers. One great way to do that is by running a giveaway campaign.
People love free stuff and social media is an excellent platform for distributing it—it’s only right that you take advantage of it as an entrepreneur. And beyond just growing your follower base, giveaways are also a good way of generating buzz about your product or brand:
if people get excited about what they might win during a giveaway, they might share it with their friends! Even better than getting more followers organically then? Yep: turning them into loyal customers and brand advocates.
6) Run targeted ads
Okay, it’s time for some serious business talk. If you’re still a small fish in a big pond and you want to grow your following quickly (and organically), then there’s no better way than running targeted ads.
Your ad account will need some funds to get started—with more cash burning a hole in your pocket every day—so wait until you have about $100 before you dive in. Start small with a couple of $5/day campaigns; once they start bringing new followers in consistently (you should expect anywhere from 10-30 new followers per day), increase your daily spendings. Keep experimenting with different keywords and take note of what works best!
7) Share high-quality content
It’s pretty hard for someone to find your account if you don’t post anything. On social media, sharing is a core currency. If you have nothing of value to share with others and no presence in your niche, then it’s going to be really hard for others to find you.
As such, posting regular (or even irregular) content on social media will help people notice you and begin following you. However, what does high-quality content mean? It means high-quality content for your target audience.
Post Incredible Photos
One of the best ways to get organic followers is through great content. This means having a solid camera and taking incredible photos. But even if you have everything in place, it can still be hard (and frustrating) to get likes and follows.
Don’t worry—there are plenty of things you can do on a regular basis that will bring real results. The key is consistency: one or two good pictures every few days won’t cut it; post something new at least once a day.
You’ll need to take photos with hashtags in mind (more on that below), so make sure your phone is always charged! Try getting one shot off per day and then scheduling additional posts for later in the week.
Use Hook In Your Post
When you’re creating an Instagram post, don’t just say what your picture is—say why it’s interesting. How was it made? Why are you posting it? What makes your thoughts behind it worthwhile? Make your followers feel invested in what you do and want to come back for more.
In other words: Tell a story with each post. The more compelling your story and voice are, the more real followers you’ll attract who like what they see. Plus, if customers can relate to or get excited about your brand based on what you share, then you’re even closer to that long-term fan base that will drive all of that business growth.