Instagram Followers: 8 Proven Tactics To Grow Followers and Engagement

Instagram Followers: 8 Proven Tactics To Grow Followers and Engagement

There are 8 Tactics that will Help You Reliably Get More Followers on Instagram:

1. Identify Your USP.

2. Use Popular and Trending Hashtags.

3. Try Videos, Live Videos, and Stories.

4. Be Smart About Timing.

5. Try posting to Instagram Once or Twice a Day.

6. Strengthen Your Caption Game.

7. Like Other People’s Photos.

8. Leverage Other Social Media Connections.

 

1. Identify Your USP.

Instagram is a photo-sharing platform that has people from different professions all across the globe from photographers and travel bloggers to artists, chefs, and actors. But if you want to create a niche for yourself and get people to follow you as well as like the content you post, your first step should be to find the right kind of USP for your Instagram page. It could be anything that you’re interested in, have the talent to execute and that can ideally differentiate you from the swarm of other IG users.

If you’re someone who is struggling to discover the kind of content you want to post, popular Indian comedian and social media influencer, Mallika Dua has some advice for you, that she follows herself, “If there is a USP that you have, and if you don’t feel like posting content in that genre for a bit then try new things but don’t clutter your feed with that. That’s not what people would want and it might lead to people unfollowing you. I understand certain patterns about myself. Like my comedy posts do much, much better than my random posts. So that is one thing I am conscious of.”


2. Use Popular and Trending Hashtags.

You probably already know how important hashtags are in your marketing. If you don’t, you may want to stop and read this post first! In short, using hashtags on Instagram will allow people outside your current pool of followers to find you and follow you.

There are three main strategies for using hashtags to get more Instagram followers:

  1. Use popular hashtags that you know your target audience is using. This will help you gain much more targeted followers. This is the strategy I recommend if you want highly targeted followers!
  2. Use extremely popular hashtags that get searched for most often (e.g., #love, #photooftheday, etc.)
  3. Use hashtags that are designed for getting likes and followers (e.g., “like4like”, “follow4follow”). Use this strategy sparingly, as the quality of these followers probably won’t be the best!

For more tips on using hashtags to get followers, check out my post.  Top Instagram Hashtags For Gaining New Followers.


3. Try Videos, Live Videos, and Stories.

While Instagram started as a photo-sharing network, it has grown beyond just photos. With features like videos, live videos, and Stories, brands can now create many different types of content to engage their fans and grow their following.

Here are a few compelling reasons to try posting these new content types:

  • The average engagement for videos is growing faster than the average engagement for images3
  • When you go live on Instagram, you will appear right at the front of the Stories feed4
  • More than 400 million people use Instagram Stories every day5
  • Sixty-eight percent of marketers surveyed plan to create more Stories in 2019

4. Be Smart About Timing.

To reach and sustain a loyal following in a short time, it’s absolutely critical to A/B test your ads. Being smart about which variables you test can have an enormous effect on how efficiently your campaigns achieve your goals (at the lowest cost possible).

In addition to focusing on optimizing your text and images, since Instagram just rolled out a new scheduling feature, try using the timing of your posts as a variable. Now, you can use third-party scheduling apps like Hootsuite to post directly to the app, which makes the process even more efficient.

Knowing when your Instagram viewers are most active on the platform will help engage them at the right moments to turn them into followers.

While the best time to publish your Instagram posts will depend on your specific business, below are a few guidelines based on recent test results:

  • If you’re targeting an international audience, ideal posting times are around 2 a.m. and 5 p.m. EST, which is when the most Instagram users will be online.
  • On the flip side: 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. EST are the two worst times to post for engagement.
  • If you’re focusing on a local audience, post before work (between 7-9 a.m. in your time zone) or after (beginning as early as 5 p.m.).

Within these time periods, there is enormous potential for ever-better targeting. For example, if you’re homing in on new parents, the early morning could be a gold mine; for college students, your best hours could be from 10 p.m.-2 a.m. Testing to determine your brand’s sweet spot will go a long way toward helping you reach your goal of 1,000 more Instagram followers.


5. Try posting to Instagram Once or Twice a Day.

Recent research seems to suggest that posting just once or twice a day is optimal for increased reach, likes, and shares  – and therefore followers as well.

Just remember, this is based on averages…which means some accounts will do best when they post 10+ times a day, while others will get the best results posting 2-3 times per month!

Here’s a simple experiment you can do to see what works best for you: Start by posting once a day, and track how much engagement you get for each post. It’s also important to track your corresponding follower growth.

Gradually move up, trying different posting frequencies. Go as high as you’re comfortable with! Choose a frequency that gives you the biggest growth, and that’s also sustainable and enjoyable for you!


6. Strengthen Your Caption Game.

Captions are one thing that could either make or break your Instagram post. While sometimes the photograph you upload is strong enough to convey the message, at other times the caption you use could indeed catch the eye of your audience and get them to double tap. But it all depends on the kind of content you put out. According to Ruparel, “Captions need to be crisp, snappy, and on point. People are endlessly scrolling and captions need to be eye-catchy.”

Although, Luxury blogger Riaan George seems to disagree. He says, “I am a traditionalist. I do not like one-word captions which may work for other bloggers but not for me. I like my captions to be laden with information. Since I talk about premium products, I rarely ever use slang/short forms or language that is too casual. I keep it crisp and clean but still informative as there has to be some value given to the reader.” So, it’s really all about what kind of content you’re uploading and what works for your audience.


7. Like Other People’s Photos.

Liking other people’s photos is one of the best ways to get more Instagram followers. The key to using this strategy successfully is to like photos of people who are in your target market  – rather than just like a bunch of completely random stranger’s photos.


8. Leverage Other Social Media Connections.

Don’t forget to let your current fans, followers and email subscribers know you’re on Instagram! Use an Instagram badge or Follow button on your site, and ask your subscribers and fans to follow you on Instagram.

Share popular and interesting posts with your email list, Facebook fans, and blog readers, and ask for their input, feedback or thoughts.

You should also let them know why exactly why they should follow you on Instagram. For instance, “Follow us to be notified of special deals”, or “Follow us to find out about new contests or promotions’.

 

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