With more than 1 billion users, Instagram became the place to be for influencers and brands. While Facebook is going more and more towards private messaging, Instagram becomes the house of brands and products. Influencer marketing is a new trend and you need a considerable amount of Instagram followers if you want to be part of the game. No matter if you have 100 followers or 100’000 the main idea is to keep a healthy and natural growth to your account. Most of the time we tend to say that size does not matter but in terms of Instagram, influence size is really important. Never let yourself to be tempted to buy fake followers. This will never pay at the end. Most of the time Instagram will spot these fake accounts and will literally erase them, so you would lose time and money. So, in order to make you focus on what is important, here are 10 tips to make your Instagram account to grow constantly and even double after a while. These tips are also recommended by Instagram themselves.
Tip #1: Focus On Something Interesting To Share
Before start sharing whatever you think it is relevant, ask yourself what is original and unique about yourself and what you like in general. It is not really about a theme in general but more about your angle. You can be interested about a very generic theme like dogs, for example, but if you have a specific angle, you will gather interest about what you share. It could be dog clothes, or Dalmatians or Dog collars…. The more specific you are the best results you will get. You can also search on the platform for your interests and see what kind of content is popular.
Tip #2: Focus On One Theme If Possible
By experience, we know that a mono-thematic Instagram account has more chances to be followed than a multi-purposed lifestyle feed. Indeed, people tend to follow someone for one specific theme (or hashtag) which they know you will always post about it. It does not mean that it needs to be a single product or subject. It can be “yellow things”, or “black dresses”. By having one single angle, it will allow people to see you as a reference in one topic, therefore they will follow you.
Tip #3: Work Hard And Publish High Qualitative and Beautiful Imagery
If you want to see your account growing, you need to work hard to make it happen. This means you need to make sure you publish great content. Without investing o a shooting crew that will for sure cost you thousands of dollars, your phone, some clever “Photoshop-style” apps and a good sense of aesthetics can be sufficient to make the deal. Do not always try to be surreal or super perfect because you might lose spontaneity and authenticity. Do not be too ambitious and try to find your way to create content that does not represent a nightmare for you. Instagram should be a pleasant moment in time and not this weight you need to carry on a daily base. Be clever, ask the opinion of your friends and sometimes you might want to get advice. Today you can find classes of “photography with a smartphone”. It is done by professionals and you might learn a few tips that can help you with the publication.
Tip #4: Publish Often
It is said that someone who publishes at least once a day (something meaningful of course) gets ten times more followers than if you publish randomly during the month. in order to achieve such pace, you need to organize yourself. Certain hashtags like #tbt (Throw-back-Thursdays) or #mondays or #itstheweekend can help you organize your content. You can also get the help from some third-party software in order to help you publish at the right time on the right day but honestly, if you already start by publishing more often you will see an effect. Depending on how many followers you have at the start, you might see between 3 to 20 new followers per week. And this can climb very fast up to hundreds. Publishing often also brings higher engagement, which is also beneficial for your account.
Tip #5: Publish Daily Stories
Something I have underestimated a lot is Instagram Stories. Due to the ephemeral state of this publication (only last for 24h), I thought it was not worth it to dedicate time to build them. I was wrong. Instagram stories are the best way for users to discover your content. You have natural visibility on top positions. Instagram is also promoting stories quite a lot. You can find them on your stories feed as well as on the discovery grid. It is also a good way for your current followers to see your work. More than 50% of interactions in the platform are produced by stories.
Tip #6: Interact With Other Instagramers Within Your Theme
If you have a strong theme within your instagram grid, do not hesitate to interact with other instagramers who are also interested in the same topics. Not only there is a natural fit, therefore a mutual interest to follow each other, but it generates interest from their followers as well who can take part into the conversation you create. Instagram is a social network, therefore you should interact with other users. It is known that most of successful influencers in the platform do interact with their followers and with others. It might be a bit time consuming but it is worth trying. Your primary motivation, of course, should be the quality and the interest of these human relationships, not only because these would bring you followers.
Tip #7: Study And Use Quality Hashtags
When Chris Messina invented the hashtags back in 2007, his preoccupation was to organize discussions within Twitter. Back then in Silicon Valley, there were plenty of IT developers and consultants using Twitter as a fast way to communicate. But very fast, everybody was lost in the discussions due to the high amount of tweets. And this is why Chris Messina tweeted this famous message that would change Digital marketing forever:
For the past 13 years, hashtags continue allowing you to organize and follow your discussions but above all, it became a marketing tool. The same way advertising agencies would think very hard on a slogan for your ad campaign, now they need to come up with a hashtag. My best advice is to choose not more than 3 to 4 hashtags. Some people will publish on Instagram with at least 15 to 20 hashtags. They think this will give them higher visibility in the platform. Please note that Instagram will consider these posts as spam. It is impossible that one image or one video relate to 15 to 20 different themes at the same time. So you have better chances against the algorithm if you choose carefully your hashtags. Do not forget that people can now follow a specific hashtag rather than people, which can bring visibility to your content and in-fine, new followers. I personally follow certain hashtags like #swissbloggers or #blogger_ch that helps me to connect to the Swiss blogosphere.
Tip #8: Host Contests That Generates Interactions
This is something than many agencies suggests but you need to be careful with this. Hosting contests it is a very good way to get quick followers. With mechanics like: “follow the account, tag 3 friends and comment this post and you might win this prize”, you might get for sure a considerable amount of new followers interested by the reward. Once the contest is over and someone did not win, (s)he might just unfollow you immediately. If you think you can host interesting contests in a regular way, it is for sure an interesting growing strategy. Just be careful to choose winners in a clever and honest way. There are some apps and softwares that can help you with that.
Tip #9: Use Your Instagram Analytics For Better Posting
If you are really upscaling your Instagram game on a professional way, you might want to get into analytics at one point. By analyzing your publication results, timings. interactions and pace, you can easily identify the top-performer posts and try to learn from them. Why this post performed better than this one? Was it timing? Was it a video versus a picture? Was it the hashtags or a combination of both? Please note that using analytics will not give you a magical formula. Human beings can be very unpredictable and other parameters like current context might influence the performance of your post. You need to give it some time and spend a couple of month to get a good understanding. You might want to do some tests as well in order to prove your theories. It is learning by doing. The instagram platform provide some good basic insights but if you want to upscale your game, you definitely need a professional tool to bring you more details and granularity to the results.
Tip #10: Be Patient, Be Patient And Of Course, Be Patient
Last but not least and by far the hardest point to manage: be patient. Rome was not built in one day and your Instagram community will not be build overnight. It is a long path. Unless you are the hidden child of some big celebrity or hosting your own very popular TV show, the growth will be slow. But every good strong follower you get, it is a great victory because this person will be part of your community and this is the beauty of it. I would strongly recommend not to buy fake followers. First, they are not real people and will never interact with your account. Engagement is much important than the number of followers. On top of this, Instagram chases fake accounts all the time and if you spend a couple of hundreds of dollars to buy fake accounts, these might just disappear overnight after an Instagram cleaning. So be patient, do a good job and you will be rewarded. Evolution is exponential. The more followers you get, the more followers you get. So you will be rewarded.
With all these tips you should be able to build a continuously growing community on Instagram. Do not let yourself tempted by easy tricks. It will not pay and you will always be disappointed. You can also check Instagram guidelines here to get familiarized with some important rules: https://www.instagram.com/about/legal/terms/
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