80+ Quick and Easy Tips Guaranteed to Increase Your Instagram Followers
Whether you’re trying to grow your Instagram followers because you’re looking to increase your brand’s exposure, increase your conversions, or you just want a larger social media presence, it can be quite difficult if you don’t know what you’re doing.
That’s why you need to bookmark this article, like, right now.
Instagram is a huge part of the Foundr brand’s success story, and if it’s a tactic you can use on the platform, chances are we’ve tried it. So we compiled some of our faves right here in one place.
This following will provide you with a whopping 80+ tips designed to inspire you and guaranteed to increase the number of Instagram followers you have. All of these are easy tactics that you can immediately use, and together can form the foundation for a successful Instagram strategy.
You can use them all right away if you’re especially eager, but we’ve also separated them by topic so you can browse at your convenience. Here we go.
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1. Posting content on a regular basis is one of the best ways to build up a strong following on Instagram. Make a commitment to post at least once a day. In order to grow your followers fast, your audience needs to be able to expect a consistent flow of content from you. Otherwise they’ll get it from somewhere else.
“Consistency is king and quality is queen when it comes to posting on Instagram.” – Kevin Kuster, CEO and Partner at #JJ COMMUNITY
3. Stick to the 80/20 rule of value and promotion. This means that 80% of your posts should be providing value to your audience, and 20% should be promotional. Don’t alienate your audience by spamming them.
4. Develop a story with your posts. Capture people’s attention by providing a narrative; don’t just settle for a generic line of text. Get people invested and show off how much value you can provide in one go.One of my favorite accounts to follow is cereal.entrepreneur. Each Instagram post is accompanied with either a small bio, or interview with the featured entrepreneur so you get a chance to know a bit more about them and what they do.
5. Stick to a certain topic or theme with your account in order to maintain consistency. The faster you establish yourself as the go-to account for a certain niche, the faster you’ll grow your Instagram followers.
6. Always look to elicit an emotion with your posts. Whether you’re looking to inspire people, make them laugh, or stun them, your posts should always aim to trigger an emotion with your audience.A great example to look at here would be Chubbies, and note how they’re always looking to make their audience laugh by posting an assortment of jokes and memes.
7. Repost images from trending hashtags. You already know that these posts resonate with your audience, take advantage of that and repost them, with permission of course.
8. Every post should have a strong call-to-action encouraging people to follow you or like the post in the caption. By adding in a call-to-action, people are 25% more likely to follow through on that action than without it.
9. Post often, as we’ve found the more you post the faster you grow. But don’t post a heap of posts in one go, as that comes off as spammy and you can lose followers as a result. Instead spread your posts out throughout the day.
10. Make sure you post on Sundays. Sunday is usually a pretty quiet day on Instagram, making it the perfect opportunity for you to get ahead of the pack and get your posts in front of even more people.
11. Use Instagram videos as a powerful way to generate even more Instagram followers. Many marketing experts agree that online video has the best ROI out of all forms of content.
“Considering that a video can generate three times more inbound links than written posts, it’s a valuable tool that can be used to engage fans, grow your following and drive traffic. As marketers, we all know that Instagram is about visual storytelling, but with a video you can actually bring your story to life.” – Sarah Quinn, Copywriter for Wyzowl.
12. Remember that quality always beats quantity when it comes to Instagram posts. Don’t post something for the sake of posting. Always make sure your content is providing value to your audience in some way.
13. Maintain an aesthetic theme so that your Instagram feed has a better brand identity. A simple way to do that is to use the same filter. It makes your images more recognizable and your overall feed look more professional.Notice how Herschel Supply maintains their aesthetic theme by constantly making sure their posts have similar tones and colors. Not only do these posts look great, but because of the consistency you can see how their feed has a natural flow to it that builds familiarity and affinity.
14. Make sure to add a watermark to your posts, whether it’s your logo or your Instagram account’s name. Let people know where these posts come from.
15. Include faces in your photos. Images with faces have been known to increase engagement, because our brains naturally want to interact with other people. Also images that don’t include faces, but using a point-of-view shot where the camera acts as the eyes of the audience can help them make them feel like they’re a part of the image.Despite having fewer likes, you can see how the following post by Mecca Maxima has far more comments compared to their posts that don’t include faces.
16. Use Instagram stories to show behind-the-scenes content. Instagram stories are the perfect way to give your account more personality and separate yourself from the rest of the competition.
17. Post user-generated content whenever possible. Not only will this give your brand social proof and make people far more likely to follow you, but it’ll also help you build a vibrant and engaged community around your Instagram account.Frank Body have almost built their entire Instagram strategy by curating user-generated content. This has helped them build a community of engaged Instagram followers, as well as create hundreds of loyal brand ambassadors. To find out more about their social media strategy, do make sure to check out our interview with the founders of Frank Body.
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18. Use hashtags and reference each post with a full 30 hashtags. Instagram allows you 30 hashtags per post, so use each and every one of them to maximize your post’s exposure.
19. Post hashtags in both your caption and the comment. Use hashtags in the caption if it fits the flow, and hide the rest in your comment section so your post doesn’t look cluttered.
20. Create a branded hashtag to make it easier for others to find you. Original hashtags can help you facilitate conversations, increase your brand’s reputation, and help you build credibility.
21. Use your custom hashtag to build a community around your brand. Use your custom hashtags as a way to regularly engage with your Instagram followers. It’s an incredibly easy way to make your followers feel like they’re a part of a larger community.You can see how customers and followers of Frank Body follow the custom hashtag #thefrankeffect, and how large a community has come together because of this hashtag.
22. Check out what the top-trending hashtags are with Tags For Likes.
23. Copy the hashtags that the top influencers in your niche are using. Use this as a way to not only generate more exposure and gain more followers, but as a way to get on the radar of other influencers.
“Users can now use Instagram’s Explore feature to find posts related to trending hashtags such as #LoveWins, #CanadaDay and #FullMoon. If these trending tags are relevant to your brand, include them in timely posts to aid discovery. On the topic of search, Instagram also introduced the ability to search by emoji.” – Jim Tobin, president of Ignite Social Media.
25. Create a mixture of high-performing, and low-performing hashtags. Use around 10 hashtags that have over a million posts, then another 10 hashtags that only have 10,000 to 50,000 posts, with another 10 anywhere in between. This way you make sure your posts get as much exposure as possible.
26. Create multiple sets of hashtags to maximize exposure. Don’t just settle for one set of hashtags, create around three different sets of 30 hashtags each. Regularly rotate them so that your posts reach a variety of people relevant to your niche. Save them in your notes so all you need to do is copy and paste them, and not have to worry about writing each one out every single time.
27. Use hashtags like #instafollow, #followback, or #f4f (follow-for-follow) to immediately attract followers. While this tactic is great to quickly build your Instagram followers, don’t rely on it too much, as it doesn’t bring in very high-quality followers.
28. Use a hashtag in your bio so that your account gets more exposure. This is a very easy way to make sure that your account shows up in hashtag searches as well.
29. Hide your hashtags in your comments so your post looks more professional. Another way is to put down five asterixes down in a line so that the hashtags are not immediately shown in the caption.
30. Use hashtags to find out who the top influencers in your niche are. Take a look at what the top hashtags in your niche are and see if you can identify any particular account that consistently appears in the “top” or “trending” posts. You can pretty much guarantee that they’re an influencer and someone you want to connect with.
31. Post hashtags in a different language to reach a wider audience. Just use Google Translate to find out what your hashtags are in a different language. This is a very easy way to increase your Instagram followers fast, especially if you’re an international company.
32. Find out what the hashtag of the day is and use it. Whether it’s something like #motivationmonday, #fitnessfriday, or #trumpettuesday, get in touch with an even larger audience by participating in these hashtags.
33. Comment on other posts in your niche to get more exposure. Get your account out there, and get potential followers to start recognizing your name. While this won’t provide an immediate uptick of Instagram followers, it will lay down a solid foundation for you in the long run.
34. Like other pages’ photos to gain more exposure. The way Instagram’s algorithm is set up, by liking the posts of similar account you’re associating your account with theirs, making it far more likely to have your account appear in the “recommended accounts to follow” section.
35. Always write back to comments on your own posts. Can’t stress this enough, make it a mission to engage with your community as much as possible. This one simple thing can be all you need to turn your average follower into a loyal one.
36. Create comments that go beyond the generic “nice pic,” “awesome post!” variety. Actually show that there’s a human behind the screen. It’s a surefire way to make yourself stand out from the crowd.
37. Follow other accounts’ followers to get on their radars and a percentage will follow you back. Take a look at an influencer’s account and see who follows them and follow their followers. You know these are people who will enjoy your content so they’re more likely to follow you back, plus you’ll get a better understanding of what your target audience is like.
38. Engage with posts that have your targeted hashtags. By commenting on posts that have the same hashtags as yours, you’re more likely to associate your account with your target niche.
39. Send a private message to your new followers. Make your Instagram followers feel welcomed and glad to be a part of your community.
40. Tag followers and influencers you’ve recently connected with in your posts. This encourages people to interact with your content even more. But don’t tag people you’ve never interacted with, as you’re more likely to annoy them, rather than gain a new Instagram follower.
41. Share content posted by your community. People love free exposure and knowing that their content has received an official seal of approval from a larger account. It’s a great way to boost engagement and reward your followers.
42. Follow other accounts relevant to your niche/market to ensure you’re more likely to appear in the “recommended accounts to follow” section.
43. Use longer captions in order to increase engagement. The longer people spend on your post, the more likely they are going to follow. Capture their attention by writing an in-depth caption.
44. Be as conversational as possible when engaging with other users, and be true to how you speak in real life. Emphasize the personality behind your brand and let people know that you’re not just another robot. Again, take a look at how Frank Body use their “Frank” persona to engage with their followers to great effect.
45. Ask questions in your captions to encourage people to respond. This is a very simple tactic to make sure that your Instagram followers are interacting with your account.
“Putting a question in your caption always creates interest and forces people to read and hopefully respond.” – Bianca Cheah, founder and MD of Sporteluxe
46. Turn on notifications for influencers so you can always engage with them when they post. Be one of the first people to leave a comment every time one of your targeted influencers publishes a post. It’s a very easy way to get on their radar and have them eventually become more open to collaborating with you.
47. Regularly use your posts to ask followers to share their content with you. Make sure to give them an incentive for doing this, though, like running an Instagram competition or giveaway. You can easily curate their posts by asking them to use your branded hashtag.
48. Hold giveaways on Instagram that require users to follow in order to enter. Everyone loves free stuff. Get a bunch of followers overnight by running a giveaway, but make sure to promote it, otherwise you won’t be seeing many results.
49. Hold competitions that require followers to tag their friends in order to enter. This is one of the best, and most organic, ways to quickly build your Instagram followers. A general rule of thumb to follow, though, is to hold your Instagram competitions when you have at least 10,000 followers in order to see the best results.
50. Run instagram ads. If you have a budget, and an Instagram Business account, we highly recommend that you take advantage of Instagram ads as a way to capture new Instagram followers.
51. Create viral images encouraging your fans to tag their friends. Get ideas for what types of posts tend to be popular by watching what’s trending in your targeted hashtags. Create similar posts in your own style, and ask people to tag their friends.
52. Promote your Instagram on all your other social media channels. This one can be as easy as just simply asking people to follow your Instagram account, or telling people that you have an Instagram-only competition.
53. Add your Instagram handle to your email signature. A very simple way to let people know that you have an Instagram account. You can either just add a link to it in your email signature, or create a more deliberate call-to-action.
54. Use geolocation targeting to identify followers relevant to your niche in a certain area. If you happen to run a brick-and-mortar business, this is an excellent way of getting the attention of local clientele.
55. Take your promotional efforts offline and promote your Instagram account through the use of physical products like branded stickers or pamphlets, for example. If you happen to have a custom hashtag that you’d like to promote, use these physical products as a way to get people more interested and excited about your accounts.
56. Create fan pages and use them to drive followers to your business pages. Instagram now allows you to run multiple accounts through their app, so take advantage of this by creating another account designed to support your main account. Use it as a way to experiment with different strategies, and connect with other influencers.
57. Organise a “thunderclap” and get multiple accounts to share a post of yours at the same time. This is a fantastic strategy to drive more traffic to your account, especially if you’re looking to sell a product. A shoutout from not one, but multiple influencers in your niche will guarantee that thousands, if not millions, of potential Instagram followers will see your post.
58. Automatically share your Instagram posts onto Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest. Create a simple process with something like IFTTT so your Instagram posts are automatically shared on your other social media accounts. Give your posts that extra bit of exposure while simultaneously growing your other social media accounts.
59. Make your main account “exclusive” by making it private (works best if you have a personal brand). Neil Patel recommends this strategy, as it automatically creates an air of mystery around your account, triggering people’s natural sense of curiosity to want to know more and be a part of an exclusive community.
60. Invest some time in creating Instagram-specific lead magnets available only on your account. Whether it’s an e-book, a webinar, or even a simple PDF. This will incentivize people to follow your account, and it’s an integral part of your Instagram marketing strategy if you’re planning on generating sales and conversions through your account.
61. Create a list of 10-20 influencers you’d like to regularly engage with. Know exactly who it is you want to get in touch with, because these will be the people who will be able to help take your Instagram account to the next level.
62. Get influencers to share your content or shout you out. This is by far one of the best ways to increase the number of Instagram followers you have. You’ll be hard-pressed to find any other tactic to generate you as strong of an ROI. Arrange for influencers to give you a shoutout by participating in an S4S deal.
“It’s the #1 way to grow for free.” – Jason Stone, founder of Millionaire Mentor.
63. Join and participate in like-for-like groups to improve your post’s organic reach. Find and connect with a group of like-minded people who are in a similar niche to yours. Help each other out on Instagram by liking each other’s posts, or leaving comments. These groups are a great way to further your network, and develop stronger relationships with other influencers.
64. Use your like-for-like groups to drop “like-bombs” or “engagement-bombs” on posts to increase their chance to start trending. Create a custom hashtag that only you and your group are aware of so that it’s easier for you to find each other’s posts. Then, as a group, everyone like or comment on one person’s post to give it a huge boost in organic traffic.
65. Get other pages to share your content doing S4S deals. The key to arranging an S4S deal is to find yourself a leverage point, something that you can offer that’s equivalent in value to an influencer giving you a shoutout. Think outside the box, perhaps arrange for a deal where you shout them out five times in exchange for their one, or perhaps change your bio link to promote their account for a certain amount of time in return for a shoutout. Find that leverage point.
“Definitely, S4S is the most effective strategy we have used to grow our following. I think it’s crucial for all accounts starting out to find accounts that have a similar-sized following as them in a similar niche to do S4S with.” – Brad Cameron, founder of Build Your Empire Magazine.
66. Use hashtags like #s4s, and #shareforshare to find accounts to do s4s deals with. Anyone who is using these hashtags are open for business and looking to connect. However, be careful when it comes to who you choose to do S4S with. Make sure to only engage in deals with accounts who are like-minded, in a similar niche, and have an engaged following.
67. Create your own share-for-share groups. If you’re having difficulty finding other accounts to do S4S with, then just create your own! Reach out to people who you have done S4S with before and create a group on something like Kik, Slack, or GroupMe.
68. Pay influencer pages to share your content. If all else fails you can always pay someone to give you a shoutout. But before you do make sure that you can get a guarantee on an ROI. What you’re looking for is someone with an engaged audience, not necessarily just a large amount of followers.
69. Do an account-swap with other influencers in your niche. Take over someone else’s account for a day and show off who you are to their audience and vice versa. This is a great strategy for anyone with a personal brand.Buffer would also sometimes let their employees take over their Instagram account for a day. This way their Instagram followers could get to know more about Buffer, their workplace culture, and what went on behind-the-scenes.
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Cool tools to use
70. Use ink361 to run scans on your competitors’ accounts and find the most commented and liked images to find inspiration.
71. Track your growth and your competitor’s growth using Social Blade.
72. Use Iconosquare Pro for in-depth Instagram analytics. This is our personal recommendation for anyone looking for an analytics platform for Instagram, but Iconosquare Pro can be very expensive, so only invest in it if you’re serious about your Instagram account.
74. We recommend VSCO to edit your images and give your account an aesthetic theme if you’re not doing quote images and using mainly photographs. It’s a great app with a ton of functionality that’s perfect for social media editing.
75. For desktop users, definitely use Canva to create most, if not all, of your social media images.
77. Use Grum to schedule and automate your Instagram posts. Take some of the work out of equation by simply automating when your posts go out.
78. Share popular posts with Repost and Instagrab. Whether it’s an image post or a video, use these apps to download popular posts from other accounts. But remember to always credit the original creator.
79. Plan out your Instagram feed with Planoly. This is great if you want to get an idea of what your feed would look like, or if you’re planning on creating a collage-type feed with multiple posts. I’d recommend using this for the first few months or so of a new account to help figure out what the aesthetic theme is going to look like.
81. Use Kik to connect and communicate with other Instagram users. If the other user doesn’t have their Kik publicly listed, you can always message them directly through Instagram’s native messaging tool.
82. Apps like Hyperlapse are great for creating videos with tons of energy and fast-paced movement. Videos with a lot of movement immediately grab people’s attention and creates interest. Tell an entire story in the matter of seconds.
83. Apps like Flixel or Pictoreo are great for creating subtle cinemagraphs. While fast-paced videos tend to grab more attention, the slower cinemagraph-type posts are more likely to generate more engagement.
84. Create stunning text animations with Legend. This is a great tool to help your quote images stand out even more.
What are we missing Foundr family? I know you all have a few Instagram tricks up your sleeve. Share your favorite, or let us know if you have questions on any of these in the comments below.