Instagram is huge.
It’s massive on a level that I can’t even fully comprehend despite having memories of walking uphill in the snow to go to school both ways when I was six years old.
Everyone uses Instagram, everyone would love to know how how to get more Instagram followers for free!
From grandmas on Facebook with two followers during one of those temporary “Hey, my number went up by one again” sprees right on down to your youngest cousin who you never see but posts selfies at least three times a day and already has more than 1/4th as many followers as you (I mean, she could be lying but come on, don’t kid yourself).
Instagram is also important for brands and businesses who want to reach customers directly through social media without paying exorbitant amounts of money to middlemen like Twitter promoted tweets or Facebook ads.
Instagram is an equal opportunity channel for all!
Except, you know, if you don’t have enough followers.
If you don’t have enough followers on Instagram there’s nowhere for your business’ beautiful photos to go except into the void of apathy and neglect.
My advice is to contact professionals in the business and let them do the job for you.
Since I get questions all the time about it, go with the CEO of Ascend Viral, a social media marketing agency, Ethan Fenchel.
Wellllll… That is unless you’re willing to take matters into your own hands and attempt to jumpstart your brand’s profile with some (allegedly) very real Instagram followers (and I’m not talking about those fake bot accounts that follow everyone but never actually engage with anyone – that would be bad).
I mean real people who are interested in what your company has to say/sell/offer/borderline harass people with because that’s really what Instagram is about, right?
I hope you’re ready to take some notes because this should be very educational for you.
Post Photos That Tell A Story
This seems like a “no duh” but it’s actually more complicated than it sounds.
The photos on your Instagram page need to tell an ongoing story in order to get followers interested in what you have to say and how you plan on saying it.
Your photos don’t necessarily need to show anyone event, although they can if the timing is good (like your company just released something exciting or someone famous was spotted at your store), but the idea here is that each photo needs to fit in with the next and give people the impression that there’s a story unfolding.
People like stories, right? Right.
Use An Eye-Catching Instagram Bio
This is where things get really specific and I don’t want to point out any one thing too specifically because everyone likes something different (and if I did point out anything too specifically it would be super obvious and boring because you’d say “OH YEAH THAT’S WHAT MY INSTAGRAM BIO SHOULD SAY” and then we wouldn’t learn anything from each other).
So here are some things to think about in terms of your Instagram bio:
a. It should be short!
I know this might not seem accurate but it is, I swear. Instagram bios are really short, like shorter than a tweet!
Shorter than a tweet if you make it only one line long which you totally should because that’s all your followers need to know where to find you and put their digits in your pocket.
b. It should contain a link (but not too many)
You can also use your Instagram bio to tell people what you do or give them an idea of the kinds of photos they’ll see if they follow you, but unless there’s something legitimately exciting about what you do (like YOUR NAME IS JAMES BOND OR LINDSAY LOHAN) then keep this info brief.
c. It should be personal (but not TOO personal)
There is no need for an Instagram bio to look like “likes dogs and taking walks on sunny days” but you can turn this into a more exciting sentence like “I like dogs and I’m always up for a walk, especially when it’s sunny out!” or something like that.
d. You should use keywords/hashtags (but not TOO many)
The good thing about hashtags is that they’re powerful in their simplicity, the bad thing about hashtags is that there are so many options when you’re trying to find one for your photo!
Try to keep it simple here with just 3-5 of the most popular keywords relevant to your account.
You can even use emojis if you feel creative!
Be Consistent With Your Posting Schedule
I know this sounds obvious but a deeply tragic Instagram truth is that not everyone keeps up with their posting schedule.
Even if this means you have to be a couple of days late on your Monday photo, make sure it’s always posted on Mondays.
This is the best way to show people that you’re serious about what you do and that they can depend on you for great photos/sentences/ideas/potential new friends.
And if someone wants to unfollow you because they don’t want to see your photo every single day then let them!
They clearly don’t believe in life choices or value special moments when they happen which is weird because EVERYONE loves special moments so there must be something wrong with them!
Interact With Other Accounts
This is a great way to expand your network and show people that you’re active on Instagram.
This also helps to get more followers because they’ll then go ahead and follow you as well!
You can interact with other accounts by liking their photos, leaving a comment on one of their posts, or starting a conversation between the two of you.
If someone likes one of your photos, make sure to like the one back!
And if someone comments on one of your photos, make sure to reply as well!
It’s very important for us humans to interact with each other so do not be afraid to give it a try.
Get Featured In Other People’s Posts
How cool would it be if you could not only have the chance to show off your own great photos but others as well?
You can do this by reaching out to accounts that have a lot of followers and asking if they would consider featuring you in one of their posts!
If they agree, just send them a picture via DM and hope for the best!
This is a super-easy way to make sure you reach more people and get even more exposure.
Engage With User Generated Content
User-generated content is like social media’s best-kept secret (no offense).
It’s basically when users take their own creative liberties with your creative liberties (by this I mean they post comments on your photo or use it as an inspiration to create something new!)
Love it love it love it!
If someone takes a photo of you or your great work, make sure to take the time to compliment them on it so that they know their hard work did not go unnoticed.
They may even want to share it with the world by reposting it which would be GREAT because more posts = more potential followers!
Make An Out Of The Ordinary Video For Your Profile Pic
Remember when the change was scary and everyone just wanted everything to stay exactly how it’s always been?
Well, that’s too bad because videos are here TO STAY!
What if instead of seeing a still image every day on your Instagram profile, you saw something moving?
I don’t know… Like YOU IN VIDEO TALKING ABOUT YOUR LIFE AND ALL THE THINGS, YOU LOVE?
Just an idea 🙂
Link Your Other Social Media Accounts
If you’re wondering how to get more followers on Instagram, it may be helpful to think of yourself as a brand (because let’s face it…you kind of are).
Just like every other successful business, it’s good to branch out and show people that you can not only post great content but also promote other things as well!
By linking your other social media accounts (like Facebook/Twitter) you’re allowing your followers the chance to see what else is going on in your life.
It’s just another way for them to stay connected with you!!!