How To Grow Your Instagram: 15 Proven Ways (2024)
With 4.76 billion active social media users in the world (that’s 59.4% of the entire global population), individuals and brands are moving their businesses to social media.
Facebook and YouTube are the largest social media sites, with 3 billion and 2.5 billion users, respectively.
However, Instagram is catching up—with 2 billion monthly active users—and is tied with WhatsApp for the third largest social media app.
If you’re a brand or influencer looking to build your personal brand this year while also monetizing your profile, read on for some great tips on how to grow your Instagram.
In this article, I’ll teach you how to grow your Instagram following so you can tap into one of the world’s largest social media platforms and benefit from its reach.
Want to grow your Instagram account? Consistency, high-quality content, and these 15 tactics can help. Without further ado, here are the fastest ways to grow your Instagram.
Reels are an Instagram feature that was released in mid-2020 and is one of the many formats available for Instagram content (as well as stories, carousels, and more). They’re short, engaging videos up to 90 seconds long. Reels can be fun, creative, and informative all at the same time.
If you’re not using Reels yet, now is the time to start—they are a great way to get more eyes on your content and grow your following.
Here’s a quick way to create your first Instagram reel:
Knowing what your concept or reel is going to be ahead of time will make the filming process much smoother. You don’t need an entire script, but having a general idea of what points you want to hit will help keep you on track while shooting.
Once you have your storyboard ready, it’s time to start filming! Remember to try and keep your reel under 90 seconds.
After you finish filming, it’s time to add any effects or music you want in the background. You can also trim your reel down to make sure it’s under the 90-second limit.
Finally, it’s time to share your reel on Instagram! You can share it on your feed or as a story. You can also use relevant hashtags and tagging to get more eyes on your content.
When we talk about growing your Instagram, the main thing we mean is growing your Instagram follower count. To grow your follower count, you need to create great content for your Instagram posts. But just creating posts isn’t enough—you also need to scale your processes.
To do that, consider using an Instagram scheduling tool to schedule your posts in advance and put your Instagram strategy on auto-pilot.
My favorite way to schedule Instagram posts is with a social media management tool called Combin Scheduler.
This tool lets you plan, manage, and schedule your posts from one dashboard. Here are the steps to easily get started with the tool.
With Combin, you log into your Instagram page (or business profile), add new Instagram posts, add your post description and relevant hashtags, tag your location, and set a date and time for the post.
By scheduling posts, you can provide your Instagram audience with content on a regular basis, which helps improve your follower growth over time.
You can also use scheduling tools to discover the best time to publish for the most reach and engagement. Posting content at key intervals is one of the best ways to propel your Instagram growth.
Some sources say that you need to post on Instagram between one to three times a day. However, this may not work best for you.
While brand awareness is good, your potential followers might see hyper-frequent posts as spam and will start to unfollow you. Second, if you start posting several times per day and then slow down, your user engagement rates with your target audience may decline.
If you’re not able to create high-quality stories and posts every day, then post less frequently. It’s always better to post fewer pieces of good content a week than a lot of low-quality content.
Use Instagram analytics to view which trending and top posts resonate with your audience and the Instagram algorithm. You can also boost your high-performing posts with Instagram ads, having a call-to-action for visiting your profile and your website.
Instagram started as a social network for picture sharing, however, it has grown far beyond this point.
The intention of Instagram stories is to share your life moments quickly and easily. The best feature here is that all stories are highlighted at the top of the Instagram feed without any prepayments or post boosting.
Despite the fact that stories last only for 24 hours, their impact lasts longer—especially with the most popular stories, which you can pin as highlights in your profile so visitors can play them again and again.
Stories can be in the form of a picture of course, but for better engagement, we suggest you go for videos. If you can’t film or edit videos, then use the help of tools available.
For example, Renderforest has a large library of Instagram Stories templates suitable for any kind of industry.
In addition to Reels and Stories, you should also use live videos and IGTV videos as part of your Instagram marketing strategy.
Hashtags help to build up a community and involve people who have common interests. The right hashtag can expose your image, video, or Instagram story to a large and targeted audience.
Many brands are creating their own hashtags and encouraging people to use them. For example, #JustDoIt and #ImLovinIt—we all know what those stand for.
We know it might be difficult to convince people to use your hashtag and start following you, but what about starting with smaller groups?
Let’s say you host a virtual or video conference and you think of a hashtag—#MarketingSummit2024. Make sure that it’s not taken (i.e., used often for other purposes) and start to use hashtags during the event on invitations, as decorations, in marketing collateral, etc.
You can even repost images from your followers who have used the hashtag, showing how much you appreciate their photos.
Let’s not forget that Instagram is a social media platform where you can meet new people and communicate with those who share common interests.
Start liking tons of pictures that are related to your profile topic. For example, if you’re promoting a healthy lifestyle or fractional nutrition, look for people to talk about it.
Leave your comments under other posts, let them know that they are doing great, or share your own opinion on what they’re talking about.
But also, don’t forget about your own comments and messages (you’ll find these DMs—direct messages—in your inbox). Respond to all the comments and DMs you receive to improve engagement and let your followers know you see them.
Give your followers two-way communication. If you don’t want to miss a comment on your profile, make sure you switch on the notifications.
People follow a particular brand, blogger, or influencer because they find value in it. Usually, we tend to subscribe to content that is visually attractive, informative, or motivating.
Staying with the fitness account example, become an expert who can educate or motivate those who are planning to change their diets and lose some weight. Share your story and show them how what you went through will help them on their journey too.
Kayla Itsines does just this. One look at her account and you can tell she’s skilled at influencer marketing—she shares her workouts, meals, and other tips with a huge community both on Instagram and on her Sweat app.
Don’t underestimate the power of visual communication. When it comes to presenting a brand, customers recognize the product by its logo or color choice first. If we see a soft drink and a red-colored label on the bottle, we all know it stands for Coca-Cola.
Do the same with your own Instagram profile and make your grid consistent and visually appealing.
This isn’t just about color and logos, but also the structure and symmetry. You can use a free tool like Planoly or Preview that allows you to preview the picture layout before you post. Make sure to stick to one picture filter for color consistency or become more creative with collage and puzzle pictures.
Another tip is to add some quotes on one color background or post the same object on every third or fourth picture in the row.
With this organized posting, you can start telling your brand story. Your followers will be more likely to stay on your community platform as it will become a visually pleasing account to visit.
When you are visiting places that are super amazing make sure to geotag them. Instagram users who have been there or are planning to visit the awesome restaurant or city you’re tagging will notice your photo and potentially follow you since you have something in common.
Check out the example below from GoPro and how it has geotagged Mallorca, Spain in the below image.
You can even create your own geotag and build content around the location so others can use it in the future. If you see that people start to use your geotag, interact with them. Write a comment, like a picture, and start following their Instagram content—people will notice and follow you back.
Join forces with other popular and well-known bloggers and influencers to essentially exchange followers with each other. Make sure you collaborate with influencers who have similar interests or topics because the audience will be more likely to follow you.
And other influencers aren’t the only ones who can make a difference—so can brands. If brands aren’t approaching you, send a short introduction email to their marketing team. Don’t be afraid to ask for a promoted post.
Consider spending some money to boost your profile so that these other influencers and brands know you exist.
Your Instagram bio is going to be the first interaction many people have with your brand, so make sure it stands out. Whether you’re going for a great Instagram bio for boys, girls or even professionals, there are some factors to consider.
In your business account, you need to be clear and concise about what your business does and work in keywords that are relevant to your brand or industry so visitors know exactly what you’re about.
Another top tip is to maximize the potential of your Instagram bio link by using a tool like LinkGallery—a new product from the popular URL shortener, Rebrandly—to send your visitors to multiple destinations, all from a single link.
With a link tool, all of your links—whether your website, e-commerce store, or even your other social channels—are hosted on a page that can be customized to fit with your branding and is accessed from that small but powerful link in your bio.
You can also use the built-in analytics feature to see which of your links your prospective customers are most interested in and use this data to optimize your CTAs and conversion paths.
Creating a successful Instagram business page also includes uploading a high-quality profile picture (either a professional headshot or your business logo) so that your profile is immediately recognizable.
User-generated content or UGC is content that your followers or customers create. If you run a small business, you might want to create a hashtag (heading back to tip #5) that customers can use to tag photos they share of your products.
You can then share that content on your own page as a form of social proof. People are more likely to become new followers when they see that others enjoy and use your product.
Here’s an example of what this could look like from Solo Stove:
This type of content can help you reach new audiences as well as increase engagement. Just make sure you get permission from the person who initially posted the content before adding it to your posting schedule.
This tip should be a part of every social media strategy. Never, ever buy fake followers or bots. Sure, they inflate your overall follower count. But why does it matter if your follower number says 100,000 if only 1,000 of those people are actually real users who are going to interact with your content?
Instead, fake followers can cause your engagement rate to drop and reduce your chances of the algorithm sharing your content. If Instagram can see that not even 1% of your followers engage with your content, they’re not going to want to put your posts in front of other people, no matter how great they are.
You can include up to 2,200 characters in an Instagram caption, and sometimes we recommend you do just that. Not every caption needs to include a long explanation, but using your captions strategically can help engage your viewers and keep them on your posts longer.
Check out this guide on how to add captions to your reels.
Here’s a great example of how you can use your caption to provide even more useful information to your viewers:
Other times you might want to use your caption as a call-to-action, directing your followers to your link-in-bio, story highlights, or another post on your page. Incorporate emojis into your caption and make sure your brand voice and personality really comes across as well.
Here are some ideas when creating group photo captions.
If you have the additional marketing budget, be sure to put some towards running Instagram ads. This is a great way to reach an even wider audience, as well as to generate conversions.
There are a number of objectives to choose from, like brand awareness, website traffic, engagement, and sales.
The secret sauce? Stunning, high-quality imagery that captures the essence of your brand.
With compelling visuals, your ads don’t just speak, they resonate with new audiences, drawing them into your brand’s story. Each ad is an opportunity to make a memorable impression. Make it count, and watch as you connect with new leads and turn them into loyal customers.
Want to grow your Instagram followers? We see macro and mega influencers on the app all of the time, but we don’t hear much about their growth stories. So let’s talk about it.
- @dani_the_explorer shares how it took her 12 months to reach the 100,000 follower milestone. According to her, “I’m not going to sugarcoat it, growing on Instagram isn’t easy, but it is doable!”
- @stephanielynnkase didn’t hit 100k followers until 2022 after starting her account in 2015. She attributes her account growth to building a strong personal brand and being consistent in her content creation.
- @ijeomakola also hit 100k after 10 years of consistent content creation. She says one of the keys to Instagram growth is authenticity and consistently showing up as yourself. She also shares that, “Although in the influencer space, income is somewhat tied to follower counts, it is definitely not the only, and not even the most important, metric that determines how much brands are willing to pay you.”
- @dianamillos now has over 150k followers after first hitting the 100k mark in 2019. She shares that tactics like posting daily, using storytelling tactics, and thinking outside of the algorithm have been key components in helping her rein in between 10-20k new followers some months.
There are many ways to grow your Instagram profile this year. Think about the layout and overall look of your profile and make sure you post regularly—there is value for your followers in the content you share. If you want to widen your reach, use Instagram hashtags and geotagging.
Make sure people can easily find you and identify the main interests and topics that coincide with your personal branding. Work with other influencers and brands. Whether it’s via shoutouts, promos, or giveaways, other profiles can boost your visibility.
Follow a few of these suggestions to grow your Instagram account and you’re sure to gain more followers this year.
Did we miss any strategies to grow your Instagram? Let us know in the comments.
Further Reading on AdamEnfroy.com: To generate sales on social media, check out my articles on how to make money on Instagram and how to sell on Facebook. You can also review how to start a blog if you want to combine your social media marketing with content marketing.
Guest Post by Roman Daneghyan – the Chief Marketing Officer of Renderforest․ He’s a Content Marketing Specialist and an Expert in SEO, social media marketing, and link building. Roman enjoys sharing his experience gained along working as a marketer and helping other entrepreneurs succeed. He has his works published on some of the most renowned blogs and mediums like Crazy Egg, Forbes, Upwork, and ShareThis.
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