Your girl is now part of the “swipe-up gang” on Instagram! I was proud of hitting that milestone, however, with that accomplishment came many questions in my inbox, which is why I’m writing this post on how to gain Instagram followers.
I’ve seen many posts about “how to gain 10K followers in X amount of time” and I want to make it clear that there’s no timeframe for growing your page. It has taken me almost 2 years to get my page to where it is now, 10K followers with a highly engaged audience – which is the most important part! There’s no point in having a high following if no one is engaging with your content.
This post will not give you hacks or shortcuts on how to gain Instagram followers. Instead, you’ll find strategies I’ve followed that have helped me build connections and get my brand to where it is now. It may not happen as fast as you want it to, but don’t give up!
How to Gain Instagram Followers
Engage + Follow Similar Accounts
I can’t express how important engagement is, it’s not a one-way street. Don’t expect to sit back and have everyone flock to your page just because. Double tapping on a few photos here and there is cool, but what’s even better is leaving genuine comments and following people you’re interested in.
Building connections with others will bring more eyes to your content and possibly followers if they like what they see. Focus on following those who are within the same niche as you! Don’t go around commenting on random posts for the heck of it, people can tell a genuine comment from a spammy one.
Engagement is something you should start working to build during the beginning stages of your account. Trust me, you’d rather have an engaged audience at the end with a bigger following. When you show love to others, it will come back to you.
Create Good-Quality Content
You want to start posting good-quality, attractive content. Think about the type of posts you engage with regularly: Are they clear? Is the picture/video bright? Does the background have clutter? You want to post content that’ll not only bring your target audience to your page but also brands you can possibly work with in the future.
You don’t have to invest in a professional camera to post quality content. Although it is an upgrade, your phone can produce good content on its own. One thing you want to pay attention to while creating is making sure you’re in a well-lit area. Lighting can either make or break the quality of your content.
Another important factor when it comes to posting quality content is editing. Taking a good photo is only the first step, however, editing can enhance your content and make it more attractive. My favorite app to use is Adobe Lightroom.
Related Post: The Best Equipment for Content Creators to Purchase
It’s important to stay consistent when posting. I’m not saying you have to post every day or multiple times per day, however, you want to stick to a schedule and always provide your audience with valuable content. Before you post, think about what someone would learn from you!
In the beginning, I posted 2-3 times per day and I’m not going to lie, it burnt me out fast. Thinking about the type of content I was posting back then makes me cringe because it wasn’t my best work. Don’t ever feel like you have to post only to say you showed up. Your audience will appreciate it when you take the time to provide content that can teach them something.
One way you can stay consistent is by planning your content. I love batch creating, which means I take one day out of the week to take as many pictures and videos as I want. You can also use this time to create captions and hashtag sets.
I recently ordered a planner and have already put it to good use! A planner can help you keep track of your goals and the content you want to post on a specific day. The one that I received is perfect for Entrepreneurs and Content Creators. Click on the picture below to check out their website, they’re also black-owned!
Use the Right Hashtags
Hashtags and I have a love-hate relationship. Sometimes they work in my favor and other times I feel like they say “ha, yeah right, not today!” I’ve tried many hashtag strategies and I learned that using the right ones can help you gain more Instagram followers. When people type in or follow a certain hashtag that you use, your content will pop up.
Your goal should be to use hashtags that are relevant to your brand, niche, and audience. One way to find related hashtags is by typing in a keyword that is focused on your niche into the search bar on Instagram. Here is an example, I used natural hair blogger:
You can also see which hashtags other bloggers are using! When I use a set of hashtags and my post has great results, I always save them in my notes app on my phone! That way, I can quickly copy and paste it when I want to use them again.
Here are a few more tips about hashtags:
- Use up to 30 hashtags on your post
- Don’t use popular hashtags
- Don’t use the same hashtags on every post
- If you have multiple niches, have different hashtag sets for each
Write Engaging Captions
Although Instagram is a visual platform, attractive content isn’t the only thing that can bring more followers to your page. What you write in your captions also has an impact on your growth. When your audience engages with your post, this will help you gain more reach.
The story you tell on your page is just as important as the content you share. Your captions can show your personality, provide more valuable information, and inspire your audience. Writing engaging captions is a great way to build connections with others and become more relatable.
According to a blog post on Later: “In 2020, our feeds will be filled with an average caption length of 405 characters. Longer captions will result in higher engagement rates. A higher engagement rate not only means that your content is hitting the mark with your audience, but it also helps with its overall discoverability.“
This is why I recommended batching your content and captions. Think about what you’re posting and a story you can tell your audience. When I do this a few days in advance, this gives me time to fix errors and add extra words if I think about something else interesting.
Collaborate With Others
The last tip I have for gaining followers on Instagram is collaborating with other creators. Whether it’s for a giveaway, Instagram live, or social posts, collaborating with others can get you in front of more people within your niche. With that being said, you want to collaborate with someone who has a similar target audience as you.
It wouldn’t make sense to work with a food blogger if you’re focused on beauty. If you did host a giveaway and their followers came to your page, they wouldn’t stay because you’re not giving them the content they’re interested in. Your main goal should always be to get more people on your page who are looking for the content you provide. More than likely, they will stick around and engage with your posts!
When it comes to gaining more Instagram followers, it will seem like a challenge in the beginning. You’re putting in a lot of work but may not have noticed any changes. I encourage you to stick with these strategies and not give up. You won’t grow overnight and this journey is all about patience and commitment.