Instagram is one of the popular social media platforms, hence why you need to increase your Instagram followers. And gaining relevance on this platform is a thing of concern not just for random users both also for businesspersons. This platform does not only connect people but also help businesses grow their online presence, and increase sales in return.
However, there is a popular stereotype that Instagram is a platform for the rich, and for show-off. This could be true or false based on your perception.
In this article, we will explain how you can use Instagram to build your brand online without any form of prejudice. You do not need to engage in shady tactics as this article will also help you maintain your uniqueness and originality. Remember that your goal is to attract real people that actually care about your brand and are out to engage you.
To increase your followers on Instagram, you must do the following:
Develop an Instagram strategy
Generally, you need a workable strategy to grow your business and same applies when you want to increase your followers online. This Instagram strategy must also be part of your larger strategy that connects to your overall business strategy. Be sure of why you want to increase your Instagram followers. Do you want to increase your followers for popularity sake, increase your brand awareness or drive traffic to your website? The answer you give will determine how you will structure your strategy. Be intentional about what you want.
Define your target audience on Instagram
Identifying your target audience will help you determine the right content for your potential customers. If you do not want to run a survey, you can ask yourself honest questions about people you are trying to reach: what’s their age range? What’s their occupation? How do they use Instagram? Answering these questions will determine your content and level of interaction with your audience.
Your consistency plays a huge role in your brand awareness on Instagram. No matter what you do, if you are not constantly showing yourself, people will not take you serious. Be spontaneous, you can post random pictures of yourself. You can also share your real-time experiences via videos, that is one proven way to connect to your audience. Have a plan to consistently post something everyday for one month and you will see how much audience you will attract to your brand. Your posts should be simple and relatable.
Create a catchy bio and profile
Your profiles speaks first for you on Instagram, and a catchy one is key to increasing your audience. Two-thirds of Instagram business profile visits are from non-followers. Hence, your profile must convince new views to click the follow button. Mind you, there are chances that they won’t follow you if your profile is incomplete, or unappealing.
Here’s what you can include in your profile:
- Name: Up to 30 characters, and included in Instagram search, so you may wish to include a keyword.
- Username: Make it the same as your other social media platforms. This will make it easy for your followers on other platforms to find you on Instagram.
- Website: The only place on Instagram where you can include a clickable link (aside from calls to action in ads or swiping up on Stories).
- Bio: 150 characters to convey your brand identity and show new visitors why they should follow you.
Promote your Instagram presence on other social media platforms
One simple way to increase your followers is by making your Instagram profile
discoverable. Make it easy for people to find you by sharing your Instagram link in other social media platforms. You can also give your already existing account link to your followers to help you repost. But if you are just starting your Instagram account, make sure you litter your space with rich contents before you share the link elsewhere.
Use relevant hashtags
Using hashtags will increase how people discover your posts. Hashtags make your post discoverable to people searching for your product, service or industry. Find and use popular hashtags. However, you can also establish your own hashtag that will motivate your existing followers to adopt it and make it trend. But do not use hashtag gimmicks. Be unique and original in whatever you do online.
Aim to get features
A lot of persons do not understand the advantages of getting features. Feature accounts are Instagram accounts that repost other users’ content based on a tag or hashtag. It may interest you to know that majority of these accounts have quite a reasonable number of followers. Also, there is a feature account for every niche and interest on Instagram. All you have to do is pick the one that suits your brand.
Tag your location
Once you notice a clear location element in your post or story, add a location tag. This will make people find you easily on Instagram. Whether you have a shop or not, tag your location. When you attend conferences or seminars, add your location so that other attendees can follow you.
Follow other relevant users
When you follow a user, there is a good chance they will check your feed. If your content is compelling and interesting, they will surely follow back. However, you shouldn’t be in a haste to follow other users’. Remember your follower ratio is important for credibility.
Engage with other existing communities
Just like every other social media platforms, Instagram is concerned about the communities built within it. Engage and interact. You can do so by liking, commenting, and sharing interesting contents from other users in your community. However, you must avoid generic comments that appear like they came from bots. This will increase your brand awareness because more engagements is a great signal to Instagram algorithm. And increases your chances of making it to the Explore tab.
Tag relevant users
You can tag featured Instagram users in your photos with an @-mention in your caption or by using Instagram’s tagging functionality. Either way, they will receive a notification when you do so.
Tagging someone encourages them to engage with the post and share it with their own following. When you tag someone on Instagram Stories, they can share that content to their own Story with just a couple of taps. If they do so, everyone who views their Story sees your user name and can click through to your account.
Post at the right time
As earlier said, Instagram uses an algorithm not a chronological feed. However, timing is still very important, as it is one of the major signals the algorithm considers. You can start testing various times and recording results. For example, if you are a retail brand, you might want to post during commute times and or on weekends when people are not a work.
Write compelling captions
Although Instagram is more of a visual platform, your captions play a huge role in increasing engagements. When writing a caption, put the most important words up front. You do not need a long tale. You can also ask a question, this will make your audience leave a comment. The aim is to get more followers on Instagram.
Embrace Instagram stories
This feature is worth calling specifically. There is no big deal about this. If you want Instagram followers, you must use Instagram stories. Statistics shows that half a billion Instagram accounts use stories every day, and 45% of the most-viewed stories are from business. Use the hashtag and location features in your stories to expose them to people who do not follow you already. Although this is one underused strategy, it is a sure way to get followers on Instagram without paying a dime.
Use interactivity features on your Instagram story
There are many interactive features to get users engaged via your Instagram stories, one example is poll or question stickers. Polling sticker increases three-second video views in 90% of Instagram’s beta campaigns for this feature.
If users come across your Story from a hashtag or location page, that immediate opportunity to engage is a great way to make them want to learn more about your brand by giving you a follow.
Consider Instagram live collaboration
Instagram is the perfect place to take advantage of live video, a trend that is continuing to grow on social media. Through interactive features like questions and comments, you can engage with viewers in real time. Creating more of that precious engagement can help boost your reach.
Live videos appear within your brand’s Story. When the live video ends, you can let it disappear or choose to make it available for replay on your story for 24 hours. Users are notified when an account they follow starts broadcasting live, so a live video really grabs attention.
To get your Live video in front of a whole new audience, use the “Go live with a friend” option to co-host a live video with someone else in your industry. Ask the other person to host a Live video, then invite you as a guest. The two of you will appear in a split screen, introducing you to all of their followers.
Make the most of stories highlights
Stories highlights actually gives you an opportunity to introduce your brand to people who visit your profile. Input great info and content into your highlights. This will help show visitors what you do and why they should follow you. Also, make good use of the cover photos on your highlights.
Engage in competitions
A lot of persons do not know the power of contest. Contest can get you more followers on Instagram. You can ask people to follow you, comment, tag a friend, and stand a chance to win something. For better reach, you can partner with another Instagram account on the contest, ask entrants to follow both accounts, it is a win-win for both of you. Also, encouraging user-generated content as part of your contest can also help you reach more people. People will learn about your contest from posts their friends create. This is an effective way to build trust with new followers, and get more traffic to your page.
Consider Instagram advertising
This one sounds like a difficult task but it is actually very easy. Instagram ads are a proven means to reach new followers. Be intentional about this part, because this is part of the main reason why you need new followers. This strategy will increase your sales rapidly. Target your audience by location, demographic, occupation, other users, and key behaviors and interests. Besides your main page, you can also advertise via Instagram stories.
Learn from Instagram insights
This is one strategy that people always neglect. Instagram analytics tools gives you data on impressions for each post, along with reach, top posts, engagements, and more. You can also discover demographic information about your followers, including location, age, and gender. Reviewing this data on a regular basis will help you recognize areas where you need improvements or adjustments. Like we said before, timing is necessary. You must keep an eye on what time your followers use Instagram.
In conclusion, handle your Instagram page like your business depends on it. Channel your efforts into building your brand awareness. The world is going digital and it is only wise that you follow the moving train. Also, if you cannot manage your Instagram account well, or you are too occupied or lazy to follow these guidelines, you can hire a virtual assistant. Most preferably, if you are just starting, hire an expert who will give your brand the ideal publicity it needs. But the truth is nobody will announce your business like you would. And no one will connect to your potential customers like you would.
Whatever your choice may be, make sure it corresponds to your initial goal – increase your sales. Also, make sure you are real, maintain the same energy online and offline. Whatever you do online should represent what you do offline. That is the only way people can trust you.
Also read: How-to-get-paid-by-using-instagram