Getting Followers on Instagram: 10 Steps to Grow Your Audience

Apr 10, 2019
8 minutes to read

Instagram is a huge and really sought-after marketing channel. And it can be also used as such for your online dating site, app or social network. Through Instagram, you can build a loyal group of people that will help you make your brand more recognizable and trustworthy.

There are over five hundred million users on Instagram daily, which makes it a very juicy platform to engage the audience.

But, of course, there are things that you should do and things you shouldn’t do like on any other social networks.

Today we will talk about the most efficient ways to increase and engage your followers on Instagram for the sake of your brand.


Getting Followers on Instagram:


1. Know your way around the Instagram hashtags

Please keep in mind that your objective is to engage your followers on a regular basis. New, catchy and valuable content is pretty much enough for engaging, but if you want to further increase your audience, you will need to start hashtagging. Adding hashtags helps new users to find and follow your photos on the search, using specific keywords related to what you do and offer.

Like any other social networks, Instagram has its own unique hashtags that may help you discover new members.

Here is the list of top 20 hashtags:

  1. #love 1.221B
  2. #instagood 704.0M
  3. #photooftheday 478.6M
  4. #fashion 456.5M
  5. #beautiful 445.0M
  6. #happy 413.8M
  7. #cute 404.3M
  8. #tbt 401.4M
  9. #like4like 393.9M
  10. #followme 374.3M
  11. #picoftheday 363.1M
  12.  #follow 357.3M
  13.  #me 341.6M
  14.  #selfie 329.4M
  15.  #summer 320.6M
  16.  #art 319.4M
  17.  #instadaily 311.6M
  18.  #friends 299.3M
  19.  #repost 295.8M
  20.  #nature 286.4M

You may wonder “But what do I do with them? None of those apply to my site is about!”.

Well, one needs to know what hashtags are suitable in every situation. 

Using top tags may increase your likes, comments, and views, but, in the long run, it will not be of much help in enlarging your audience.

In order to hashtag properly, you first need to find the hashtags relevant to you.

So let’s go on a researching adventure!

To find relevant tags, you can use Webstagram.

Let’s say, I’m trying to promote my swinger site, right? So I type #swingers and I receive a list of keyword hashtags with the number of how often they were used:

#swingers 302,731 Posts
#swingersclub 27,897 Posts
#youngswingers 6,534 Posts
#swingersclubs 5,801 Posts
#swingersvacation 4,977 Posts
#swingersdiner 3,250 Posts
#swingerscouple 1,312 Posts
#swingershub 231 Posts
#swingersgroups 1,689 Posts
#swingerslounge 1,459 Posts
#swingerslondon 996 Posts
#swingerselokuva 588 Posts
#swingersmovie 571 Posts
#swingersteam 325 Posts
#swingersuicide 371 Posts
#swingerswestend 838 Posts
#swingershavemorefun 529 Posts
#swingersbar 235 Posts
#swingersgolf 2,403 Posts
#swingerscity 198 Posts
#swingersquito 966 Posts
#swingersbrasilia 348 Posts
#swingerscampinas 327 Posts
#swingersweekend 304 Posts
#swingersldn 2,032 Posts
#swingersdateclub 161 Posts
#swingersvitoria 449 Posts
#swingerspty 380 Posts
#swingersvitória 274 Posts
#swingersnight 241 Posts

You may want to try a number of combination and keywords to find the most optimal hashtags for you. But please bear in mind, that Instagram allows only 30 tags per post. And tags’ popularity tends to change over time, so it’s wise to revise them periodically.


Alternatively, you can borrow hashtag ideas from your competitors or any similar accounts. But this way, you will be sharing your audience with them as well.

You can list a dozen of keywords that describe what you offer, 5-9 that describe your brand and 5 more to cover the location of your audience.

You can also renew your old photos by posting comments below them with a portion of hashtags. This will attract new users and likes and comments.


2. The filters

According to Iconosquare Study, there are top filters on Instagram:

  1. Normal (No Filter)
  2. Clarendon
  3. Juno
  4. Ludwig
  5. Lark
  6. Gingham
  7. Lo-fi
  8. Aden
  9. Valencia
  10. X-Pro II

Filters, as well as hashtags, can help you receive a better response from your audience and can impact your engagement campaign.

According to TrackMaven Mayfair, Hefe, and Ludwig filters attract the most attention from the community.

TrackMaven Instagram data


Use the same IconoSquare to monitor the performance of your action with different filters and hashtags on your Instagram account.


3. Publish at the right time

Publishing when your post will appear right when your audience is browsing the feed is the key to successful engagement.

You can use the IconoSquare to find the most optimal time window to publish.

Gray dots represent the best time for posting, the bigger they are, the larger the response you will receive.

Instagram posting habits has studied the optimal time to post on Instagram for 2019.

The time zone is EST(UTC -05)

Additionally, you can use Instagram Analytics tool, but only if you have a business account.


4. Lure away audience from your competitors

Find your rivals and engage with their members. Their audience has already displayed interest in the similar product they offer, so it would be easier to snatch them.

There are three main ways to engage with an Instagram user:

  1. follow him/her
  2. like a photo
  3. comment on a photo

The more you engage with users, the more likely they will become members of your brand advocates.


5. Geotags for local awareness

Make stories and posts with geotagging if your site or app has strict local restrictions allows you to engage with your potential audience.

You can also track users in a chosen location and engaging with them on your own. This will build trust between you two.


6. Organize Highlights

When users open up your profile, first what they see are highlights.

You can use those to tell them what your account or site is all about. Then segregate your Stories into different categories – based on location, gender, age and etc.

You can also promote some features or services through stories.

7. Ask your audience

Don’t hesitate to address people and ask them to follow you. They may be interested in what you offer and share, but require a little push to make them follow you so they can receive valuable and interesting content later on as well.

You can also tempt them with some goodies on your site or app in exchange of following you or sharing a link to your account/site with their friends.


8. Use trends

Trending topics and hashtags can help you cover previously un-engaged audience.

Trends can be such as events, holidays, famous people and others.

Just make sure that the tags are appropriate to your content.


9. Giveaways

A good way to encourage your audience to like, follow, share, comment and tag friends is giveaways. One of the best kinds of comments you can get on any social media post, not just Instagram, is a comment where one user tags a friend. Not only do these comments contribute to your post’s engagement, which in turn makes it favorable to the Instagram algorithm, but each tag brings you a new audience member who arrived through a recommendation and who you could potentially win over as a follower.

Instagram has its own promotion guidelines but they are not hard to follow.

Tagging friends can be a valid way to acquire new users and make them follow your account.



10. Monitor your account data

Always make sure you see the statistics of how many users you get, how many you lost and how they respond to your engagement strategies.

There are a lot of useful tools to get that data and Social Blade is one of them. It allows you to see daily followers, daily following and total media uploads of an Instagram account.

You can also use an in-house Instagram Analytics to view more detailed data, but it’s only available for Business accounts. In there you can view how many people checked your profile, how many people have reacted to your posts, what are your most interesting posts and where most of your followers come from.


Grow your business through the Instagram following

Today we’ve talked about 10 best ways to increase Instagram audience engagement. But hey, don’t be too hard on yourself, just be who you are and share your experience and valuable content with the world. Sooner or later, everything good will get back to you 😁

As Instagram is a good engagement platform to scale your business and your brand.



Main photo by Luke van Zyl on Unsplash

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