Five steps to increase your Instagram followers

Instagram is a social media platform that ranks supreme when it comes to its potential as a marketing tool, particularly amongst B2C brands. One of the most common questions we get from individuals or brands is how to grow their follower base, followed by: ‘Can we buy some followers?

It's never a good idea to buy fake Instagram followers, and while it can be time-consuming to organically grow a brand’s follower base, there are some tips and tricks that can speed along the process. For many brands, social media is identical to their ‘shop window’ where customers can peek inside and get a glimpse into all that the brand has to offer, so having a strong base of ‘real’ Instagram followers is castigatory to the long-term success of any brand. and here are five easy ways to get started on expanding your loyal followers on Instagram.

The right hashtags to increase Instagram followers can be your secret weapon

Creating engaging content and posting regularly is key, but an ultra-critical element is using the right hashtags so that people (non-followers) searching for specific terms can be directed to your photos. As with all social media platforms especially Instagram, certain hashtags get preference over others. In the case of Instagram, if you use the topmost popular hashtags, the chances of getting discovered by new users are much higher. Hashtags should never be seen as an afterthought, but are an integral part of the content creation and captioning process.

Sometimes, the most trending hashtags may not apply to your brand and that’s why it’s important to do some research and find the most relevant, marketable, desired, and popular hashtags in your category. A trick here is to keep an eye on the hashtags that your competitors are using and ensure that you incorporate them as well.

As with everything in life, timing is an essential key, and this applies across the board for any social media platform. The timing of your post can contribute to its success or failure and there are various third-party tools, as well as the analytics function within Instagram itself, which will give you a detailed analysis of the best days of the week and times to post. Depending on the time zone that your followers are from and their personal preferences for being online, it’s important to post when your audience is the most engaged.

Interacting with your Instagram competitors’ audiences

One of the easiest ways to get more followers is to engage with competitors' audiences. People who follow your competition are already aware of the product or service category that you operate in and have manifested an interest. They are a logical target audience to seek and engage in attempts to grow your following.

An easy way to get started is by initiating first contact. Start actively interacting with your competitors’ audiences by following them, liking their photos, commenting, or simply dropping an emoji.

This will ensure that you are noticed by them, and chances are, they will follow you back, or at the very least, be curious and check out your account.

Everyone loves a freebie (a popular tactic) on Instagram

Giveaways and competitions are a great way to get people to engage with your content. They encourage people actively to tag others and entice them to follow your Instagram account, in the hope of winning a freebie, as one is never able to resist a freebie.

One of the most popular tactics on Instagram is the tried and tested ‘giveaway’ campaign that asks audiences to tag a friend and follow your account. Besides, the more traction and comments your giveaway post gets, the higher your engagement will be, leading it to be favored by Instagram’s algorithm as well. This combined with all the people that have been tagged by existing followings, and comments by their friends creates great visibility for the brand and eyeballs from people who could be potential Instagram followers.

The power of user-generated content (UGC)

Accounts that are successful on Instagram are the ones that are authentic in their value proposition and what they stand for, and nothing is more authentic than sharing what your real customers, clients, and followers have to say. The essence of promoting UGC is to allow authentic insight into what it’s like to use your product or service and show the diversity of people who are fans of the brand.

Reposting your followers’ content, where you are tagged is not only a very cost-effective strategy for content creation, but it also makes followers feel special and recognized by the brand. It strengthens the relationship with existing customers and encourages them to become unofficial advocates for the brand, are more willing to post about the brand, and encourage engagement from their followers.