I started a personal project where I create a new logo every day to post on my artist Instagram account. Since I started sharing my work, I have learned what works and what doesn't when it comes to increasing an account following. These are 5 tips that can be useful to grow your Instagram following.
1. Consistency is key
Instagram is a highly competitive environment where thousands of new posts are made each day. Posting consistently increases your chances of getting noticed by potential followers because the more posts you have out there, the more chances you get for profile visits.
While posting consistently is important, you have to make sure each post has value and can stand out from the rest in some way. Yet each new post must also fit well into your profile feed. Good posts invite users to explore a profile in more detail, and that is where the decision to follow or not is made. It’s important to have a consistent theme so that your followers, and potential followers, will know what kind of content to expect from you.
2. Improve your hashtag game
Hashtags are more important on Instagram than on any other social network. If it weren't for hashtags, a profile would be virtually undiscoverable. Providing relevant content and posting consistently is not enough if your posts don’t get to the eyes of the right people. While using hashtags like #picoftheday can get you many instant likes and follows, your posts will probably only be findable in the hashtag feed for a few minutes before they get lost in a pile of new posts.
Using hashtags relevant to your content ensures that the right people will see your content. Try to find hashtags that have been used around 10,000 - 80,000 times. Instagram allows you to use up to 30 hashtags per post or comment. I like to add my hashtags in the comment section to keep my captions clean. It’s also a good idea to keep a couple lists on hand of quality hashtags to use with each post. Adding a location to your posts also creates better results.
It is important to mention that “curators,” a new category of Instagram profiles, have become increasingly popular. These are accounts that do not create any content, but simply have you use their hashtag in your posts. They then repost or share the best posts under their hashtag. This is a great way to get your profile noticed and to start building your following.
3. Study your audience & analytics
There isn't an absolute best time to post on Instagram for everyone, this is why it’s important to use the analytics tool to your advantage. Monitoring your posts helps you to be more efficient. After I started posting regularly, I found out that I get the best results when I post around midnight, which is apparently when most of my audience checks Instagram. Seeing how your posts perform is an important tool to understanding what will do the best in the future.
4. Build community & stay connected
Having great content can sometimes be irrelevant if you don't build a community and connect with others. I started by commenting on posts I thought were great and followed profiles that I liked. Doing simple things like replying to comments or answering private messages creates an online presence for you that your followers can interact with. I have found that Stories are a great way to share and stay connected. They have recently become even better with the inclusion of polls and slider bars, as well as the ability to include hashtags in your story. This allows people who may not be following you, but who are following those hashtags to be able to see your story.
Your content is what makes people follow you, but the way you behave online and interact with your followers is what makes them stay.
5. Stay up to date with features & trends
Instagram is constantly changing and adding new features. For example, hashtags used to rule Instagram, but I have recently seen stories being used with greater success now that you can highlight them in your profile.
Staying aware of these changes and using them to your advantage helps you stay on top of your game.