Instagram is one of the most popular social media platforms available and is used by more than 1.3billion people worldwide.
The evolution of social media has made platforms like Instagram a viable option to build a business and career from, with influencers able to earn huge amounts of money through sponsored posts and brand collaborations.
Not only that, but people can advertise and promote their own products to turn a profit for any business or personal venture.
This is certainly made easier when you command a good following, as you’re able to reach a wider audience, but how do you grow your following organically and effectively?
Optimise your profile and content plan
First impressions are hugely important when meeting new people and this certainly extends to your social media profiles. Make sure you are making the most of your profile customisation; pick the right photo, keep the bio section concise but informative to make it clear to viewers who you are and what you do.
If you are running a business via Instagram, a first port of call should be to include a link to your website, which isn’t included in your 150 bio character limit, and feel free to include any relevant hashtags relating to the profile from the get-go.
There is also the option to set up an Instagram business account, which you can manage via Facebook Business Manager and utilise a suit of tools to help make posting and running ads easier.
It’s also important to be smart about the content you post and when you post it. Having a clearly marked out content planner and schedule will ensure you achieve the all-important consistent flow of posts for consumers.
In turn, this will allow you to establish a degree of brand recognition and trust, which will only continue to grow over time, as Instagram’s algorithm will start to pick up on any growing engagement in your posts and will likely start to move your content up people’s news feeds.
There are in fact different social media planning tools available to purchase if you feel as though you need additional support.
Trial different content types to learn what works
Whilst having consistent content is key, making sure you prioritise quality over quantity is important too. It would be a good idea to try out different types of content, whether it’s stories, reels, IGTV posts, carousel posts or grid images on your page, keep a close eye on which ones gain the most engagement to establish a trend.
Once you have a proven idea of what your followers want, you can tailor your content to maximise that type of output and boost your fan base accordingly. However, it is important not to copy content from other profiles and try not to become repetitive with your posts. Post content in keeping with consumer appetite and trends, but make sure you have a point of difference.
Captions and hashtags
The majority of Instagram browsers are engaged by visual assets first, but if you are trying to increase your influence from a personal or business perspective, having an efficient caption is hugely valuable.
Captions allow you to provide background and context for the image you’ve used to initially capture someone’s attention, including the relevant information to keep them on your page.
Captions can be up to 2,200 characters long, but don’t feel obliged to use this every time. It may be a good idea to play around with different length captions, perhaps include any relevant emojis to make the post more visually appealing.
Hashtags are also a valuable asset. Hashtags add your content into a larger conversation around any given topic, which will likely mean it’s seen by more people and people who are interested in that hashtag.
Be sure to research which hashtags best represent your content first to optimise how you use them, as overloading posts with too many can be off putting.
One way to increase the awareness of your profile is to collaborate with others to increase the number of eyeballs your content reaches.
Consistent, high-quality content over time will naturally begin to entice sponsors or brands wanting to partner with you, and they will share and post your content in return for doing the same for them, or they may pay you to share theirs.
Depending on your budget, you can also partner with influencers of various sizes to utilise their reach. Getting an endorsement from an Instagram influencer with a big following will undoubtedly have an impact on growing you own.
In this instance, it is still important to continue with a consistent plan of action in terms of content generation, to ensure any additional exposure from influencers has maximum and long-lasting benefits.
There are so many methods for growing your Instagram following, all of which require a dedicated and disciplined approach in order to make be successful in the content creation space.
It is vital to be patient when growing your following. There can be a temptation to take shortcuts and try and buy followers, but this can actually have a negative impact on your profile.
Bots will not like or comment on your content, nor will they buy any of the products you’re selling, which will only serve to deter authentic followers through the perception that the page is spammy. become obvious to authentic followers and will
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