Around the end of January I wrote the blog post Business or Personal: Why your Instagram account isn’t growing I noticed that my Instagram profile ( a profile with the “Business” setting on Instagram) wasn’t getting very much reach.
I realized if you have you Instagram set to “Business” Instagram will view your profile as a business with fund to pay for advertising.
If Instagram thinks your are a business advertising they are going to assume everything you post is an ad. Instagram severally limits the reach business accounts.
If you have a business account. You content is only being seen by a fraction of your audience.
(Click here for in depth explanation of Business or Personal: Why your Instagram account isn’t growing)
I was devastated the content I was creating wasn’t being seen because I made a mistake when I was in an “act as if” phase.’I was “acting ask if” I was a business. Plus I wanted to see my insights.
Insights is the only perk of having a business Instagram page. (For me at least) I used my insights as tool to create content… but to me it seemed pointless to make content that only 10% of my audience was seeing.
Over the next 28 days I worked to grow my account from 0-381 followers.
I studied new Instagram growth techniques and applied them.
I was astonished by the findings and decided to share some tips on how to grow your Instagram.
Research hashtags prior to posting
I found a great video by “Dawntreprenuer” on YouTube it’s all about hashtag strategy!
Many of us are familiar with hashtags but we aren’t using the right ones to help us grow and be seen on Instagram. We are all using the same 30 generic hashtags and that’s a problem.
Instagram is smart. If it sees that the same hashtags are being used repeatedly it will assume you’re a spam account and it will limit you views your chances of making it to the explore page.
When using hashtags think smart. You have 30 chances to pin point your audience with a post and get organic followers.
Using hashtags that over crowded like #momblogger will not help your post stand out. Here’s why:
The hashtag #momblogger is used 4.3 million times. Click on the “recent” tab and you see there’s a new post every 53 seconds.
The chances of you standing out in that hashtag is slim to none if you have a small following.
However if you take a little time and find a less crowd hashtag, you increase the likelihood of your content standing out.
I learned a formula from “Dawntreprenuer”
Pick 5 hashtags from 10,000-50,00, 5 Hashtags from 50,000-200,000 and so forth all the way to 25.. the last 5 you select hashtags relevant to the content posted.
I don’t use 30 hashtags.. I love this method, however,I just stick to around 20-25 hashtags and seems to bring a decent amount of traffic to my Instagram profile.
My little profile consistently is growing in “likes” and comments because of using the right hashtags and placing the content in front of the right eyes.
Hashtags are the only “search engine” that Instagram has so its paramount to use them as a tool.
I learned another trick from youtuber Vanessa Lau
Vanessa groups her hashtags in notes, in order to copy and paste them into the post.
Group you hashtags in “notes” (or equivalent) order to “copy and paste” them into your Instagram post
This tip saved me so much time while posting. I was able quickly copy and paste my hashtags into my post instead of typing one by one!
I often edit the hashtags to make them more relevant to post, and to really target my audience. This really increased my “likes” and I was able to see what groups of hashtags worked and which didn’t. I was able to weed out the hashtags that weren’t effective and increase my followers the next week.
Use IG stories
People love IG STORIES! This is another way to be interactive with you audience and to find EYES!
There’s more eyes than you think watching stories! A very high percent of your followers actually watch stories and engage with the stories!
Also tagging others in stories opens you up to their audience.
If you have similar content you will more than likely gain a few followers from simply tagging another instagrammer.
The thing I like about stories is just feels more intimate and quick.
It’s not a post but it still a tool for growth and it really does make a difference.
I notice when I don’t use stories I don’t grow as much.
IG stories gives your audience a behind the scenes view into your life.
You’re able to post pictures, music, memes, videos, you name it! You’re even able to go live!
Many use know this but its feature we aren’t using.
I made an effort to post to my lg storied at least once a day. Those stories are so beneficial!
They are a direct link to the DM’s and open conversation between you and your audience.
When you’re trying to grow on ig you need to make your presence know in all places and IG stories is the easiest way to connect but it’s the most overlooked.
In order to have engagement..you need to engage!
jump in the comment section and be apart of the conversation.
Go visit those who “liked” your post and “like” their post. Leave a genuine comment. Let them know what you liked about THEIR post.
I guarantee the more your open, honest and positive online the more you will grow.
People will see that you are an active and engaged Instagrammer and they will want to interact with you. They will come and check out your content.
Especially if you leave a comment over a few words. Most people don’t leave anything other than emojis so sending a heartfelt comment will really stand out.
Another way to increase engagement and growth is sharing tour favorite post in your stories. Once again you’re exposing yourself to a broader audience by tagging the user and you’re also showing your personality online. You’re showing your audience what you like to see and that’s intriguing!
Sharing the work of other also build a sense of community on Instagram.
You don’t know how much it means to a creative to share their work even. Even if your page is small using your stories to shout-out someone does bring in a few followers here and there. It all adds up.
I posted 96 post in about 30 days.. I post Monday, Wednesday and Friday. On the days I post I try to post more than once. I only have this intense posting schedule when I’m actively growing an account.
The reason is simple.. more post equal more eyes.
I post about food, family and fitness. I consistently post about those thing so that what my audience expects.
I show up on their timelines consistently with the same style of post and photography consistently.
I have longer form post but that’s what my audience expects.
Consistency trumps talent.
If you’re showing up everyday. You’re naturally going to get better at posting on Instagram and you’re naturally going to grow.
If you post sporadically, you’ll grow sporadically.
I’m consistently coaching people with their Instagram growth and the one thing I always notice is people don’t post consistently enough to grow.
Instagram takes time to grow. It’s a job.
It really is. People make six and seven figures from their Instagram followings. That should tell you it’s not an overnight thing. It doesn’t take a lot but it does consistency.
You can’t show up twice a week and expect to have 50k followers in month. That’s not how it works.
You have to show consistently on timelines or you will be forgotten.
I’m not saying throw your life into ig.. I’m saying have a dedicated schedule and stick to it. If you can only Instagram 2 times a week for 45 minutes then do it!
Use that time to post and to NETWORK! If you can’t post consistently at least network consistently.
You really want your name to show up on timelines. Be it in a post or as as “like” you want that name to be on minds and in eyesight!
DO NOT POST AND GHOST!
Don’t just make a post and then log out..
Thats not ok. I like to engage about 5-10 minutes before I post and about 15-20 minutes. It makes social media more interactive. It shows people you’re online! If you post and never respond to others you won’t grow.
The love you show on Instagram is what’s returned to you. Your followers matter.
Click that tab that says “Followers” and go on a comment and liking spree.
Just spend 10 minutes a day really liking your followers work. It feels good! It also makes them feel good to see you’re not just another “follow” you’re really grateful for their support. You might make someone’s day.
Make a content calendar and stick to it!
One thing that really has helped my growth on Instagram this year for my business and personal account was sticking to my posting schedule.
I know the reach on my business account is limited, I only post to that account 3 times a week. Monday, Wednesday, Friday.
Instagram has the option to post on multiple accounts. I utilize the option to show how stunted reach is. The same photo post at the same time.3 likes in 10 minutes time on an account with 2,201 followers vs personal 11 likes on an account way smaller.
It’s clear there is a difference in reach but that’s not bad. There are perks to having an Instagram business account. Insights and Ad’s do help!
I am actually happy I had to start over. I know the followers I’m gaining are all basically handpicked through hashtag searching and networking.
It’s also nice to create knowing your work has reach! Full reach! Not just reaching a small percentage of your audience because you can’t afford to promote on Instagram.
Did you switch to a personal account after my last post? I’m curious to hear your results in the comments