I get asked a lot how I grew my Instagram. I am here to say there are a few very important tricks I have learned along the way…. You want in on the secret? Here you go…….
I CANNOT stress how important this is. Think of Instagram like a resume for a job. When someone clicks over to your page they should instantly know what you are all about. 9 times out of 10 a person will make a decision as to whether they are going to follow you within the first 10 seconds they are on your page. I am all about furniture and home decor so my followers are not coming to my business page to see my family or what I had for lunch, they have come to get ideas. I put my prettiest pictures on Instagram because like I said before this is my resume and I want my best foot forward!
You will have to play around with this a little bit to figure out when you get the best interaction, but I get the best interaction from my followers around 8am and 10:30pm. Strange times right? But every time I post at these times I get more likes and comments! With the new Instagram algorithm I have been trying to post 4 to 5 times a day but if it is a busy day I will at least post at those 2 times!
I have found Instagram to be a lot more interactive then other social media platforms. If I comment on someones photo most of the time they will respond to me and vise versa. I try to answer as many questions and I can and thank people for their kind comments. I also have made it a point to comment on others post as well. I have a goal to comment on at least 20 posts a day and I try to make them meaningful. If someone posts a picture of their kitchen I will find something I REALLY love about it and express that in the comments. Rumors has it that Instagram is only counting comments with 3 or more words so make those comments count!
I am part of a few groups where we all make it a point to comment on each others posts. Once we post we share it to the group message so the others know we have a new post up and it and allows everyone to comment on it when they have a free minute. This is a great way to get around the new Instagram algorithm but it is also a way to get to know new accounts.
4- Share Groups –
This is a great way to find new followers as well as make new friends. When I set up a share group it usually consists of 6 other accounts. I will add all 6 accounts into one group message and over an 6 week period of time we all agree to share one person a week and link to each others profiles. Since we are all in a group message it is a great time to talk and get to know the others in the group as well. I have made lots of real life friends this way.
5-Hashtags (hashtag list here, this is a google sheets document so as I update it you will see it too!)
If you can’t see the google sheets here is my current list!
I try to play along with as many hashtags as possible. If you are a blogger you probably play along with link parties, hashtags are very similar to that only on Instagram. I host a few and I try to play along with as many as I can.
For Example, I am currently co-hosting #mystylewednesday with 6 others. Every Wednesday we post a picture with the theme and ask people to play along. Then each Friday we all pick our favorite and post it across all of our accounts.
I have attached my sheets document above with the hashtags I play along with each day. Feel free to download, but check back for updates!
Instagram is still a great way to grow through giveaways. As a thank you to my followers I try to giveaway product here and there. I also participate in group giveaways hosted on other accounts.
This is a great new feature from Instagram that has really taken off. You can see these circles on the top of your feed. If you click on them it will play a 10 second video from the account holder. These videos are a great way for your followers to get to know you better and see things in action! It is also another way to get your stuff out there to more people so make sure you are using them, even if it is weird at first….you get used to it, trust me.
I have still not fully cracked the code or figured everything out, but here is what I do know.
- Posts are weighted now similar to Facebook, where the most popular posts are on top instead of being in chronological order like they used to be.
- Interaction is key.
- Post frequently, at least 2 times a day….more if possible
- Most importantly have fun and make a few friends along the way!!
You may have realized by now…A LOT of work goes into growing a following. We joke around here that it is a full time job…..but if you are hoping to make money blogging building a following is key.