….I grew my Instagram following by 1000 people in 32 days organically and this is how I did it and what I learned.
So first of all I’m sorry for not posting lately, I dove in deep with Instagram this last month and I’m not gonna lie it took up all my time.
I set a goal to grow my Instagram followers by 1000 in one month and I made my goal, almost (short by one day!)
So growing my Instagram presence has always been something I really wanted to do, I love photography, photo editing and working on aesthetics and this was the perfect place for me to showcase my artistic side. I was the yearbook editor in high school and Instagram is like my own personal yearbook so I love it haha. I set a goal to really focus on it and this is what I learned.
During the last month, I started posting three times a day, one post in the morning around 9 am, another post at lunch time and then one more in the evening. (Turn on business account in order to view your analytics and post your photos at the peak times the app tells you)
In order to have enough content to post this often I have been spending my only day off, Sunday shooting enough content for the entire week. Yes this means doing my hair and outfit four or five different ways and driving all around Newfoundland to find cool places to shoot which is a little crazy I agree. I spend the next few days editing my photos and getting them prepared to post.
I use an app called “UNUM” to practice my layout and preview how my feed will look before posting, this app is really awesome as you can plan out your posts for the entire week in advance, including captions, Geo-tags and hashtags. Then you can set a reminder to alert you when to post them and send them directly from the app to your Instagram, basically fool proof.
Having a constant stream of content coming in consistently was a huge factor in how I grew my followers. In my previous post about how to give your Instagram a boost I talk about how to target your hashtags to the right size audience and this paid off big time for me.
Another thing I did in order to help me grow organically was engaging, I commented on everything I saw, genuine kind positive feedback to peoples posts. I would search a certain hashtags that were relevant to my content for instance “self portraits” and then I would scroll through the posts and comment something nice on the ones that I enjoyed. This brings direct attention to your profile, causes an alert on someones phone and is a nice way to make someone feel good.
People are posting to Instagram to get feedback and interaction, they want you to comment. This grew my followers substantially, so much so that Instagram has currently blocked me (UGH) from commenting completely. Be mindful, a good way to be engaging without being blocked is to,
Like a post
Like a post
Like a post
Comment on a post
Follow an account
…and repeat that pattern, no guarantees you wont get blocked but its seems to work for most people, (Instagram is trying to protect our accounts from bots and fake followers so this blocking is annoying when your a human and not a bot but its a necessary measure I think)
Another thing I did was I targeted larger accounts than myself and reached out to them, sending a direct message to a larger account with a compliment or a question may not always get you a response but it does most of the time, these people are happy to give pointers and support most often because that is how they grew their followings. Doing a shootout in your story of an account you really like is a good way to make a bond with another influencer and who knows, they might even shoot you out back!
Answer your DMs! If someone has an interest in your content and they take the time to send you a direct message, then answer them….sure you will get some inappropriate messages (especially if you are a girl but I’m sure men have this problem too) and you will get auto messages from people trying to sell you their products. Be polite, everyone’s just trying to make a living. Having a real discussion with one of your followers makes them feel important and valued and that will make them loyal and they will engage in your content and you will meet some awesome people.
Anything works if you put effort and time into it and this was a great lesson I taught myself while doing this experiment, yes I spent hours buried in my phone this last month but I got the results I was hoping for because I worked for it.
I am taking the long weekend completely off from Instagram and my phone in general, I have deleted the app and logged out, recharging and refocusing will give me the ability to return with better and more creative content. Instagram can be time consuming and its easy to get wrapped up and loose sight of why you started in the first place.
Try not to get wrapped up in the numbers of it all, it can be stressful and takes the fun out of it a bit, keep making good content and the numbers and followers will follow.
If you like this post let me know, I will make more like it.
Follow me on Instagram @nine.eve