Social Media Tips

10 Tips To Gaining Instagram Followers

I basically grew up on the internet, at the young age of thirteen I made a Tumblr blog and instantly gained a ton of attention on there. I went from 100 followers to 10,000 to 70,000+ followers, and then decided it was time to move onto Instagram. After 5+ years on Instagram and 8+ on Tumblr, I would like to think I have racked up some useful tips to help you gain more followers! Most of these tips are aimed at Instagram and Tumblr, but I’m sure they can work for any social media site! Those are just the sites I consider myself to have the most experience in. So, If you want to know how to increase your following just keep reading.

#1. Find your niche

What do you like taking pictures of or blogging about? There are a ton of niches to choose from, but a few examples would be fashion, food, fitness, lifestyle, and travel. I would consider myself a lifestyle blogger because I post a little bit of everything. For example, I have fashion posts like this some skin care flat lays here and a lifestyle shot like this. So find what you enjoy posting about and make that your focus!

#2. Have a good quality camera

No one likes seeing a low quality, dim lit pictures, it just isn’t eye-catching so make sure your area is well lit and high quality! I use my iPhone X for all my photos, so you don’t need a DSLR or anything, iPhone quality is pretty good, and natural sunlight is my favorite way to shoot. 

#3. Use filters

Filter are great because if you use the right one you can dramatically make your posts more appealing! Once you find a filter you like make sure to use the same one for all your photos so your feed has a theme going on. For my Instagram, I like a clean, bright and airy look, so I mostly use Lightroom now, but for my old posts, I used VSCO filter A6. Also remember to edit all your photos (temperature, exposure, contrast, etc.) because most likely your pictures are shot in different backgrounds and lighting so the filter will look slightly different on each picture, but with a little editing, you can make them all look identical. (If you guys would like a seperate blog post all about editing pictures and what all those settings mean, let me know!)

#4. Utilize hashtags 

This is so important for Instagram and even for Twitter. If you have a business account, you’re able to see how many people have seen your post just through hashtags. My trick for Instagram is to use about ten hashtags, sometimes more sometimes less it just depends on the photo. So the trick to being successful with hashtags is to go through and find hashtags that are relevant to your post. What I do is I choose half my hashtags that are popular, these would include posts that have over 1million posts under that hashtag. Then, I try to include ones with less than 100k, this way my post is more likely to be visible since there’s less content under those hashtags. For Twitter, just 1-3 relevant hashtags are enough since there’s a word count limit and you don’t want your tweet to look too crowded and long. 

#5. Have a public account

It might not sound like that makes a huge difference, but people like seeing your content before they choose to follow you. Also, hashtags won’t show up if you’re a private account and you won’t show up on the discovery page either if your account is private. 

#6. Attach a face to your social media

Just post some selfies every once in a while! People are more likely to remember you and your content if they recognize you, that’s basically how I gained such a huge following on Tumblr. I also found that when I post pictures of myself on Instagram, I gain a bunch of new followers as well, so give it a try! 

#7. Tag all relevant brands

If you post outfit pictures or pictures of any products make sure to tag all the brands shown in the post. That way, your post will show up under that brand’s profile under their tagged pictures which will reach a wider audience and potential new followers. If you’re really lucky and the brand sees your content and likes it, they might even repost and give you credit which will be a huge win for you. 

#8. Make genuine friendships and collaborate with others

If you’re an influencer or blogger find people in your niche and interact with them. Don’t do this in an “I’m using you for exposure” sort of way, of course, but if you’re a beauty blogger then find other beauty bloggers to talk to and interact with. You can take it a step further and if both parties are interested you guys can collaborate together by giving each other shoutouts. This is a great way to gain some new followers because chances are their followers will be interested in your content as well if you both are in the same niche.

#9. Host a giveaway

Either by yourself or split the cost with a few other people, so the prize is bigger and more people are likely to enter. I did this about a month ago with a handful of other bloggers and influencers on Instagram and it was a huge success!

#10. Interact with your followers

No one likes bloggers or influencers who don’t talk to the people who support them. Simply like comments, reply to some and try to answer DMs. Also posting polls and interactive activities on Instagram stories is a great way to gain peoples attention. One thing I always used to do on Tumblr back in the day was host question or story hours and my followers really seemed to enjoy that and so did I. 

Those are my 10 most important tips on how to gain followers on social media! Thank you so much for reading, I hope you guys enjoyed. Got any of your own tips on how to be successful on social media? Comment them down below!

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  1. Love this! I have been looking for a way to gain more followers on insta!

    1. Thank you for reading! Hope it helps 🙂

  2. Great tips! And this would make a great “title post” for a series; you could do a full post about each of your 10 tips, going into more detail with each one. Your point about private accounts is very accurate. In fact, when people have private accounts, I don’t follow them because I feel like it’s private for a reason and they probably don’t want strangers to follow them.

    Which brings up a question: I have a public business account. If someone with a private account follows me (someone I don’t know) should I follow them back? What’s the IG ettiquette there?

  3. Thank you so much, I appreciate it! The series idea is really good, I’ll look into it.

    Hmm, So I think it’s all about personal preference. I don’t follow everyone back on Instagram- only people I know, other bloggers in my niche, or people whose content I enjoy. If someone is private and I can’t see their content and I don’t know them I wouldn’t follow them. If you’re someone who follows everyone back and wants to follow this private account then go for it! However. if you don’t follow everyone back and you can’t see this persons content I just wouldn’t follow back because I think following someone and then unfollowing isn’t the best way to go. Only follow people whose content your actually interested in.

  4. Great point about attaching a face to your social media and using selfies. Never thought about that, but it makes sense. People like to interact with people. I’m not a good selfie taker but will seriously consider doing this.

    1. Yes definitely, faces are usually easier to remember! I also feel you on the selfie skills haha I take about 100 selfies and maybe 1 or 2 might come out good. Don’t worry you got this 🙂

  5. Great Ideas! I need to be more “face forward” with my followers… thanks for the reminder. Also, I hadn’t thought about a giveaway! Thanks for the information.

    1. Yay, glad it helped 🙂

  6. #9 how do you avoid the freebie hunters?
    Great post,

    1. Do you mean the people who just follow then unfollow? If so that’s a hard one because you can’t really stop people from unfollowing. My best advice would be- if you see someone who constantly unfollows you or is only looking for freebies then block them so they won’t be able to participate in the future. Also, from my experience, I didn’t receive as many unfollows as I expected so give it a try with a small prize and see how it works for you and if you think it’s worth it. Thanks for reading!!

  7. These are great tips! I think the tip that has changed how my social media accounts flow is building the relationships. It certainly takes a lot of time, but it’s worth it. Especially if you sell something. Coming from someone who has grown up on social media this is invaluable because you truly do know what you’re doing. Thanks for putting this out there!

    1. Yes exactly! You need to basically network on social media as well and take the time to support others. Thank you so much for this reply, means a lot!!

  8. Carly says:

    I’ll definitely be using some of these tips to grow my account! Thanks for sharing!

    1. No problem, I hope it helps!

  9. Zara, my Millennial daughters rant and rave about Instagram. I will try your tips. Best of the best to you!

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