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If you've ever wondered how to get more followers on Instagram as a brand or business, the good news is that the answers are actually quite straightforward. 

Instagram - or IG, Insta, or The ‘Gram - is an American image and video sharing social media network owned by Facebook. The primary function is not only for users to post their own content, but to engage with the content of others. Like minded users are able to connect via the use of hashtags and location geotags, so it differs greatly from the Facebook model of a community of “friends”.

In the early 2010’s, using Instagram was as simple as slapping a filter on an image and posting it with a few hashtags. These days, the game has changed significantly with additions such as Stories, Reels, IGTV and much more. 

As the platform is now generating over $12 billion in advertising revenue per annum, it can be difficult to organically grow your brand’s presence on the platform without defaulting to paid marketing - so how do you get more followers on Instagram for free?

Ten Instagram Growth Hacks To Try

With Instagram now regarded as one of the biggest heavyweights in the world of social media, it’s not a platform that brands and businesses can ignore any longer - particularly if they’re trying to market to young people.

According to Statista, over 71% of the one billion active monthly users are aged under 35. As Millenials have now surpassed Baby Boomers as the world’s largest living adult generation, so too has their buying power. If you’re a brand trying to tap into this illustrious market, are there any shortcuts to take advantage of this and ultimately boost your followers tally? 

Create A Branded Hashtag - A dedicated, custom, or branded hashtag allows you to essentially craft a collection of your best content that lives in the one place. The best part? Both you and your audiences can access it, and it can help to significantly drive brand awareness. An example of this is #JustDoIt - ring any bells? We thought so. 

Go Local - The internet is a big place, so don’t be afraid to tap into your local community. Now more than ever, every day consumers are eager to support the brands and businesses that they share a post code with, so try to capitalise on events or things happening in your area, as well as partnering with others operating in your community network. 

Lift Your Caption Game - When learning how to get more followers on Instagram, it’s important to remember that while it is indeed very much a visual platform, the words you opt for still count for something. Lift your caption game by being informative, engaging or even just plain funny, as it helps to humanise your content. 

Diversify Your Content - You may have noticed that high performing influencers and accounts on Instagram do more than just post a photo once a week. Diversifying your content to include components such as Stories, Reels and even IGTV videos really can work wonders when it comes to connecting with new audiences who may not normally view your content. 

Partner With Micro Influencers - The magic of micro influencers can be found within their engagement levels. Usually capped at a maximum of 100,000 followers, these public figures may have a lower audience - but it’s a specific, attentive and engaged audience - and often directly in line with the type of people that your brand should be connecting with. 

Engage Regularly - Finding success on the internet is often a two way street, and the traffic doesn’t usually flow one way. If you want to get seen, you need to put yourself out there, so start actively engaging with other posts and accounts by liking, commenting or sharing their content. Although it can be time consuming, even thirty minutes a week is better than nothing. 

Switch Up Your Hashtags - Whatever you do, avoid the ol’ #FollowForFollow tactic. Instead, regularly mix up your choice of hashtags and include localised, industry specific and long tail options to avoid the Instagram “powers that be” casting you as a serial spammer. Save them into the notes section of your phone or even as a draft email in order to use your time efficiently. 

Develop A Brand Identity - How often do you take a step back to assess your Instagram profile as a whole, instead of by each individual post? Many top performing accounts run with a “theme”, such as colour palettes, using the same fonts for quotes or statistics, and even post certain types of content in a particular order - so deploy a calendar to ensure you’re consistent. 

Optimise Your Bio - The bio section of your business or brand’s Instagram account is prime real estate, so don’t let it go to waste. While you only have a small window to work with, this is your one shot to market yourself in simple terms to new and existing audiences. It’s also how search engines and Instagram categorize your brand, and can be a shortcut to getting seen. 

Timing Is Everything - While what you post is absolutely important, so is when you post. You might have a particular video that you want to showcase to the world, but if you post it when most of your followers are offline, then you can really do your content quite the disservice. Instead, dig into your analytics to see the most active times and schedule if you need to. 

Sourcing Help With Your Instagram Content 

Producing quality, consistent and on brand content takes time, effort, experience and resources - and you’re not alone if you can’t quite commit to that. Avoiding blogging for business altogether may actually be doing your brand a disservice, but thankfully - outsourcing and in turn, investing in a solid content marketing strategy has never been easier. 

Here at Content Hive, producing top quality digital content is exactly what we do best. We have itemised a list of digital content services, and allocated credits next to each of these. This means that each month, you can use your credits with us to produce digital content such as blog articles, social media posts, videos and even animated Instagram stories. By using this model, we believe that it enables us to produce high quality content with faster delivery times. It also means that because you have a monthly credit, you are going to want to make sure you use these up - and so do we - meaning that your digital content is always consistent.   

If you aren’t quite sure where to start on your digital marketing journey and would like to speak to a professional, why not book in a free discovery call with us at Content Hive today to discuss how we can get your brand buzzing online.