Instagram has become one of the most popular platform for brands looking to leverage on the power of social media marketing to connect with current and potential new customers. The reason for this is not far-fetched; according to Forrester Research, “Instagram is the king of engagement”. Their research showed that top brands on Instagram witnessed a per-follower interaction rate of 2.3% which is far more engagement than the 0.2% they see on Facebook.

With more than 500 million active monthly users and high engagement rate, it therefore means that gaining huge number of Instagram followers should be a priority for every business. In this article, we will discuss some of advanced methods you can use to improve your instagram and let other users to easily find and follow you.

1. Create An Action Plan
Using any social media network as a brand without a clear strategy can lead to ultimate waste of time and resources and abysmal return on investment.

It does not matter whether you are starting from the beginning or you want to adjust your current Instagram strategy, here are some tips to develop a solid instagram strategy.

A. Get to Know your Competitors
Research your competitors, know what they are doing on instagram, this will help you know to what actual following looks like for businesses in your industry, the type of content your competitors are posting on their page, the frequency of posting and other ways business in your industry use to engage your ideal audience.

B. Decide on your Content
You need a content that is perfectly suited for audience in a highly visual social network like Instagram. Deciding on what story you’re going to tell your followers will give you a sense of purpose and can inspire your community thereby making your Instagram account more attractive to new followers.

Tell your followers how your product is made or where your company is headed, share any employment opportunity through your Instagram page. No need to limit your Instagram action plan to one strategy. In the beginning, try different strategies to see which one performs the best before making your choice.

C. Set Your Objectives
How many followers do you want to have in the next one week? Your Instagram strategy won’t be successful without an achievable goal. Set a goal that aligns with your overall marketing and business strategy. Your goal could be adding new followers, driving traffic to your website from instagram, creating more awareness through Instagram and other goals relevant to your business overall success.

2. Get More Followers By Being More Visible
Most people looking for new followers forget that they can easily gain followers by making it easy for people to find them. The simple solution to gaining new followers is increasing the number of ways that Instagram users can discover your account. Here are some ways to make your Instagram more visible:

A. Link to other social network
You probably have an account on Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin, these social media networks provide you with an opportunity to announce your Instagram account. Make a post about your Instagram and consider using paid advertising to boost your post to reach many new potential followers.

B. Link to Your Instagram Account
Put a link to your Instagram account on your website, newsletters, email signature, forum signature and other places so that more people can find you and follow you.

3. Use Good Contents To Increase Your Following
We cannot stress the importance of content you post on Instagram. You need to pay attention to your content if you are serious about gaining new followers. No one will follow if you are posting hugely unattractive photos, or topics that no one is interested on. Don’t make all your posting about yourself, consider talking about your followers once in awhile to show appreciation. Below are some ways you can improve your Instagram content strategy:

A. Find the best time to post
Your post will perform optimally if you can determine the best time for posting on Instagram. Use your competitors Instagram account and the insight about your customers to know when to post. The time you post depends on the audience you are targeting. For Instance; if you are targeting those who work full-time job, chances are they will be busy at work in the morning and won’t have time to check your post.

The best way to find out the most effective time to post on Instagram is by going over your previous post to see how they performed. If you notice that a photo you posted in the night consistently earned more comments and likes, then you need to adjust your content schedule accordingly.

B. Post Regularly
If you want to keep your audience, you need to post consistently; there is no magic number of how often you should post on Instagram. However, posting at least 2 – 4 times a week is good to ensure your photos appear in your followers’ feeds so they can interact with them.

Your followers are following you for a reason: they want to see your posts. Don’t leave them hanging, fulfill their wish by posting consistently.

C. Use Hashtags
All your post needs to contain relevant hashtags. The popular trend is to find out trending hashtags and use the same on your content. This will help push your content to people who may are not following you. You can use this strategy to gain many new followers.

D. Use Captions
Captions are as important as hashtags. They play a big role in helping you get new Instagram followers. Things to consider when using a caption can be a question, you can also tag a user or your location.

4. Create Contests and Campaigns To Gain more Followers
Contest is one of the most effective ways to grow your audience and drive traffic to your offer. Set a condition for entering the contest; this condition may be for those who are alreading following you to like your photos, comment on your post or use a specific hashtag. You can require those that are not following you to follow you to enable them enter the contest.

Instagram contest is a great way to engage your customers. Big brands and individuals have used this strategy to build their Instagram account and gain lots of followers.

B. Instagram Campaigns
Consider integrating Instagram campaigns into your overall marketing plan. A teaser campaign that is exclusively focused on Instagram can help you to grow your followers, you can as well use the opportunity to announce your new product or service.

5. Consider Instagram Ads
Your social media ads budget should not be limited to Facebook and Twitter, consider using Instagram ads if you have enough budget. Instagram gives everyone an opportunity to purchase sponsored posts within their platform. With Instagram ads, your post will be more visible to a good number of Instagram users.

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