Have you been using Instagram for a while, yet only have a handful of followers to show for it? Do you rarely receive likes and comments on your photos? If so, you may need to learn how to get noticed on Instagram. These tips should help you steamroll through that plateau and create an Instagram profile to shock your audience and increase your real followers.
Tips to Get Noticed on Instagram
Instagram is a powerful medium to expand your reach – but only if you use it the right way to get noticed.
1. Find Your Niche
To effectively boost your following, you need to understand your target demographic. Gauge who your ideal followers are and how you want them to interact with your social media and brand.
It’s good to be multi-faceted, but if you have a travel blog, you should be tailoring your content to entice fellow travellers. If your focus is on fitness, then you will be looking for exercise and sports enthusiasts with your fitness videos and diet tips. People will unfollow you once they either see content that doesn’t relate to them or don’t see consistency in your focus. Keep these things in mind before you start uploading content.
Furthermore, keep your professional page professional, and leave your personal or random photos for your private, non-business account.
2. Post Consistently, But Not Too Much
Brands that get noticed on the platform are consistent posters. At the same time, they don’t spam their followers with too many photos.
You need to post regularly if you expect to grow your followers and your reach. After all, nobody will be able to discover your account organically unless you put some content out there.
A good rule of thumb to follow for posting is one photo a day, max.
3. Use Only Your Best Photos
Take a look at the people you follow on Instagram. Unless they are friends, celebrities, or more practical Instagram accounts, you are likely following them because you love their photos. So put yourself in your followers’ shoes, and only share photos with them that you, yourself, love.
When people land on your Instagram account, you will want them to be blown away with your smartphone photography skills. This will not happen unless you are only posting your best shots to your public profile.
This doesn’t mean you must stop posting all those impromptu selfies and less-polished photos. Instagram has a new feature (gradually rolling out to everyone) that allows you to share some of your posts only to your “Close friends” list, which should generally just comprise your friends and family. You can manage your list by clicking the Star icon at the top of your profile when you’re logged in.
When you post a shot to your Close friends list, it does not appear on your public profile. So you don’t need to worry about it tainting the rest of your Instagram portfolio.
4. Don’t Pay for Engagement
Instagram’s algorithm can tell the difference between real users and bots.
“Bots” are automated services that many business accounts use to like posts, follow users, and even comment. It is easy to see why people crunched for time take advantage, but it is not a good practice.
Just avoid paying for illegitimate engagement. Instead, work on getting it organically or through platform-based advertising for best results.
5. Have Your Own Aesthetic
People also follow Instagram accounts because they love the aesthetic of that account. They love the style of the photos being uploaded. You can’t have this appeal if you are constantly changing up your filters, swapping between color and black and white, or playing around with different styles day in, day out.
So, spend some time figuring out your own aesthetic.
This doesn’t mean you’re locked into this style forever. You are (obviously) free to evolve your photography aesthetic as you like. But when it comes to getting people to follow you on Instagram, having a recognizable, largely consistent style can be a real help.
6. Use Your Hashtags Wisely
Using hashtags is one of the main ways to get more people to see (and hopefully interact) with your photos and videos. Instagram limits the number of hashtags you can use in each post to 30. And while there is some debate over how many hashtags you should actually be using, there’s no right answer.
Using all 30 doesn’t appear to have any negative effects, so knock yourself out.
When it comes to picking which hashtags to use, avoid super-popular ones like #love or #instagood. They are just too broad to be of any use.
Instead, keep your chosen hashtags highly relevant to your interests. To do this, start typing a hashtag into your caption, and Instagram will suggest alternatives that could perform well for that topic. Don’t fall into the lazy trap of using the same hashtags all the time, though. Customize them to the subjects of your photos, and you will reach far more people.
7. Post at the Right Times to Get Noticed on Instagram
Posting once a day isn’t the only important factor to get noticed on Instagram. You also need to post strategically, at the right times.
To get the highest amount of initial engagement, post when your target audience is most active. This time will vary depending on the demographics of your followers.
However, there are tools you can use to track when people are engaging and when you should post, like Owlmetrics.
This initial spurt of engagement from posting at the right time can help boost your post. This means it will show up higher in people’s feeds, getting more exposure and even more notice.
8. Interact with Your Community
Remember, Instagram is a social network, not just a publishing platform. So to really succeed, you need to integrate yourself into your Instagram community.
At the very least, this means replying to comments that you receive on your posts, and tagging people and places who are in, or relevant, to your photos. In return, they will receive a notification about this.
If you are looking to take your Instagramming even more seriously, you wll have to take your interaction to the next level.
A simple way to do this is to follow Instagram hashtags that are relevant to your niche. Some photos that are tagged with these hashtags will then appear in your feed. Spend some time leaving valuable comments on these posts, and following profiles you admire. This will help you enter the radar of other people in your niche.
9. Host an Instagram Contest
Hosting a contest is a great way to encourage engagement and get noticed on Instagram.
To start one, usually, you just need some swag. To announce the contest/giveaway, post a photo of it on your account and describe what the goods are.
For lots of engagement, require entrants to complete a number of tasks. They can like the photo, follow your account, and leave a comment, or tag a few friends in the comments. They can even repost the photo. Each task counts as an entry and increases their chances of winning.
For maximum impact, team up with another business account on the contest so you can share followers and engagement.
10. Use a Consistent Filter on Photos
Unsurprisingly, the Instagram accounts that get the most engagement and notice are consistent in every way. They:
- Post consistently
- Post consistent, relevant, interesting photos
- Use consistent photo filters for a unified look
Yes, even your photo filters can contribute to the notice you get. For a unified brand look, stick to the same one or two filters to improve the look of your photos.
Don’t use a random array of photo edits when people visit your feed to see what you are about, your grid will look random, too.
In short, to draw them in, keep things consistent and unified, right down to the look of your photos.
11. Look at Your Competition to Get Noticed on Instagram
Like other industries, the social media realm is ultra-competitive. Studying fellow Instagram users who specialize in things you concentrate on is a good strategy. Look at their engagement metrics, see which hashtags they use, when they post, and what they post.
Examine the type of content they use to attract followers and generate the best interactions. It’s even helpful to see which posts fall flat when it comes to making impressions. These insights will help you optimize your own content to help you stay ahead of your closest rivals. You can also benefit by curating your posts and videos in the most cohesive way possible.
12. Post Multiple Images as Once
If you have shot a variety of photos during a shoot, you might want to publish these as a multi-image post, rather than as lots of individual posts. Multi-image posts can contain up to 10 images (using a single caption). Users can swipe through them from left-to-right, before continuing to scroll through their feed.
The benefit to this is that you can tell a more comprehensive story in a single post. This could be showing behind-the-scenes snippets to your main image, or several angles to a single location or subject.
This is far better than pepper-spraying your profile with lots of shots that might all look very similar, since they are all of the same subject.
13. Use Instagram Stories to Get Noticed on Instagram
Instagram Stories have quickly become a key part of the platform, and can be a great way to build loyalty and engagement in your community. We recommend these tips to make your Instagram Stories more engaging. Don’t forget about apps that will make your Stories more awesome!
The thing to note here is that Stories are an ideal way to share more dynamic, unpolished content (both video and images) that can offer a “behind-the-scenes” look at whatever you are sharing on your main profile.
An additional benefit is that individual Stories can contain links to your website. This is something you can’t do on your main Instagram posts. So it’s one of the only ways to drive your Instagram followers elsewhere.
14. Use Engaging Captions If You Want to Get Noticed on Instagram
Looking at pictures without knowing what you’re looking at can be frustrating when surfing Instagram, especially when you see something interesting and want to know more. So why would you leave your followers in the dark?
Keep your followers engaged with witty, sharp captions that still explain with clarity what they are seeing. Captions are a great way to show your brand’s personality because people like to feel connected to those they follow.
Talk to them through captions without talking too long. Keep your captions informative and descriptive but not too wordy. People like simple, short, and intriguing bits of text to read on social, and captions should embody that spirit.
Instagram has grown into a social media stale across the world. If you follow the best social strategies and learn Instagram tips you didn’t know, you can use Instagram as a true promotional hub.
To become a successful marketer, you need to be well-rounded on Instagram, learn from the brands leading in your industry and know the right tips to help you promote yourself and achieve a large and loyal number of followers.
By implementing some or all of the tips listed above, you will not only create a far more attractive profile, but you will also become a real part of your own community on Instagram, and could even find yourself making money on Instagram.