The number of followers you have in Instagram is, to a certain extent, a measure of your marketing strategy success. The more followers you have, the more is your product's exposure to the potential customers.
Followers aren't simply numbers on a counter - they represent the pool of people potentially able to purchase the product or order the services that you offer.
If you have a huge number of followers on Instagram, it will be much easier for you to use other tactics meant to boost your brand's sales and overall performance both online (i.e. in social media) and offline, bringing you a real success.
In order to increase the number of people following you, you need to build a well-thought out and complex strategy.
To assist you in building your core audience and conquering Instagram, we've prepared for you a following list of tips:
1. Find your audience
Even if your product or service is incredibly specific or niche, it has a good chance to find its audience on Instagram with its 400+ million users. Doesn't matter what your niche is - whether you are writing about travelling, food, gadgets or kittens - chances are, there are more than one community on Instagram you can connect with and use it for promoting your brand and introducing new people to it.
Once you've found the community that corresponds to your needs, you need to define:
- Hashtags that are used the most by the community members;
- Opinion leaders present in the community;
- Topics people are talking about the most;
- What activities do people in the community prefer - question posts, contests, offers;
- Who are tagged in the opinion leaders' posts the most.
When you've understood how your community works, you can use the tips you have learned to plan your Instagram strategy and genuinely engage with the other members of the community you have chosen.
Make sure you do not only promote your brand, but also communicate with other members of the community, offer them helpful advice and in time establish yourself as an opinion leader in your niche.
2. Choose the right hashtags
People who do not belong to your community and do not follow you yet, but are somehow interested in your niche and the products you are offering, have a chance of finding your posts through hashtags. And that means you need to be extra attentive while choosing hashtags to put into your posts.
They need to be popular enough to have the chance to be found, yet not too popular in order not to get lost in the general flow of the others' posts.
- Use the specific hashtags, unique to your niche;
- Adjust hashtags according to the platform you are on;
- Your hashtags should be relevant;
- Don't make them too long or difficult to remember;
- Don't overdo it with the hashtags.
You can also use branded hashtags that will work as a possibility to connect with your brand. Encourage your existing fans and potential followers to use them via the special offers, contests and various online and offline events.
3. Remember about the contests
Giving people free stuff is a great way to grow the number of your followers, which is why you need to hold various contests more often.
This way you can introduce more people to your brand and products in a short amount of time.
You can create different rules for entering the contests:
- People need to like a post or photo to enter the contest;
- People need to make a comment in order to enter;
- People need to repost something to enter the contest;
- People need to find the winning post among the others.
You can also host a contest that will require users to post some photos with your product or/and the branded hashtag. That's another great way to make yourself known.
4. Engage the influencers
Working with the opinion leaders in your niche is also extremely important. You can use them to gain access to their huge pool of followers who are potentially interested in the services or products you offer.
Endorsement of an opinion leader in your niche can be a huge boost for a brand that is merely starting to build its Instagram presence.
You can also use these people in order to give your brand a voice and a face - both can prove really useful while building your strategy and expanding.
Here are the perks you get from involving the influencers:
- You make your brand look more human;
- You build your reputation;
- You widen your reach;
- You guarantee yourself positive feedback from the respected people;
- You get more traffic for your website;
- You inform more people worldwide about your brand.
In order to choose which influencers would be the best for you, try to determine, whether they share your brand's values, if you are interested in a long-term cooperation with this person and whether it's possible, and if you like them as people, not simply as opinion leaders. If you answer "yes" to all the three questions, then go ahead and start the dialogue.
If not, maybe it's best to continue searching.
5. Try sharing videos
In 2016, videos are a new scorching hot trend, and not only on Instagram - Facebook has launched its own video service, too.
It would be unwise not to use the possibilities videos give you - you can much better tell your brand's story through them.
With videos, you'll be able to do it much more dynamically that with traditional photos.
Here's what you can achieve through the power of videos:
- Get more shares that from photos;
- Tell the story vividly and in your own unique way;
- Engage the potential customers more actively;
- Answer the fans' questions in a creative way;
- Promote contests and events more effectively;
- Get more engagement on YouTube and Facebook, too.
Videos offer you the most creative way to grow your brand and build an image. Do not hesitate to use this opportunity.
6. Engage with your followers
People love to get attention, which is exactly why you need to engage with your followers' posts, too. Like and comment on the relevant posts, especially those mentioning your brand, and you'll see how the fans' respect for you grows.
It doesn't take long to like a photo or post, but through that simple action you'll show hundreds of your fans that you care about them, that you pay attention - and that's extremely important for growing one's followers base.
7. Create a relevant schedule
The time of the post may be crucial to its success. You need to remember about your audiences location in order to chose the right timing (time zones can ruin even the best of posts).
Make sure you've studied your audience and determine when your followers show the most activity. Depending on the results, you can schedule your posts in a way that will allow them to get as much attention as possible.
With these 7 tips, you will easily grow your Instagram followers base.
Try them and let us know how they worked for you, in the comments section below!