[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Hey news flash. Stop using apps to help you gain followers on Instagram. They are simply a cheap, and FAKE way to grow your following. I will encourage you throughout this article to think about gaining followers on your Instagram as a job. Not as a something you can spend $9 a month on and get a huge return on your investment. It just simply does not work that way.
In almost 4 years of experience with Instagram I have seen many people try to cut corners, use “easier” tactics or tricks. However, there is a reason I have been as successful as I have been. None of the reasons is because I cheated the system, tried to take the easy way out, or gave up on finding the strategy that would work. The number 1 reason I have been able to gain over 2.1 million followers in this amount of time is from DILIGENCE. Intentional time learning, applying and re-testing. If something I was trying wasn’t working, open your ears and eyes and figure it out. I have never bought a fake follower, never used an App to help me get “super” likes, and I most definitely have never and will never give up on Instagram just because the algorithm is a pain in the butt.
If you are ready to have the DILIGENCE that it takes to gain followers on Instagram the RIGHT way then I have some things for you to listen to, and apply to your daily routine.
First and foremost, engagement is SUPER important on Instagram. When you get high engagement Instagram will help show your content to more people. Getting engagement however should be done organically. Here are 5 things to AVOID when trying to gain your following and a few ways to help you correctly gain that elusive 5000 followers a month that you are after.
1) Avoid Instagram Automation Software.
a. While of course it is an attractive thought to be able to just buy a $9 app and have your entire system on auto pilot for your account. However, this is actually a HUGE no no, and will likely get your account banned. The act of automation is actually against the terms of service of Instagram and if detected can significantly reduce your organic reach and make gaining followers nearly impossible.
2) Following and Unfollowing is DUMB!
a. Of course it seems easy to think that if you just go on a following rampage that a bunch of people will follow you back and wallah you have like 2000 followers. Then you go back and unfollow half of them so that your ratio looks better. I strongly URGE you against this. I am all about following people that are relevant to your line of work or that you share some interest in. That is of course what Instagram is about after all. However, going back through and following a bunch of random people and then just unfollowing them a week later is actually more of an annoyance then just doing it the right way. The result will lead you to a yo-yo effect of gaining and then losing a bunch, gaining a few, then losing a bunch more. I can promise you that this tactic is not the way to see a sustained gain of followers.
3) Choose Network growth over random growth
a. Your network is a collection of people you have developed connections with. So when you have a network of people and engage with each other’s content after posting, it lets Instagram know that your content is “trending”, and that more people should see it. This is how we go viral on Instagram every day. Choose to engage with people who match your network or “target market” if you will. This will also help Instagram figure out what kind of content to show you daily to engage on. In this case think “Quality > Quantity.”
4) You HAVE to be consistent.
a. Gaining your followers on Instagram is a marathon. Not a sprint. When it comes to growing your following it is so important to spend time DAILY on your account. If you are like me and have several personal ones plus all your clients it is important to figure out a period of time that you can devote solely to engagement. Tip: I schedule all my content out on Sundays and therefore reserve enough time in each day of the week to engage on each and every page at least 2-3 30 minute sessions per day. The biggest mistake that I see people make is that they learn a strategy and put it in place for a few weeks, maybe a month and then slack off and give up and then say “yeah that doesn’t work.” Well how would you know if it works if you haven’t taken the time to fully implement it?
5) Think with the “Long game” in mind
a. Stay consistent and stay motivated. Write down your long term goals and then write an action plan for it. Think a one month, a 3 month, a 6 month etc What this does is help you stay on track without being overwhelmed by what the ultimate long game is. If you are building slowly do not be discouraged. As I stated before getting my biggest account to 2.1 million took me 3.5 years. It was a full on triple marathon not a quick road race.
WHAT’S THE BIG TAKEAWAY?
At the end of the day your ability to gain followers on Instagram is up to you. Your choice of tactics, your choice of accounts and ultimately your conscious choice to be deliberate in your efforts. Think about the things that you can control in this Instagram game and attack those. The algorithm is absolutely something that is frustrating, but it is beatable. Post consistently, engage VERY consistently and be intentional in your choice. Network with others and be authentic. You will be shocked at how easily your page will grow if you focus on authenticity.
Related article: Social Media Scheduling Tools: Buffer and why I use it!