INSTAGRAM GROWTH HACKS

These growth hacks are straight and to the point. Use them consistently and there is no reason at least one of them shouldn't work out really well for you.


THE INSPIRATION EFFECT

Gotta love those social media posts with the dreamy pictures and quotes that always some how seem to make you feel a bit braver, more ambitious and INSPIRED.

"Go out there & get what you deserve."

Hell yea! That's me, you say to yourself as you take a screenshot or hit the share button and post it to your page.

The above quote has the ability to resonate with a variety of people, and how you display it determines if it is reaching the RIGHT people. The Inspiration Effect is an inspirational quote placed in context of your brand. Whether the quote is your own personal words or famous quotes you can take those words and turn them into posts that your target audience will not only be inspired by, but want to share. Below are 3 examples of the above quote, but in different situations depending on who the brand is speaking to.

You will notice some where on all of the images is a hashtag and/or link back to the page where the image originates from. That is where you put your own hashtag and/or brand name. Doing this helps the sharer find their way back to your page. People almost naturally share posts that touches them in some way.

FOLLOW FOR FOLLOW

Ewww you say! That sounds SPAMMY. Yea maybe you didn't really say that out loud but you probably frowned.  Following others in order for them to find you is in no way SPAMMY. Instagram is a social network let's not forget. Your goal is to let people know you exist, but not just any and everybody but people who could potentially be interested in your product or service.

You will want to identify 5-10 IG pages for competitors within your market. Look for those with both high and low follower counts. Once you have found them take a scroll through their followers.

You can use the drop down arrow next to the follow button to find accounts that are similar to one another.

Go through their follower lists and begin following the accounts. You may also checkout followers in the comment sections. If you don't want your follower count to become astronomically higher than your amount of followers give yourself a cap (stop at 1000 follows). I'm not saying follow a 1000 people in one day! No way, actually that's not allowed. Instagram allows you to follow/unfollow 160 people per hour without flagging your account. So this is something done over time. You can do it once or even twice each day. Set a goal for a follower count you want to reach and give yourself a date of making it. (ex: 1000k new followers by July). Don't worry yourself about who follows back and who doesn't. You can go through your list later after you've built your following up some and unfollow.

POST ABOUT A CURRENT EVENT/POP CULTURE

We all love a good news story, maybe it's a risqué dress Rihanna wore on the red carpet or the tragic tale of Harambe the gorilla, people can't get enough of current events. The key is to make the current event relevant to your brand story. This tactic only works if you are able to do so. Posting a current event just to post it and it not being relevant to your audience may go unnoticed. Same goes for posting about celebrities or television shows. Figure out a way to relate it to your brand's audience.

A 30 DAY CHALLENGE

A challenge can force you to post something everyday. Building a following on Instagram is all about maintaining consistency and quality. Choose something others can participate in and create a hashtag for it. Stick with it! Don't quit 10 days in, you want to keep your word to your audience and most importantly yourself.

HASHTAGS

Yes good ole hashtags are on this list. Hashtags themselves are no secret, the secret is in knowing how to use them effectively. There are 3 types of hashtags; general, specific, popular.

1. General Hashtags: Are ones that are broad yet relevant to your business. Example: #goldnecklace #nameplates #accessories #shine #bling.

2. Specific Hashtags: will either connect directly to your image or your audience. You may create a special tag for a particular product or campaign (like with the 30 day challenge) or ones that have to do directly with your niche. Scout hashtags from your competitors or others with posts relevant to your business.

3. Popular: Trending tags that can be found on the Instagram explorer page only work if they are relevant to your brand and/or what you are posting. Randomly hashtagging#beyoncé on your IG post if it has nothing to do with your business is what not to do.

Keep your tags in note pad on your phone so they are handy whenever you post. Always post them in the comment section and not directly in your caption.


written and illustrated by Tiffani Nicole