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Instagram Tips & Resources

How to Get More Instagram Followers: 2022's Top Tips


By Jillian Warren

Updated on April 20, 2022

12 minute read

Ready to supercharge your Instagram growth?

Published November 19, 2021

Stay on top of the biggest social media marketing trends!

Instagram followers are more than just numbers — they're members of your online community.

That said, growing on Instagram can help you increase traffic to your site, make more sales, or even turn you into a trendsetting influencer.

In this guide, we're sharing 15 ways to get more Instagram followers — without the spam accounts or bots.

How to Get More Instagram Followers in 2022

If you want to get more Instagram followers this year, here are 15 proven strategies to try on your account:

  1. Curate your profile for a strong first impression

  2. Tap into Instagram Reels 

  3. Optimize your post captions for search

  4. Invest in your hashtag strategy

  5. Host an Instagram giveaway

  6. Partner with influencers and brands 

  7. Create highly-shareable content (including memes)

  8. Have a clear value proposition

  9. Cross-promote your account on different channels

  10. Create an Instagram challenge 

  11. Encourage user-generated content (UGC) with a branded hashtag

  12. Make your content accessible to all audiences

  13. Post consistently

  14. Add keywords to your bio's name field

  15. Collaborate on feed posts

Ready to jump into the details? Get the low-down on how to get more followers on Instagram by watching this video — or read the full blog post below.

#1: Curate Your Instagram Feed for a Strong First Impression

Having a well planned Instagram feed, that clearly showcases your niche, is key for converting profile visitors into followers.

When someone lands on your profile, you want them to instantly understand what your account is all about.

To create a consistent aesthetic that supports your brand, use an Instagram feed planner, like Later's Visual Planner, to curate your Instagram feed before you post.

A gif showing how to use Laters visual feed planner

Consider how your posts look together as a whole, and what impression they give when  someone lands on your profile for the first time.

#2: Tap Into Instagram Reels 

If you’re not sharing Instagram Reels yet, you could be missing out on a huge opportunity to grow your follower count.

Reels, Instagram’s short-form, looping video feature, is still one of the most effective ways to reach new audiences on the app.

Unlike most of the Instagram experience, viewers in the Reels feed are served high-interest content from both users they follow, and users they don’t, leading to increased engagement

This means the Reels you create can easily reach far beyond your follower list — helping to increase your visibility and grow your follower count.  

For the best results: 

  • Use keywords and hashtags in your Reels captions that accurately describe your video content 

  • Use trending sounds

  • Keep your Reels short and snappy to encourage repeat views

  • Create original content

  • Add on-screen text for viewers watching without sound

  • Aim for high-quality video footage (rather than uploading content with a TikTok watermark)

Even if your brand or business doesn’t feel like an obvious fit for Reels, there are still ways to see success. 

Experiment with popular trends, take followers behind-the-scenes, or even share a before and after of your product.

New to the world of Instagram Reels? Find out how to create next-level videos that super-charge your reach in our blog post: 15 Instagram Reels Ideas to Post Today

#3: Optimize Your Post Captions for Search with Instagram SEO

Optimizing your Instagram posts for search is a major Instagram hack for growing your following. Instagram SEO is proven to make it easier for new users to find your account.

Following a recent update from Instagram, English-speaking users in 6 countries are now able to search Instagram using keywords. 

According to an Instagram spokesperson via The Verge, the team considers a number of factors, including the “type of content, captions, when it was posted,” and more to surface relevant results.

It also uses machine learning to “find the highest quality content that’s relevant to you.” For now, only grid posts will show up.

TIP: Write your post captions in advance, on desktop, with Later's Instagram Schedulernstagram-scheduler/.

Local Mojitos uses a saved Instagram caption to save time using Laters Instagram scheduler

You can write all of your post captions in one focused power hour, and then set them to go live at your best time to post

Plus, you can save multiple caption templates with Later’s Saved Captions feature – that you can add to your posts in two taps. It makes creating great Instagram captions easier than ever. 

#4: Invest in a Hashtag Strategy

Instagram hashtags are one of the biggest tools for growth at your disposal, and shouldn’t be overlooked. 

After looking at over 18M Instagram feed posts, we discovered that reach rate increases by 11% (from 24% to 35%) as the number of hashtags grows from one to 30. 

hashtag trending

To put that in perspective, for an account with 20K followers, that’s an additional 2.2K accounts reached per post. 

If you need inspiration on which hashtags to use, check out Later’s Instagram hashtag tool, Hashtag Suggestions — it provides 30 associated hashtags sorted by relevance that you can add to your post captions.

instagram hashtags trending

TIP: Use Later’s Saved Captions feature to curate and save lists of top-performing hashtags that you can quickly add to your captions in two taps.

#5: Host an Instagram Giveaway

If you want to grow your following fast, hosting an Instagram giveaway can be one of the most effective tactics.

With the right strategy, you can reach thousands of potential new followers, all while building a stronger sense of community around your brand.

Make sure you set clear entry requirements that support your growth goals, such as tagging a friend in the comments, sharing to Instagram Stories, and following your account. 

Instagram giveaways can be especially beneficial when hosted in partnership with a creator or brand that shares your target audience.

Which brings us onto our next strategy to get more Instagram followers...

#6: Partner with Influencers and Brands 

Partnering with likeminded influencers and brands is a major win-win.

You'll be able to benefit from brand association and tap into a new pool of potential followers.

The best news? Partnerships don’t have to break the bank. Some of the most effective ones are simple and mutually beneficial. 

For example, beauty retailer SpaceNK partnered with a luxury retreat destination to offer their community the opportunity to win an exclusive getaway.

Similarly, you don’t have to work with supersize influencers to make an impact.

Nano and Micro influencers typically have higher engagement rates than Macro influencers, and typically have a lower rate card for sponsored posts. 

However, you will have to work with more Nano or Micro influencers to reach the same audience size as a Macro influencer – so the right strategy will depend on your bandwidth and budget requirements.  

New to influencer marketing? Find out how to find the right influencer partner for your brand or business in this blog post.   

#7: Create Highly-shareable Content (Including Memes)

When it comes to organically reaching new audiences, creating shareworthy content is a great place to start.

Inspirational quotes, informative carousel posts, and on-trend memes are all tried-and-tested formats — and it only takes one viral post to reach thousands of people.

Memes in particular are huge for generating viral reach — especially when they tap into something that’s trending in popular culture.

They’re often funny or clever, and they typically feature a combination of text and imagery (a photo, GIF, or video).

To create a super successful meme, try to find the balance between the trending visuals you’re working with, the sentiment of your target audience, and your brand’s niche.

On Later’s Instagram account for example, we typically create memes that are relevant to social media managers:

The more your meme resonates with members of your community, the more likely it will be shared far and wide, which can help to increase your Instagram following.

Looking for Inspiration? Check out some of social media's hottest trending memes here.

#8: Have a Clear Value Proposition

Would you walk into a shop if you had no idea what it sold? Probably not, right?

Well, the same principle applies to your Instagram account. 

Having a clear value proposition (whether it’s styling tips, inspirational quotes, or lifestyle content) is essential for converting visitors to your profile into followers. 

However, this doesn't mean all of your content has to be exactly the same. 

Content creator Christina Galbato recommends focusing on 3-5 content pillars that are related to your niche — so you can add variety to your content plan without diluting your core value.

Need help establishing your content pillars? Find out How to Use Content Pillars for Your Social Media Strategy in this blog post.

#9: Cross-promote Your Instagram Account on Different Channels

If you’re looking for extra ways to grow your Instagram following, cross-promoting your account on other platforms is a great place to start.

TikTok is a major platform for cross-promoting your Instagram account. 

On TikTok, one of the first things you can do to ensure Instagram traffic is by connecting your Instagram account to your TikTok.

You can then create a few TikToks that encourage viewers to click through to your Instagram profile.

Later links to its Instagram profile from its TikTok page to increase Instagram followers

If TikTok isn’t part of your marketing strategy, you can direct people to your Instagram via your website, email newsletter, podcast, or another social platform.

#10: Create an Instagram Challenge

Instagram challenges have always been popular (remember the ice bucket challenge in 2014?), and now they're appearing more frequently on Instagram Reels.

Creating a successful Instagram challenge can catapult your account into the zeitgeist – reaching thousands, or even millions, of potential followers. 

For the best results, make sure that participation is as easy as possible, create a branded hashtag to tie the challenge back to your brand, and think about what people will enjoy participating in.

#11: Encourage User-generated Content (UGC) With a Branded Hashtag

Encouraging your community to share user-generated content (UGC) is an awesome way to raise brand awareness and grow your Instagram following.

And sharing UGC is super easy! Followers can either use your branded hashtag or tag your brand.

Bridesmaid dress company Birdy Grey encourages their audience to use their branded hashtag #birdyinthewild when they share pictures that feature their clothes:

The result? Anyone who sees a user-generated picture has an easy route to discover the Birdy Grey Instagram account.

TIP: With Later’s Content Creation Tools, you can review all of the posts you’ve been tagged in, or search for posts that contain a specific hashtag.

Once you find the perfect post, you can save it to your Media Library. Later will maintain the original quality of the post and add the handle of the original creator.

Burrard Beauty searches Instagram posts by hashtag in Later to find relevant user generated content

NOTE: You should also ask permission from the original creator — even if they tagged it with your specific UGC-focused hashtag. 

#12: Make Your Instagram Content Accessible

Over 430M people people in the world are Deaf or Hard of Hearing, while at least 2.2B people have a vision impairment.

Here are four simple ways to make your Instagram account more accessible and inclusive today:

  1. Add subtitles or text overlays to video content (including Instagram Videos, Stories, and Reels)

  2. Manually write descriptive alt text for your Instagram posts 

  3. Verbalize visual details during stories and videos

  4. Capitalize each word in Instagram hashtags. This helps screen-readers to read them aloud properly

TIP: Instagram recently released auto-generated captions in 16 languages for stories, so it’s easier than ever to make your content more accessible.

#13: Post More Consistently & Schedule Instagram Posts

When it comes to growing on Instagram, consistency is the name of the game.

Later recently analyzed over 81M feed posts (excluding Reels) to discover how posting frequency impacts average reach and engagement rates.

One of the key takeaways was that accounts that post more frequently typically have more followers:

A line chart comparing Instagram account average number of posts per week vs the average number of followers

However, creating quality content that drives real value for your audience should always usurp quantity. Scheduling Instagram posts makes it easy to ensure that your regular posts are of high quality.

#14: Add Keywords to Your Bio's Name Field

Did you know: the words you include in the Name Field of your Instagram bio are searchable?

For example, if your brand specializes in custom artwork, you may want to include keywords like “Art,” or “Artwork” in your Name Field.

“Think about what your niche is, which industry you’re in, who you target, and what solution you offer,” recommends Instagram expert, Elise Darma. “When in doubt, pop that term into the search bar on Instagram and see what appears.”

Users who include the keyword artwork in their Instagram bio appear when users search for the keyword

TIP: Find out how to get your first 1000 followers in our free course with Elise Darma.

#15: Collaborate on Feed Posts and Reels

With the Instagram Collabs feature, users can co-author Instagram feed posts (and Reels) – opening up an entirely new way to reach new audiences. 

This way, you’ll be able to share views, likes, and comments, and can leverage each other’s communities. 

But in order for it to work, you have to make sure the content works for both accounts — whether it's an educational carousel or a Reel that taps into your niche.

NOTE: If you don't have the feature yet, hang tight!

Figuring out how to get more followers on Instagram can seem like a uphill battle, but if you follow the right techniques and strategies, you can definitely grow your following.

It’s a combination of posting creative content, targeting the right audiences, and tapping into Instagram's new features and trends.

So, are you ready to grow your Instagram following? Sign up for Later to plan, schedule, and post to Instagram.

Plan, schedule, and automatically publish your social media posts with Later.

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