Ok, so this post is long overdue…
If theres one thing I get asked on the daily it’s how I grew my Instagram account. Now, before I jump into this, I need to disclose that there is no “magic” or “secret” tricks here, and it does require work. But we’ll get to that shorty.
I started my Instagram account a couple years ago as a space to share some of my food photos and recipe creations. In fact I started my Instagram account months before choosingchia.com was born! When I first started, I had no idea what I was doing, or the potential it could bring. I would just bake some cookies, or make a smoothie bowl, snap a quick pic with my iPhone, and upload to the platform. At first growth was extremely slow. But eventually, after playing around enough I started to pick up on some tricks that really helped shape my Instagram into what it is today. Bear in mind that Instagram is constantly changing, so you may need to experiment and vary some of these techniques overtime.
Here are my top tips on how to organically grow your presence on Instagram!
1. Get social
Ok, so this one may sound obvious, but many people overlook the fact that it is so important to be social on social media. There is no replacement for engaging and being active on Instagram. Engage with people in your niche, follow accounts similar to yours, leave genuine comments on people’s photos that you like, and respond to comments left on your photos. Engaging on the platform also means posting on a regular basis. I typically post once a day, everyday. (But that doesn’t mean you have to, find something that works for you, but posting often will definitely help!) When I first started to grow my account, I would spend a minimum of one hour a day implementing these techniques. It takes time, but it works.
2. Find your voice
This tip is all about finding your unique outlook. What do you have to share thats different from others? What is it that your passionate about? Yes, I know there are tons of food accounts, travel accounts, etc. all sharing similar types of content. But finding your voice is all about the little things that make your content special. Maybe it’s in the photo, the styling, or the caption. But find something unique and different to share, and you’ll be sure to get people’s attention.
3. Hop on the bandwagon
Ok, so this one may seem a bit like I’m contradicting tip #2, but hear me out! We all know that there are constantly new trends popping up on Instagram. Whether it’s frozen berries, or avocado roses, trends are trends for a reason. However you wanna slice it, people like trends, and are eager to share them. Instagram’s algorithm also recognizes trends. Instagram is made to want to promote content they believe people want to see. Post this type of content, and you’ve got a pretty good shot at getting some more exposure. Just make sure to still keep tip #2 in mind, and put your own signature twist on these trends!
4. Use all the features
When Instagram first started out, you could only post photos. But now you can also post videos, and stories on Instagram. The discovery page is a great place to find new users through their stories, videos, and photos. Post all three of these and you’ll maximize your discovery potential!
5. Hashtags & photo tags
These 2 techniques used by many are simple, but effective. Instagram allows you to put up to 30 hashtags in a photo. In short, do this. Make sure these hashtags relate to your niche of course, don’t put #forest if your posting a photo of a smoothie! I’d recommend to use a mix of small and big hashtags. (i.e. #smoothie has approx. 7,000,000 shares (big), whereas #smoothiebowls has 97,000 (smaller)) All hashtags have a “top 9” section when you click on the tag. If you make it into this top 9, that’s even more exposure for your account!
The second technique here is tagging “share” accounts in your photo. (these are usually large accounts that are based off of sharing other users content, and tagging them in the photo & caption, for example @beautifulcuisines.) This is a great way to get your content out there and make yourself more discoverable!
6. Cross pollinate
Get outside the box! (or the app in this case.) Share your Instagram photos to your blog, Facebook page, Pinterest, and any other online platform you’d like. Maximize the potential for people to discover you by being social not just within Instagram, but externally as well.
I hope these tips on how to organically grow your presence on Instagram are helpful. Keeping in line with tip #6, make sure to follow me @choosingchia on Instagram to stay up to date with all my latest content!;)