We've tried growing our Instagram following for the last two and a half years, and I feel like we've tried everything.
Two years ago, posting every day with 10-15 hashtags relevant to your business really worked. It increased visibility in the Instagram search, and allowed new people to find your site and follow you.
Shortly thereafter, the algorithm changed and profiles with the most comments got more profile views and follows.
Then, commenting on other people's posts (like legit comments, not just emojis or quick spam copy-paste) really started to become a strategy. But that is super hard to pull off, because you have to have an intelligent thought behind your comment, and it has to be related to the discussion at hand on the post.
Now, our most successful Instagram follower-growth strategy for businesses is a spin-off of the commenting strategy.
It is to search "Tags" that are related to things / topics your target audiences are interested in, then find the "Recent Posts" and follow accounts with anywhere from 100 to 1,500 followers.
Accounts this size won't have too much noise to "notice you noticing them" and are likely to see you're legit and follow you back.
Thanks for reading, watching and listening, and have a great day!
Paul Hickey, Founder / CEO / Lead Strategist at Data Driven Design, LLC has created and grown businesses via digital strategy and internet marketing for more than 10 years. His sweet spot is using analytics to design and build websites and grow the audience and revenue of businesses via SEO/Blogging, Google Adwords, Bing Ads, Facebook and Instagram Ads, Social Media Content Marketing and Email Marketing. The part that he’s most passionate about is quantifying next marketing actions based on real data.