Updated: Aug 29, 2022
The complaints don't seem to stop. Instagram is under a lot of pressure since the beginning of this year. Many creators feel stuck in their growth and engagement is dropping left and right even with a consistent posting strategy.
I started using Instagram in 2015 and built up my account over the years. It was a lot easier to reach your audience 5 years ago and to end up on your target groups FYP was predictable. Since influencer marketing became a thing the platform changed a lot. The focus shifted to selling products while the creator himself struggles to keep up. New features seem copied from other platforms (*Tiktok*) and make it even more complicated to grow.
I hope this article and tips will help you gain more engagement and organic followers within a few weeks and change your whole perspective on how to approach social media in 2022.
Tip #1 - The trinity of Instagram boosters
In order to grow on Instagram in 2022 you have to start promoting your content on additional platforms. For example: 1 carousel post on Instagram = up to 10 pictures which could be 4-5 pins and 1 story pin on Pinterest. Whenever you shoot content also make sure to create at least 1 video with the outfit. 1 video= 2-3 reels on Instagram and 2-3 Tiktok videos. Which leads me to tip number 2...
Remember to shoot multiple versions when you (binge) shoot content. Different angles, variations and edit them afterwards.
Tip #2 - You can't make it without the squad
Unless you end up on television or marry someone famous (or become famous in any other way) it will be tricky to grow a lot just by yourself. UNLESS... and here comes my next tip: Unless you start to be active yourself and work with other creators. I am not talking about those weird "support like groups" people try to invite you all the time (btw they actually damage your engagement and they are high maintenance for little results + you have to support creators that don't even match your vibe). I am talking about supporting similar influencers in your niche that you ACTUALLY like and want to create content with. If their followers like their content they most likely will also like yours. Make sure your comment is creative because best case they will pin yours to the top of the post = people will more likely click on your account and follow you if the aesthetic matches. Share some other creators in your story once in a while and slide into their DM's to shoot content together. The more you connect and are active the more they will return the favor and promote you as well.
"I met so many amazing IG gals and it really pushed my engagement by 50%. We create content together every week now and support each others posts." – katyironman
Tip #3 - Keywords or hashtags?
The big debate about what's better. You see a lot of creators switching from ## to keywords the past few weeks. In the end it really depends on your account. From my experience hashtags work much better due to the fact that they make it easier for people to find your content when they look up specific words. Same goes with posting your reels only on your main feed or only on your reels feed. There is no "golden rule" when it comes to both and the best advice I can give you is to try both out for 1 month and see how the algorithm reacts to it. From my experience are hashtags better for your reach + you can check in your post insights how many percent of your impressions are coming from hashtags.
Tip #4 - Use all the features
Going live on Instagram, and using all the features to your advantage is a must. Instagram introduces new features all the time to help you connect better with new accounts and helps you to stay relevant. The more you use them the more the algorithm will push your content out. Try to go live at least once a week even if it's only for 2 minutes. Do an unboxing, try on haul or film a little podcast episode with a friend. You can save the video afterwards and post it on your feed as well. Instagram pushes reels the most right now and you can increase your engagement by more than 100% by posting at least 3-5 times a day. And yes it is a lot of work (which is why many brands hire a social media manager) but if you want to grow you have to put the work in.
Tip #5 - Work with brands
Even if you start with gifted collaborations make sure you put effort into the content. The goals is to get reposted. If the brand likes your video or picture they are more likely willing to share it in their story or even ask for your permission to repost it. Make sure they tag you in the caption and picture though! Only work with brands that match your vibe and aesthetic otherwise you end up with new followers that aren't even your target group.
You don't know how to reach out to brands and get paid/ unpaid collaborations? Read this.
You can grow and get thousands of followers even in 2022
It is not too late. Yes it may have been easier 5-10 years ago (comparing this to early bloggers and YouTubers) but you can still become an influencer TODAY. I see it all the time that people start with a completely new account and end up with 100K followers within 1 year. It's all about being consistent, putting in the work and do make sure you stay flexible and up to date with the algorithm and all the trends.
Like and subscribe for more tips and a PART II.