How to Grow Your Instagram Following From Scratch

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For most of us, growing an Instagram following from scratch can be intimidating. After all, who would want to follow an IG account with zero followers, right? But, the good news is that it IS possible! How do you think 26.9 million IG users started on the platform? Surely, not all of them are celebrities with fans and a vast network behind them! 

Here are four steps to get you started with growing an AUTHENTIC following from scratch on Instagram. 

1. Prioritise Value 

If you’re new to the ‘gram, it’s understandable to automatically zone in on growing your followers. However, if you’re going to prioritise this over filling up your IG feed (initially) with valuable content, it might take you longer to gain followers. 

The best approach is to have a few posts up on your feed so that when you start engaging with other users, and they visit your account, you have something to offer them. Share as much high-value content as you can. This will give people a reason to follow you — other from you following them back.

For content ideas, check out our blog post: Stuck on content ideas? Here are 34 content ideas to get you noticed on the ‘gram.

2. Engage With Photos That Are Relevant to Your Industry/Niche  

Once you have a set of posts on your feed, it’s time to help your target followers find you. To do this, choose hashtags that are relevant to your IG industry or niche. Start liking photos, leaving comments on posts, and following the user who posted the images. 

The goal is for people to be aware of your presence on Instagram. Typically, when you engage with a post, the person who posted the photo will reciprocate the gesture. This is different from general follow-for-follow activity. You’re not just following random IG users hoping for them to follow you back. You are engaging and following users who you think may find value in your posts. 

Download our free instagram strategy planner here.

3. Run a Giveaway or a Contest

This is popular among brands that are active in the network. However, many personal IG users looking to increase their following and boost engagement have also adapted the strategy. 

On Instagram, the mechanics are often simple. Those who want to join your giveaway simply have to follow you, like your posts and leave a comment. Some add another way to gain entries by asking participants to repost the giveaway photo and tag them. Doing this is like hitting two birds with one stone. First, you expand your reach as participants share your profile or posts to their followers. Second, you get to grow a highly engaged, organic following — which is always great for brands and influencers. 

4. Socialise! 

Instagram may be a photo-sharing platform. Let’s not forget, however, that it’s a social network, too! So, go ahead and interact with people. Let them know how you like their posts. Leave thoughtful and valuable comments, instead of merely dropping an emoji. If you’re up for it, you could even send them direct messages to start a more personal conversation with them. 

There you have it! Four practical ways to grow your Instagram following from scratch. If you liked this blog and found it helpful, feel free to share it on your socials! If you have any other suggestions for strategies to grow your Instagram following from scratch, I’d love to hear them in the comments below.

If you’re interested in working with me, you can contact me here.


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