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If you want to learn how to grow your Instagram to 5k in 5 months then you are in the right place!
Whether you are a blogger, a content creator or an influencer, this post should be able to help you work on your strategy to grow your Instagram account. The great thing is that nowadays even having 5k+ means you can make money purely from your Instagram account. So the only struggle is working your way up there.
Instagram is all about consistency and quality!
I regularly hear that people find Instagram the hardest social media platform to grow on – and I can understand this.
If you want to find me on Instagram I am at: amberxpagex
So if you are wanting to learn how to grow your Instagram to 5k, then take a look at the tips below and let me know how you get on!
I started my blog Instagram account on 7th April, fast forward to 28th August 2020, I have 5k followers!
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Overview: How to grow your Instagram to 5k in 5 months
- How to start your account for success!
- Create valuable content – use presets, research and get inspiration
- Write killer captions for your IG pics
- Research the hashtags for your niche
- Engage, engage, engage – make connections, use engagement groups,, answer you comments and DMs, use your Instagram Stories
- Use your Instagram insights – create a posting schedule
- Learn the Instagram algorithm
- How NOT to grow your Instagram
How to start your account for success!
The best thing to do to grow in Instagram quickly is to get started the right way from the get go. This means when people look at your account they want to know a little about you and what you do.
Name (Instagram handle)
Your name and your bio is what someone first see’s when they click on your account. This means you want to make it either relatable or give some info that will make them want to follow you.
Your name should be something related to you so it could be your blog name or your real name. If it is something random it just means people will less liely remeber that name connects to you.
TIP: If you own a website/ blog, try and make all of your socials have the same handle. For example, my Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram all have similar names so that people can search and find me if they wanted to. You have to make it easy for people.
- unpredictedpage – Twitter
- unpredictedpage – Pinterest
- amberxpagex– Instagram (I recently changed my IG name (previously @theunpredictedpage) because I felt that using my real name meant brands could connect with me better)
Your bio is what people read when they want to find out more about you. If you run a blog let people know what you talk about. If you work, mention your job so people can relate to you. Do you like travelling? Mention it!
MAKE IT RELATABLE!
For example, in my bio I mention I have a lifestyle blog and that I am a student so hopefully I look relatable to other student bloggers.
TIP: Remember to link your website as well in the link section. A great website you can use to get multiple links on Instagram is Linktree.
Grow your Instagram: Create valuable content
Sometimes it is the case that people skip your bio and don’t read it. They head straight to your content. Obviously Instagram is all about pictures and it is very visual. However, captions so play a massive part in gaining followers so don’t neglect them. (I will go more into caption later!)
People want to look at things that are pleasing to the eye so use nice backgrounds and pick a theme.
Use presets for your Instagram posts
A great way to stick to a theme is to create a preset. A preset is where you edit a photo and can save all the settings that you just did so that you can use the same settings on another photo more easily. You could say you have created your own filter.
You can buy some premade presets, create your own on Lightroom or access some free ones that are already made.
As you can below, on the left is the original photo, then on the right is the photo I used my preset on!
Research and get inspiration
Something I regularly do is browser similar accounts to me on Instgram that have a high following. That way you can see the sorts of style people like. You can figure what angles/ backgrounds you need to try.
You can also give Pinterest a go. For example, if you run a makeup Instagram account then you can check out makeup shots on Pinterest and see how the photos are taken.
TIP: Never copy anyone completely. It’s not only wrong but it means you aren’t unique.
Write killer captions for your IG pics
Your captions are where you need to draw the reader in enough so they want to comment. A great way to do this is to ask questions. Even a simple ‘what did you get up to today’ at the end of your caption.
I use this question at least once a week and I always get people commenting letting me know how their day went!
In your captions a great thing to do is to share tips, advice, or funny stories. This way, you are helping people and they’ll want to follow you so that they can learn new tips.
You can almost use your captions as a mini blog!
TIP: If you struggle to write large captions due to not having the time to do so. Then get yourself on Planoly or Preview where you can schedule your Instagram posts and pre-write a caption when you do have time.
I used to use Planoly but recently moved to Preview but both are as good as each other!
Research the hashtags for your niche
A must if you want to get more people to notice you is to pick the right hashtags. If this is something you struggle with or don’t have the time to do so, then get my list of 100+ hashtags you can use! Along with the dos and don’ts of hashtags.
Make sure you pick the right ones for your niche:
I know the feeling of thinking that hashtags are cringy and that was something you used to do when you were 13. But using hashtags can maximise your reach.
As you can see below, I get the majority of my impressions from hashtags! If Imagine if I didn;t use them! You can see I would get no where near the amount of impressions.
Impressions can turn into likes/ comments and even follows.
If you do start using hashtags then there are some things you should know:
- Make sure you use all 30 hashtags – do not waste an opportunity!
- Don’t use #love #yolo #fun or basic words like these, as these hashtags are used by millions of people meaning your photo will get lost among everyone else’s. A good website to use is All Hashtags which will give you a range of popular ones
- Group your hashtags together. So by this I mean if you regularly post fashion posts then have a group of hashtags related to fashion. The same with selfies and travel posts.
- Try and switch up your group hashtags and use different ones as you may get different results. It also means Instagram won’t think you are spamming the hashtag.
- You can add your hashtags in the caption or in the comments. I add my hashtags in the comments because I think it makes the caption look neater without them – I believe it doesn’t matter where they go you will still get the same results.
A great thing i have seen some people do is create there own hashtag!
TIP: Create a hashtag and get your followers to use it. This way you can use your own hashtag on your photos and get a small number of people to see it if they are looking through the hashtag.
Finding hashtags on Instagram
When I say use a range of hashtags, I mean hashtags of different sizes. So use small ones which will be super niched down so something like #foodishappiness which has under 100K posts.
Different sized hashtags
A medium-sized hashtag would be something under 500K so carrying on with the example of the food niche, #foodisbae has 300k posts and would be a medium hashtag.
A large hashtag would usually be anything above 500K. I would usually stay away from hashtags about 1M but would use one or two if you wish.
A great way you can find what hashtags to use is by searching a generic term in the Instagram search bar. Then you can look at the related hashtags.
For example, I went with the makeup niche here: So I started with #makeup which has far too many posts way over 100M in fact. In the related hashtags, I came across #makeupjunkies which had 737K posts which I would use as a large hashtag. This then leads me to #muaunder10K which only has 41.6K posts which I would use as a small hashtag.
TIP: put your hashtags in groups in your notes so you can easily copy and paste them instead of having to remember which ones are good to use.
Engage, engage, engage
If you want to grow your Instagram to 5k then you have to work on your engagement. There are so many ways you can make connections and engage with people: reply to peoples stories, reply to your comments, use engagement groups, if you like there account them let them know.
You can find your engagement rate on Social Blade.
Something I try and do is like and comment on the top 10 photos of the hashtags that I use or that are slighter bigger ones. This way you can get your profile seen by more people.
TIP: Engage with your followers 20 minutes before and 20 minutes after you post a photo!
The accounts you engage with more will show up more on your feed and visa versa. This means if you make connections with people then you will show up more on their feed.
TIP: Like and comment on peoples posts but make it personal, make effort and don’t just use emojis.
Use engagement groups
I know some people like to stay away from engagement groups as Instagram can see them as spam. But if you use them in the right way and have conversations with the people in your group then Instagram will simply see it as a group chat.
The good thing about engagement groups is that you get that constant support on your photos which then encourages others to comment on your photos.
I have heard bad stories about people being nasty in engagement groups. If this is the case then just leave. Maybe even start up your own group so that you can ask people yourself. I am a part of a couple of groups with some really nice people and we don’t put any pressure on each other.
Answer you comments and DMs
This goes without say that you should answer comments and DMs just to be polite. However there are so many people who don’t. If you reply to people then they are more likely to comment again. Which will increase your engagement.
When you return comments, make them personal – don’t copy and paste comments the algorithm doesn’t like it. I talk more about this later.
A little engagment challenege you can try if you have a bit of spare time:
- Pick 5 hashtags that you regularly use
- Start with the first hashtag and click on it
- Like and comment on the top 10 photos
You have now commented on 50 photos. This shows to Instagram the type of hashtags you are associating with. It also means people can see you have commented and may click on your account.
Use your Instagram Stories
Now this is something I need to work on myself. If you use your stories then people can get to know you a little better and will want to conenct with you more. If you can use your voice on your sotires then even better. It gives people the chance to
TIP: If you want to increase your engagement and grow your Instagram to 5k then try to use polls and use questions boxes so you can get your followers to interact and maybe even learn a little more about them.
Use your Instagram insights
Firstly, you need to make sure that you have a business account. You can easily change this in the settings. Instagram insights are so valuable.
- You can see the demographics of your followers which can help you with what sort of posts you should create.
- It shows when your followers are active.
- You can see how many impressions your hashtags are getting and whether they are worth using.
If you click on the 3 lines in the top right corner you can then select Insights.
You can find out pretty much whatever you want to know: such as which photo has the most likes, saves or comments.
Create a posting schedule
Check your insights to see the best time to post. This will be when most of your followers are active. You can then either schedule your photos using an app. Or just simply post at this time if you have the time to do it.
You can see the times your followers are most active on different days:
Learn the Instagram algorithm
Engage with similar accounts, follow the hashtags in your niche and engage with more accounts. This will all increase your reach.
Following different hashtags makes it so much easier to engage with new accounts that are in the same niche as you. Which is a way you can use the algorithm to your advantage.
You can learn more about the Instagram algorithm on Hootsuite.
Instagram is watching you
Make note of what you like and what is in your niche. Then search for it and save. This shows to Instagram what you are interested in and therfore what your account is similar to.
The same about the type of posts you comment on. Instagram makes not of it.
TIP: Don’t save posts like memes or twitter captures as these accounts won’t engage with you and your account is nothing like their accounts.
Don’t copy and paste comments. Instagram see this as spammy and may block you from commenting for a while. This also means you aren’t personalising comments for people. Your comments should be engaging and relate to the photo you are commenting on so that the person may want to then check out your account. If it is an obvious generic comment then they are less likely to notice you.
How NOT to grow your Instagram to 5k (or more)
WHATEVER YOU DO, DO NOT BUY FOLLOWERS!
It will do nothing good for your engagement rate which is what really matters.
You can only work on your engagement rate if you know you have active followers who you can interact with.
Brands can easily tell if you have paid for followers so even though you will have a massive following, you won’t get any brand deals if that was your aim.
Conclusion: How to grow your Instagram to 5k
Always remember that it is not about how many followers you have but more so the engagement you get. What is the point of having 10k followers and only getting 50 likes because your followers are inactive? I know I would much rather have 3k followers and get 300 likes.
Every now and then, I go through my followers and delete any followers who don’t have a profile picture or who haven’t posted in a long time as this tends to mean they are inactive.
As long as you start implementing these tips, you WILL start gaining followers. If you are following and engaging with the right people then they will engage with you too!
I hope some of the tips will help you out! Let me know how you are doing with Instagram so far!
About the Author
Thank you for reading my post on how to grow your Instagram to 5k. If you want to find out more check out my about me page. My name is Amber Page and I run The Unpredicted Page. You can find me over on: