Most articles will say something along the lines of “hard work”. Post every day, research your competitors, post when your audience is online, and so on.
While all of this is true, it’s missing something very important. Automation.
Imagine if you could take all of the small, annoying tasks involved in growing a successful Instagram page and completely hand it off to someone else. That’s essentially what using an automation tool can do.
You still get free Instagram followers as you would if you were to grow your page naturally, but with an automation tool you get followers much, much quicker.
Here’s a typical road map to growing a successful page, gaining free Instagram followers and how automation can help you significantly speed up the process:
1) Research your competitors
Think about what you want your Instagram page to be about. Namely, think about what niche you want to pursue – travel photography, lifestyle, business inspiration, etc.
Once you have an idea of what you want your page to be about, you can research what other people in that industry are doing that are bringing them success.
The idea here is not to copy what your competitors are doing, but to understand what they are doing that is working and to incorporate what you find into your own Instagram page.
- what kind of content are they posting?
- How often are they posting?
- What does their bio look like?
- How do they write their captions?
Now that you have a solid idea of what tactics are working for your competitors, you can begin creating your own page in a way that you know has proved successful before.
2) Research hashtags
You could be creating the best content in the world, but if you’re not attaching the right hashtags to your posts, no one is going to see it.
This is why it’s important to understand what hashtags your target audience is actively using and searching for.
To find these hashtags, simply follow these 4 steps:
- Search for a general keyword related to your niche on Instagram. (if you are a fitness page, for example, you might search for the keyword “squats”).
- Note the popular hashtags that show up from your search.
- Tap on one of these hashtags and take note of each related hashtag shown in a row below the main hashtag.
- Repeat for as many hashtags as you want.
Now, whenever you post to Instagram, you know what hashtags you should be targeting so that you best connect with your target audience.
3) Post when your audience is most active.
Different audiences are online at different times.
For example, if you are targeting night-shift workers, you wouldn’t want to post mid-day because your audience is likely asleep during that time. You would want to post early evening, middle of the night, and early morning hours because that’s when your audience is awake.
If your target audience is stay-at-home moms, however, your posting schedule would be different, and so on.
Beyond just guessing, you can also look at the amount of engagement your posts get from your audience at different posting times.
If you notice that posts uploaded from 3-5PM on Monday consistently get higher engagement than posts posted at other days/times, then you would want to make sure that you are always posting at Monday form 3-5PM.
A good way to make sure you never miss these opportunities is to use an Instagram scheduler like TagScout. It allows you to upload posts from your desktop and schedule them for days, weeks, or even months ahead.
4) Engage with your community
You know what your competitors are doing. You know what hashtags to use and what times to post to best reach your target audience. The final part of the equation to getting more free Instagram followers is actively engaging with your community.
This means Liking, commenting, sharing, DMing, and generally engaging with other people in your niche on Instagram.
The reason you want to do this is because when you pique someone’s interest through a Like or comment, for example, that person is more likely to check out who you are and return the favor in the form of a Like, comment or follow.
If you’re going to put in the time and effort to engage with tens, if not hundreds of people every day, you want to make sure that the people you’re engaging with are likely to return the favor.
To find these people, all you have to do is the following:
- Search the hashtags you found from your research above.
- Like or or leave a comment on all of the recent posts using that specific hashtag.
- Take note of the usernames of the people posting with that specific hashtag.
- DM them expressing an interest in their page and ask for any advice for someone new to the community.
- Repeat this as many times as possible (ideally once a day)
Neil Patel found that for every 100 posts that he liked, he received 6 followers in return. While it definitely produces results, this kind of engagement can take an extraordinary amount of time.
To speed things up, use an Instagram automation tool like TagScout.
All you have to do is put in the hashtags from your research, hit “Go”, and TagScout will be automatically engaging with your target audience.
You can also refine your targeting by location, connection to competitor, and specific lists of Instagram users.
Two out of the four steps required to successfully grow an Instagram page in your niche can be significantly optimized and sped up with the help of smart automation.
Know of another way automation can help you on your journey to Insta-fame? Please share in the comments below!