How to Get More Followers On Instagram

Before we start let’s consider the most important question when dealing with a social media platform.

Q. What do you like to see when you open your Instagram feed?

This is a great starting point for content ideas to post on your own account. “It’s about sharing not showing.”

instagram tips

I consider Instagram my most personal form of social media. This platform is the best way to intimately connect with followers, and is devoid of typical blog marketing tactics like titled photos of pin-worthy recipes and projects.  To be frank, seeing blanket posts on Instagram (from bloggers) hurts the experience. For a long time I was using Instagram strictly as a personal account and rarely gave any thought to how it will relate to my blog.  Now that I’ve started effectively hopping around—–I can see this social media platform more clearly.  As a blogger we always want to reach more people (potential new readers) right?  This is how I’ve nearly doubled my Instagram following in 30 days…


1. I started networking within Instagram itself through the use of popular hashtags. Last week some companies and magazines have found me this way! #Exciting

2. Provide a little narrative background for pictures.  I’m not suggesting you write an entire blog post but use thoughtful words to further your connection with viewers and tell the story behind the image.

Instagram Photo Story Tips

  • When was the photo taken?
  • What were you doing during the picture? After? Before?
  • What did the object taste or feel like?
  • Does it remind you of something that other people can relate to? Elaborate on that idea [just a little bit].

3. It’s a great way to make an announcement.  I just received my business card and posted it here. Notice I also tagged someone.

4. Get out there and start a conversation.  I click on every user who likes my photos.  Follow them back if you can, and stay active in their feed through likes and comments.
5. Lump your social media tasks with Gramblr, an application that lets you upload photos to Instagram from your desktop.

6. You can add your feed to Hootsuite and save time catching up with everyone’s photos.

  7. Cross-promote. Post your instagram photo on Facebook or Twitter with a catchy phrase to entice readers to click over. 8. The key to getting your following off the ground is engaging with the people who already follow you.  The more your are out there in the Instagram-sphere the more likely new followers will run into you and click over. Especially if your comment provides extra value to the original photo. Tag your photos with related keywords. My personal approach to Instagram is to provide unique information that is mostly exclusive to Instagram itself.  As you can see I have a live feed on my sidebar that offers my regular readers a preview of things they have not seen.


If you want to drive traffic to your blog from Instagram remind your viewers that there is a link in your profile [write in those words “link in profile” within the description] and only show the first or last step of the project.  Think of the photos as an appetizer to your main course ( the blog post).  I honestly don’t receive tons of direct traffic from Instagram itself.  (Keep in mind—people might be manually typing the URL address in.) However it’s a fabulous platform to bring awareness to your brand.  There’s something very powerful about constantly reminding people you’re there, and making great content as well!

9.  If you’re posting a “preview” of a blog post you can always add a comment later on, letting your followers know that its #OnTheBlog.

10. Be consistent and persistent.  Don’t worry about it too much.  It’s not the health of your children or the engine of your car.  It’s just Instagram. My best advice when you’re feeling down about your growth is to keep your head down and work. You’ll see results over time!

11. Use Padgram to add hashtags to your post.  You’ll want to use this convenient app because it suggests hashtags as you’re typing.  I found #instafood and #thatsDarling this way!

Here are some extra articles to help you with Instagram.

How to get more followers on Instagram.

Why Instagram is a great marketing tool. 

 15 Hashtags to Get Noticed + Make Friends

Hashtags for Your Dinner. Get your recipes noticed!

Psst…You can get a free printed album of your Instagram feed. #RightPlaceRightTime
See the details below.

While I was at the Build Your Blog Conference I picked up my Chatbook and I must admit…I got a little weepy.  To hold a year of hard earned memories in my hand (like we did in the old days) was sentimentally overwhelming.  We keep in on an end table in the living room and I’ll find my husband thumbing through it from time to time.  It’s a chance for him to see the moments he’s missed while he was busy at work and all of my blogging photos I’ve uploaded during 2014.

instagram albumHumanize your digital memories and get your free chatbook below.

instagram album

xoxo, Jessica (@aw2sl)

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Lovely comments

    • Jessica says

      There are so many popular hashtags to pic from. Just google popular instagram hashtags and you will find an overwhelming amount! Good luck!

    • Jessica says

      I highly recommend using Instagram. I think it will eventually be more popular than Facebook. Thanks for stopping by.

  1. says

    These are great tips! Instagram is my favorite. I guess I like looking at photos a lot more than I like reading. 🙂 I just started following you on IG.
    ~Bonnie @ Our Secondhand House

  2. says

    Thanks for the tips! I like using Instagram, but it can get overwhelming at times. Sometimes I worry that I post too much, or not enough, or that my photos aren’t that good. It kinda stresses me out! I do love looking at photos and commenting, that part doesn’t stress me out 🙂

  3. says

    Thank you for this post. I really need to utilize Instagram more for my food website since Foodgawker and Tastespotting are so hard to get accepted into. I feel I should put a few minutes aside every day to seek out others to follow and comment on their photos. I think this will help with interaction and follow backs. I’ve never used Gramblr, but I have heard a few people talk about it now. Found you through the Lets Get Real hop and I have pinned this for reference!

  4. says

    Your last tip is the best – people (yes, even me!) tend to get frustrated when they don’t see immediate results to their social media. But I can tell you, after 90 days of consistent action on my social media, I’ve doubled my Twitter followers (from 600 to almost 1400 now!). It takes time and consistency to make it work.

    Thanks for the tips – I’m hoping to start making my moves on Instagram soon!

    • Jessica says

      Twitter is so powerful. I wish people could see how useful it can be. That’s great news about doubling your following! Good luck with Instagram!

  5. says

    Thanks for this great post! It’s exactly what I needed to start to utilize Instagram a little more. And thanks for linking up to the Be.YOU.Tiful link party!

  6. says

    Clicked over from SITS, Such a helpful post! I love instragram but definitely need to start using it more to relate to the audience that follows me!

  7. says

    Love your blog! Did you know you can embed your Instagram posts into your blog? They would look amazing in this post and then people could like them right from your blog, It’s pretty easy too!

    Also, I clicked on your Instagram link at the top and got an error so I couldn’t find you. 🙂

  8. says

    Oh my goodness! Awesome article dude! Many thanks, However I
    am encountering issues with your RSS. I don’t understand the reason why
    I cannot subscribe to it. Is there anybody getting the same RSS issues?
    Anyone who knows the answer will you kindly respond?

  9. says

    Hi, Thanks so much for the tips! I have a question in regards to the instagram photos that are click-able above, what application/plugin/ HOW did you do that? I’ve been looking for it for ages!


    • Jessica says

      You click on the “…” button and choose the embed option. Then I plugged the code into my webpage. It’s really easy! Good luck!

  10. says

    Found this post in my Pinterest feed and just want to say these are great tips. I haven’t been optimising Instagram at all really so this is so helpful that I had to say thanks 🙂

  11. says

    I will be thankful to you for my whole life. Seriously! Why? for this amazing post and for suggesting the tool – gramblr. You literally worked as an angel for me and LOL it does seem like flattery but seriously! thanks 🙂

  12. johanna says

    This is helping me so much! As a fellow military spouse and photographer, I am struggling to built a folllowing back up, now that my husband is posing. this is helping greatly. Just downloaded gramblr. I think this will help tons!

  13. says

    Thank you for the helpful tips.
    As a blogger beginner I’m finding instagram is the easiest to keep on track. Hope you can write something onwhat time and day to post for better traffic.

    • Jessica says

      Thank you Leslie! I’m so happy I could help. Instagram is still my favorite social media, especially because I can interact a lot via Padgram!

  14. Simon Ostrovsky says

    Thanks for the success story you described. You inspire many people, including me. By the way, I use the app you mentioned earlier – Hootsuite. It lets me do more with social media. Also i prefer to enjoy Zengram for inreasing audience


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