With more than 1 billion monthly users, Instagram is an ultra-smart algorithm and loads of clever and creative accounts. It's a competitive place if you're looking to grow your account and grow your fan base.
Fortunately, we know exactly how to make your business stand out, show off your brand, and get more followers on Instagram – so you can work smarter, not harder.
We're sharing 14 new ways to reach your audiences and get more Instagram followers in 2021:
How to get more Instagram followers in 2021
Growing your Instagram account may not be as easy as it used to be. However, there are some strategic tips and tricks that you can try.
In a nutshell, here's how to get more Instagram followers:
- Use Instagram roles
- Optimize your profile for searching
- Create an IGTV series
- Be more inclusive and diverse
- Work with micro-influencers
- Create authentic shareable content
- Promote Instagram content on other social platforms
- Write longer subtitles
- Experiment with Instagram Lives
- Create an Instagram Viral Challenge or Game
- Introduce a branded hashtag
- Share memes that appeal to your audience
- Create a custom filter for Instagram stories
- Work with amazing brands
Ready to jump into the details? We'll give you an overview of each of these strategic tips for growing your Instagram account and how to start implementing them in 2021.
# 1: use Instagram roles
If you don't share Instagram roles In 2021 you could be missing out on a great opportunity for your brand or business!
Reels, Instagram's newest video feature are the focus of the new main navigation bar, is a way to record video clips up to 30 seconds long that have been set to music on Instagram.
With Instagram choosing to put Instagram Reels at the top of Instagram, there is This is an important step in helping users browse and share roles more frequently in 2021.
Roles can be found in a separate tab in individual Instagram profiles (and also on the Instagram Explore page!).
Similar to TikTok videos, Instagram reels have a chance to get serious viral. Instead of users seeing roles from only the accounts they follow, users see roles from all accounts. This is a big game changer.
Sharing your role on both your feed and the Explore page is an incredible way to expand your reach well beyond your followers – and potentially go viral in the process!
There are so many creative options that you can take advantage of Instagram roles for your business! If you need some inspiration to get started, check out the 15 Role Ideas Here.
And since Reels is a new feature, it's a good idea to jump on the bandwagon now while the competition is still low, especially since Instagram gives Reels a special place in the main user feed and on the Explore page.
Not sure where to start with Instagram Reels? Learn everything you need to know to create your first Instagram role in this handy step-by-step video:
# 2: optimize your profile for searching
Optimize your profile for searching is a heavily underused Instagram hack that can help grow your following – and which you should definitely try in 2021!
With a recent announcement made by Instagram, English speaking users in 6 countries will be able to search Instagram using keywords. This is a great game changer in the app!
Previously, when users searched for home workouts, the hashtag or accounts were filled in with the words “home workout” in their username. Now, posts with home workouts should show up in search even if that hashtag isn't in the post.
According to an Instagram spokesperson on The Verge The team considers "a number of factors" including "type of content, subtitles when it was published" and more to arrive at relevant results. It also uses machine learning to "find the highest quality content that is relevant to you". Currently only grid posts are displayed. "
Instagram notes that keyword searches are limited to General Interest Topics and Keywords that adhere to Instagram Community Guidelines.
With this change, it's still more important than ever to optimize your username and bio for search.
Instagram expert Elise Darma has taught thousands of developers, freelancers, and entrepreneurs how to grow their businesses on Instagram. Your favorite method of Instagram searches is to optimize yours Username and name field!
And the best part about it? The words that you include in your name field and Instagram bio are actually searchable on Instagram. This makes it the most important keyword for real estate in your biography!
“Most people nail the username, but the Name field triggers them. In your name field, think about what your niche is, what industry you are in, who you are addressing, what solution you offer, etc. If in doubt, type that term into the search bar on Instagram and see what comes up he says to Elise.
Make the most of your bio by changing your name field to something relevant to your brand or business. That way, you can improve your chances of showing up in the top results when someone searches for your target keywords.
"If a lot of other profiles are using this term, that's a good sign. You don't want to use a search term that no one else is using," Elise adds.
Are you ready to grow your fan base? We partnered with Instagram expert Elise Darma to create a free Instagram workshop on how to get your first 1000 followers on Instagram:
# 3: create an IGTV series
One of our key predictions for 2020 was this IGTV would become an important part of Instagram – and it doesn't look like it's going to stop anytime soon!
With COVID-19 bans, more and more social media users are turning to Instagram for entertainment. It's easy to target your Instagram audience with yours thanks to the IGTV tab in profiles IGTV content.
Create a IGTV series is a creative way to connect with your community and at the same time use a broader network to reach new target groups.
If you haven't created an IGTV channel yet, 2021 is a great time to jump into the game. Think about what longer-term video your audience would be interested in and start creating!
Plus, Video content Tends to get more traction on your feed – more engagement and more viewing of your videos can lead to more followers.
Plan and plan All your Instagram posts in advance with Later! Choose weekly or monthly calendar views to see all of your scheduled content.
# 4: Be more inclusive and diverse
Having an accessible, inclusive, and diverse Instagram account is not only the right thing to do, it's also a way to increase your engagement, increase your number of followers, and empower your community.
There are so many ways you can create more accessible and integrative Instagram account. You just have to start!
The first and easiest step you can take is to include subtitles on your Instagram video content.
85% of the videos on Facebook is viewed without sound, so getting your content digestible without audio is no problem.
Subtitles are great not only for people who watch without sound, but also for people with hearing problems.
ICYMI: Instagram introduced automatic subtitles in 16 languages for IGTV. Learn more about it Here.
There was also a big shift in 2020 as brands and influencers take responsibility for their responsibilities Lack of diversity in their marketing. And in 2021 the importance of diversity will be on the roof.
If brands choose not to partner with more diverse content creators or show support for social causes, they could seriously fail to reach a wider audience that may endorse their brand and products.
Actually, 74% of consumers Expect the brands they love to take a stand on important issues. In this way, you can humanize your brand, increase brand loyalty and thereby increase your fan base!
Hear from 4 black creatives how important diversity is in influencer marketing Here.
# 5: work with micro-influencers
If you're looking to reach new audiences in 2021, working with micro-influencers is one of the best ways.
While blue checks and high number of followers can be enticing, these influencers may not be the best choice for your brand or business.
According to a current study by MakerlyMicro-influencers – between 10,000 and 100,000 followers – offer the best combination of engagement and reach.
We asked Later's PR and influencer manager Chrissy Abram on the benefits of working with micro-influencers in 2021:
"Partnering with micro-influencers has the potential to appeal to a really engaged audience without fighting for their attention."
As micro-influencers operate on a smaller scale, they tend to have fewer sponsored posts and are known for a specific interest or niche.
"Think of micro-influencers as household names in your community," says Chrissy.
# 6: Create authentic shareable content
The power of Authenticity on Instagram The growth of your followers is enormous – and we expect it to grow even further in 2021.
One of the best ways to reach a larger group of people is to create authentic shareable content. Shared content on Instagram is one of the best ways to get your message out there. Users can share feed posts on their Instagram Stories or through direct messages.
Whether it's the problems of owning a business or your step-by-step skin care routine, being open to your audience will make your followers feel it.
When you make your followers feel like friends, they may feel a natural attraction to share your content with their own community of followers.
The Instagram algorithm tends to prefer posts that get a lot of engagement. So when your posts get shared, the post will boot up in people's feeds. And if a post has enough commitment, it can even end on the Explore page. Hello new followers!
Simply sharing can be very important to your brand or business. So it pays to make an effort to create (authentic) shareable content.
TIP: Take your time to be active on Instagram! On Reply to comments and DMsDon't forget to interact with the accounts you follow and those who have audiences similar to you. Chances are their followers will check you out!
When you see a post that you really like, comment on it! Besides, your comment can be pinnedand easily seen by hundreds of potential new followers.
If you deal with other accounts, the Instagram algorithm also knows that you have a "relationship" with them. This is how your account will appear in related and suggested account proposals.
ICYMI: Instagram released Instagram Guides – a new way for users to share and use helpful recommendations and tips in an easy-to-digest format.
Instagram guides are a great way to work with your followers to create shareable (and fun!) Content in 2021.
The creative possibilities are endless. You can share guides that consist of products, places, or posts. They can be gift guides, travel guides, inspiration, storytelling, advice or guidance, and much more.
Find out more about the new Instagram feature here.
# 7: Promote Instagram content on other platforms
If you're looking for new ways to grow your Instagram following, cross-promoting your Instagram on other platforms could be the answer.
We forecast for the year 2021 Tick tock and Pinterest These are two of the best ways to grow your Instagram followers outside of Instagram.
With TikTok's unique algorithm and The increasing referral traffic from PinterestMany developers and brands have seen an increase in their Instagram followers since joining TikTok and Pinterest.
The first thing you can do with TikTok is to make sure your Instagram traffic is getting by connecting your Instagram account for your TikTok.
Other ways you can grow your followers? Create a TikTok that shows what you have on Instagram, tease Instagram content, and get your TikTok bio. Learn more about how to turn your TikTok audience into Instagram followers Here.
Similar, Entitlement to your Instagram account on Pinterest comes with a number of loaded advantages. By claiming your account and pinning your Instagram posts, you can get more traffic and engagement for your Instagram content over a long period of time!
If TikTok and Pinterest are not part of your marketing strategy, you can always refer to your Instagram through your website, email newsletter, podcast, Twitter, Facebook and YouTube!
# 8: write longer subtitles
Long captions were big in 2020 and won't be going anywhere in 2021 – especially with the new Instagram keyword search.
Instagram used to be all about graphics – a coherent aesthetics, high quality photographyand branding images were a must. Now viewers want to know more about you, your brand, and your mission.
Indeed after Influencer Research from Fohrthe average length of subtitles has more than doubled since 2016.
And in 2021 our feeds will be filled with an average subtitle length of 405 characters – which is an average of 65-70 words!
Influencers were the first to jump in on this trend – they shared long captions on their posts to get a better look at their world or to get a glimpse of current events.
But brands are also using the trend – especially when it comes to raising awareness of the causes that are important to them.
As you share more with your audience through your Instagram posts, you will build a stronger and bigger community.
And since Instagram allows users to search for specific keywords such as “healthy recipes” and “gold jewelry”, including keywords in your longer captions can help you get a more organic look at your content.
# 9: go live on Instagram
Video is the future of Instagram – and Instagram Live This is possibly one of the best ways to use video to drive engagement and followers in 2021.
Instagram Live is a completely unedited video stream that your followers can adjust to and engage with. This means your audience can submit comments and questions in real time.
A ton of brands have jumped on the Instagram Live train, especially with the home based shift in 2020.
The content options for Instagram Lives are endless. You can do weekly shows Games and tournaments, Online webinars, tutorials and much more. And now you can even showcase your products to increase sales.
ICYMI: Instagram released Instagram live shopping – A new way for brands and developers to sell products during an Instagram Live broadcast. This means accounts with access to Instagram checkout can mark products from their Facebook shop or catalog and let their audience shop on site.
Are you ready to try Instagram Live? Read our step-by-step guide for businesses Here.
# 10: create an Instagram viral challenge or game
From #FliptheSwitch to #BathtubChallenge, 2020 was the year of Social media challenges and games.
Influencers and brands have recognized the power of viral Instagram challenges and games, especially as a way of building brand awareness and growing your fan base.
To take Bailey StanworthFor example PLAY Digital Founder. With inspiration from @ HunterraeBailey started the #BathtubChallenge where she encouraged her followers to dress up, take a selfie in the bathtub and tag 3 friends.
Suddenly, her followers were posting and tagging friends and the hashtag grew to over 2,000 posts!
Another way to increase your following? Be creative and host your own Instagram game!
Bailey cultivated a second highly interactive Instagram moment with her PLAY Pong tournament – an online version of a beer pong tournament. The weekly event, hosted on Instagram Live, supported the COVID-19 relief fund.
"At first I thought it was just a fun little way to give something back while quarantined in our homes, but it quickly turned into a viral event with up to 100,000 people watching."
Turn your Instagram game into a branded streak that you commit to on a monthly, bi-weekly, or even weekly basis.
And Later, you can spend more time with your audience by planning your Instagram challenges and games in advance.
# 11: create a branded hashtag
Branded Instagram hashtags are a great way to increase your company's awareness User Generated Content (UGC), to build a communityand attract new followers.
A branded hashtag is a hashtag that is unique to your business. This can be as simple as your company name, your slogan, or the name of one of your products, events or campaigns.
According to a report by Visual objectsOne of the best ways to see engagement on your hashtag is to incentivize your customer base.
For example bridesmaid dress company Birdy Gray encourages their audience to use the hashtag #birdyinthewild to have the chance to be featured on their Instagram and website.
You can also encourage users to use your branded hashtag on their own posts to win a prize, as they did with the hashtag later LaterCon.
Plus, any posts that use your branded hashtag are double that User generated content (UGC). And UGC can do serious things to help you grow your sales and build true brand loyalty.
Are you ready to implement UGC into your Instagram strategy? Later has covered you.
# 12: Create memes that appeal to your target audience
Brands have recognized the power of clever Instagram memesespecially when it comes to building brand identity, increasing product interest and gaining more followers.
In fact, memes have become one of the most important methods of online communication, with a reported over 55% of 13 to 35 year olds Send them out every week.
Check out how @smartsweets creates branded pop culture memes to fill their Instagram feed:
While most of us recognize a meme the instant we see one, it is surprisingly difficult to pin down a definition.
In the broadest sense, a meme is any medium that is passed on from person to person on the Internet. They usually have cultural relevance, are often funny or clever, and usually offer a combination of text and images (this can be a photo, a GIF, or even a video).
Take Later's hugely popular Netflix show, Emily, in Paris, for example, and encourage followers to go out and vote.
Some brands like @ Girlboss and @Hello Sunshine have won millions of Instagram followers thanks to their witty and playful use of memes in their Instagram strategy.
There can still be challenges in creating memes, such as: B. the integration of memes in your profile without compromising your aesthetics. But there are ways to do it. Apps like Canva and about They have a number of templates to make creating memes easy for you.
# 13: create a custom IG Stories filter
"expanded reality, ”Or AR for short, may seem like space age jargon, but it starts in a BIG way on Instagram.
What began as cute puppy ears or heart filters on Instagram Stories has now evolved into one whole library with thousands of filters that increases the content of your stories.
Apart from the content and AR creators on Instagram who used it Spark AR Studio from Facebook To create camera effects, color grading, and fun face change filters, we've also spotted plenty of brands and influencers who are on the trend.
Christine CollingLater's social media manager explains how Later used AR filters to drive and increase Later brand awareness:
“For LaterCon, we created two AR Filters and promoted them by asking our audience to use them to win some awards. On the day of LaterCon, our AR filter received over 230,000 impressions and over 5600 captures – which made many potential new followers known for our brand. "
We have also seen other brands pick up on this trend. With just a simple cloud background, @summerfridays created a fun, extremely easy-to-use, in-brand filter for their followers. It's even named after the best-selling jet lag face mask.
The greatest benefit of a custom Instagram stories Filter is that when someone uses your filter, their viewers can see who created it in the top left corner of the screen.
From here, a viewer can tap the filter name or the creator and try it on for himself.
It's a creative and carefree way to bring new eyes to your filter and increase your followers on Instagram.
Ready for the AR leap? See Rik Lomas, CEO and Founder of SuperHiGuide you through creating your first AR filter!
# 14: Collaborate With Awesome Brands
The power of one Collaboration or a co-marketing campaign Your business is huge and is fast becoming one of the most popular ways to grow your following.
When you partner with like-minded companies and brands, your profile will be introduced to new and engaged audiences.
If an Instagram user is discovering your profile through co-marketing, they will likely click this button if they have similar interests or if they are the right demographic for your brand.
Plus, Co-Marketing Campaigns don't have to be complicated or expensive! More important is who you work with. You want to make sure you have a mutually beneficial partnership that will benefit both audiences.
We talked to Jess Ruhfus, Founder of Collabosaurus, a marketing tool that connects brands for clever collaboration and partnership to gain insight into the trends.
“Branded collaboration can be incredibly powerful,” says Jess.
“In our experience, a branded partnership can double your organic reach without spending any money. And they're up to 25x cheaper than digital advertising! "
Takeovers, giveaways, competitions, or content collaborations from Instagram Stories are fantastic ways your business can reach new audiences quickly and cheaply.
Growing your Instagram account often seems like a challenge, but if you follow the right techniques and strategies you can definitely get more Instagram followers in 2021!
Remember, it's a combination of creative content that will appeal to the right audiences and promote your business in the right way. Try some of these tips in 2021 and see how much your account can grow this year!
Are you ready to grow your Instagram following in 2021? Sign up for later to plan, plan and post on Instagram.
Jessica is a creative problem solver and content writer. Jessica is from Winnipeg, a city in the middle of Canada. She currently lives and works in Paris, France. Follow us on @jessicaworb.