How to get more followers on Instagram

by | May 5, 2021 | Naked Feature

I couldn’t help but wonder how to get more followers… Dear reader this is the NUMBER 1 most asked question about Instagram (according to Google).

Can YOU believe it?

Yes probs.

Cos let’s face it, you’d be Snow White perfect if you’d never once considered how to get more of the F-word in your life.

Here’s how to get more followers on Instagram:

1 – Nurture your existing Instagram followers

It’s not the size of your Instagram following, it’s what you do with it.

If you’ve got 1,000 true fans (as Kevin Kelly calls them) you’re doing flipping awesome. And if you rounded them all up in one place that would be loads of people!!!! Nurture the people you’ve got vs chase the ones you don’t.

Part of having a great following is that they will introduce you to other people. Just by nature of commenting, tagging and sharing your work.

Remember David Meerman Scott’s Cocktail Party analogy. You’re not just on social media to walk into a cocktail party and start shouting about your offering.

No my friend, you’re here to make friends and influence people. Talk to people, make connections, network. Because ultimately people buy from people.

Also remember that a big following doesn’t necessarily mean they are BUYING from you. The goal is to build a business with real people who TRUST you and want to work with you and buy your product or service.

2 –  Think about it what you want those followers for

Is it a vanity following you’re looking for or a real following? I know, I get it, your competitors might have more followers, your best friend might have more followers. But please, please don’t waste time looking left and right comparing yourself.

You don’t know if your competitor has been putting more hours in, has been buying followers or playing the following / unfollowing game. So comparing in the main can be a waste of time. Instead, put your time into YOUR business plan and strategy.

Let’s write it down:

  • Exactly WHO are you trying to attract? What does your ideal customer look like? What content are they looking for? What product or service do you have to sell them AND is it packaged up correctly?
  • What are your numbers indicating? LOOK at your Google Analytics! And your newsletter numbers and social media. Where are your sales coming from? Which pieces of content are they engaging with?
  • What are your competitors doing well that you could emulate? Are you spending time in key results areas? How can you work more efficiently to maximise the results?

If you’re mindlessly putting content out there and not getting the right followers, it is time to reassess.

And while I’m here, this is a great time to remind you that you don’t own Instagram. And it can be a serious time hoover. So please make sure that you are also building up other channels JUST in case Instagram disappears one day. Get your website, get a newsletter, and create more channels to market.

Pop a reminder in your calendar and block a day out every six months to review strategy. I always pick August and January as they’re {slightly} quieter times.


I couldn’t help but wonder, how does the algorithm work

3 – Are you actually creating content to attract new people?

Are you? What’s performing in your world? Track your numbers on Instagram using their Insights and add them to a weekly spreadsheet,

Take a look at your followers, reach, engagement, saves, comments and so on as you’ll be surprised what works.

It is no surprise but repeat what works. Drop what doesn’t.

And experiment, try new things. Try delivering the same information but switch it up – try it on the Grid, then Stories, then Reels and an IGTV. Find the sweet spot between what works for you and your followers.

Find out what the most effective content is and make more of it.

4 – Tactics – Collaborating, competitions and sharing content

Remember the more people you attract the more you have to make content which serves your audience to maintain it.

There are ways to bump up your following by being more visible. Make sure if you use any of these tools that they fit into your overall business strategy.


This is one of my favourite ways. You can team up with a likeminded brand or person with a similar (or higher) following to produce a special product, service, Webinar, IGTV, you name it, you can work together on it.

This puts you immediately in front of their audience and vice versa. You’ll both see a nice halo effect from the shared efforts.


Competitions are an oft-used mechanic for growth on your Instagram account. They are great for rewarding followers, retaining followers and finding new followers.

But a word of warning here. You need to use competitions sparingly otherwise:

  • your audience will tire of it
  • it can look super spammy
  • you can actually end up building an audience of competition hungry folk who might not even buy your products

I would suggest running some form of competition once a month is perfect. Like everything with Instagram, you can run a competition any way you wish. You can use grid, stories, Reels or IGTV.

Sharing Content:

If you can share third parties on your stories then you:

  • share the love and introduce them to your followers
  • get noticed by them so they may share your story to their audience
  • they may follow you back
  • they may message you back so you get firmly on their radar

I have to admit that I was stuck around the 1.8k followers mark forever. And the difference for me was sharing my clients content. This content was often my work so kind of demonstrating my skills.

But the upshot was that the more they re-shared my stories (about them), the more I grew from relevant and engaged people.

I think I could attribute a good 500 extra followers to this strategy.

5 – Play with all of Instagram’s features

It is no surprise that Instagram WANTS you to USE all of Instagram.

It wants you to DM. It wants you to Grid. It wants you to Reels. It wants you to IGTV. And Live. And Stories.

Tired yet? Tell me about it.

Instagram often rewards early adopters to the new things, so make sure you try to balance all the features out if you can.

If one of them REALLY doesn’t work for you, then you can dial it down and do less of it. BUT do experiment so you know exactly what works for you.

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