146m Instagram followers and counting! Don’t you just want to be like @TheRock? The good news is this is just a fraction of Instagram’s over 1b monthly active users.
Instagram is about the fastest growing social media platform, therefore finding cheap or free ways to leverage this growth and get more Instagram followers in 2019 is a good goal.
Instagram has grown from merely a fun app for sharing photos into a serious marketing and networking tool for brands and individuals.
Why You Need More Instagram Followers
There are several ways to get more Instagram followers, but you also need to know why you need to get more Instagram followers.
Compared to most other social media platforms, Instagram offers an appreciable amount of organic reach. This means having more followers translates into even more reach.
Instagram largely remains an organic platform. Although there are paid media solutions, you stand a better chance of reaching and engaging with a sizeable amount of your audience without having to spend a dime.
Therefore, the higher the number of followers you have, the greater the chances of them seeing and engaging with your content, and buying from you which can boost your dropshipping business, for instance. The use of best hashtags can also be of tremendous importance.
A number of followers are a form of social currency, credibility or social proof. It is generally understood that if your content is good then people will engage with it and share it more. By doing so more people will visit your profile and start following you. An account with a huge number of the following will act as a form of magnet pulling even more followers.
Having a sizable following on Instagram is more than a vanity metric. This is because of your organic reach, social proof, and your ability to command real results all depend on maximizing followership.
Instagram Followers for Sale: Should You Buy?
It is an established fact that people consider the number of followers an account has before opting to follow it. Brands also use a number of followers as a metric to measure their Instagram efforts. Therefore, businesses, brands, and influencers do a lot to grow their followers. One of the easiest and fastest ways to grow your Instagram followers is to buy them.
Although this method is quite cheap, with some services charging as little as $3 for every 1000 followers, in the long run, it is far more disadvantageous. Below are four reasons you shouldn’t buy Instagram followers:
- These Followers Won’t Engage with Your Account
When you buy followers you get what you pay for; a number. You are not likely to get any meaningful engagement from your purchased followers, this is because they aren’t real people, they are majorly fake bot accounts. The best you may get are automated and mostly unrelated comments, such as “nice post”.
- You Put Your Brand Integrity at Risk
Trust is highly essential when building a brand. Taking the shortcut of buying Instagram followers puts your brand integrity at risk. If your real followers were to find out that the huge number is fake, they would feel betrayed and would find it difficult to trust you.
This is of particular importance to influencers. If a business hires you to help promote its product only to discover your followers are not real people but bots, then you would have lost the trust and patronage of that company forever.
- You May Get Inappropriate Bot Comments
In order to counteract the lack of engagement, bot accounts are programmed to comment on posts. The only problem with this tactic is that most times these comments are inappropriate and irrelevant.
Sometimes they come in a completely different language to yours and at other times a generic comment such as “good one” would be in stark contrast to a post which is about sadness or mourning.
- You May Get Spammers
Aside from the fact that these followers are fake, some are fronts for spam. When you buy these fake followers you open yourself to spam posts.
This sometimes goes beyond Instagram, in cases where you may have provided your email address either on your profile or where you bought the followers.
10 Cheap or Free Ways to Get More Instagram Followers
Below are 10 cheap or free alternatives to garnering legitimate Instagram followers;
- Have a Branded and Complete Instagram Profile
This is one of the basic and most effective ways of converting visitors into followers. Your profile is as important as your homepage.
Therefore, you must have a good Instagram profile photo, active stories, and an effective Instagram bio. You can easily achieve this with the use of Instagram Aesthetic.
- Get Creative with Hashtags and Location Tags in Your Instagram Stories:
Instagram Stories are very efficient at reaching new audiences and boosting followership.
What makes Instagram Stories so effective is that it appears on the Explore Page, thereby making it available to people who don’t follow you to find.
- Use Selfies to Get More Followers
On Instagram, photos showing human faces get more likes than those without. This is because people feel more comfortable following accounts they can relate to.
Therefore, making your Instagram account as human as possible can get you more followers.
4. Use Videos to Get More Followers
Videos are equally as effective as selfies, so long as they have personality and are relatable.
They’re one of the best means of engaging with any audience, any day any time.
- Cross-Promote your Instagram Content on Other Platforms
This can be an easy way to direct your existing followers on other platforms, e.g. your website or other social networks, to your Instagram page.
If they enjoy your posts on Facebook, chances are they’d also want to keep tabs on other platforms.
- Employ the Power of Collaboration
By teaming up with complementary and like-minded businesses, and interacting with their posts, you get to advertise your profile/business to a new and engaged audience that you may never have reached on your own.
One good comment can send new followers your way.
- Join Instagram Engagement Groups
This is an effective tactic for beginners. By joining the engagement group for your particular niche, you will get a targeted list of Instagram followers and likes from people who share your interest.
- Ask Customers to Share their Photos/Videos
You can ask your customers to share with you photos or videos of them using your product.
As motivation, you can offer them a discount for doing this. This would act as a form of social proof.
- Reposting Viral Content
By reposting other people’s content, particularly the ones that went viral or is of significance, you can pull attention to your account.
In other words, you can share in other people’s shine by helping them shine.
- Host Giveaways
Don’t we all like giveaways? You can tap into this flare for “free” and reap the many benefits and publicity that come with it.
Now that you’ve got them you’d want to keep them. Not so? If you want more than a hollow follows, you need to engage your followers. By using some or all of these strategies you should be able to grow your Instagram followers in 2019.