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PRESS RELEASE: Paid content from NewMediaWire
Press release content from NewMediaWire. The AP news staff was not involved in its creation.

Instagram Followers: The Definitive Guide

December 6, 2020 GMT
Instagram Followers Guide
Instagram Followers Guide
Instagram Followers Guide

New York, NY - ( NewMediaWire ) - December 5, 2020 - Getting Instagram followers is not as straightforward as it used to be. In this guide, we will show you how to beat the new Instagram algorithm and acquire more followers than your competitors.

Instagram has come a long way since it was launched in 2010 as a mobile photo-sharing app. Gone is the chronological feed where the most recent posts would appear first, replaced instead by a constantly evolving, machine learning-based algorithm that determines which posts should show up first or not at all in user feeds.


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Translation? Amid the competition out there where 75% of U.S. businesses use Instagram for marketing, you can only afford to put your best foot forward. This means optimizing your account to reach more people and achieve what is called success on Instagram, which is attracting more followers, likes and comments but also engaging with your audience on a deeper level to drive your marketing and sales goals.

Ranking Factors of The Instagram Algorithm

In 2020, 1 billion people use Instagram every month, of which 63% log in at least once a day and spend an average of 28 minutes on the app cumulatively. 200 million Instagram users will also visit at least one business profile a day, amounting to an incredible advertising reach.

The trick is understanding how the platform’s algorithm works so you can find a way into user feeds. And while it’s impossible to know all the ranking factors that the algorithm uses, some have been confirmed by Instagram itself, whether directly or through announcements like this one: See Posts You Care About First, made on March 15, 2016. The 5 known ranking factors of Instagram’s algorithm are:

1. Interest

This is a measure of how much your post is likely to interest a particular user, based on their pattern of behavior in the past.

2. Relationship

Facebook and Instagram have been trying to put “friends and family” first for a while now so this ranking factor only makes sense. The algorithm uses hints to determine interactions fall under the “friends and family” category, like frequent likes and the accounts users search for or send messages to.

3. Recency and frequency

Since Instagram wants its users to spend as much time on the platform as possible, these two factors are important. One is a measure of how relevant the content is; The other helps Instagram have more posts to show to users the next time they log in.


4. Following

And finally, the accounts a user follows will ultimately determine what shows up on his or her feed; The more accounts they follow, the harder it is for your posts to rank high because Instagram can only fit so much on a person’s feed.

The takeaway: You need great content that will trigger engagement, and you need optimize your time of posting and frequency. Additionally, you need your target audience to follow you.

Why Your Instagram Follower Count Matters

To get your content in front of more people and ultimately drive your business goals, you need your prospects to follow you. The challenge, if you’re a new account, is your low follower count. Like AppSumo reported, it’s much easier to go from 10K to 20K followers than it is to reach the first 10K milestone.

The reason? The psychology of social proof.

People follow the action of the masses. Others see a high follower count as a measure of how important or well-received a particular person or brand is. It’s why politicians and celebrities, despite having many followers, are often caught buying fake ones; More followers mean they can exert more influence online.

Like that time Mitt Romney tried to catch up with President Barack Obama’s Twitter follower count, and he is not the only one. Many celebrities including members of the Kardashian-Jenner clan and Ellen DeGeneres have been reported to buy Instagram followers in a bid to win the popularity game.

So, while it’s true that engagement plays a much bigger role in cracking Instagram’s algorithm, it all starts with inspiring people to follow you, and that comes down to how popular your account appears.

Why Engagement Matters

From Instagram’s ranking factors that we know of, it’s pretty obvious that engagement is THE METRIC to get right to make sure the platform serves up your content to its users. This means getting more likes, comments and views on your posts. In general, for an account of 1,000 or less followers, an average engagement rate of 8% is good; Bigger accounts of 10,000 or 100,000 followers will have less engagement, in the vicinity of 2-4%.

Keep a close eye on your analytics to track how your audience feels about your profile, but also how the Instagram algorithm sees it.

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How To Get More Instagram Followers And Engagement

1. Content, content, content

Instagram is a very visual platform so you can’t create random content. It needs to be strategic and targeted, with text, visuals and other media that Instagram allows. In particular, human faces are a big deal on the platform so you need to humanize your brand. Additionally, things like quotes are a phenomenon, as is user-generated content, which we see in just a bit.

2. Optimize for your audience

To drive maximum engagement, you need to optimize your profile, and this means a good picture, name, profile name and description because people do look at these things.

Then you need more access to your profile, and you can do this in a number of ways. Like promoting your Instagram in your newsletters, and putting your account handle on your business cards and other marketing materials.

You also want to make sure the content you share are stunning visuals because this is the lifeblood of Instagram. It’s how the platform demarcates itself from the other social media sites like Facebook, and that will never change.

3. Think feed posts but also Stories, IGTV and Reels

In addition to feed posts, experiment with different types of content on Stories, Reels and IGTV; Some profiles get more views on their Stories than they do on their posts and aligning your content with the preferences, interests and stances of your audience is the best way to get top engagement.

4. Think hashtags

Then, of course, hashtags are very important on Instagram. Unlike Facebook and Twitter, the platform does not have a very prominent search feature so hashtags are one of your best bets to get more visibility. You should use them in your posts and bio, but also on your Stories and IGTV.

5. Cross-promote and engage

And finally, if you want to grow your Instagram in record time, there is no better strategy than partnering up with influential users in your niche and raising your brand awareness. This is because people trust the recommendations of others online. This also explains the popularity of user-generated content on the platform. That and the fact that Instagram is a community, and you need to be an active member to grow and cultivate your audience.

And there you have it! A complete guide on how to grow your Instagram account.

To learn more about Zeru and all the social media marketing solutions we offer to businesses, head to our website on