Easy methods to Develop Your Instagram Following

Have you ever been struggling to develop your Instagram following? Or aren’t positive the place to start?

Whether or not you’re a blogger eager to increase your attain, a small enterprise trying to construct up your buyer base, or an entrepreneur hoping to get your work out into the world—I’m right here to assist!

I’ve shared numerous running a blog ideas from my final information to beginning a profitable journey weblog to the way to run a weblog whereas working full-time to ideas for taking pictures gorgeous journey flat lays.

In every a type of guides, there may be one widespread thread:

It takes work.

Whereas some points of running a blog and constructing an Instagram following are actually enjoyable (like exploring your creativity and pictures), the important thing instruments and techniques mandatory to show your account into one thing larger (like a enterprise) require time and a whole lot of effort.

Disclosure: I’ve been on the platform for eight years—whereas I’ve over half 1,000,000 followers, I wouldn’t say I ever went viral or was an in a single day success. It’s been a gradual and regular development with ups and downs.

From determining “why” to utilizing Later.com to plan out content material to picture technique (and a lot extra!)…

Listed below are my key ideas for rising your Instagram!

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What’s Your “Why?”

The thought behind Instagram is that it’s a neighborhood. It began off as a neighborhood platform to share photographs and join with others and it continues to function as such.

I attribute my success to making a neighborhood inside the journey house and at all times having an open dialogue with my viewers. Partaking with my neighborhood, answering feedback and messages, and offering helpful and/or inspiring info — that’s how I grew.

It wasn’t a lot as being idolized for what I do, however relatively being an skilled in a specific area of interest, and sharing relatable content material by being an open useful resource for different ladies in journey.

There are a whole lot of methods you possibly can strategy Instagram, and I’d give the identical recommendation for a weblog:

Begin with determining your “why?”

I’ve talked rather a lot about “What’s your why?” and the way this elementary query impacts a lot of what goes into making a model, and, in flip, an Instagram profile.

Pinpoint Your Ardour

Earlier than you get began, pinpoint your ardour. There’s a area of interest for the whole lot. Solo feminine journey is what captured my coronary heart nevertheless it might be one thing fully totally different for you. No matter sparks your soul, I assure you that there are numerous others on the market that share the identical hearth.

Take into consideration your motivation. Ask your self a collection of questions:

Why do you wish to construct an Instagram following?

What’s your model all about?

Why will another person care about what it’s important to share?

For those who’re trying to develop a following to get freebies or one thing like that, please dig deeper! That’s such a straightforward strategy to burn out and in addition doesn’t gasoline a deeper “why” when issues get stagnant or difficult.

For me, I wished to share my private travels, give others perception into the way to journey as a solo feminine, and join with different ladies who shared that keenness. Because the years have gone on, that important “why” has stayed the identical—and I’ve even expanded upon it!

Why is establishing a “why” vital?

It’ll assist you to determine what to share. Start shaping your content material round that. I’m going to make use of journey for example as a result of that’s what I do, however this will apply to so many alternative industries and niches.

Sharing fairly journey photographs is one factor however why will somebody care to comply with you over one other journey account? Is it as a result of your photographs are fairly? Or since you are distinctive within the house and have an fascinating story to inform?

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The Blonde Abroad Instagram Feed

Suggestions for Creating High quality Content material

Whereas Instagram remains to be all about neighborhood, it has modified in some ways. What was once a platform for smartphone photographs and candid day by day life has grow to be a type of gallery of epic content material — folks have come to count on high-quality photographs from bloggers and types.

The standard of photographs could be a reflection of the standard of the content material a blogger creates or the merchandise {that a} model is promoting.

After all, there are exceptions, like celebrities or comedians, for instance, that don’t want skilled imagery as a result of their viewers follows them for various causes.


The very first thing to contemplate is that in case you’re going to make use of Instagram to construct a following, you have to concentrate on high quality photographs — a person picture must be participating, informational, and/or entertaining.


Your general feed is the second factor to contemplate right here. When somebody clicks to the principle feed of your profile you need them to get a right away really feel for what to anticipate from you and what your account is all about — aesthetic and branding.

For a very long time, I feel creating an aesthetically pleasing and patterned feed was key to development. There was a sure method — a decent topic, a faraway topic, a decent topic, a faraway topic. Utilizing comparable colours and brightness or darkness. Nevertheless, I don’t assume that’s as essential anymore.

Whereas curating a feed like this will definitely assist, for me, it tends to stifle creativity. As a lot because it’s interesting for the consumer, it will probably typically take away the enjoyable of the expertise or simply creating for the sake of making.

That mentioned, in case you have the power to do that and create a beautiful trying feed — it will probably’t damage!

Despite the fact that I’m not patterning my private @TheBlondeAbroad feed, we are inclined to curate the @TBAEscapes and @TBAPresets a bit extra and plan out the feed effectively upfront.

One in all my favourite instruments for creating stunning Instagram feeds is Later.com.

It’s a beautiful social media planning software the place you possibly can drag and drop photographs and plan forward to assist curate your feed. You possibly can simply shift issues round to attain these ~aesthetic targets~ and plan out your content material effectively upfront.


Thirdly, you have to focus in your caption.

I started running a blog in 2011 (earlier than Instagram!) so the written phrase has at all times been my biggest medium for sharing journey experiences.

It’s vital to me to proceed the storytelling aspect from my weblog on my Instagram, so I usually write longer captions to share experiences and ideas, and in the end to interact with my viewers.

I imagine it helps enhance the engagement I obtain on my posts, growing the feedback, and general performing higher with the Instagram algorithm.

Longer captions are one thing that my viewers has grow to be accustomed to. This might be an amazing technique in your account as effectively in order for you folks to behave, relate, and have interaction.

We are going to get extra into captions and development methods under!

What Sort of Content material to Share

I personally discover that as a result of I share a whole lot of journey content material, pictures of journey landscapes are vastly profitable (so long as I’m a small topic). A journey panorama with out a topic? Not a lot. A shot of me with little consideration to the place I’m? Hit and miss.

My purpose is to share journey experiences as an alternative of me, me, me. Whereas with a trend or way of life account, your aesthetic could not comply with the identical “guidelines” or strategies.

The important thing right here? Learn the room! See what folks are sharing and get a really feel for what’s working for the profitable accounts.

Once more, this doesn’t imply that what works for some will give you the results you want. You don’t want to alter your model, your aesthetic, or what you’re posting — however it’s actually useful to maintain a pulse on what works.

Then you possibly can put your individual artistic spin on issues!

Get Artistic with What You Share

I’ve shared the whole lot from movies to IG “Lives” to the brand new “Reels”—make the most of what’s on the market. Till you’ve established an viewers, you actually can’t say what works finest and what doesn’t with the kind of content material you is likely to be sharing.

So once more, learn the room.

Video did very well for me nevertheless it’s time-consuming and a LOT of labor. So, now, I do it carefully. However particularly for journey, in my view, video might be one of the best ways to showcase a vacation spot or expertise.

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Preset Feed Before and After

Share Your Greatest Photos 

I personally like vivid and colourful photographs, not essentially overly saturated, however I need my general feed to really feel energetic, enjoyable, and pleasant!

It’s apply to establish what aesthetic matches along with your model.

No matter your vibe is, take into consideration the sentiments you wish to evoke when folks see your feed — go together with that! Is it moody and earthy, or muted and funky? Possibly it’s loud, vivid, and colourful!

That is all primarily based on private desire.

Choose three emotive adjectives and hold these in thoughts when modifying your photographs and deciding what to share.

Whereas I don’t actually plan out my private @TheBlondeAbroad feed like I used to, I nonetheless edit my photographs in a constant method utilizing TBA Presets. Modifying my photographs inside a sure aesthetic helps create that cohesiveness on my general feed, even once I’m not curating a sample.

Easy methods to Optimize Your Photos for Instagram

  • Modifying on Cell: Edit within the Adobe Lightroom App (or a cell various like Snapseed and VSCO). I created my Cell Lightroom Presets to be used in LR Cell!
  • Modifying on Desktop: I virtually at all times want to edit on my Macbook. It’s faster, I pressure my eyes much less, and I can edit RAW photographs so get one of the best outcomes this fashion. I even have Desktop Lightroom Presets and a information to taking pictures on Handbook Mode in case you’re new to pictures!
  • Optimum picture measurement and determination is AT LEAST 1080px broad for retina screens (nevertheless I at all times add the best decision doable)
  • Crop your photographs tall (5×4) and use pictures ideas just like the ‘rule of thirds.’ Taller photographs take up extra “actual property” in peoples’ feeds so that they’re greater and simpler to see.
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TBA Presets

Whether or not you’re simply beginning out with pictures or have been taking pictures for years, these easy-to-use presets will immediately add a stupendous aesthetic to your whole photographs!

Store Now

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When clicking on an account and viewing it for the primary time, folks often resolve whether or not they’re going to comply with you or not in a matter of seconds. I’d enterprise to say they resolve inside 3-5 seconds.

So, placing your finest work on the market, and preserving it cohesive and constant is vital.

This implies consistency in whenever you publish, the standard of the pictures you publish, and the way typically you’re sharing updates on Instagram Tales.

Take into account that posting greater than two Instagram photographs per day could lower your engagement. A very good rule of thumb is to stay to at least one Instagram publish every day (or a minimum of 5 posts per week).

Nevertheless, don’t simply publish for the sake of posting.

I posted practically EVERY DAY for six years… so now I give myself a break and publish much less typically, nevertheless it was crucial in development.

It’s a LOT of labor in case you’re taking pictures high-quality photographs, nevertheless it’s the way you feed the beast.

Nevertheless a lot content material you possibly can deal with sharing, make certain that the photographs you’re posting are your BEST work — whether or not they’re stunning, participating, or entertaining. You’ll quickly study what your viewers likes finest!

Deal with your Instagram profile as a gallery of your finest work.

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Later Sample

Use Later to Plan Forward

I discussed above that I like to make use of Later.com to curate the feeds for @TBAEscapes + @TBAPresets. Along with that, I take advantage of Later to plan out my upcoming posts and draft captions upfront to ensure I keep up to the mark — it helps with consistency.

There are occasions the place I’m feeling actually impressed and might write a number of captions about my journey experiences, after which there are others the place I’m simply…clean.

I wish to capitalize on my artistic days and schedule out a few of my Instagram posts for the longer term so I’m by no means drowning in duty to make it occur.

Later Preview


I like with the ability to preview and plan out my photographs in Later earlier than posting in order that I can be certain the whole lot seems inline with my aesthetic targets! I also can use the analytics to determine when one of the best time to publish for my viewers is.

Better part?

You possibly can even schedule tales! (However extra on that later)

Because the #1 visible advertising and marketing platform, Later helps me to simplify my Instagram advertising and marketing and technique by means of their scheduling platform, and the analytics accessible on their desktop platform.

Whether or not you’re a person or a enterprise — Later helps retains issues streamlined!


Whereas not all of us have a number of Instagram accounts to handle, I actually like the convenience of switching between @TheBlondeAbroad, @TBAEscapes, and @TBAPresets on the Later platform. It makes it tremendous simple for me to remain on high of the whole lot in a single place!

New customers can get 1 month freed from Later Premium with the promo code:


**The promo code is case delicate and contains $20 off for brand spanking new prospects solely.

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When It Involves Captions

As I mentioned earlier, more often than not, I share very lengthy captions. I attempt to interact my viewers each with the picture and what I’ve to say about that picture — however typically a photograph can’t converse for itself!

I’ve tried to be thorough with my captions from the very starting of making my account again in 2012, so my viewers is used to studying and interesting with my captions — they know what to anticipate from me!

Once more, consistency is vital.

Lots of of us who share stunning photographs don’t at all times put the identical effort into their captions or creating one thing that folks can interact with. For these accounts, it may be troublesome to seize followers, get their viewers’s consideration, or get them to click on by means of to different content material.

For anybody trying to flip their Instagram account right into a enterprise, your captions are going to be the MOST vital piece of the puzzle.

Some Methods for the Captions

  • Give some background as to why you’re posting the picture
  • Immediate a narrative or publish with one thing considerate or participating
  • Finish with a query or name to motion! One thing like, “share within the feedback how you are feeling about this,” or “I’d like to know what you assume” may give your viewers one thing to behave on. This usually will generate extra significant feedback and conversations, relatively than issues like an emoji, or “tremendous fairly.”
  • For those who’re snug getting very private, many accounts have grown an enormous following over their transparency and authenticity. I’m private, however I don’t share each single facet of my life. I’ve seen and even comply with some very private accounts and love the candid and extremely relatable content material they share.

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Geotagging and Hashtags

I wish to preface this part by saying that the Instagram algorithm has modified rather a lot through the years, and there’s by no means been one proper strategy to develop your viewers on this platform.

In truth, I’d say that the majority huge accounts all have taken a distinct strategy, and that’s what’s cool concerning the platform.

Lately, Instagram launched “comparable” accounts which can be really useful when a consumer follows an account. This could be a useful gizmo for customers to search out your account — Later has a full article on it here.

Instagram Tips


Geotagging is nice for accounts which can be creating journey content material and for locating content material from around the globe.

You may as well get featured inside geotags and hashtags — so in case your picture is participating and ranks as one of many high posts, it has the potential to be seen by extra eyes.

In case your purpose is to seize a extra native viewers, then geotagging your metropolis or an area landmark may give you extra publicity to folks round you!


Hashtags was once tremendous essential, however I’ve personally by no means actually searched a hashtag…until it was for a model or a function account. So, it’s as much as you to trial and error and see what works for you!

My present technique with hashtags is utilizing them once I know one other account pulls from a hashtag to re-gram different folks’s photographs.

We’ll discuss getting featured subsequent!

When you’ve executed the analysis about which hashtags are finest to make use of for what you’re wanting to attain — you possibly can really save these hashtags on Later to make use of for future posts!

In case your Instagram is extra of a neighborhood web page or a model, utilizing your individual neighborhood or branded hashtag could be a enjoyable software to make use of! 

With my all-female excursions, we encourage our attendees and any ladies who’re touring solo or with their pals to share with the #TBAEscapes hashtag to get featured on the account.

This labored nice at first after we have been attempting to construct out the account, and now we principally share photographs from the excursions, which inspires the gals who come on the excursions to share through the hashtag for a function.

It’s a win-win because it generates neighborhood engagement and people which can be utilizing the hashtag really feel somewhat further love after we function their picture.

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IG Stories

Instagram Tales

I like utilizing Instagram Tales to share snippets of my day by day life in addition to push by means of new content material on that I share on my weblog.

Lots of people do real-time tales or a day within the life, however I usually solely publish every single day once I’m touring. Like I discussed earlier, I’m private! However I additionally like residing some points of my life offline.

I’ll say that anytime I publish on Tales with my day by day life or make it possible for I at all times have some Tales reside, they carry out very well.

Nevertheless, I’ve to create a piece/life steadiness, so I usually put my cellphone down when it’s residence and household time.

I additionally assume that Instagram Tales can attain a portion of your viewers that in-feed posts could not — with the algorithm, getting your posts to be seen each time can show troublesome. However sharing your posts to Tales may help acquire extra publicity when a publish may get hidden.

My group helps me design my Tales with my branding with templates that we created in Photoshop. It makes it pretty simple to share weblog content material and different fascinating content material in a cohesive method.

Later is nice for scheduling out Tales if you wish to plan forward!

It additionally lets you visually plan and storyboard your tales — which is tremendous useful in case you’re sharing a number of movies a few journey expertise, or in case you’re a web-based boutique and sharing new merchandise in your store.

Later additionally helps you resize your photographs for Instagram Tales, plus you possibly can select from totally different fonts and add textual content to stylize them.

Anytime I share a weblog publish on my web site, I’ll function it on my IG Tales with a “Swipe Up” to learn extra!

TIP: Notice that you just DO want 10,000 followers to get the “Swipe Up” function to simply direct folks to an outdoor web site. I like to recommend customizing the hyperlink in your bio with Linktree or Taplink to create a number of options in your viewers. Simply say “Hyperlink in Bio” when you have to direct somebody and be sure you hold that hyperlink up to date!

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Constructing an Viewers

Engagement is vital. I’m not a believer in going and following hundreds of accounts for the sake of it until you’re going to persistently interact with them.

No matter you do, don’t use bots! It’s NOT value it.

For those who actually wish to go into Instagram with the intention of making a enterprise out of it, deal with it like a enterprise.

It’s going to require you to take a position a whole lot of time and also you gained’t see a return on it for some time — that’s simply the truth of it. There’s no fast or simple method of constructing an viewers on-line.

Have interaction with Your Viewers

Observe the accounts you really love and have interaction with these accounts. Like them, touch upon them on a regular basis, put aside thirty minutes a day to strategically interact with the accounts you’re keen on in addition to your viewers.

For the people who find themselves following you — it doesn’t imply you have to comply with them again, however go onto their account, like their photographs, depart a real remark or two.

Clearly, upon getting a big following, it turns into troublesome to try this with everybody. A comply with for a comply with won’t be essentially the most real method to make use of Instagram and is often fairly a short-sided technique.

I nonetheless have followers who’ve been with me from the very starting as a result of I nurtured these relationships even when I didn’t comply with them again.

Reply to each remark in your posts! Put aside thirty minutes after you publish to interact with followers. I nonetheless do that to this present day.

Having a tough time replying and monitoring all feedback in your cellphone? Later’s desktop platform has a “Conversations” part that lets you by no means miss an Instagram remark once more!

You possibly can handle your Instagram feedback sooner and with extra ease.

The software lets you hold observe of all of your feedback and responses, which makes staying engaged along with your viewers simpler. I do know I can kind a lot faster on my laptop than my cellphone, so that is an superior software!

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How Do You Get “Seen”?

One in all my key methods for development is getting featured on Instagram accounts with bigger followings. From the get-go, perceive that you don’t want to adapt your fashion to be featured on different accounts nor change your model. However it’s useful to maintain a pulse on what others are doing and what’s working for them.

For instance, GoPro has been an incredible account that helped me develop by means of options, and now, I’m proud to be a long-time ambassador of their cameras.

Within the early days, touring with a GoPro was a no brainer and it made taking pictures content material whereas touring solo rather a lot simpler. Naturally, it made sense for me to share a whole lot of GoPro photographs and movies and use all of their branded hashtags.

Each time I get featured on their account it places me in entrance of their thousands and thousands of followers.

I’ve at all times aimed for travel-focused manufacturers as that’s what my account revolves round. However, there are such a lot of different manufacturers and accounts on the market that repost user-based content material and are nice to get different eyes in your work (MEANING: you don’t want to focus on GoPro).

Instagram Features

Whereas getting featured isn’t crucial — it has helped me a whole lot of the years. Nevertheless, I wouldn’t suggest altering your fashion or what you’re doing simply to get a function.

However why? Wouldn’t you need an account to share your content material as a lot as doable? What if I knew I had photographs they might love?

I fully get that rational, however listed below are my ideas on that: If I had a killer browsing picture of a wave—it would seamlessly mix into their feed. For the model, that’s nice. Will I acquire a ton of followers? In all probability not.

The kind of picture getting shared is tremendous vital in case you’re banking on development by means of account options.

In case your picture is tremendous just like their different content material or might be thought of “filler content material,” it possible gained’t generate as many clicks or follows from their fanbase.

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My most profitable photographs with GoPro have been pictures which can be on-brand with what I usually share, however are distinctive and interesting to the GoPro account. AKA, many of the pictures have me in them.

Getting myself featured (actually) has been one of the best methodology of getting extra folks to pop over to my account and comply with.

I nonetheless wish to stand out and be myself whereas utilizing their product.

A number of the huge accounts that I’ve been featured on which have been actually nice for me are:

My focus has at all times been on manufacturers I already use and love—as a result of I may create rather a lot with what I had, they usually love getting content material they will share.

Perceive When You’re Lacking the Mark

Lots of my content material is vivid, colourful, and pleasant. It’s not essentially excessive trend or as lifestyle-focused as some accounts.

So, I don’t ever count on to be featured on sure accounts.

For instance, I like Free Folks’s clothes (actually most of my wardrobe is from them) and I journey and have a whole lot of photographs of their clothes. Nevertheless, my picture fashion doesn’t actually mesh with what they usually share—that means I don’t shoot content material that matches their feed.

And that’s okay! I genuinely like and am happy with what I publish, and that’s what issues most to me.

That goes again to not altering your fashion only for a function.

One extra tip is that you just don’t need to at all times publish content material that you just assume would work effectively as a function on one other account.

If I ever did shoot content material that had a powerful “Free Folks” vibe that match their IG fashion however didn’t actually mesh with my Instagram feed, I would attain out to them instantly through DM or electronic mail to share the photographs and see in the event that they is likely to be thinking about utilizing them.

It’s value a shot!

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Tip: Don’t Mass Message Instagram Accounts

Now that I’m the place I’m, I get DMs all. the. time. requesting me to function their account. You recognize these “try my account” or “I simply began a journey weblog and I’d love so that you can test it out and provides me a comply with” kind messages.

Please don’t do that — it comes off as a one-sided ask and a generic spam message as a result of it’s not custom-made in any respect. There may be nothing improper with reaching out with real reward or a private remark adopted by a small introduction to what you do. However don’t be egocentric.

The identical goes for manufacturers!

Manufacturers get so many Instagram messages and feedback per day about options, collaborations, and so on. Not solely are these exhausting to maintain observe of, however for the individual behind the display or laptop—this isn’t useful!

For those who’re going to strategy a model, do it personally and professionally.

Do Your Analysis

  • Spell their title appropriately (it’s the least you are able to do)
  • Clarify why you’re keen on the model and what they imply to you
  • Share some examples of what you do and the photographs you’ve shared
  • You possibly can say one thing alongside the strains of, “I’m such an enormous fan of your model/merchandise and I take advantage of it on a regular basis/take it in all places I’m going. I’m at all times completely happy to share my love for my favourite manufacturers. I’d like to ship you among the content material I’ve created utilizing your product that I feel your viewers would love and that might profit your feed. Be happy to share!” (ship picture examples) Personalize this to the model — don’t simply copy and paste!

Going that step above and past is absolutely significant and advertising and marketing and PR contacts are on the lookout for that sort of factor — it makes their job simpler in case you give them what they’re on the lookout for.

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Adapting to the setting is vital. What labored eight years in the past once I signed up for Instagram just isn’t what works finest at this time.

At all times consider what your viewers likes. Nothing is endlessly and I feel having that understanding will assist you to in the long term.

All the things evolves in social media and that’s one thing to remember. Don’t get snug with what works in the future and count on that to maintain working endlessly, you’ve bought to adapt.

Suppose again to what most modifying types regarded like on Instagram again when it was first beginning out in comparison with now. YIKES!

It’s all about adapting!

It’s vital to do not forget that there isn’t any secret sauce for mastering Instagram.

The algorithm is at all times altering so there’s by no means a strategy to crack it—however you possibly can be sure that you’re placing your finest foot ahead and work exhausting to construct an engaged viewers.

And there you might have it! These are my ideas for rising your Instagram following. Do you might have any ideas that give you the results you want? I’d love to listen to them within the feedback under!

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This publish was written in partnership with Later. As at all times, ideas and opinions expressed listed below are totally my very own and primarily based alone experiences.

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