The struggle to grow organically on social media is something that many businesses have faced in recent years. It has become progressively harder to grow online without a budget, especially on Facebook where little or no organic growth takes place now.
However, businesses on Instagram have seen an increase in growth over the past few years due to changes in the social media platform. It has become a site of meaningful engagement and quality content.
Thankfully, this has enabled the ability to grow without needing a budget or the time commitment to do so.
It is the favourable site for many businesses wanting to make a large impact, and to network with potential or current customers and clients.
Knowing our fair share about Instagram, we decided to put together our top 5 strategies to help you organically grow on Instagram!
1. Engage with Relevant Influencers in your Sector
People forget that it is essential to be social on social media in order to benefit your business. This is the most effective way to grow your following organically.
The first step is to find other businesses in your sector, this can be on a local, national or global level. Join in with conversations where your potential customers are already engaging in order to grow an engaged following yourself.
Furthermore, it’s always good to be aware of your competition so that you can evaluate how you can improve your business.
You need to make a point of liking, commenting and following in order to build relationships and network with users. Take what you would do offline to network, and bring it online!
2. Find Complementary Businesses
Similar to the previous strategy, this is about finding accounts where your potential customers are engaging already. However, the accounts you engage with do not need to be in the same sector as you. This is beneficial because you can join in with an already engaged audience and there will be no competition.
For example, if you are a business offering personal training, by finding another local business which is focused on healthy eating, this could open you up to a new set of followers that are relevant to your business but are not offering the same service.
This also creates the opportunity to collaborate and build a relationship, whilst reaching new followers at the same time. In doing this you will only continue to grow and learn more from each other!
3. Follow Hashtags
This is arguably one of the simpler strategies.
If you are already doing strategies 1 and 2, then you might be seeing frequently used hashtags by other businesses and potential customers. It is important to follow the most relevant hashtags to your business in order to engage and network more easily through it.
For example, we follow hashtags #BrightonBusiness and #SocialMediaAgency because they are relevant to us and have a high level of performance for engagement.
As a result of following hashtags that other businesses are using and engaging with, this will make your business more discoverable. From there you can follow those accounts with the aim that they will follow you back. Furthermore, following hashtags means you will see different content on your feed which keeps it interesting!
Tip: Use Sprout Social for monthly hashtag reports.
4. $1.80 Strategy (2 cents)
Admittedly our favourite strategy… the $1.80 strategy! Created by marketing guru Gary Vaynerchuk.
The idea is that you find the 10 most relevant hashtags in your sector, search those hashtags and leave your “2 cents” (i.e. your opinion) on the nine top posts.
However, the engagement needs to be meaningful and relevant because if other people are searching these hashtags, they will see your comment and it will need to be engaging in order for them to actively want to engage with you.
Tip: Integrate social into your everyday life. Put aside 30 minutes a day, whether that is on your walk to work or whilst sat on the loo (thank you Callum for that one), and engaging online won’t feel like it’s work.
5. Publish Quality Content, Consistently
Last but not least, the final strategy.
Posting online will not have a positive effect on your business if isn’t adding value to people’s lives. You can’t expect to grow by publishing half-hearted content and in an irregular manner.
If you can, post at least once or twice a day, on either your main feed or the stories feature! High quality content will attract followers and encourage them to engage (especially if you are using hashtags and the $1.80 strategy!).
Consistency is key. This will show you are interested in and passionate about what you are doing. We like to think that algorithms will always favour content that is engaging and has quality conversation taking place.
Tip: Create a solid social media content strategy. This will guide you in the correct direction for what content to post and how it will benefit your business.
There you have it, 5 easy strategies to try! Let us know how you get on.
You can listen to Kerry and Callum discuss the strategies in more depth on our Social Media Simplified podcast, episode #24.
If you are interested in bespoke social media strategy training for yourself or your business, contact Kerry for more information.
We also run an Instagram Masterclass! During this course we will help you become confident with all the features, set objectives, plan your strategy and get creative with your business marketing.