Creating a Viral Instagram Account
Lesson 1: Create an Account
(There’s video version of this lesson, if you’d prefer that instead!) – https://youtu.be/EWbZ0q8FZPg
Your account’s bio is the first thing a visitor sees, so you have to work hard on making it count.
Let’s dive in! In the bio, we have 5 main components:
2. Bio, which is a short description of the account
Your name is the first text that your page visitors see. If you’re running a personal account, it makes sense to write your name there. If you are running a brand or business account, try to use keywords related to your company that would attract potential customers.
For example, I have my personal brand @gettinggrowth, but I don’t use my name “Johannes Kanter” in the name field. Instead I have “Entrepreneurship & Inspiration” written there as relevant keywords advertising my skills.
This is because my ideal follower is not searching for content under my name. Keywords like “entrepreneurship” and “inspiration” are more appealing to their personal interests. Whenever someone is searching for these keywords, my account is more likely to be discovered than if I were to use my name as the account title.
Your bio is the main way to really grab the visitor’s attention. Since people’s attention spans online are short, you need to make the bio stand out so that it is memorable. Some brands, like Nike, are a perfect example of simple attractiveness. However, if you’re not yet well-known by followers, try to keep the focus of your bio on one certain theme or trend. Emojis can also be an appropriate addition if they are relevant to your brand’s product. See above for some examples of emoji use in account marketing.
Your avatar, like your name, is shown in the search results. It’s important to choose an attractive avatar so that people are more likely to click on your account and browse through your content. If they see photos and videos that interest them, they will spend more time on your Instagram account page.
Whether you’re building a business account or personal account, a great avatar image is essential. Use well-lit pictures and make them look professional. For businesses and brands you should go with the brand logo or a picture of your product. If you are making a personal account, most users upload a profile picture of themselves. Make sure to spend time deciding on the perfect Instagram account avatar, as it can make a huge difference in attracting followers.
Providing your website link in the bio is an extremely important part of your Instagram page. This is how you get visitors to see your landing page and product details.
If you’ve switched to a business account, you are able to view statistical data on link clicks as well. This is useful when you switch the link once in a while and add different call-to-actions. Try to avoid long webform links to make your account look more professional.
Add value with the link you use. Don’t merely drive traffic to your home page. It’s better to get visitors to a specific landing page where you can provide a more optimal entry experience.You may also offer a free product or service to the customer, ideally in exchange for their email address which can be used for marketing purposes. The free giveaway can be anything, but make sure it is relevant and provides value to the potential customer.
Story highlights are important to give a quick overview of your account and brand. Use your best stories or events as the company highlights. You can even hold new events specifically for these highlights to give potential followers a great idea of what your brand is all about.
This concludes the first lesson. Keep reading for more tips on creating a viral Instagram for 2019 and the next decade to come.
Lesson 2: Getting Instagram Followers
After you have optimized your brand or personal Instagram account, it’s time to start attracting some followers.
If you read my blog post about becoming famous on Instagram, then you probably have some idea about these tips. Because you signed up for this exclusive email course, I plan on providing additional tips and ideas to get even more Instagram followers.
Know Your Competitors
-Seek out your competitors and see who is following them. From that list, follow some people who seem like they may be interest in your brand. Interact with some posts and leave a thoughtful comment on topics that are also relevant to your Instagram service. Often times competitors are happy to re-follow your account and help the community of Instagram brands
-Turn on post notifications on competitor accounts so you know when they publish new content. When that happens, you can make first comments to get brand exposure. Leave an interesting comment to bring in real customers. A good portion of them will follow you.
-Search content by relevant hashtags and find accounts that have less than 1,000 followers. These accounts are often looking to build their followers too, and are happy to follow your account.
That is all for Lesson 2! Use these Instagram skills to attract millions of followers to you company brand account.
Lesson 3: Followers Vs Following
You can follow up to 7,500 accounts, you should not necessarily try to reach. Following too many accounts without them following you back makes you appear spammy and desperate for followers. Ideally, you should always try to have at least twice as many followers as people you are following. People are more likely to follow with this ratio because they know you are a credible brand of product.
Make sure to keep track of who is following you and who is not. Not everyone is active on Instagram 24/7, so leave some time for them to respond. Remember, don’t just follow the account and leave, spend some time interacting with the account content so they are more likely to do the same.
Unfortunately, you cannot check within Instagram to see if someone is following you back or not. There are several apps that provide this service. Here is one for Android, and one for iOS. These are only two of the many available options, but be sure to post on my blog if you find more good Instagram tools.
A good ratio of “follow-backs” from other accounts is around 25% to 33%. If you follow 20 people and only 1 of them follows you back, you may be lacking in brand content or account credibility.
That is all for Lesson 3. Stay tuned as we go over more Instagram strategies that will make your account go viral!
Lesson 4: Hashtags
This lesson could be one of the most important lessons, so pay close attention. If you prefer video over text, then be sure to watch this video for the recorded lesson: https://youtu.be/uns-EJc0jm8
Why do we use hashtags on social media platforms? It’s quite simple: Hashtags are a way to describe your content and connect it with similar organic material. This helps Instagram sort your brand’s product and show it to the ideal audience.
What Hashtags Should I Use?
The truth is there is no definite strategy for using hashtags. You must keep adding and changing these keywords to see what works for your brand and product.
Keep these domains in mind when you are brainstorming for hashtag ideas:
1. Specific / Relevant
Make sure that the hashtags are relevant to your content. This is important, because your content may be grouped with irrelevant material if hashtagged incorrectly. For example, if you are selling bird cages and have “#bestdogfood” captioned under a picture of your best selling cage, many dog food buyers may be misled to your company’s site. A better hashtag to use would be “#bestbirdcage” to bring in bird owners around the world.
You obviously want to get featured in the “Explore” section on Instagram. You can hit this front page Instagram location by using the proper hashtags on your company material.
Okay, so it’s Valentine’s day and you want to use all sorts of “love” related hashtags on your media. That’s fine, but you must take into account that very popular hashtags like #life and #love are extremely overused and crowded. Even if you have the best content on the internet, it is hard to get featured by using these broad hashtag keywords(unless you’re Rihanna).
Instead, use more specific hashtags. This obviously depends on your account size, but I would go for 50k – 100k post shares initially. When you’re at 1,000 followers, you should try to find hashtags that reach into millions, and when you’re over 10,000 followers, try to find hashtags that have around 10 million post shares.
I wouldn’t cut out super popular hashtags all together. Sometimes you might get lucky and end up getting some attention from these popular tags. This is a great way to make viral content. Again, adjust these strategies as needed because the Instagram marketing industry is always changing.
3. Trending Hashtags
Using hashtags that are trending is a great way to “ride the tide.” This can be a powerful tactic if you tag something that has grown in popularity rapidly. Think of it this way: you’ve been using “#soontobetrendinghashtag” or “#alreadytrendinghashtag” a long time and Instagram has featured you in the explore many times. Now, if that hashtag starts to take off, Instagram sees a lot of new related content. Since you were consistent with the tag before the trend explode, Instagram will keep your content featured in the explore section.
Also, check out Instagram weekly and pay attention to weekend hashtag challenges. It is a great place to get new Instagram marketing ideas and meet people in your brand’s industry. http://blog.instagram.com/
How Many Hashtags?
The short answer is 30. That’s the maximum amount allowed by Instagram on a post. As long as you find relevant hashtags to your media content, I strongly suggest using all 30 to get maximum exposure.
Helpful Hashtag Tools:
Getting featured with less popular hashtags is better than using popular hashtags and not getting featured
Use relevant hashtags for more exposure
Take advantage of trending hashtags
Try to use all 30 hashtags
That’s all regarding hashtags. If you already use these hashtag strategies, you are among the top 1% of Instagram marketers. Congratulations!
Stay posted to learn more about Instagram marketing.
Lesson 5: Automation
Did you know that you can use specially-designed software to manage your likes, comments, and follows on your Instagram account? Unfortunately, Instagram has recently been working to shut down these services. On July 31, 2018 the old Instagram Platform API closed the comment, like, and relationship management functionality on their program. Most of these engagement tools are still not used as extensively as before.
Is this the end of automated engagement services?
Yes and no. I see more people hiring account managers to do the heavy lifting, and third party tools are available to provide customer data metrics. Additionally, some automation tools are available, and more are coming out in the industry.
If you want to test out an automation tool then I would suggest Combin. It’s a free software that you can download to your Windows or Mac laptop, and with the paid plan you can really scale things up.
It’s important to note that automating the follow/unfollow functions can hurt your engagement in the long run. Let’s say you follow 100 accounts. Out of these 100, maybe 30 will follow you back. Out of these 30, around 20 will follow you because you followed them, but not because they think your content is amazing. The remaining 10 followers probably followed you because they liked your content, and a few of them will be engaged potential customers.
So what’s the big deal?
With that scenario you’ll end up with a lot followers who aren’t engaging with your content, which gives Instagram signals that your content simply isn’t quality material. This will make it less likely for your content to be featured on Instagram.
You can also partner up with various companies, like coffee shops, pizza parlors, or game streamers where people are incentivised to like and follow certain accounts in exchange for giveaway prizes. That network can be used to increase your engagement and followers. However, keep in mind that these people will not be targeted and engaged users, just another means of content exposure. This strategy is inexpensive and can help boost the amount of views that your company receives.
Is this strategy secure?
No login details are required for your account, which makes it quite difficult for Instagram to take down or ban your material.
If these Instagram marketing techniques sound appealing to you, feel free to send me an email for more networking opportunities.
Lesson 6: Engagement Groups
Today I’m going to give you one of my favorite growth hacks on Instagram – participating in engagement groups.
Video of this lesson: https://youtu.be/OrULOd2P_pw
So, What are Engagement Groups?
Engagement groups are group conversations within Instagram and other platforms (there are several on Telegram app). The idea is that all the participants in the group will engage (like and/or comment) with each other’s posts. This can happen asynchronously or on specific times of the day.
Both options are good, as you get real people commenting and liking your posts. For massive growth, however, it is important to target mass exposure opportunities. It’s important to get a lot of engagement in the first hour after you post, because this indicates to Instagram that your content is quality material. You are then much more likely to be featured on Instagram’s explore section.
So this makes “good posting times” irrelevant. You should post during times that these engagement groups start the engagement, or when they start “a round” as they call it.
A round usually starts 30 minutes before the actual engagement time. This is the time where everybody who wants to participate in the round inputs their usernames into the conversation.
After 30 minutes, username dropping will be closed and a group administrator or chatbot will compile a list of all the users who wanted to participate.
All participants receive this compiled list, and are then able to start engagement. You can engage manually (which I recommend in the beginning) or you can set up a bot (e.g. FollowLiker is good for that).
After engaging with all the posts, you usually have to report that you’re finished in the group engagement chat.
How Can I Get Engagement?
Since they are not heavily promoted, you should simply direct message me or any other social media figure on Instagram to ask about attendance. Some of these engagement groups are free while others require an initial fee.
You can also use Google to find engagement groups. I recommend starting with Telegram groups.
Here’s a list of all the groups I would recommend checking out: https://gettinggrowth.com/instagram-engagement-gro…
Getting In the Group
Now, the concept of engagement groups has been around since late 2016. Today, Instagram doesn’t consider activity from engagement groups as valuable as it once was. I would also argue that like-based groups aren’t as useful anymore. Really, engagement groups are an easy way to get some initial followers. If you really want to grow your account, I suggest consulting with me regarding the automated engagement strategy as mentioned previously.
If you prefer to use manual, organic methods, hear me out. We have been testing various Instagram accounts and this is what’s working effectively in 2019.
Message Followers Directly
Since these people already follow you, your message will end up nicely in their inbox. If you also like and comment on their recent content, you will increase your chances of getting a reply.
Instagram looks at a few different factors when ranking your content. If you look at your feed, you’ll see posts from accounts that you frequently like and interact with.
By simply exchanging a few niceties with your followers over DM, you can increase the likelihood of them seeing your posts in their feed. Imagine if half of your followers saw your content? Again, this would indicate to Instagram that your brand material is quality and suited for the explore page material.
Building relationships with your followers and customer base is an invaluable tool in growing your Instagram brand’s popularity.