Instagram follower count stuck? 10 ways to jumpstart your following

Jumpstart your following

It can be discouraging to see your Instagram follower count plateau and stop growing. As a creator, you put a lot of work and love into your content, so you want as many people as possible to see it! 

But don’t worry. There are plenty of strategies that can get your account growing again. Whether you have 10,000 followers or 100,000 followers, it all comes down to getting new eyes on your content, and there are plenty of ways to do that. 

Here are a few of the best strategies to start gaining followers again and build a strong, connected community.

1. Engage and network

networking

If your Instagram follower count has stopped growing, an effective solution is to engage and interact with other people on the platform - both the followers you already have and the wider community. 

Make it an ongoing practice to reply to all your comments and DMs, and to comment on other peoples’ content — especially other creators whose niche and audience aligns with your own. 

If you make your Instagram presence as interactive and conversational as possible, potential followers will see it as a space for fun and connection. That makes them much more likely to stick around. 

2. Host a giveaway

This is one of the most direct ways to gain new followers — you literally give them something for following you! Simply choose a great prize, then advertise it on your account along with the steps to enter. 

Typically, creators request that entrants follow them, then take additional steps like tagging a friend in the comments and sharing the post to their Story. 

Giveaways also work great as a collab. Team up with one or more like-minded creators, and each contribute one prize. Then share the giveaway on all your accounts, and watch as you gain followers from each others’ audience! 

3. Collaborate and partner

Speaking of collabs, there’s a whole other world of options beyond giveaways. Teaming up with other creators is a win-win, allowing you both to break past a plateau and grow your following.

Plus, creating content together is fun, creative, and a source of mutual inspiration!

Try holding ‘takeovers,’ where you swap accounts with another creator for one day and share content to their feed or Stories. You can also collaborate on posts or Stories together, for example by conceptualizing, shooting, and starring in a mini fashion shoot. 

4. Show brands some love

Brand love

You don’t need official partnerships to engage with brands on Instagram. Try tagging relevant brands in your images, especially if their products are actually pictured. You can also use relevant branded hashtags to improve your chances of getting reposted. 

You can even make tutorials or demo videos showing off products you love, such as makeup, art supplies, or kitchen tools. Be sure to tag the brand — you’re basically giving them free marketing, so you want to get on their radar! 

Brands notice when Instagram users show love for their products, and often comment on or re-share their content. That means an entirely new audience of people will see your new post — some of whom will hopefully stick around as followers! 

Did you know 85% of influencer marketers would pay a premium for creators with Instagram insurance?    

5. Reassess your niche

If your Instagram followers have plateaued, that might be a sign that potential followers are confused, and don’t understand what you’re offering. 

Take some time to step back and get crystal-clear about why you’re on Instagram. Do you truly understand your niche and audience? If so, is that clearly reflected on your profile? Get even more tips on finding your niche in our recent guide

6. Create Reels content

reels

Did you know Reels get 22% more engagement than regular Instagram videos? 

Right now, Instagram is heavily promoting this format. The IG algorithm pushes more Reels into users’ feeds, and there’s even a dedicated Reels-only explore page. 

If you want more eyes on your content, this is a sure-fire way to get it. 

Originally, Reels were conceptualized as a way to compete with TikTok. But whether or not you’re on that platform, there’s no denying that short-form video is a pretty big deal. Why not embrace it? 

You might be interested in: 8 Instagram Reels hacks to help grow your account

7. Level-up your captions

  • Be authentic and genuine 
  • End with a CTA
  • Use hashtags strategically

Instagram is a visual platform, but words matter here, too. Captions are your place to share authentically with potential followers, use your own unique voice, and encourage viewers to follow you. 

Don’t be afraid to flex that writing muscle — there’s evidence that long, genuine captions get you better engagement. You should also end every caption with a call-to-action, like ‘follow me’ or ‘learn more at the link in my bio,’ and use hashtags strategically to get even more views on your post. 

8. Learn from your Insights 

Instagram analytics

If you want your content to do better in the future, try looking at what’s worked in the past. 

Delve into your Instagram Insights and examine your best-performing content. What patterns do you see in post content, format, caption, time posted, and more? 

You can also look into your audience better, seeing what geographical areas and demographic groups your followers fall into. 

All this knowledge will help you create content that’s even better targeted to the people who love your work. 

9. Follow the rules

This might sound like common sense — but pay attention to Instagram’s Community Guidelines! If you don’t play by the rules, you risk getting shadowbanned, or even having your account deleted entirely!  

While the community guidelines are always changing, the basics are pretty simple. Nudity and images of harmful or illegal activity aren’t allowed. Spam-like behavior and stealing others’ content without credit isn’t cool, either. 

This isn’t an area where you want to take chances. Few things are going to freeze your follower count like getting pushed down by the algorithm or banned from Instagram entirely!

10. Be consistent 

Graph showing consistency

Finally, don’t give up! It’s okay to feel frustrated when your Instagram followers plateau and your growth feels stuck. But this isn’t the time to give up, it’s the time to push through even harder. 

Succeeding as an Instagram creator is all about making incredible content, then pushing it out consistently. That will help you break through a plateau and also help you realize all your other Instagram goals, from getting brand partnerships to earning an income. 

Building a sustainable business

Notch dashboard

Whether your following has plateaued or if it’s growing fast, your Instagram account is always at risk of being hacked. 

Even if you’re all set up with a strong password and 2-factor authentication, hackers can take down the community you’ve worked so hard to build in a matter of seconds, and getting your account back is no easy matter. 

That’s why you need to protect your Instagram account with insurance, just like any other entrepreneur would protect their assets. 

We’re Notch, the very first Instagram insurance. 

Find out how to protect your Instagram account and build a sustainable Instagram business today. 

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