Growth Hacking Your Instagram in 2 Key Steps

 In Growth Hacking, Uncategorized

As engagement soars, and users top 1 billion, the marketing opportunities on Instagram beg your attention, and budget.

BUT, just because there’s countless people on Instagram, it doesn’t mean you have immediate access to all them, or that they give a shit about your product.

You must build an audience, engage them, and then sell your product to the audience.

Sounds simple enough, right?

Well, Instagram has really put a clamp down on Instagram profiles for business. It’s your job to create an experience that outdoes all your competitors, so you can actually capture this huge opportunity.

So how do we do it?

Here’s the most proven methods we’ve used to grow accounts to 100K+ followers.

How to Create a Huge, Highly-Engaged Following

There are several ways to do this, but choose wisely.

Getting More Instagram Followers


You can follow a few hundred accounts per day, and unfollow all those who don’t follow you back. This method has great benefits because it’s targeted on a one-to-one basis. You can personally verify each follower’s relevance before engaging with them.

However, this can take hours each day.

God forbid you want to give them all likes & comments? It’s simply too much work. The reality is, if you’re going to grow your following fully manual, it’ll just take months and years to hit 10K followers and beyond.



Services like ours, Vistagress, can automate all your follow, unfollow and like activity. That way, you can follow 400+ followers per day, and automatically unfollow all those who don’t follow back. This results in 20-70 new followers per day, depending on whether you have high quality, original content. All, while keeping your follow/follower ratio very good.

You essentially submit your competitor’s usernames, and we’ll have our service follow their followers, then grab their attention by liking their posts. The competitor’s followers will get several notifications from your profile, come back and visit your profile and follow back.


Buy Followers

This option is to essentially buy a block of fake accounts to gain vanity metrics. You’ll get the followers on your profile, but the users will not engage with your content. They’ll also appear fake, because they’ll follow many more users than their own following. Fake accounts typically follow 3,500+, but only have ~300 followers.

There’s not a clear use case for buying followers. Because, if you have 10,000 followers but only get 75 likes/picture, it’s obvious your followers are fake, or your content is simply uninteresting. This is worse than having 2K followers and getting 100 likes, in my opinion.



Creating Engagement

This is a bit more tricky, but it can be done effectively if you follow some basic rules.


Instagram Automation

Automating “like” activity, and in some cases, commenting from your profile can dramatically improve your engagement. If you have Vistagress running on your profile, your account will “like” hundreds of your target customer’s pictures, and each user will get a notification from your profile, and come back to visit your account.

Engagement Groups / Comment Pods

These are group chats that everyone agrees to like or comment on your latest post, assuming you return the favor. While these are real users and real engagement, the followers typically aren’t genuinely interested in your account.

So, we don’t personally use engagement groups. However, they’re available to you if you’re interested. You can Google them, “top Instagram engagement comment pods” or simply invite all your friends with large accounts into a chat and start doing “engagement rounds”.

Engagement groups do have one key benefit that I should mention though. If you’re in an engagement group with users that have 20K+ followers, when they engage with/comment on your content, it can help boost you to “discover” on Instagram, and get a ton of free reach.


Shout Outs

These are still the best method for REAL engagement, in my opinion. When an influencer gives your account a shout out, only the truly interested people will go follow your account. That means no vanity likes, no pity likes. Only people who saw your account, became interested, and followed/engaged. Ever notice how @fuckjerry and @beigecardigan are always shouting each other out?

Shout outs are free if you have accounts of the same caliber share your content.

Say you have 10K followers, you can DM an account with 12K and similar engagement, and ask them to do a post-for-post.

If you want to get shout-outs from larger accounts with say, 100K, you’ll need to pay $50-$1,000 per post, depending on how strong the target account’s engagement is.


A Few Last Remarks

While Instagram is going to push their ads on your profile aggressively, we don’t recommend ever doing ads unless you plan to for life. Once your account has run ads, it’s become a “business” account on the Instagram side. This means, lower engagement, more marketing content from Instagram to your inbox, and other shitty things.

On that note, we also don’t recommend switching your profile to “business” under any circumstance. Instagram will push this hard on your account, but ultimately it’s so they can sell you ads.

Keep Your Account Real, Healthy and Interesting

The real key to a strong account is great content, posted regularly. This concept is still the best way to grow your account so you can start monetizing your followers.

Automation helps amplify the effect of good content, but it isn’t the only aspect you need.

Hope your accounts grow big and we all get rich!

Thanks for reading, Jack

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