Social Media

21-Day Plan to Grow Your Instagram Following

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The following is an excerpt from The Ultimate Guide to Instagram for Business, 2nd Edition by Kim Walsh Phillips, on sale now.

When it comes to growing your Instagram following, there is a lot of contradictory advice out there. I’ve tested what works and what doesn’t and came up with a 21-Day Blueprint that will help you increase your following with right-fit prospects who are ready to buy from you.

Follow this plan to grow your Instagram following

Day 1

  • Research 20 brands in your niche and write down the hashtags they use.
  • Get a good night’s sleep; you have an empire to build.

Day 2

  • Develop a brand board with the look and design elements you want on your page.
  • Create your “Commenting Squad.” This is a group of people you organize made up of friends, peers, employees, or anyone else who can be dependable to get the job done. When one of you posts something, you each commit to comment and like one another’s postings to add more street cred and start the social algorithms rolling.
  • Take a nap. Because you can.

Day 3

  • Write your posts for the month.
  • Give yourself a hand massage. Your digits are likely tired.

Day 4

  • Design your posts for the month using the Word Swag app and record your reels.
  • Buy an artist’s smock because you are now officially a “creative type.”

The Ultimate Guide to Instagram for Business, available now at Entrepreneur Bookstore | Amazon | Barnes and Noble

Day 5

  • Post your first post, writing a good description and using the hashtags you found were popular in your niche. Prevent yourself from cursing out your phone by typing up the description in your Notes app on your desktop and then pasting it in on your phone.
  • Ask your Commenting Squad to like and comment on your post.
  • Like the posts of 10 followers of other Instagram users in your niche.
  • Do a little happy dance. You are on your way to more followers.

Day 6

  • Post the second post, again writing a good description and using hashtags popular in your niche.
  • Like the posts of 10 followers of other users in your niche.
  • Keep on boogying.

Day 7

  • Continue to post each day.
  • Tap your right hand gently on your left shoulder because you deserve a pat on the back.

Day 8

  • Post and add an emoji to your comment.
  • Like 10 posts by other people’s followers in your niche, and comment with emojis.
  • Pretend not to be super excited that you are getting more followers, but secretly do a little jig when no one is looking.

Related: Instagram Is Reportedly Rolling Out A Text-Based App to Compete With Twitter

Day 9

  • Post and add emojis to your comment.
  • Like 10 posts by other people’s followers in your niche, and comment with emojis. Pick your best-performing post so far and promote it.
  • Dream of having an emoji created in your honor someday because of your Instagram awesomeness.

Click image to order

Day 10

  • Post and add emojis to your comment.
  • Pick another best-performing post so far and promote it.
  • Pour out a little mineral water on the sidewalk for the dollars you will sacrifice in the name of growing your Instagram following.

Day 11

  • Post and add emojis to your comment.
  • Like 10 posts by other people’s followers in your niche, and comment with emojis.
  • Resist the urge to add emojis to every text and email you write for the rest of the day.

Day 12

  • Do some additional research on hashtags, and test adding some new ones to the mix. Post and add the new hashtags to the post description.
  • Ask your Commenting Squad to like and comment on your most recent post.
  • Like 10 posts by other people’s followers in your niche, and comment with emojis.
  • Start making a hashtag symbol in the air when others high-five you. After all, you’ve got to be in it to win it and might as well start a trend.

Related: 8 Expert Tips for Optimizing Your Professional Instagram Profile

Day 13

  • Test running two posts in one day to see what happens to engagement.
  • Like 10 other accounts and comment with emojis.
  • If Doublemint gum is still a thing, chew it in honor of doubling up your efforts.

Day 14

  • Analyze the double posts to see if you should continue or stop. Post accordingly.
  • Analyze the results so far of your promoted posts and promote another post.
  • Congratulate yourself on how cool you are and how well this is going.

Day 15

  • Continue your daily posts and likes as you have been doing.
  • Check out some of the leading Instagram pages in your industry to see which of their posts are performing best. Do not get jealous. This is research, not a comparison game.
  • Treat yourself to the beverage of your choice. You’ve made it to more than two-thirds of the way through the blueprint! Cheers!

Day 16

  • Continue your daily posts and likes.
  • Write a few new posts based on what you have learned from watching other accounts.
  • Daydream about being interviewed by Entrepreneur magazine thanks to your Instagram genius.

Day 17

  • Continue your daily posts and likes.
  • Design those new posts using the app Word Swag.
  • Wear your artist’s smock out to pick up an extra-customized obscure coffee drink. Resist the urge to order it on your mobile app so you don’t have to say all the bizarre ingredients out loud. You’ve earned this moment. Savor it publicly.

The Ultimate Guide to Instagram, available now at Entrepreneur Bookstore | Amazon | Barnes and Noble

Day 18

  • Post one of your new posts.
  • Check on the progress of your promoted posts. Are you getting followers and/or more engagement? If yes, congrats and keep going! If no, try “Allow Instagram to Pick the Audience for You” feature on the post and see if your results improve.
  • Pour a little more mineral water on the sidewalk.

Day 19

  • Post another new post.
  • Like 10 other people’s posts.
  • Create your own touchdown dance when you check your follower numbers. You are a champion.

Day 20

  • Post another new post.
  • Like 10 other people’s posts.
  • Schedule the stylist for your first on-air interview about your social media success that someday will surely happen.

Day 21

Post another new post.
Like 10 other people’s posts.
Toast your success. You did good.

Congratulations: You completed the 21-Day Blueprint! Run a post with #21Days-Done #InstagramGuide, and you can win one of 100 prizes!

For more success strategies, buy The Ultimate Guide to Instagram for Business, 2nd Edition, available now.

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