how to grow your instagram: from 15 instagram gangstas

Whether you're just getting started on Instagram or you're just getting serious about growing your account, it can be a struggle.  There are so many 'get famous quick' available... this isn't that.  I'm not going to suggest #likeforlike, #followforfollow or any automated instagram bots that will promise 100 followers overnight.  Fuck that.  These strategies come from real instagram ganstas from The Gram Gang.  These ladies are keeping it real and sharing what has helped them build community, cultivate a following, and build an authentic account.  


grow your instagram like a boss


color theory

My engagement went waaay up when I started sticking to a color scheme/theme! I think people like looking at feeds that stick to a certain aesthetic :) @coleenbuckley

I started getting serious about eight weeks ago. I was averaging about 45 likes with MAYBE 650 followers. I have almost 1600 now and averaging about 135-ish likes with lots of comments. I've started creating a more consistent color scheme. My past ones were either bursts of brights, bursts of moody colors, or burst of pastels. I've found a theme that works for me now. I also ask questions to my followers because I genuinely want to get to know them. I may run a business page, but I am a person and love interacting with them. Also, consistency is a main factor. I usually post 1-2 images a day, and that's going well so far!  @sarahbcalligraphy



I'm just posting about stuff I love (vids, pics + stories). I engage with my followers or people who just post a comment. I always like at least one pic on someone's feed if they liked mine. But I am not lazy about it...meaning I don't just like their first pic. I go through their feed and really choose one that I'm drawn too. I sometimes look through hashtags I like and like / comment on photos or vids I love. I get lots of surfers, tattoo artists, rock and country singers, gardeners, restaurants and girls from LA writing blogs who follow me. My feed is real + I don't overthink it, plan it or try to make it "perfect". @island_time_studios

Be really interactive-- respond to comments with questions and tag others handles to make sure they see it. Go on liking and commenting sprees not only for followers you want to attract, but also to show appreciation to and encourage interaction with followers you already have! @thepearlcartel

Interact and be genuine . I invest time in responding to those who comment on my posts and also going to they're page and showing some love ! Like others photos and comments and follow ! It takes time but it does pay off ! I have grown my audience by 1,000 in three months doing this . And I love it because they are authentic followers that want to be there ! @gofrenchyourself


all about #community

Partner with another business and run an Instagram contest to share your audiences :) @taylrn

Connecting and engaging with both peers and your tribe. Asking pertinent questions and not only responding to answers but creating a real discussion in the comments. Collaborating with others in related niches. @printables_and_crafts

Interact! Go out and like other people's photos, comment on others' posts. And ALWAYS respond to those who comment on your posts @knitabitofwhimsy

Make sure you get paired with the right grouping. It's hard to get ungrouped. Like only your target audience pics. And follow those too. @jennyscrayons


timing matters

Find a posting time that works for where your audience is at peak. I've learned that I get best engagement when I post at 3am pst because that's when a lot of my followers wake up (6am est). A lot of people focus on their own time zone but make sure to learn where your followers are from! @pineandable


content + hashtags

The best piece of advice I've ever had is to treat your Instagram like a mini-blog! I learnt this from the wonderful Zie Campbell (

There's lots of interacting comments but that's really helped me a great deal. Also the use of hashtags consistent with your brand and not using any random hashtag to get attention. Responding to comments, following back as well. @marleeashfinear

I started growing my following exponentially when I started getting real + raw. I think it's important to be relatable instead of portraying a picture-perfect life. @merrissa

Offer valuable content that is focused on what your people are struggling with and want help to focus on. IG is about showing others what you have to offer them. Are you available to connect and engage with them. To sum up in one sentence... It's not about you, it's about what you can do for your followers to help them. @heidilistening

Share what you do, and show you work. I'm almost new to IG, I started posting again, and the posts with more engagement are those that feature the work I do as a fashion illustrator :) @ImKarenAvila


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