How to gain followers on Instagram?

I want to note right in the beginning, that getting followers on Instagram or on social media is not the most important thing. The most important thing is, that you enjoy what you are doing and stay real to yourself. However, many wish to grow their Instagram accounts, so this post is dedicated to them.

Ah, Instagram. I remember when it first launched and it was so exciting. I immediately started sharing pictures and I was intrigued at how easy it was to edit photos and make them look ‘cool’ (although now that I look at my first photos, there’s nothing cool about them).

I also remember me checking my feed constantly and being bored – ‘cause my friends were adding new pictures only ever so often.

Nowadays I’m never bored, ‘cause my feed is constantly changing and there are billions of photos on Instagram to look at. The fact that Instagram is so popular and huge, means that there is a lot of competition. It creates a new challenge to bloggers and influencers – how to get yourself out there?

I know my account is just a small fish in the sea, but people have asked me how I gained over 1000 followers on Instagram, so I thought it couldn’t hurt to share my thoughts. Some of these tips may be obvious to you, but hopefully there’s also something you haven’t thought of yet.

instagram tips

How to gain followers on Instagram – My tips

  • The photos are everything
    Ask yourself: would you follow you? Are your photos good and interesting?
    I just had to state the obvious here. My first Instagram photos were horrible. Bad quality, with bad lighting and just boring.  Nowadays you can take great photos with your cell phone, but I still prefer a real camera. Every now and then I upload a mobile photo to my feed, but I instantly see the difference compared to the other photos taken with my Olympus Pen EPL7 camera. And did I already mention the lighting? You need good-quality photos with great lighting. The more light, the better. Light, light and light.
  • Be active
    Are you putting in the work and hours?
    Have you heard of social media? It’s gotten it’s name from it being – you know -social. So be just that. Interact with other people. Like, comment and follow. If you see something interesting, like it. Leave a comment. More often than not, people respond to you and return the favor. And once your photo gets more likes and comments, it gets more visibility = your profile gets more visibility = you can gain more followers. I have gotten lots of new followers and friends this way and I honestly value that. A simple ‘Have a great day” comment from one of my instafriends can make my day.
  • Stay real
    And be genuine.
    When I said to like, comment and follow – I didn’t mean to just do it for the sake of doing it. Don’t spam – like leaving a random emoji on a random photo – it’s not cool. Pay attention to what you are doing and leave comments that are relevant, funny or just your real reactions to the photos.
  • Follow, don’t unfollow
    And do actually interact with the accounts you’re following.
    I follow a lot of people on Instagram and I think it’s great. I have found new inspiring accounts and some smaller ones, that are interesting, ‘cause they are personal. Sometimes the person you are following, follows you back, so you get a new follower. But not always! Personally I always follow back other bloggers, ‘cause I want to show my support and connect with them. Sometimes these people play the unfollow game – they only follow you to gain you as your follower and they unfollow you as soon as you follow them back. I understand why they do this, but it still feels a bit wrong. I wouldn’t recommend to play that game, but it’s up to you.
  • Make your feed your happy place
    Make Instagram fun.
    Instagram should be a happy place for you. Follow accounts, that you love, that you find inspiring. Don’t follow accounts, that you don’t like. Make Instagram fun. Don’t think about the numbers too much.  The same goes to your own photos: upload photos, that you like. Don’t try to be something you are not, just simply do what you love. I’ve heard so much complaints about Instagram lately and it’s depressing. I’ve tried to take another approach and just keep myself and my Instagram positive and inspiring.
  • Look at the big picture
    Your feed is your profile picture.
    When you click open your profile, how does everything look? Is it nice to look at? Are there weird colors competing against each other? Does it look messy? Your feed is a reflection of your personality and it should look like you – but if you want followers, you just need a nice looking ‘theme’. Your followers should know what they are getting by taking a quick look at your feed. This one is a bit hard to explain, so I have photos to show you:

charlottave instagram

My feed nowadays. As you can see, it kinda has a theme. It’s peaceful to look at – the colors are toned down and there is a bit of everything: my face, my body, details. The photos look good next to each other. By the way: there is one mobile photo in there. Can you find it? Here it kinda works, but I still see the difference in quality compared to the other photos taken with a professional camera.

instagram bad feed

My feed, when I was not actively blogging and I was just using it as my personal account. Looking at it from a professional point of view: it’s horrible. Very dark with bad quality photos. Also – there’s very little of actual me in there. Photos of my feet and food hardly give any intel about my personality. People follow your account, cause they are interested in you, so try to make it personal – that means uploading photos of yourself as well every now and then.

Here are some other great posts about growing your Instagram:

How to get big on Instagram – My top tips
How to look good in every picture – 10 new Instagram secrets
20 Instagram hacks for a perfect feed

Want to be my instafriend? Come follow me at @charlottaeve.

Blog recommendation: Amy Evans

amy evans blog

Blogs are great, because they give a glimpse of the writer’s live. The author is what makes a great blog and I’m always looking for bloggers who I can relate to. The content is also key and a good blog is a combination of both.

finnish lapland

Amy writes a UK Lifestyle blog called Amy Evans. She describes herself as a cat person/introvert who dreams of Arctic explorations. On her blog she does everything from beauty reviews to travel adventures and her pictures are just amazing.

We decided to collaborate and get to know each other a little better. We did a Q&A so here are my questions for Amy and her answers.
If you want to see my answers to Amy’s questions you can find them on Amy’s post.

new blogs to read

Let’s start with the cliche I still want to ask. What is the best thing about blogging?

Definitely discovering new blogs and meeting bloggers from around the World. I love hearing different perspectives on things and feeling connected to such a big community.

Also I love taking photos so enjoy that aspect of my blog the most. I’m naturally a perfectionist so blogging has been a great way to relax that slightly. Keeping to a schedule of posting with a full-time job can be really hectic so sometimes you have to have a ‘that will do’ attitude which I think has helped me keep my blog going for the past 18 months and not be overly critical of it.

I love quotes whenever I can’t find words for my feelings. What is your favourite quote?

Dracula is one of my favourite books and I love the quote “Listen to them, children of the night, what music they make” which is taken from it. Dracula says this when he opens his door and hears the wolves howling in the distance.

I’m a night owl and have always felt this quote could be applied to our generation. Bloggers, coders, designers, illustrators, photographers, anyone creating anything. As a teenager I would get in trouble for staying up late and sleeping in, as do most I’m sure. As a generation though millennials are so creative, using technology to share that and grow it.

I’m someone who often struggles to switch off at night as I have so many ideas, so this quote has always resonated with me. Although I’m sure this isn’t what Bram Stoker was getting at in 1897.

When we visited Svalbard we tried to walk to the edge of the settlement to get a photo of the polar bear warning sign. A husky pack penned up somewhere in the distance did nothing but howl and in the pitch black it was so creepy I had to turn back! I’ve read this book one too many times to not get spooked by that.

And to the important question: Name one makeup product that you can’t live without?

This is so hard! I think foundation has the biggest impact, if I were to only wear one item it would probably be that as without it I look like a zombie. I’m currently obsessed with the YSL Touche Éclat Le Teint foundation which I’ll be reviewing soon.

However the product I am reaching for all the time at the moment is my Tarte In Bloom palette. I wear it daily and think I’ll be doing so until I hit pan on all shades. It’s rare to find a palette I use in it’s entirety.

What is the be sticking to a routine, I think it would be to use and spend most of your budget on serums. Since I started using a few I’ve noticed a dramatic improvement in my skin. My favourites are probably Pestle & Mortar’s Pure HA Serum and Sunday Riley’s Luna night oil.

You’ve actually been to Finland. How did that happen?

I love cold counties and want to visit each in the Arctic circle. I had always wanted to go to Finland and so we decided to go to Ivalo via Helsinki in January. Sadly our visit wasn’t great as we stayed in really commercial hotels. I would love to have just rented a cottage somewhere in the wilderness instead. I really loved Helsinki even though we weren’t there long, so returning is high on my travel wishlist.

When we got to Helsinki it was absolutely freezing (duh!) but our luggage had gone on to Ivalo. I always get hot on planes so was wearing really thin leggings. That was a cold walk back to the hotel!

lifestyle blogger

I love Amy’s blog because the content is beautiful and you can see she really puts a lot of effort into it. Here are some of my favorite posts from her that I want you to read! These also give you an idea of the variety of posts Amy writes.

  1. 5 ways I’ve improved how I do my makeup
     Great tips for anyone who enjoys makeup.
  2.  Oh K! Coffee Bean Hydrogel Mask
    Coffee and skincare? Yes please!
  3. Brand Spotlight: Kylie
    I own zero Kylie products and this post explains quite clearly why.
  4. Surviving our first holiday together
    Amy’s travel posts are a joy to read and the photos are always phenomenal.
  5.  My wedding photos
    I love to read about weddings and Amy has done many posts about her wedding, so definitely check those out!

 lifestyle blog recommendation

Photos: Amy Evans

Amy Evans blog


What are your favorite blogs?


Scroll to top