7 Creative Ways to Increase Instagram Followers

Are you on Instagram? Struggling to increase your followers? 

Instagram can be highly engaging but there is a right and a wrong way to increase followers on Instagram (and followers).

In this post I asked Sue B Zimmerman (the Instagram Expert), to share 7 Creative Ways to Increase your followers on Instagram … the RIGHT way.  Sue is my Go-To-Gal for Instagram tips, so listen up!  

7 Creative Ways to Increase Instagram Followers
Image by Shutterstock

It is so important to create a community on Instagram and not just try to get as many followers as possible.  More is not always better.

The difference between followers and a community is quality.  In order to obtain quality new community members, it is a good idea to get creative….. These are my “SueB tricks to increase followers on Instagram”.


7 Creative Ways to Increase Instagram Followers


#1  Authorize the Facebook App to Connect your Instagram and Facebook Accounts

Make sure to connect your Instagram and Facebook accounts. You can post directly to Facebook through Instagram.

When people see your content coming over from Instagram to Facebook, they will be encouraged to check you out on that platform as well if they like what they are seeing… and of course they will!

You can also add a custom tab to your Facebook Page!

Instagram App on Sue B Zimmerman's Facebook Page - 7 Creative Ways to Increases Instagram Followers


#2   Embed Instagram Pics into a Blog Post

By embedding Instagram pictures into a blog post, a few important things start to happen:

  • You create a relationship between the places you and your brand are showing up.
  • There is a consistency and relevancy shining through what you are doing.
  • Time efficiency for you and your team is maximised because you are get double use from your images.
  • Your brand identity strengthens.

Embed Instagram Images into Blog Posts - a creative way to Increase Instagram Followers

#3  Add an Instagram Widget to your Website

Driving traffic to and from your different brand spaces online is how to maximise your greatest efforts.

Do not miss the chance to take a connection on a deeper dive so fans can follow you in the place that works best for them.

Get the attention of your fans while they are on your website through a noticeable and accessible Instagram widget, so they can easily check you out on Instagram.


Example of Instagram Widget on Sue B Zimmerman's Website - a creative way to Increase Instagram Followers
Having the Instagram Widget on your website helps people to find you on Instagram…


Example of an Instagram Widget on Sue B Zimmerman's website



#4  Don’t Forget the Power of Email

Make sure to remind your “list” that they should be following you on social media so they can more easily connect with you on the go.

This way they will not miss anything you are sharing because often times your content can differ depending on the platform.  You can also give them an example of how they can benefit from connecting outside of the newsletter.

And… remember to add your Instagram account in your email signature, just like this one.  This way, every time I send out an email people know how to find my Instagram profile:

How to Creatively Increase Instagram Followers
Use your email signature to share your Instagram account!


#5  Cross Pollinate on Periscope

Periscope has been HUGE for growing my following on Instagram and conneting with my audience.

I teach an Instagram Lesson every time I scope and drive traffic to Instagram from Periscope.

I also do live “Insta Audits” that brings people into my scopes and I have a #SueBSponsor on each scope so I can give live shout outs to all my creative friends!

Sue B Zimmerman on Periscope
Engage with your Instagram audience cross-platform


#6  Share Images on Twitter using IFTTT

Why?  Because sharing posts natively from Instagram to Twitter means the image won’t show unless you click on it.

IFTTT is a great tool that allows your Instagram Post to show up as an image in the feed and not as a link.  You only have a split second to get a reader’s attention.

In Twitter that is hard to do without an image and when news is moving so fast.  The IFTTT app makes sure your audience sees what you are talking about every time by posting the Instagram image instead of just the link.

Here is an example of an IFTTT “recipe” to allow you to set this up:

ITTT recipe by Sue B Zimmerman - 7 Creative Ways to Increase Instagram Followers
Setting up an IFTTT recipe is easy!


..once the “recipe” is set up in IFTTT then your images will post over to Twitter with the image as a preview (no need to click the link to see it)… like this one:

Example of ITTT Instagram Post to Twitter - a Creative way to Increase Instagram Followers
IFTTT shows your images on Twitter… but keep the description short.


#7  Take Advantage of Instagram DMs

Use Instagram DM to have a more intimate conversation and relationship with those that are following you!

You can send videos or photos via Instagram DM – it’s still not commonly used, so you immediately stand out when you use this strategy.

Here’s a screenshot of the video DM I sent Donna about this tip!

Sue B Zimmerman sending a DM on Instagram - a Creative Way to Increase Instagram Followers
Use DMs to have a more intimate conversation that stands out!


Bonus Tip:

Always ENGAGE!! Answer EVERY question and respond to comments.

Even though you might not choose to follow an account, you should always engage with those who show up on your post and give love 🙂


Over to You

How are you engaging on Instagram and increasing followers? Do you have a creative engagement strategy to share? Leave your comment below!  


7 Creative Ways to Increase Instagram Followers with Sue B Zimmerman
Like this post? Pin it for later!  Image by Shutterstock.
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Sue B. is the #instagramexpert, founder of Insta-Results (the world's first comprehensive online Instagram course) and Ready Set Gram. She's a popular CreativeLive instructor, powerful speaker on prominent stages like SMMW15 and highly sought after business coach. She's passionate about teaching entrepreneurs and marketing professionals how to easily leverage the power of Instagram to get tangible business results. As a serial entrepreneur, Sue B. has 30 years of business experience, including SueB.Do, Boxer Rebellion and Susan B. Zimmerman Enterprise. With her extensive knowledge in social media and 30+ years of business experience, it's Sue B.'s mission to teach, mentor and empower others to be highly successful entrepreneurs.

Latest posts by Sue B Zimmerman (see all)

  • Loved these tips Sue B. I need to get a widget on my website to show off my Instagram account. It’s on my to do list for next week.

    • Sounds great Nina – awesome to hear you are going to do that… I’m sure it will help!

    • Sue B. Zimmerman

      Love that you are constantly learning! Don’t you just love Donna’s blogs!!

      • I’m new to it…just started to investigate it. So far so good! There are a lot of great tips. I’m bookmarking it.

  • Annie McGarr

    Thanks for the tips! I am working on a couple of these!

  • Christina Pahlman

    Awesome tips! To the point as always #sue?. Awesome job done have The Instagram expert featured on your blog! ????

    • hah thanks Christina we have been friends for a while as we have been speakers together at a lot of conferences … I’ll be seeing her in 2 weeks in San Diego when we both speak at Social Media Marketing World.

    • Sue B. Zimmerman

      So glad you enjoyed it Christina! Donna’s blog is one of my favs – so honored to be in her library 🙂

  • Sue B does it again! Great tips for Instagram – my favorite is to engage with your community. It’s had the greatest impact on my IG experience!

  • Gina Fagnani

    Great tips! Going to put these to good use. Thanks!

  • DebaDo It

    Thank you for sharing this info Sue?. I ran over to IFTTT an created my first recipe! That was easy and fun. @debadoit ???

    • Great to have you here! And so funny that you did Xtreme IFTTT haha – awesome!

  • Susana

    Great piece of news Donna. What app do you usecto get the your social media accounts activated in your email (trick #4)? Thanks!

    • Hi Susana – I am not sure what Sue uses, but I use Wisestamp – super easy and it adapts to all of your email accounts!

      • Susana

        Thanks Donna!

  • great way to improve insta followers

  • Good to see some new & different points on how to grow a solid following!

    • So glad you liked it John! @suebzimmerman:disqus knows her stuff!

  • Charles

    I don’t have a Facebook page, or a blog or a website, is there any other way I can increase my followers utilizing in app functions?

    • You could set up a landing page of some sort to capture email addresses but to be honest I always recommend to have a website or place where you can create core content that you own – don’t build your content on everyone else’s platforms all the time. You can even have a simple website with a simple home page with a sign up form… keep it simple but have somewhere that is your “home base”.


    Great tips. I was not aware of IFTTT. I use IG and its connected with twitter.

  • Harry Lightman

    This is great. Thank you. And what do you think about special services and apps that finds followers? I heard they are pretty popular to use. My sister uses one of them called zen-promo (.com?) as I remember. I thing this is fine because if it finds real followers then nothing worry about. It just helps you. But is it “illegal”? What is your opinion? Thanks you!

    • Hi Harry – my honest opinion is to stay as far away from any app that likes, comments, follows and unfollows automatically on Instagram. It’s against Instagram’s terms so if they notice you will get your account shut down and many have had that happen. I would advise your sister to steer clear… and besides you will get a more quality following and better engagement if you grow organically. Hope that helps.

  • nogapowell

    Love the tips, hopefully will be useful! Looking forward to renting a DLSR camera off of Fat Lama for a few days and seeing how improved content helps my Insta !

    • Have fun playing with the camera and the tips!