You might have been trying to gain more Instagram followers and noticed that the opposite is happening! If you had 1,350 followers yesterday and today you eagerly check your Instagram insights to see your growth, and you’re hit with a follower count of 1,342, it’s obviously discouraging.
Do you want to stop losing Instagram followers and turn your growth strategy around? We’re sure the answer is yes, and for that reason, we’ve compiled a guide to help you get things moving in the right direction.
Instagram has over 1 billion monthly active users, making it a highly sought-after platform for brands, businesses, influencers, creators, and more. There’s no surprise that it can be tough to get noticed with so many people vying for attention.
Building brand awareness is one thing, but what about when you already have people looking at your account and they’re still not impressed? You have to ensure that your Instagram content and other tactics are on point— there’s no chance of generating any ROI through Instagram with a lackluster profile.
Even if you use Growthoid to help get your content out to more people, if your content is no good, or something else isn’t working, those new followers aren’t going to stick around long, if at all.
If you’re losing followers on Instagram, there’s something awry with your Instagram strategy. You’ve got to try to find out what’s going wrong and how you can fix it.
In this post, we’ve laid out the most common reasons why people lose Instagram followers and given you 7 methods to help address the problem and get your follower growth back on track.
Review Your Objectives
Anyone who’s had success on Instagram knows that you have to have clear, specific goals to build a strong brand identity and reputation on social media. If you don’t define your objectives, you won’t be able to have strategic and actionable plans. As a result, your efforts will be all for naught.
If you find this challenging, don’t worry— you’re not the only one. According to Sprout Social, almost 50% of all marketers have a tough time aligning their company goals and social media campaigns.
The top goals that are set by social marketers include:
- increasing brand awareness
- lead generation
- increasing sales
- building community engagement
- driving traffic to a website
While these may be good general goals, if you don’t have measurable metrics to indicate whether or not your efforts are being successful, you’ll have no idea whether or not your current tactics are working.
For example, if you are looking to increase brand awareness, you may focus on follower count. If you want to build community engagement, you may look at how your numbers of likes and comments are increasing. If you are trying to direct traffic to a website, you need to know how many clicks you’ve gotten and how many times someone visited after being funneled from IG.
One thing you should consider if you are losing your Instagram followers is if you are truly acting in line with your goals and specific strategies. Find out which has been suffering and then address it.
Let’s think about this: you’ve been focusing so much on the sales aspect and lead generation that you’ve completely forgotten to engage with your current followers and build your community relationships. Your followers may start to feel ignored and eventually begin to drop off.
Another reason you may be losing followers is that you’re not staying consistent. You may not have been posting content that is relevant to your niche, or you’ve made some sudden changes to your content. For instance, if your content pillars were related to travel and lifestyle and you’ve all of a sudden switched to fitness, people may not want to continue to follow you.
Sticking to your brand image is a vital part of any objective-driven strategy.
Reconsider Your Following
Another big reason why people see their Instagram followers decrease over time is that they may have participated in an unsavory way to grow their follower count in the first place. This includes tactics like buying Instagram followers, follow-for-follow method or using an inauthentic Instagram growth service.
While you likely gained followers quickly, this brings absolutely no value to your account. Let’s take a look at each one and why they won’t help you:
- Buying Instagram followers: when you buy Instagram followers, you’re delivered a set quantity of followers. These followers are either fake or bots, no matter how convincing they look. Instagram has developed their platform to do consistent sweeps of their platform to remove fake, bot, and inactive accounts. If you bought Instagram followers, you’ve probably started to see your follower count decrease, and this is exactly why.
- Follow-for-follow: while this seems harmless at first, really consider what F4F does. You’re basically following someone so that they follow you back, but there’s no guarantee about how long they’ll follow you and they’re also not likely to engage in your content. Over time, they’ll probably stop following you and you won’t have gained anything from this tactic in the end.
- Inauthentic Instagram growth services: some services out there are still using bot technology to spam users on Instagram in the hopes that they’ll follow; not only can this get your account restricted from performing a variety of actions, it may also get you banned from Instagram if you keep doing it. Not worth it. Only use authentic and organic methods for follower growth, like Growthoid.
You won’t have to worry about this problem if you stay away from apps that are misleading, apps that use the F4F method, or apps that require you to provide personal information with the promise of giving you a set amount of followers. If a company promises you a quantity of followers, they’re not likely to be real.
If they’re real followers, they can’t be promised: services can help you to get your content out to more people, and they can give you a ballpark estimate of what you may gain, but a set number is never a possibility.
It can definitely be thrilling to get a quick influx of followers on Instagram, but they don’t last, and they’ll only make things harder for you in the end.
Re-Define Your Target Audience
While it’d be great if every single person out there loved us, it’s simply not practical. Therefore, you have to be sure that you are connecting with the right people— those who are extremely likely to convert from viewer to customer.
If you’re losing Instagram followers or haven’t been gaining any at all, you may not be targeting the right audience. You should know what demographics aren’t likely to follow your account or buy your products so that you can avoid focusing energy on them and gain traction with people who are related to your niche and are likely to become a follower you can retain.
Take a good, hard look at your target audience and give it a refresher. Categorize your ideal people based on age, gender, location, language, industry, etc. You can do so by understanding your current audience’s metrics and also doing market research.
This is important for everyone, but it may be especially important for local businesses because they can have a higher chance of connecting with the right people in their immediate community.
You can use Instagram insights to find out information about your target audience as long as you have a business or creator account; it will let you know about their demographics and actions as well. Or, use a third party analytics tool like Iconosquare or Sprout Social to help you get this information.
You should also be regularly checking out other Instagram accounts that are your direct competition. When you know what followers your audience has, you’ll have a better idea of who your niche audience is. You may even want to connect with them and see if you can get them to take a look at your profile.
One final consideration about your target audience— it can change over time. Don’t assume that it will stay fixed, as people evolve and trends come and go. It’s important that every so often you take a look at your audience information to ensure you’re still targeting the right people.
Growthoid can help you with this. When you sign up for our services, you can simply provide us a list of your targeting instructions and we’ll do the rest. We know how important reaching the right Instagram users is and want to help you save time and get real followers who are interested in your content.
Revise Your Content Creation Strategy
One of the absolute most important things about Instagram is your content— Instagram content is the basis of the whole platform, so if there’s one thing you should put a lot of time and effort into, this is it.
You can absolutely change your followers’ minds with your Instagram content, so make sure you know what they want to see and what performs best. For example, if you rarely get any likes on your graphic posts but get a ton of likes when you feature people, tailor your content strategy to the metrics.
Because Instagram is such a visual platform, you have to be on point with your content creation. Captions matter, and we’ll talk about that in the next section, but Instagram provides its users with so many different types of content formats that if you’re not taking advantage of both in-feed photo posts as well as different video features, you’re already behind.
Take advantage of all Instagram features, including IGTV, in-feed video posts, carousel posts including both photos and videos, reels, and of course, Instagram stories.
Instagram stories is one of the most popular types of content on the platform, and always having an active Instagram story up can help you to get noticed and show people that you’re engaged with your community and your content strategy.
Don’t forget that Instagram trends are always changing, so you should stay up-to-date with what’s happening on the platform and see what other innovative things people are doing with their content. There’s always something new on the ‘gram, and you’ve got to keep up!
Lastly, make sure that your content is in line with your brand image and that your overall profile is optimized. Keep a common theme going throughout your content aesthetic and also use a profile pic and Instagram story highlight album covers that represent your brand effectively.
Your Instagram bio is also important, so make sure followers get a good picture of who you are and what you do in a quick glance.
Change Up Your Captions and Hashtags
Your Instagram content is vital, but it isn’t fully complete without effective captioning and hashtags. Your captions should be the written element to your photo that gives your followers more insight into the photo as well as engages them through a call to action (CTA). Hashtags also go in your caption, but your hashtags are meant to get your content more reach via hashtag feeds.
If your captions are boring or non-existent, it’s not likely that you’ll be able to connect with your followers and build a relationship as you should. You can generate more likes, comments, shares, and saves when you use the right captions.
Be creative, show your personality, give followers necessary information, or develop a story behind the photo. All of these are good ways to engage your followers via captions. A CTA is also important— ask your followers to like your photo, or leave a comment with their opinion, or tag a friend. You can tailor these to match your image, but here are some examples:
- Double tap if you love coffee in the morning!
- Tag a friend you’d love to visit with!
- Which one do you like better? Let me know in the comments!
- Comment your favorite!
These are only a few options but you can creatively work them into any caption. Then, there’s hashtags.
Hashtags are meant to categorize and make content discoverable, so if you feel like you aren’t getting enough new followers, use relevant hashtags that are targeted to your niche. If you don’t know what kind of hashtags you should use, try a hashtag generator tool like Task Ant.
Not only can you find the best hashtags for your niche, you can also check out important metrics about the hashtags such as how many posts include them, how well they’re doing, and more.
You can also take a look at your competitors and see what tags they’re using to have a better idea about what is working in the industry.
Finally, create a branded hashtag. If you want users to post content using your hashtag, you should create a brand-specific tag and let followers know that if they use it, they could possibly be featured on your profile. Great way to generate excitement and engagement.
Work with Niche Influencers
Influencers have a big pull on Instagram, so if you can partner with prominent ones in your niche you’ll not only increase your brand’s authority but also get your content out to a wider relevant audience.
Influencers have a great deal of trust with their followers, so when you get featured on an influencer’s account, users are more likely to take you seriously and actually follow you or buy your products.
An influencer doesn’t have to be someone with 200,000 followers— you could find someone with as few as 10k but who has a very engaged audience. Engagement is the most important thing on Instagram, after all.
Find an influencer who aligns with your values, let them know how they’ll benefit from the partnership, and set a clear goal for your influencer work (website traffic, more followers, brand awareness, etc.)
Some websites such as BuzzSumo and Awario help you to find niche influencers so if you’re at a loss for who to work with, check those sites out.
Know Your Optimal Posting Times
Our final tip for helping you to keep your Instagram followers from leaving is to know when the best time to post is. If you post when a majority of your followers are online and they engage with it, it will continuously show up at the top of their feed.
There’s no rule to the best posting times on Instagram, and it depends heavily on your target audience, but try to find out the best posting time for your industry so that your content gets under the eyes of more Instagram users right out of the gate.
In your Instagram insights section, you can visit the Audience page and at the very bottom, it will give you a breakdown of when your followers are most active on Instagram. It’s pretty incredible that they can provide this sort of information, and it can prove very useful for your posting schedule, so take advantage of it.
If you tend to get backed up on content and get behind, consider using an Instagram scheduler like Later to stay on track.
Wrap-Up: What to Do When You Are Losing Instagram Followers
If you see your profile lose Instagram followers, it can cause a bit of panic. Address the problem right when you begin to notice it and take a look at all of the above elements of your overall Instagram strategy.
Analyze what’s working, what’s not, and where you can improve. Instagram always looks so easy on the top accounts, but there’s a ton of work, planning, goal setting, and follow through that goes into a solid Instagram profile.
Dedicate yourself to making something valuable for your community and you’ll see your Instagram presence, Instagram followers, and Instagram revenue all increase in a heartbeat.