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“If you’re not on Instagram in 2021, you’re probably crazy!”, I came across a similar dialogue in one of the recent Netflix series that I was watching. And well, I agree.

Instagram, undoubtedly, is the choice of platform that a specific set of audience enjoys spending a lot of their time daily. This set of audience typically falls in the age group of 13 to 35 years, the widest online audience in any geography in the world.

It’s wonderful how so many of us are now creating a handle for ourselves on Instagram, trying to become an ‘influencer’. Now that we have seen an era of influencers from 2012 – 2021 who made it big (even to movies and what not!), by taking their Instagram seriously, everyone wants a piece of this cake.

I started this handle called digital.marketing.school on Instagram trying to study the current system of how influencers grow their Instagram followers with ads or some other ways. There’s a ton that I learnt over the last few months on how influencers got their followers (organically, using advertising or using bots), but in this article, I want to talk about the top things that you need to be aware of before you start running Instagram ads for followers increment.

Firstly, unlike FB, there’s no “Page Like/Follower” campaign that you can run as an Instagram followers campaign on Instagram. You can only drive traffic to your profile and it’s then up to your profile to get users to press the “Follow” button. Also, you need to run the Instagram followers campaign from the phone app of Instagram (and not the Facebook ads manager dashboard). Hence, fundamentally you need to choose “Your Profile” under “Select Where to Send People” when you choose to promote a post. Let’s dive into some details.

To break this article down into easily digestible sections, here’s what I’ll cover:

  1. Ad Type
  2. Ad / Post Content
  3. Audience Targeting
  4. Profile’s First Impression
  5. Budgets

Ad Type:

Always choose a story instead of a post. Simply speaking, stories have always proven to have a lower cost per profile visits and cost per followers. Also, videos work better than static images. Videos with humans work best!

Ad / Post Content:

Don’t pick a random post or story from your feed to promote. Create a content piece specifically answering why a viewer should check out your profile and then follow you. For example, if you are a business selling shoes, showcase some of your latest or upcoming collection, a couple of offers, talk about the valuable content you share on your handle like tips, hacks and more. Also, make sure you keep bringing in new content once a month instead of using the same content piece forever to grow your Instagram followers with the latest ads.

Audience Targeting:

Choose the widest audience possible. Of course, you don’t want to be targeting irrelevant audiences, but don’t shy away from adding say 15-20 interests, a wide age group and multiple geographies and will help you to grow Instagram followers with ads

Profile’s First Impression:

The following elements matter the most when a user visiting your profile decides to “follow” your handle:

  • Display pictures – Try to be clear on who or what you are via the display picture, be enticing for users to want to see more of you or your business
  • Bio – Clearly convey who you are, whom you help, how you help them and mention a CTA to follow
  • Highlights – Have well-designed icons and covers for each highlight to tell the visitor that you’re serious about your content
  • Top 5 posts – Well, make every post be better than your last post 
  • Visual symmetry of the feed – Try and maintain a visual appeal to your feed, either by having all posts in column 1 with the same background, or all posts on the third column as a real picture while others are illustrations, etc.


Start small! Invest around 80 – 300 rs per day for the first 7 days, observe results and then scale up!

That’s it, folks!

Get in touch with me in case you have any questions. You can DM me on https://www.instagram.com/digital.marketing.school/!