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How I grew my Instagram from 10,000 followers to 26,000 followers.

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I get these question pretty often on Instagram:

How did you grow?

How do you keep growing?

How do I get people to pay attention to my content?

The answers are really simple, but here’s the deal. I spend an OBSCENE amount of time on Instagram.

Wake up? Insta.

Breakfast? Insta.

Lunch Break? Insta.

After Dinner. Insta.

Before Bed? Insta.

I do all of my engagement myself. I read every comment, I (try to) answer every question. I do stories, and feed posts, and IGTV, and that’s on top of my full-time job, blogging and just life.

grow your instagram

There are many ways to grow your Instagram, but aside from the time and dedication, here’s what I did to grow. Some of these things may work for you, and some not, but you just have to keep trying them out.

So first thing is first!

Be willing to share your AUTHENTIC story.

grow your instagram

The only way this works is if you are your true, and authentic self. This takes time and effort. It takes hustle and grit. It takes making connections and working your ass off. Mostly, it takes staying true to yourself and sharing your most authentic content. If you can promise me you’ll do that, we can keep moving!


Know your profile, and what you can do with it.

grow your instagram

Few people think about Instagram as a content search engine, but like Google and Pinterest, optimizing your profiles is an incredibly necessary step in getting found. Use hashtags and account tags to add to your bio (those links are live now). Consider ways to work in keywords that you would want people to find you with.

Include your website, and update that URL on a rolling basis when you have new content. Keep your Highlights and IGTV channel updated so people can watch your feed even if you might not necessarily have new content on it. What would you be looking for if you were searching for you? Use that as a way to starting place to optimize your profile.

Produce consistent content, and make it good.

grow your instagramInstagram gives you plenty of options for content creation. You can post on your regular feed, share 15-second stories and now use IGTV for long-form vertical video. When you’re trying to grow your Instagram, the more content you have to share, and the better it looks, the more chance you have to catch eyeballs on your shares.

Got content? Now optimize it.

grow your instagram

Now that you have content, and you’re consistent, optimize what you have. That means choosing the right hashtags, picking out the right location tags for your comments, choosing accounts that align with your image to tag.

Taking this step results in a few things 1) it gives people a general idea of where you are and allows you to show up in the location feed. 2) It lets people who are following specific types of content find your content much easier, and 3) it increases your chances for a good repost of your content.

Get ready to make engagement a priority.

grow your instagram

Once you have all of the basics down and your posting to your own profile (and killing it), you need to next give all of that energy back and engage with people inside and outside of your audience. Find people whose content you like and like it, comment on it, and find ways to share it. This will help you make authentic connections and build your audience.

Additionally, thank people who follow your page and ask them what they’re looking for – or what they need help with. Be a helpful resource to those around you and you’ll keep building your community.

Pay attention to the stats

grow your instagram


When you’re trying to grow your Instagram, your stats are one of the most important things you can focus on. Stats are going to tell you about what’s going right and whats going wrong. To get stats, enable your business account settings on your profile. You’ll be able to see information about what drives people to your profile, and what your audience is.

Lastly, don’t make it all about Instagram if you want to grow your Instagram.

grow your instagram

Okay, my very last tip here is to make sure you don’t make it all about Instagram. You have to spend the time, do the work, and build your audience in different places. Like most things In life, it’s best to diversify. Build your email list, and lead people back to your Instagram when they sign up for that. Feature your social pages on your website…GET A WEBSITE. Go buy your URL today. If there’s anything I’ve learned it’s that you need to build on your own platforms. Social media could go away on any day, at any time. You need to build your brand on your own terms, not on someone else’s platform.


Some other things that will help you grow your Instagram.

  • Giveaways (Loop Giveaways tend to work best).
  • Collaborate with other bloggers
  • Network, and meet people in person
  • Share your work across platforms and lead people back to your Instagram
  • Advertise – invest in your profile
  • Pitch yourself to media and publications as a guest poster or expert

All in all, I love these tips to grow your Instagram. Let me know what else you do to keep growing your audience.

About Mila

Hi! I'm Mila.

I’m earning my Master’s degree in Applied nutrition.

I’m a journalist and Integrative Nutrition Health Coach living with  LADA (Latent Autoimmune Diabetes in Adults, a slow-progressing form of autoimmune Type 1 diabetes) I love food, travel, and my kitchen, and teaching you about diabetes self-management.

I’m here to help you live your best life possible diabetes by showing you how to create simple, blood-sugar friendly and delicious meals and tips on diabetes self-care.

Be sure to download my FREE Diabetes Community App Glucose Guide, or reach out for FREE 1:1 diabetes health and habit coaching.

How can I help with your diabetes management?

More to Dish


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Join today for FREE and benefit with recipes, diabetes support, wellness challenges, and more.

8 Responses

  1. These are awesome tips! I know it takes a lot of time to grow an authentic Insta account. I’m struggling to allocate time to engage more than responding to my own comments. I need to get better at that if I want to grow!

  2. I get that same question daily and I always respond LOTS OF HARD WORK. I think people think that we just sit back and watch the followers roll in. They don’t realize how much work it is. Unless you’re a celebrity, it’s work work work.

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