Are you trying to grow your Instagram audience without taking shortcuts, like purchasing fake followers? If so, good for you—not only is buying counterfeit followers unethical, it ultimately harms your brand. You might think you are using social proof to make yourself appear popular, but people can tell when your follower count does not match your engagement rate. Expanding your audience organically requires a significant amount of work, though. It’s well worth it, but it will be advantageous to have a few tools at your disposal so that you do not have to do everything manually. Between understanding your followers, interacting with them, generating content, liking and commenting on posts, and more, you have a long to-do list. Here are some of the best tools to grow your Instagram that don’t involve buying followers: Repost The concept of “reposting” is integral to platforms like Tumblr, Facebook, and Twitter. If you see a piece of content that you like, you can share it on your own feed while giving credit to the original poster. It’s an excellent way of keeping your feed fresh without having to generate content yourself, and you can foster relationships with other creators by disseminating their material. Unfortunately, Instagram does not include such capabilities—but there is a third-party app called Repost that makes it possible. With Repost, you can share content similarly to how you would on Facebook, allowing you to provide value to your followers in additional ways while participating in industry conversations. Hashtag for Likes Hashtags are an essential part of Instagram. They make content visible and discoverable—without them, it is improbable anyone who doesn’t follow you yet would find your posts, and it makes it challenging for you to interact with other members of your niche. However, hashtags can be saturated with posts or underutilized, so maximizing your posts’ visibility nevertheless requires some strategy. So, how do you know which hashtags are the best to use? Hashtags for Likes can give you real-time updates and suggestions regarding which hashtags are the most advantageous for your account. You have a limited number of hashtags allowed, so it’s important to choose your keywords wisely. Snapseed Do you know what’s eye-catching? Dynamic photos. Instagram is an image-heavy platform, so pictures and videos are your best bet for conveying information while keeping your audience interested. Grainy, poorly composed photos clearly taken with a phone camera are not going to cut it, though. If you want people to follow you, then it helps to edit your photos so that they look professional-grade. Resources like Snapseed can help you spruce up your images into stunning attention-grabbers—even if you have no photography skills. Over Besides your posts, Instagram users will pay particular attention to your Stories (many people even prefer to watch these than scroll through their feeds). Utilizing Stories is also an excellent way to tell a story or share news about an event—but people only have so much patience, so the images and videos you decide to include had better be enticing. Over enables you to create well-produced, compelling photos and graphics that convey your brand’s tone and making you appear more professional. Kapwing While on the subject of enticing content, videos are another medium that occupies an integral space on Instagram. Cisco reports that video will account for 82 percent of all online traffic by 2022, which means it’s in your business’s best interests to create something people can not just look at, but watch and listen to. Do not fret if you lack expensive equipment or video production skills. Tools like Kapwing allow you to create high-quality videos, slideshows, stop motions, and other content to communicate your point while entertaining your followers. Videos are also an advantageous medium outside of social media marketing, such as embedding them into your website. Crowdfire Generating content is hard work—doesn’t it feel like a hassle to create everything in real-time and post it? With a social media management tool like Crowdfire, you can manage all of your social channels from one dashboard and schedule posts ahead of time. This way, you can more seamlessly interconnect your various accounts while trusting that your feeds are staying updated—without you needing to micromanage them. Sprout Social One of the most practical tools for any social media campaign is insight. What are your audience demographics? How often are they online, and when? What kind of content strikes a chord with them the most? When you have a birds-eye view of how your campaign is performing, you can adjust your strategy accordingly. Sprout Social is a comprehensive analytics tool that can tell you all the things you are doing right and wrong with your Instagram so that you can maximize your social media presence. Instagram might seem like a straightforward platform, but building your audience is more challenging than you might expect. Which tools do you believe will help you expand your online presence?