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March 2, 2020

[012] How to gain 1k followers on Instagram in one year

I'm Vicky Shilling

A wellness business mentor, podcast host, author and I help you start and grow a successful wellness business.

My magic is in being able to break down the practical and strategic parts of business building, coupled with helping you cultivate a mindset that supports those actions to get the outcomes you desire.

Strategy + Beliefs =
Business Prosperity


What do you need help with?






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This podcast episode covers some of the tips I share in this video resource for how to increase your Instagram engagement:

In this episode I talk about the exact techniques that I use to grow my Instagram by 1,000 new followers in one year in a really sustainable way, attracting the right kinds of followers.

I’ve broken this episode down into three sections:



  • You can’t expect engagement from your audience if you’re not giving it. Stop mindlessly scrolling.
  • Dedicate time to proper engagement (using the techniques below). Put e.g. 30 minutes in your diary or on your to-do list, set a timer and do it! Things you can be doing:
    • Reply to everyone that leaves a comment on your posts, going to their account and leaving a reciprocating comment.
    • Leaving comments and likes on existing followers comments
    • Leaving comments and likes on posts you find in your feeds
    • Sending DMs as replies to Stories
  • All comments should be more than 3 words. Otherwise you could just be a bot.
  • Start paying more attention to the people that are following you, rather than focusing on the ones that aren’t.
  • You aren’t harassing or stalking people by doing this. If their profiles are open or they have agreed to allow you in then you’re allowed to do this! They can always mute, block or delete you if they want.
  • You’re there to start a conversation, not to sell. You’re meeting people on a human level.



  • If you’re just getting started or haven’t found a rhythm: just share what you want to share. Try not to over analyse. Just get it out there. The only way you’ll learn what gets great reactions is to try.
  • Always include a caption and when writing them, always include a ‘call to action’ (also known as CTAs). Ask questions and encourage engagement.
  • You want to create content that is SHARED and SAVED. You can see what you’ve posted before that has been shared or saved by others by checking your Insights (you need a Business account fo this, it’s free). If there’s a trend here, follow it! Create more content like this.
  • If you don’t have many shares/saves at the moment on your content, see what comes up in the top selection on hashtags or in your explore page. Think about if you can recreate something similar in your own style.
  • Quotes, graphics and photos of you generally do well. But you don’t HAVE to do that if you don’t want to.
  • If you want to create a graphic I recommend using Canva, a free graphic design tool.
  • Consistency – do what works for you. If you sometimes feel short of ideas, keep a note in your phone when you do get inspired so you create a bank.
  • Stop beating yourself up if you slip from your plan or the frequency you wanted to stick to. This only makes it harder to get back on it.



  • Proactively looking for new followers
    • Go to similar accounts to yours and work through their followers or people who comment on their posts. Go to their accounts and leave them comments, likes and DMs on their stories.
    • Location tags – think about locations that your ideal customers might be spending time e.g. a local gym or a popular vegan restaurant. Find the location through your Explore page and then like and comment on everyone who has tagged themselves in at that location.
  • Use hashtags
    • On your own posts use all 30. Make them relevant to what you’ve posted. Stop using ones with other 1M hits.
    • If you don’t know what hashtags your ideal client is searching for you can find out! Pinpoint someone who seems like an ideal client, go to their account and look at who they’re following. In there you can see what hashtags they’re following.



I talk about Janet Murray’s techniques to grow her Instagram account by 1,000 in a month.

I mention Sara Tasker from Me & Orla as an Instagram expert you might want to check out.


If you want more support growing your Instagram to serve your wellness business, find out more about coaching with me. We can work together one-to-one and bust through those blocks holding you back.



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