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As a professional athlete, you should have an Instagram profile mainly because it is one of the most popular social networks nowadays. According to Facebook’s vice president of global marketing solutions, Carolyn Everson, Instagram has 800 million monthly active users, five hundred million of those are daily active users. That’s a lot of users waiting for you! For this reason, you should learn how to get more Instagram followers.

As the first of a series of articles on how to get more Instagram followers, today we will set the basics. Later on, we will talk about the best evaluation tools, the potential of Instagram stories, the proper use of hashtags, and the advantages of cross-promote it, among other key strategies. So, stay tuned!

How to get more Instagram followers: An athletes’ guide

  1. Have a goal
  2. Be authentic
  3. Don’t go private!
  4. Catchy description
  5. Give users a reason to follow you
  6. Keep constant
  7. Make users feel part of your journey

Have a goal

The more important social networks are getting, the greater role athletes’ digital image play. Therefore, if you manage well your profile, you could get more Instagram followers. In turn, it could help you attract sponsors and income. Income to invest in your career to professionalize it. Instagram is a very powerful and helpful network to help you go professional so think about its potential and set your goal in order to follow a coherent digital strategy. It could be having more followers, getting followers from other sports, captivating sponsors, attracting sports clubs you are interested in…

Be authentic

Despite the fact that Instagram is very useful to get followers and sponsors, do not jeopardize your authenticity in order to achieve your goal. It is important to remember that Instagram users seek for real people to follow. Be natural, be yourself. There is no magic formula of what to post or say to have more Instagram followers, you just need to emphasize what defines you, what makes you different. It can be helpful to list the key aspects of your personality and emphasize them in all your social networks. Build your personal brand and promote it. Be different, be memorable. 

Don’t go private!

If you decide to use your Instagram profile as a marketing tool to get more followers and sponsors, you have to go public. If not, you won’t get as many followers as you would get otherwise. We recommend you to think about the level of exposure you are ready to face. There are athletes that share everything on their social networks and it may be scary. But you don’t have to be as open about your private life as they are. For instance, you can show only your professional facet. Before posting, think which is the level of exposure that makes you feel comfortable and start from there. Be coherent with yourself.

Catchy description

Instagram is a great network to get fans from other disciplines and to even attract people that don’t usually follow athletes. Therefore, you have to explain to them who you are and which your main achievements are. Impress them. Think about the greatest achievements of your career and synthesize them in a catchy sentence. Add some emoji to make it more dynamic and tag your sponsors to professionalize it and to show them the value of sponsoring you. If you are new on Instagram, remember to choose a username that is easy to find and to identify, and brief enough to remember.

Give users a reason to follow you

We started this article saying that Instagram has 800 million monthly active users. It means that it is a great network to attract lots of Instagram followers but, at the same time, it means that millions of users are doing their best to get more followers on Instagram as well. You have to be better and more interesting than them. Athletes are role models, so take advantage of it. Explain how you train, your rituals, your diet… Show what can’t be seen in broadcasted competitions. Give them some tips to be better in your sport so they can take advantage of following you. Motivate them, inspire them, help them be better players. Do you need some inspiration? Check out the most popular athletes on Instagram.

Post constantly

In order to get more Instagram followers, it is very important to post regularly. Users normally follow different profiles, so if you want to be in their news feed you have to post almost daily. If not, you will be forgotten. Moreover, Instagram followers search for real-time images, so it’s better to keep them updated with your daily life. Having said that, do not sacrifice quality over quantity. If you can’t post daily, set a goal of frequency and follow it every week. It is also very important to publish at the right time. As each country is different due to its lifestyle, one day we will write an article just about it. For now, just think of when it is easier for users to stay connected and follow your instinct.

Make users feel part of your journey

When brands seek for athletes to sponsor, they mainly focus on their engagement. It doesn’t matter if you have a lot of Instagram followers if you don’t have an influence over them. Therefore, it is important that you interact with your fans, that you make them feel close to you. Take your time to read their messages and answer them carefully. Ask them what they want to know about you, and answer it in a post or through your Instagram stories. Instagram is about storytelling, so tell them the whole story and make them feel part of your journey and your achievements. Be grateful for their support.