5 Tips for Attracting Followers to Your Travel Instagram

5 Tips for Attracting Followers to Your Travel Instagram

Have you browsed a seemingly endless number of Instagram accounts focusing on travel, and have now decided to do it yourself? That’s incredible—but now the question is, how do you get people to follow you, of all people? Incentivizing Instagram users to follow a newbie travel account is not an easy task. You need to connect with them by leveraging the same psychology that made you peruse all of those other accounts yourself: the love of seeing the world. Now, it’s your job to show them a new angle.

Acquire a base

People are more likely to do what they see other people doing, and the same principle applies to social media. Users will follow influencers that already have sizable audiences because they take it as evidence that the content must be worthwhile. When you are first getting started, ask your friends, family, and even your other followers on Instagram (if you have any) to follow your new account. You’ll probably have only a few dozen say yes (or over 200 if you’re lucky), but having this base will be the foundation that encourages other travel lovers to click that “follow” button.

Improve your photography

Say you find a travel account that photographs stunning parts of the world, but the images themselves are sub-par. Would you follow this account? Probably not. If you want followers, then you need to post appropriately stunning photography. Brush up on your skills: learn how to snap great pictures with your phone’s camera, review the basic elements of design, and make sure all of your images are crisp. The best travel accounts boast pictures that jump off the screen, and that won’t happen if the lighting is poor or the colors are dingy.

Take the right pictures

Do not feel pressured to post pictures of the Eiffel Tower, the Grand Canyon, the Taj Mahal, and other wonders to prove that you have been to these places. They are photographed so often that your followers can see them anywhere else. Instead, tell a story that they have not heard before. Take pictures from angles of these monuments that they have never seen. Your potential followers can easily Google what these places look like, but what they want to see is what happens at them.

Ask to take pictures of people, and then request their permission to put it on your channel (never do so without their consent). What human moments can you capture at the Aztec pyramids or a Japanese garden? Will you include a mixture of locals and other travelers? You’re going to need to walk the line between establishing a niche and diversifying your subject matter. Post images of exciting alleyways, locations with lesser-known natural beauty, find the highest point in every city you go to, or something else—and maybe include yourself in a few.

Optimize your hashtags

Hashtags will play a significant role in how people find you. However, you do not want to sport an abundance of tags in every caption that somehow incorporate the word “travel” (and #travel itself might be too generic for you to be noticed). Not only is it obnoxious, but people will also be able to tell that you are desperate for attention. Keep your hashtags to less than of the twelve most relevant, including whatever tag you make to represent your brand.

Be strategic with your hashtag to help you differentiate yourself from the crowd. You want tags that are not enormously popular, but popular enough that there are still lots of people searching for them. Try to pinpoint the few that people are browsing, but not always posting under.

Travel as often as you can

If you want to curate a travel account, you need to, well, travel. You need to post consistently: people are far less likely to follow an influencer that only posts incredible photos for two-week spurts twice a year whenever she goes on vacation. If you are going on an extended trip, you can run your account for however long it lasts, but do not be surprised when people start unfollowing you because you are not keeping up the content.

You can take a ton of pictures every time you travel and space them out throughout the year, or you can travel often enough (if you have the means to do so) that your images are always fresh. Maybe you can volunteer internationally, or find ways to explore the world through work. Some jobs are inherently remote, so many people who work from their laptops have embraced the concept of “digital nomadism,” traveling the world while freelancing or working for companies they do not need visas for.

Traveling is a marvelous experience, so it’s natural to want to share it with as many people as possible. How will you attract followers to your travel Instagram account?

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