How to Get More Instagram Followers: 9 Rules to Live By

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How to Get More Instagram Followers: 9 Rules to Live By
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Photo: Getty

Your obsession with Instagram is probably twofold: Not only do you regularly get sucked into spirals of looking at the photos of people like Kim Kardashian or whomever on a regular basis—you’re also equally enthralled with how to get more Instagram followers of your own. Don’t lie.

MORE: The 20 Most Naked Celebrity Instagram Photos

To that end, there are actual studies floating around out there that have tracked things like, well, likes—and followers—to find out how to up your numbers, scientifically. For example, social media research organization TrackMaven released a fairly large report detailing a number of different aspects of posting to Instagram that encourage the most engagement from your followers, and increasing the number of followers you have. We added their research to other studies we found out there to compile the nine most compelling things you can do right now to up your follower count. Ahead, your golden ticket to more Instagram followers.

MORE: 15 Mood-Boosting Instagram Accounts

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Mayfair Is the Most Effective Filter
Mayfair Is the Most Effective Filter

TrackMaven researchers found that while #NoFilter is the most used hashtag on Instagram, the Mayfair filter is actually the most successful at encouraging follower interactions.

Photo: instagram / @chrisvallejos
Stick with Reddish Tones—or Lavender
Stick with Reddish Tones—or Lavender

In a research paper titled "What Makes an Image Popular?" which analyzed 2.3 million photographs on Flickr, they found that people were less attracted to greenish and bluish colors, and gravitated toward reddish colors the most. According to a graph, the most popular color is a soothing, pleasing lavender.

Photo: instagram / @lavenderandcotton
Sunday and Monday Are the 2 Best Days to Post
Sunday and Monday Are the 2 Best Days to Post

While Thursday is the day people post the most, Sunday and Monday are the two days where engagement is the highest, TrackMaven found. So if you want more likes and more followers, post things on Sundays and Mondays with a high number of hashtags.

Photo: instagram / @sundaysinparis
Post Pics of People
Post Pics of People

Georgia Institute of Technology and Yahoo Labs researchers looked at 1.1 million Instagram photos to find that likes on photos of human faces were 38% higher than those without faces, and comments on such photos were also 32% higher. So—selfie?

Photo: instagram / @kimkardashian
More #Hashtags Increase Engagement from Followers
More #Hashtags Increase Engagement from Followers

We can all probably agree that few things are more annoying than when a #caption #is #literally #nothing #but #hashtags, right? But as it turns out, those kinds of posts do much better in terms of engagement than posts that only have, say, one or two. "Accounts with less than 1,000 followers where a post with 11 hashtags received an average of 77.66 interactions," the TrackMaven report says. The message: The more hashtags you use, the better.

Photo: instagram
For Sales, Try Yellow and Blue
For Sales, Try Yellow and Blue

If you're trying to sell something, work yellow and blue. A study by University of Winconsin and Olapic found that these two colors are where it's at when it comes to sales; TBD on whether it'll attract followers, but—can't hurt. 

Photo: instagram / @parisinfourmonths
Post Pics Whenever You Want
Post Pics Whenever You Want

Contrary to what might seem logical, there's no better time a day to post photos for maximum engagement, TrackMaven found. In terms of photo posts, Instagram pretty much produces the same levels of engagement around the clock, 24/7.

Photo: instagram / @munsterrose
Write Long Captions
Write Long Captions

The University of Winconsin and Olapic study found that engagement is higher when captions are longer. We can't vouch for this aesthetically, but—now you know. 

Photo: instagram / @crazystylelove
Post Videos After-Hours
Post Videos After-Hours

The TrackMaven research found that for videos, the data is different—you shouldn't just post whenever. Videos posted after work hours, between 9 p.m. and 8 a.m., by far have the highest number of interactions.

Photo: instagram / @natgeo

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  • Mayfair Is the Most Effective Filter
  • Stick with Reddish Tones—or Lavender
  • Sunday and Monday Are the 2 Best Days to Post
  • Post Pics of People
  • More #Hashtags Increase Engagement from Followers
  • For Sales, Try Yellow and Blue
  • Post Pics Whenever You Want
  • Write Long Captions
  • Post Videos After-Hours

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