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With a whopping 500 million monthly active users, there’s no denying that Instagram is a social media favorite. As this number continues to skyrocket, brands and businesses are recognizing the need for an Instagram presence.


We all love to see the notification, “_____ liked your photo,” on our smartphone screens, along with those multiplying hearts. However, the likes don’t necessarily come easy. As with any social media platform, brands and businesses must develop an Instagram strategy for success, to garner audience engagement.


So, what’s the best way to get that Instagram “like“? Read on to see how to get users to double-tap.


4 Ways to Gain Instagram Likes


No. 1 Follow a Consistent Theme


Instagram Likes Example 1


Instagram accounts with a consistent theme are key in building brand identity and retaining (and gaining) loyal followers. People love consistency, so presenting them with anything that’s out of the ordinary might just leave you with one fewer follower and, in turn, one fewer like.


Choose a theme that’s consistent, but allows enough flexibility to not come off as repetitive. For example, GoPro does a fantastic job with their theme of adventure — from scuba diving to crowdsurfing, their cohesive feed displays a variety of bold activities taken on by several GoPro users.


Need guidance in coming up with your Instagram profile theme? Simply ask yourself this question: “How do I want people to feel when they look at my Instagram feed?” The answer should connect to your overall brand identity.


As a part of your strategy, remember that a consistent theme must be accompanied by a routine posting schedule. Erratic posting patterns will drive once-loyal followers away.


No. 2 Use “Insta-worthy” Visuals


Instagram Likes Example 2


It’s a question we’ve all asked our family members, our friends and ourselves: “Is this Insta-worthy enough to post?” A picture worth posting on Instagram is bright, colorful, crisp and clear. Here’s a surprising pro tip: Studies show that photos with no filters receive the most engagement!


Next time you’re going to snap a shot, keep these extra stats in mind and you’ll end up with a highly like-able photo:


  • Pictures with cool tones, such as gray, blue and green, get about 24-percent more likes.


  • Pictures with faces boost empathy, and receive 35-percent more likes. It’s the human factor we’ve seen in Starbucks’ social media strategy; people love seeing their fellow humans!

Also, let’s not forget about how many likes photos of our furry friends can get us.


No. 3 Avoid Overusing #HashtagsOnHashtags


Instagram Likes Example 3


We’ve already learned that social media managers loathe excessive hashtags. Well, it turns out that social media users do too. An outrageous number of hashtags only comes off as desperation for likes, and will definitely drive followers and likes away.


Hashtags are meant to make content more accessible by grouping similar social posts together, under one targeted word or phrase. Use unique hashtags as a part of your strategy, ones that are specific to your Instagram profile theme or the posted photo. For example, @tofupupper uses the hashtag “#dogsofmelbourne,” instead of “#dogs” alone, to ensure that the Instagram post doesn’t get buried under the other thousands of “#dogs” posts.


No. 4 Employ Calls to Action


Instagram Likes Example 4


While Instagram is a highly visual platform, it’s important not to neglect captions. Studies show that Instagram posts that have a strong call to action perform much better than those that don’t. When Instagram copy included the word “like,” posts received 89-percent more likes, and when copy included the word “comment,” posts received 2,194-percent more comments.


I mean, how can we resist commenting on this little guy?


Combine these 4 tips, and you’ve got yourself a stellar Instagram strategy. It’s time to garner those likes!

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