10 expert tips to grow as a creator on Instagram in 2024

The insider tips in this article will equip you with creating the content your Instagram audience wants to see.

10 expert tips to grow as a creator on Instagram in 2024
Instagram creator

What does "growth" on Instagram even mean?

For creators, it can be anything from reaching new customers organically to boosting engagement on posts, growing your follower base, or ultimately achieving your unique goals. 

We understand there’s no one-size-fits-all approach, and Instagram's recent shift towards video, especially Reels, has shaken things up.

So what can you do to build a lasting following and effectively achieve your goals on the platform? 

Content creator and social media coach Favour Alabi shares proven tips that helped her amass over 32,000 organic followers in just 1 year and 6 months, with significant growth happening in the past 6 months alone!

Alabi emphasises that building a successful Instagram presence requires dedication and a strategic approach, keeping in mind that true success on Instagram doesn’t happen overnight. 

The Hootsuite social media trends report shows the average monthly follower growth for business accounts is 1.25%. Let’s explore how you can get to that benchmark or even surpass it using these valuable tips in this article.

10 best practices for growth on Instagram in 2024 (Content Creator Edition)

In no particular order so there’s no overthinking the first or the third tip:

1. Collaborate with others 

2. Find your niche and do it differently 

3. Trigger emotional engagement with your content sometimes

4. Plan to post more Reels, especially what your audience wants to see

5. Post regularly but do it with a time-bound plan 

6. Invest most of your time in the captions and relevant hashtags

7. Explore formats other than Reels

8. Post outside the app but focus on the audience on Instagram

9. Invest in your knowledge and gear

10. Analyse and Adapt

Collaborate with others

While starting out as a creator on Instagram, collaboration is your secret weapon. According to Alabi, it’s a feature that content creators shouldn’t overlook, as it can instantly expose your content to a new, targeted audience. By partnering with creators or businesses in and outside your niche who share your values and have a passionate following, you can significantly broaden your reach. 

Remember, branded content thrives on authenticity. Look for creators who genuinely love your brand and can seamlessly integrate your message into their content. 

Take a page out of UGC creator Victoire's playbook who partnered with Video creator Ifiok for Lagos gadget retailer Ogabasseyy. They created a fun and informative post comparing different iPhone camera qualities around Valentine's Day. This is likely to boost the visibility for all three accounts and more—a win-win if you ask me.

The beauty of Collabs is that these posts appear on both accounts, tapping into each other’s audiences. You're also not limited to static posts. Don't be afraid to experiment with live sessions, story takeovers, or even sharing each other's content on your page or stories.

By strategically partnering with others, you can skyrocket your reach and build a loyal following on Instagram.

(You can find the Collabs feature on Instagram from the Reels button)

Find your niche and do it differently

In 2024, success on Instagram does not entirely hinge on carving a niche. You have to be doing something in a way that whenever people come across your content, they know it's you. When you choose a niche, research other competitors in that industry, identify the gaps, and experiment. Bring something fresh to the eye!

Say you're a fashionista in Africa. Alabi suggests mastering new editing techniques to cut through the saturated fashion scene. To be unique, your content has to align with your goals and target audience. Consider what account type best suits you: Personal accounts (come with full music options), Business (monetization-focused and limited music options), or Creator (flexible and ideal for influencers and entrepreneurs). Choose wisely to align with your content strategy.

Think of content pillars as the central themes that hold your content together. Are you aiming to entertain, educate, inspire, or drive sales? Choose pillars that fit your niche and goals. 

Still on doing things differently, you need to include SEO keywords in your name, bio, captions and visuals. Craft a clear profile name that your followers can’t miss and utilise your 150-character bio to introduce your brand and sprinkle in keywords for better discoverability

Creators also include their locations to connect with nearby businesses and build a local following.

(While other food bloggers use just reels to showcase different food locations in Nigeria, Tai (@foodieinlagos) takes a different approach. Tai infuses branding and uses carousels to add humour and food education to their Instagram page.)

Trigger emotional engagement with your content sometimes

Have you ever noticed how a relatable story can stay with you long after you hear it? That's the power of emotional marketing. Alabi emphasises this as a proven strategy, especially for creators selling products or services. While it doesn't have to be your main focus, incorporating emotional elements can be a game-changer.

The key lies in storytelling. Sharing relatable experiences, even if they're a little sad, taps into our core emotions and builds a biological connection. These stories resonate because they align with our values and beliefs, triggering a response that goes beyond just seeing a post.

So how do you translate this into your Instagram content? Powerful visuals with captivating captions can be your starting point. Once you spark that initial engagement, actively respond to comments, participate in relevant conversations, and use interactive features like polls and Q&A sessions to build a community. These interactions not only strengthen relationships with your audience but also boost engagement and follower growth.

Remember, it's about more than just posting – it's about fostering genuine connections. Aim to respond to the first few comments on your posts within an hour to jumpstart conversations and keep the momentum going. This positive interaction with your audience sends a positive signal to the algorithm, making your content more likely to appear in your followers' feeds and keeping them engaged. After all, who wants to unfollow someone they feel a connection with?

Instances of posts using emotional marketing

Plan to post more Reels, especially what your audience wants to see

Instagram now prioritises Reels, and for good reason. To succeed in 2024, enticing Reels with clear calls to action (CTAs) is your secret weapon. While "victim marketing" might get attention, focus on high-quality content creation that resonates with your audience.

Here's how: trending sounds + engaging challenges = discoverability. Timing is key on Instagram. Post when your followers are most active (use Instagram Insights to keep track) to jumpstart engagement and maximise the algorithm's reach.

Get to know your audience by developing a relationship with your followers, researching their preferences, and noticing trends: do they prefer user-generated content, quotes, or specific themes? Look at popular Instagram posts and high-engagement content to understand your audience’s wants (stay in the captions). Consider what interests them and shape your brand’s story accordingly.

Remember, authenticity is queen (content is king). It’s easy to get lost and forget your brand voice or values. Keeping an eye on updates (like Instagram’s @creators account) is helpful, but constant strategy overhauls aren't necessary.

Keep in mind that original content gets recommended more. Repurposing user-generated content (UGC) is great for social proof, but focus on original creations for the algorithm's sake. Remixing or collaborating on existing content with your own twist can be considered original too!

With users spending about 20% of their time on Reels, prioritising this strategy could be your single most impactful move as a creator on Instagram. So, grab your phone and tap in.

Post frequently but do it with a time-bound plan 

Consistency in posting content on Instagram keeps you top of mind for your audience and increases your chances of gaining more followers. While follower count is a good measure of growth, retaining existing followers is equally important. Instead of prioritising quantity over quality, focus on building genuine connections with your audience. So, how do you stay consistent without burning out?

Drafts are your friend—prepare content in advance for busy periods. Repurpose! Refresh existing blogs with carousels or transform videos into Reels. Don't be afraid to tweak and reshare successful content. Scheduling tools are another lifesaver, freeing up time for regular updates.

Batch-creating and scheduling content can help maintain consistency. Alabi highlights that quality should preside over quantity. While frequent posting can fuel growth, it can also lead to burnout. Authenticity thrives when you allow for spontaneous creativity alongside strategic planning.

Bonus: If you still can't piece all these together for your page, here's a made-for-you content plan that reveals hidden strategies in your content strategy to help you grow a loyal customer base on Instagram. 

Invest most of your time in the captions and relevant hashtags

Captions with clear calls to action (CTAs) and hook-infused short-form videos are Instagram Creator’s staples in 2024, according to Alabi.

Your Instagram captions need to include algorithm-friendly keywords, hashtags for discoverability, and engaging language that sparks interaction. Experiment with shorter, snappy text that includes emojis, keywords, and targeted hashtags. Track your results and adapt to what resonates most with your audience.

Hashtags are your gateway to a wider audience. Using the right ones gets your posts seen on relevant hashtag pages, search results, and feeds of users following those tags. This attracts potential followers interested in your niche.

While Instagram allows up to 30 hashtags per post, quality trumps quantity. Focus on 3-5 highly targeted, niche hashtags that accurately describe your content. This sends clear signals to the algorithm and connects you with a relevant audience.

Experiment with different caption lengths, hooks (text overlays), and CTAs to spark conversation and keep viewers engaged.

You can intentionally assign tasks to your viewers in your CTAs to spark conversations, as demonstrated in the post above.

See what Creator Salem King did with this caption on Instagram.

Explore formats other than REELS

While Instagram prioritises Reels, a well-rounded content mix remains notable in 2024. Master the Stories feature to foster deeper engagement with your audience; its direct, transparent format is perfect for behind-the-scenes peeks, product teasers, and informative snippets.

The algorithm also favours accounts users interact with—engage with relevant accounts and influencers in your niche to build community and potentially gain a follow-back, boosting your reach. Remember, Instagram is blurring the lines between Reels and in-feed videos, further emphasising the power of video content.

Stay inspired by competitor content and user trends, and set clear goals to fuel your growth strategy. Take your conversations beyond comments using Instagram Communities (if you have a dedicated following) to share expertise, ask questions, and connect with potential followers who share your interests. Don't forget, you can even reshare your latest post within your Community for added visibility.

Travel Creator Alma Asinobi’s community on Instagram

Post outside the app but focus on the audience on Instagram

Some content creators assert that Instagram might be the final step in their customer acquisition funnel and use it as a nurturing ground. They tend to build initial buzz on platforms like TikTok or YouTube, where algorithms can quickly expose you to a wider audience. While every platform has its own needs, that theory has proven to be right. 

Here’s how to do it:

Use a link in your bio to funnel viewers to Instagram for deeper engagement and community building. Remember, Instagram fosters a sense of trust that other platforms might not, so leverage that credibility to your advantage.

Don't let other platforms steal your audience. Redirect them to your Instagram profile! Include your handle in places like product packaging, relevant blog posts, website footers, email signatures, and notably on TikTok and YouTube profiles. For instance, at BD, we prominently display our Instagram link in our website footer. 

Make connections even easier at events and webinars by showcasing your Instagram QR code. The more effortlessly potential customers find you, the faster your community grows. 

BD website footers

Invest in your knowledge and gear

Content creation is constantly evolving, so invest in yourself to remain relevant. Workshops, courses, and online resources can equip you with the latest trends, social media algorithms, and creative techniques.

Even basic equipment upgrades can make a big difference. Consider better lighting, a quality microphone, or a phone with top-notch camera capabilities. Invest in tools that align with your content style, like editing software or a ring light for improved visuals.

Remember, the best gear won't replace your voice. Sharpen your digital marketing skills and stay true to your brand identity. Learn from other creators, attend industry events, and collaborate on projects to share insights and build your network. By refining your craft, you'll be well on your way to dominating the ‘Gram.

Analyse and Adapt

One of the best things about Instagram is that you don't have to play the guessing game to win. Instagram analytics lets you know what exactly makes your audience tick. If you're able to track your audience demographics, post performance, and see which content sparks the most engagement then you can analyse metrics like follower growth to understand what's attracting new fans. 

No guessing means you can still use this intel to become an A/B testing pro. Test different captions, posting times, and content formats to see what resonates best. For example, if a funny reel about your workplace gets more views than a makeup tutorial, adjust your content accordingly. 

Instagram is a powerful tool for organic growth, but consider ads to boost your reach. Even a small $10 budget can put your content in front of a wider audience. Use Instagram analytics to target your ads effectively and track their performance through metrics like impressions, likes, and shares.

Finally, stay informed by keeping an eye on Instagram trends and regularly analysing engagement and reach to adapt your strategy. 


Instagram's algorithm can be a bit of a mystery, but don't let that discourage you. With these tips as your toolkit, adapt them to fit your unique goals, embrace learning and most importantly, never lose sight of your authentic voice.

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