Want to know the super powerful, super effective way top Instagram users are getting thousands of followers? They do it with shoutouts, and if you’re willing to learn how to master this insane follower-building trend, you could have a very popular account as little as a few weeks or months.
Here’s how it works: Two Instagram users will often agree to give each other a shoutout post on their accounts by posting a photo or a video and instructing their own followers to go ahead and follow the other account. Shoutout posts often use photos or videos from the account they’re shouting out. This is one of the fastest and most effective ways to build followers on Instagram.
Unfortunately, getting a great shoutout is not as easy as it sounds. It requires networking with others and a sometimes a willingness to feature other users’ content on your own account as part of the shoutout or s4s agreement.
If you want to get a shoutout that gets the best results (a.k.a. lots more followers), there are a few things you should know first. Use the following five tips to guide you in your first quest to getting a great Instagram shoutout.
If you post a lot of photos of food and healthy recipes on Instagram, chances are you won’t have much luck if you target a user who mainly posts about sports. Even if that users did agree to a shoutout, you probably wouldn’t get many followers out of it, because that user’s followers want to see sports content — not food content.
Your best bet is to find other users who share similar interests with you based on their content. because their followers are the ones who will notice your stuff and decide to follow you.
Some users will often write a little blurb in their Instagram bios that they’re open to doing shoutouts. But if that user has 100K+ followers and you’ve only got 50, don’t even bother contacting them.
Most of the time, users will only agree to a shoutout if the both of you have a similar amount of followers. It’s only fair. Once you work your way up to 1,000 followers, it gets a lot easier to do shoutouts with other users who are interested in growing their followers.
Manners still matter on social media. It’s only polite to engage with the users who you want to ask for a shoutout, and it shows that you’re interested in their content. Try giving their photos or videos a few likes, comment on them and even follow them to let them know you’re serious.
Remember, social media — including Instagram — is all about engagement. A little social media interaction can go a long way, and it’s the simplest way to network with others online.
Some users get a little too eager about finding people to ask for a shoutout, so they end up spamming tons of photos with comments that say “s4s?” or something similar, without even looking at the account’s full Instagram profile or engaging with them first. That’s not the way to do it.
Don’t spam users for shoutouts. You should always find targeted users with similar content and followers, and then start out by engaging a little with them first.
You’ve now done the research by looking for Instagram users who post content similar to what you post and have around the same amount of followers as you. You’ve resisted the temptation to ask for a “s4s” by leaving a random comment on a post, and instead took the time to engage and interact — leaving genuine non-spammy comments.
Now you can directly contact the user to ask them if they’d be interested in a shoutout. First, look for a contact button (if their profile is a business account) or an email address in their bio. If none is listed, try reaching them instead through an Instagram Direct private message.