Instagram Mastery: 8 Proven Strategies to Build your Instagram Presence | Vin Thomas | Skillshare

Playback Speed

  • 0.5x
  • 1x (Normal)
  • 1.25x
  • 1.5x
  • 2x

Instagram Mastery: 8 Proven Strategies to Build your Instagram Presence

teacher avatar Vin Thomas, Designer and Creative Entrepreneur

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

9 Lessons (29m)
    • 1. Class Intro

    • 2. TIP #1: Your Profile

    • 3. TIP #2: Posting Basics

    • 4. TIP #3: Reposting

    • 5. TIP #4: Hashtags

    • 6. TIP #5: Quotes

    • 7. TIP #6: Manage Followers

    • 8. TIP #7: Manage Followings

    • 9. TIP #8: Collaboration

  • --
  • Beginner level
  • Intermediate level
  • Advanced level
  • All levels

Community Generated

The level is determined by a majority opinion of students who have reviewed this class. The teacher's recommendation is shown until at least 5 student responses are collected.





About This Class

Whether you’re starting a new business, growing your current business, or simply want to grow your personal account on Instagram, this class is for you.

You’ll learn the secrets to optimize your profile, create engaging content, and get your posts noticed!  We’ll cover everything from Instagram etiquette, managing followers, and the best third-party app to use.

Start building your Instagram audience today!

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Vin Thomas

Designer and Creative Entrepreneur


My name is Vin. I am a designer with over a decade of experience building businesses online. I have built a successful digital design company, and also run a men's fashion brand. Let me share the knowledge I've picked up over the last 12 years to help jumpstart your career and learn the skills required to build a successful online business.

Feel free to ask if you have any questions. I'd love to help you as you learn and grow.


Vin Thomas

See full profile

Class Ratings

Expectations Met?
  • 0%
  • Yes
  • 0%
  • Somewhat
  • 0%
  • Not really
  • 0%
Reviews Archive

In October 2018, we updated our review system to improve the way we collect feedback. Below are the reviews written before that update.

Why Join Skillshare?

Take award-winning Skillshare Original Classes

Each class has short lessons, hands-on projects

Your membership supports Skillshare teachers

Learn From Anywhere

Take classes on the go with the Skillshare app. Stream or download to watch on the plane, the subway, or wherever you learn best.


1. Class Intro: Hi, my name's been Thomas under designer and founder. Better feel immense fashion. A little over a year ago, I created an INSTAGRAM account with no knowledge of what it took to build an audience, but in just a few short months were able to grow to over 40,000. Engage followers in this class will cover the eight proven tips to growing a massive instagram audience, including setting up your profile, posting basics, tips for increasing engagement and even cover a few third party apps that make managing a large INSTAGRAM account even easier. So whether you're an existing brand, a new business or just want to bolster your personal presence online, this class is for you. So on a roll today and get ready to watch your instagram account go through the roof. 2. TIP #1: Your Profile: Now, the first thing we're gonna have to do is set up your profile. Now, I've created a dummy profile called only duels for us to use for an example. As we go through this course, the first thing you're gonna want to do is make sure that you have a good avatar. Now, if your business you might want to use your logo or in this case, you might want to use a photo that represents what your business does. Since we're a doodle fan club, we have a really cute picture of my dog. If you're a personal account, you probably want to use a head shot. Just keep in mind that your avatar photo is small. So if you have like a full body shot, it's probably not gonna be very recognizable from far away. The next thing you want to do is edit your bio. Let's click this edit profile, but now you'll see that we have a great avatar photo. A cute picture of my dog, Penny. The do Next we have our account name. I've added in a couple emojis just to make things fun. And then I've left out a website for now we'll cover it in a second. But then we've also made our bio really engaging. Not only does it state what we're doing or an account for the love of doodles were also inviting people to engage with our account by tagging their photos with only doodles, and you can include a email address in there as well, which is an easy way for people to get engaged. All right, now let's talk about your website link. One thing you should know is that your website link is the Onley clickable link that you can use on Instagram. Any link that you including your bio or any link that you include in a comment is not actually clickable on the mobile phone. So you really want to make sure you make best use of this. So if it's leading to a landing page to your home page, maybe even to a Facebook page, you want to make sure that this one link is exactly where people want to go. All right, so now your profile is all set up. You've got a great looking avatar, a awesome bio, and you have a link going to exactly where you want it to go. The other thing we're gonna do before you really start pushing your account is to create your 1st 12th posts. Now, why do I say 12 posts? Well, as you can see here on an iPhone seven, we can actually see nine of these posts. If you only have one or two posts, it'll look like you have a pretty empty account. But if someone were to land on this page, they'd be able to see at least 12 posts. It looks like your account is a little more active, so I always recommend before you really start building your followers and engagement get at least 12 posts in there. In the next lesson, we'll talk about how you can create those 12 posts and tips to do it pretty quickly. 3. TIP #2: Posting Basics: all right, So now we've set up our profile, and it's time to start posting. Like I mentioned in the last lesson, you'll probably want to start with at least 12 photos before you really start looking for engagement on your posts. Doing this just helps it look like your account is established, and people will be more likely to engage with your content Now. Obviously, you want to have high quality photos, but there's a couple other things you can keep in mind when it comes to posting little. Increase your engagement. First of all, you want to tag relevant accounts. As you can see, we've tagged this account right in the photo, and another thing you can do is look for popular accounts in your niche. For example, doodles, Doodles of instagram. That's a pretty popular account. What about Labra doodles? Labra Doodles of instagram? Now that's a good size account. They might want to tag these accounts to help bring engagement and awareness to your account. Now, one thing I like to do to increase engagement is to ask questions. When you ask a question, you're inviting people toe leave a comment on your post, for example, this post here where we vest left or right, people are going to chime in and say which dog they prefer. This works great, especially if you're comparing products. For example, in our menswear account, we always ask, Do you prefer the tie on the left of the time? The right and people will give you their opinion. And when they do, leave a comment, make sure to reply that will make them feel more a part of your community, and they'll be more likely to engage in post in the future. Now, in the next lesson, we're gonna be talking about reposted. Re posting is a great way you can leverage other people's content for your kids. 4. TIP #3: Reposting: Now I understand that posting regularly can be quite the job. One of the things you can do to make your account appear a little more lively is to use repost to your advantage. A repost. It's where you take someone else's photo and you re posted on your account. Always given credit, of course, and then you invite people to engage in that content on York. Let me show you the easiest way to do that. The app I like two years is called Repost for Instagram, and it's made by Red Cactus LLC. There is a free version, but I'd recommend upgrading to the pro version, which is just a few bucks. Let's open it up, and you guys can see what it looks like Now when you open up the app, there's really not a lot to do. So you wanna click that instagram icon in the top right hand corner that'll take you back to your instagram feed. Now find a photo that you'd like to repost. I think this one's pretty cute. You'll click those three dots at the top of the post and click copy Share you R L. Once you've done that, you'll go back to repost in their ego. You're ready to repost this photo? You'll see this photo is posted by Piper B, which is a great account bigot. Lots of engagement. Now you can see in the bottom left. There's the post attribution Repost Piper be now this is a limitation of the free account. If you upgrade to the pro account again, just a few bucks. You can not have that attribution over laid on the image. Now, I'm not saying we're not going to give credit because we always, always dio, but we don't want it over laid on the image. So once you've selected where you want that attribution to go or if you want it removed, you just simply click that repost button. It'll open up this dialogue and even click copy to Instagram. Now this photo just opened it instagram. One thing you always want to make sure is you click that little full screen icon in the bottom left corner, and that'll make it full screen annual click. Next. One of things I recommend is that you never edit someone else's photo. You're using their photo to your advantage on your account, so let it be the way that they've edited, even if it's not how you would have done it yourself. So let's just click next Now. Repost will actually copy the original caption two year clipboard, So all you have to do is click in here and paste it. There you go. We've got the original caption in here. They like to put the repost attribution at the top of the post. I usually will copy that and included at the bottom Instead, it's a little more natural when the Post starts with the original caption rather than the attribution. So let's paste in the attribution of the bottom here, Post Piper be. And when we've done that, we can go ahead and click the tag people. We're also gonna want a tag piper be in this photo because you always want to give credit to the original poster click Done. If there was a location, you can add it, and that can often increase engagement as well. But there wasn't one for this post. If you have Facebook connected, you definitely want to connect it to your Facebook account. You'll want to do that to your other accounts as well. If you're gonna be cross posting toe other accounts and then you can see they've already included a ton of great hashtags in this post. So we're just gonna leave it as is and click share. And there you can see that post is now on our feed. We've used their caption when Tuesday's feel like Mondays, all their hashtags And then we've given attribution at the bottom repost piper be and also tagged them in the photo. And that's how you can use a repost to your advantage and watch within just a few minutes, I promise you will have a handful of people engaging with this post. Next, we're gonna be talking about hashtags and how you can use those to increase engagement on your post. 5. TIP #4: Hashtags: All right. So we just talked about re posting and how you can use that to your advantage, to drastically increase how frequently opposed and also get a lot more engagement like account. Next, we're gonna talk about hashtag X. What? Our hashtag hashtags are basically like s CEO, for instance. It will allow you to get much more engagement than normal. If you just post let me show you the difference. Let's scroll through the only doodles account this one posted three days ago with 33 likes . Here's one with 60 likes. Here's 82 lakes. Ah, see 69 Likes 52 likes in this one with only 17 likes. Well, what's the deal? Well, the reason is, all these ones above have hashtags, but this one here, we haven't used any Well, the good thing is you can add hashtags at any time just by clicking on the comment and adding them in a comment where you can actually edit your caption. One of the things I'm gonna show you is that using Hashtags in a comment is better than using it in a caption. And here's why. Let's go up here and you can see some of these. We've actually used the Hashtags in the caption itself and you've just shown this big wall of text. Doesn't really look that great. But if we go down here, you can see that this one, the Hashtags, are actually in a comment which keeps it out of the main feed, which is pretty handy. So let's go back down to this one where we haven't utilized hashtags yet. Now one of the things you can do to make it so that your hashtags don't show up in a big wall is called the dots trick. Let me show you how it works. So one of the things you can do instead of just adding in a bunch of hashtags right here we can use the dots trick to make sure that those tags don't show up is a big wall of text. Let me show you how it works. So you can actually use the return key in a comment. But what you can do is create your comment in the notes app and then copy and paste it in there. So the dots trick works like this. See these dots that I've created here? We're just gonna select those If we copy those and paste them into our comment like this. Now we can start leaving our hash tags. Dog doggy doodle. Oops, Doodle Happy Doodle, Right? So now we have these Hashtags you're allowed 30 hashtags per post. Let's click that post button and you can see they show up like this. Well, why's that beneficial? Well, let's go back to the original post and you can see instead of showing up as a bunch of hashtags right here. It just has that ellipsis the dot, dot dot It's hiding all those hashtags because it saw those five spaces above it. Those five dots above it is hiding the hashtags because it seemed the five dots above it. So let's actually go in and delete that comment because we want to use quite a few more hashtags in that. One of the best APS that you can use for adding Hashtags is called Tags. Doc, let me show you how it works and when things to note is that this is actually a keyboard that you're going to install that makes adding hashtag severe post super simple. Let's click on the favorites, but you can see some of the favorites that I've set up their second from the bottom is the doodle stack. And if we click on that, you see, we have the dots trick already included in there and then all these hashtags that we're gonna want to use for the only doodles account. Let me show you how it works in action. Let's go back to our account here. And if you hold down on that little globe icon, you can actually open up the tags. Doc. Keyboard. There's several that AARP rebuilding here, but you're most likely gonna be using the favorites. So you just click that heart at the bottom and then when go over to the doodle stack see, it puts all those hashtags in there, including the dots. If we click post boom done deal. We have all this Hashtags added to our post, and we're gonna drastically see engagement go up just because of that. Now there are actually two ways that you can use Tags Doc to enter Hashtags on a post. Here's one where we haven't added any hashtags yet, so let's click Comment. The traditional way is just to click the stack and boom it's in there, everything's in there, and that's using the text method. But if we actually insulate that text method in, just use Hashtags, you'll see how it's different. Let's save and go back to the post. We'll delete these ones here. Open up our doodle stack now. Now, instead of putting all of them in there, it gives us all of our hashtags that we've included so we can go in at will and include whichever ones we feel are relevant for the post. So that could be handy if you have a broad range of things that you're posting about but often times. If you're posting a consistent subject, you'll want to use text. Save that in that way. You only need to click the button one time. There you go and they're added to the post. Now let's add these tags this post and see what happens to engagement as we move forward. Now, in our next lesson, we're gonna go over how you can create quotes and use those on your instagram que 6. TIP #5: Quotes: Okay, so now we've covered posting basics. We've covered how to repost how to add hashtags to your account. Now we're gonna be talking about an app that you can use to create quotes for your account . It's really easy. And people really like quotes on its fruit. So they work really well for engagement. Now, the app I use is called over over is a really cool app. Let's go through how we can create a quote for only doodles. Let's click this plus right here. Now we're gonna go to the bottom here and we're going to select the Instagram icon, which is gonna give us a blank canvas. The first thing we're gonna want to do is find a really cute picture of a dog. Well, the cool thing about using over is that they have a great image library pre built. So it's right in Labradoodle. There you go. No results. Let's go to Google Labradoodle. These are all open source images that we can use. Let's go toe pics Bay Labradoodle. Oh, right now we're getting somewhere. Well, let's go ahead and click this one right here. We have a great photo of a Labradoodle that's gonna be added to this image. You can just pinched toe resize it just like that. And then you could have your adjustments down here. We're not gonna go through too many of these, but we are gonna at least do a tint on here so that we're gonna have a little bit of a overlay. So we're gonna do like, let's do 50% around there and we'll do the color. Let's just go to black just so we have, like, a nice little overlay and actually, let's ah, even increase that to about 75%. There we go. That looks pretty good. Now, the next thing you're gonna want to do is click the text button. You can put in whatever caption you like in here the best therapist has for and and four legs just like that. It'll add that tear post it's automatically centered, and then you have a couple of options on, uh, font and Texas. Well, so let's go ahead and make that a bit more bold. Yeah, I kind of like that. The best therapist has for and four legs. There we go. Perfect. And then you can also add cool things like icons. Let's see here here's some basic shapes. Let's see if we can find a paw that might be me. Well, let's go ahead and add this heart. I think that's kind of fun and again, like it's gonna automatically align. It looks really cool. You can also add your logo in here. That's what you want to dio. And there you go. We have a quote to use on our instagram page. Now, when things I like to do instead of using the default instagram thing in here is to actually save the image. And I'll tell you why. If you use the instagram sharing here, it won't allow you to cross post to Facebook directly from it. But if you go in here, just hold down that camera icon, it will bring up your quote. You can edit it in here if you'd like next. We're just gonna paste in that caption one more time. Get over that, correct the spelling again and maybe you want to add the paw in here. There you go, the best therapist has for and four legs and you might want to tag relevant accounts like we talked about before Labradoodle. Here we go. Lab duels of Instagram That might be a good one. Toe repost, maybe dogs groups, Dogs, Dogs of Instagram. That's another huge account. Let's click done. And then we want to cross post that to Facebook and we're going to share. Now we've posted this quote, and it's time to add some Hashtags. Let's go over how we do that one more time instead of using them in the main caption, we want to use it as a comment. And so let's open the tags, Doc. Keyboard. Oh, whoops. What? Right past it. There we go. Tags, Doc, we're gonna go in here and we're gonna go doodle stack, which is gonna throw those all in there. And if there's a hashtag that you want to add in here, you can do that or you can simply click post and it's a done deal. Let's go take a look at our account now. So in the last few lessons we've posted a few times, you have this one here. No, no likes. Yet this one already has five likes, and this one here already has nine likes. And this is just within the last 30 minutes So that's how you can use the app over to create quotes for your instagram account. All right, we've got the posting basics out of the way repost, hashtags, even creating quotes for your next, we're gonna be talking about how you could find people. 7. TIP #6: Manage Followers: Okay, so now we need to find some people to follow. Now, I started this account a little while back and I really haven't given. It must stop. But I've already followed quite a few people and received quite a few people following me back. Let me show you how you find good people to follow. You can do that in a few ways. One is you can browse Hashtags. Let's just click on one of the relevant hashtags that we've included in our post. Let's say Labradoodle. Now when you click that hashtag, you'll see it pulls up the top post in this hashtag and the most recent posts using this hashtag. And if you click on any of these photos and allow you to scroll through the whole bunch of them really easily, you can see him already following quite a few of these accounts. But if you come across one that looks like it will be good, go ahead and follow it. You go through, there's another one. It's really great accounts in here. You just follow through that way. The top post will only show you a few, so you might want to go in the most recent, and that's where you're gonna really find a few more people that you could follow. The next place that you want to check to find followers is in your explore tab. Now, the explore tab automatically finds these accounts that thinks you're gonna be interested in. So again, let's click on one of them. We can go through here and a lot of these air really great accounts that will want to follow. Now, another great way to find people to follow is to follow the followers of related accounts. Let me show you what I mean. If we go through in here, I'm just gonna refresh my feet. Now these people have recently been posting. So this person posted nine hours ago already has 80 likes on this post. Here's someone from three hours ago that has 152 likes. Now, this is a great tip. I wish I had known when I started. Just click on how many people like this account and you have a bunch of relevant accounts that you can follow. You know that these people will not just follow but actually engage with relevant content. You can go through here and follow as many of these councils you'd like. Now, one of the things you want to be sure of is that you're not just mass following people all the time. You don't want to get banned. So maybe follow 5100 people a day and leave it at that weight. And hopefully these people will follow you back. And they likely will because they've already shown that they've engaged with content. That's like yours. So now you know how to find people to follow. Next, we're gonna talk about managing your followers. 8. TIP #7: Manage Followings: Okay, so now we're building our following. We're building some followers now. How do we actually manage all these people that we're following on this account? You can see that I have 152 followers, but I'm following 430 accounts. Let's go see if we can clean some of this out so that our ratios aren't too far out of balance. The app I used to manage my followers is called cleaner. Now, if you followed some accounts and they've shown no interest in following you and they don't want to engage in your content, you may want to unfollowed them as well. You want people who are engaged in your community that are excited about your content, and you want to be excited about their content as well. So when you open up cleaner, you'll see it looks like this. Now some of them will have this green arrow that says you follow them and they follow you. But sometimes it'll have that orange arrow. That means they don't follow you back. Now that's fine. Now, some accounts may not follow you, and you'll still want to follow him. If that's the case, let's go select a few of these that we know are right. The type of accounts that we want to follow. We'll click this actions up here and we'll add them to the white list so we don't ever want unfollowed those people because they're probably good accounts for us to follow. But let's go through here and see are there may be some accounts that we do want Unfollowed . Now, just for example, we're gonna go through and we're going to select some of these accounts that we're gonna unfollowed Um, how follow all these people back to because they're actually good accounts. So when you go through here, we're not gonna unfollowed people that follow us, because again, what you want is an engaged community where they care about your content and you care about their content. There we go. We have a few accounts selected here. Now let's click Actions and unfollowed, Are you sure you wanna unfollowed these 35 users? Yes, And when you do that, it'll go through. It'll unfollowed those accounts. And if we go back and look at our account now 430 let's refresh. Now we're 395. It made it really easy to go through and unfollowed the accounts that are not following you . Another thing you can do is going here and find your ghost followers. You do this by clicking quick, select, select ghost followers. It will tell you that we have toe perform this operation for every single user, which is fine. Click start As long as you don't have a massive audience, This won't take two incredibly long. There you go. We have 124 ghost users. Well, what the heck is a ghost user? Ah, ghost account is someone who has not engaged in any of your posts it hasn't liked opposed. Hasn't left any comments on your post. So we may want unfollowed these accounts again. You click actions Unfollowed. Are you sure you wanna unfollowed 124? Yes, it will go through and it will unfollowed those accounts. It will actually run the actions in the background if it's too many accounts for you, Unfollowed. But let's go back in here and refresh. Look at that. And there you have it. 295 following. We've just about cut our followings in half by using cleaner for just a couple minutes. Now, on our last lesson, we're gonna go over a few other things that you can do to increase in huge. 9. TIP #8: Collaboration: Okay, so now we've covered setting up your profile, hosting basics, hashtag quotes, re posts, managing your followers and even going over a few third party APS that make managing your account even easier. Well, I want to share with you two other ways that you can use to increase engagement. The first is a share for share. This is when you would reach out to someone who has a similar size account, but most importantly, a similar type account as yours. And you say, Let's do a share for share, which is I repost a piece of your content in exchange for you re posting a piece of my content. This can really help to cross, promote and reach even more people. The second is through engagement pots. This is where a group of like minded accounts would come together and agree to engage with each other's content. This could be in form of likes, comments or even share for share. Strategic relationships can really be a great way to increase engagement. So there you have it, a proven steps to building a massive instagram. If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below. I'd be glad to answer for now. It's time for you to go out on your own and crush it. CNN's