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Thea GasparyanHow to Get More Likes on Instagram: 40+ Expert Tips

  • Monday, July 3, 2017   - Get post updates via email + a special bonus growth hack here
How to Get More Likes on Instagram

There are over 700 million active Instagram users in the world, which is a lot of people posting selfies, holidays or brekkie snaps of avocado on toast.

There’s a certain rush people get when they post a picture and watch the notifications roll in as users Like it in real-time – perhaps even from some new people that might follow you or your business.

Likes (and followers) are fundamentally one of the biggest reasons why we’re so obsessed with Instagram, to get appreciation for our pictures and maybe become Instagram famous along the way.

So how can you ensure that you maximise your time and get the most value out of every image that you post?

Well, look no further, here’s our guide with tips and tricks to help you increase your likes on Instagram:

What Are Instagram Likes?

A like on Instagram is when you double tap on the post or click on the heart icon under your content.

So why is a like important? It’s a signal to Instagram that your image has resonated with your followers.

They are also a way for Followers to show a small gesture of appreciation for your post, or as a way of agreeing with what you are posting.

I’m very aware some of my fans had noticed I was laying low for part of the summer and questioning why I wasn’t promoting my new music, which I was extremely proud of. So I found out I needed to get a kidney transplant due to my Lupus and was recovering. It was what I needed to do for my overall health. I honestly look forward to sharing with you, soon my journey through these past several months as I have always wanted to do with you. Until then I want to publicly thank my family and incredible team of doctors for everything they have done for me prior to and post-surgery. And finally, there aren’t words to describe how I can possibly thank my beautiful friend Francia Raisa. She gave me the ultimate gift and sacrifice by donating her kidney to me. I am incredibly blessed. I love you so much sis. Lupus continues to be very misunderstood but progress is being made. For more information regarding Lupus please go to the Lupus Research Alliance website: -by grace through faith

A post shared by Selena Gomez (@selenagomez) on

Social proof can increase a users likeliness to trust a person or brand, compared to one with little or no likes or engagement.

Followers bring recognition to your Instagram page by showing how engaged they are with your content – so in a world where Instagram likes and follows are linked to popularity, quantity can matter.

Let’s dive in and example 40+ more ways to drive more likes on Instagram.

Using Your Photos For More Likes

Take & Post High Quality Photos

You need to put some effort into the photos and videos that you post on Instagram. Make sure the lighting is good and everything is in focus.

Don’t forget you don’t have to take photos with mobile devices, you can take professional photos then upload them via the Instagram app at a later date.

Aesthetically pleasing photos will naturally get you more likes.

Countless visual discoveries every time in Iceland! A river slithers through the volcanic landscape of Landmannalaugar, one of my favorite locations on this enchanted island. Going back asap with @irisalexandrov ! #Iceland #photographer #fineart #Landmannalaugar #mattiasklum #photooftheday #fineart #nikonambassador @natgeo @mattiasklumcollection @thephotosociety @irisalexandrov

A post shared by Mattias Klum (@mattiasklumofficial) on

Tell a Story With Your Caption

Captions are a very important part of your Instagram post. Unlike Twitter, Instagram does not have a character limit, but there is a limit before users will have to start scrolling.

Telling a story with your caption lets your followers get to know you a bit more. The best combination is having an amazing photo and a killer caption to go with it (more on this later).

Welcome back to Bali! 🌴✨ I've barely just arrived, and I've spent my day trying to rescue a poor dog I witnessed get mangled by a car. (Watch my insta stories). I know my last experience in Bali was a trip to remember—I learned so much and it cracked me open in a beautiful way. From flying 100 hours on a plane, getting withheld in Qatar, to being bitten by a dog with rabies….Bali is definitely full of adventures. This return I'm here for my own healing and transformation. Some very hard changes have happened in my life recently, of which I'm not ready to share on social media just yet. When I get stronger, I will. I'm learning to flow and let go. I'm also here to write. Write, pour, mend, and create. It's about the mind, body, and spirit. They journey is laid before us; all we have to do is keep moving forward in love. Are you ready? ✨ So happy to be here with @juliatrotti and @danpodbierezki at @soulshinebali. 🙏🏽✨ ✨ #FullyRaw #vegan #bali #travel #adventure #vegetarian #vegansofig #healthy #health #food #rescue #nature #dress #style #beautiful #healing #hair #Houston #inspiration #rawvegan #rawfood #magical #diet #youtube #transformation #plantbased #fruits #vegetables #vegansim #lifestyle

A post shared by YouTube: FullyRawKristina 🍉 (@fullyrawkristina) on

Use a Consistent Filter

Being consistent in your filtering scheme is one the biggest keys to building your Instagram identity. It’s kind of having a theme, so pick one or two filters and stick to them.

Consistency will make your photos recognisable on your followers feed which increases recognition and that leads to more likes.

Check out how @andrewknapp does it:

Using a Consistent Instagram Filter

Be Yourself

Instagram can sometimes feel like everything is staged or fake, it can be fantastic to be humble and just be yourself. Remove the filter and let users see the real you.

Humble, hungry & always be the thing that's written on this sweaty shirt. Grateful for this Saturday iron session. It was a MF. I think I smell like testosterone and chocolate. 💪🏾🍫

A post shared by therock (@therock) on

Colours Can Impact Likes

A study from over 30M+ Instagram photos found that using blue as a dominant colour in your photos increased the number of likes by 24%.

Echeveria Cante freezing her tips off ❄️ #echeveria #succulent #succulove #desert #plant #nature #leafandclay #blue #succulents #flower #flowerlove #garden #plants #instagood #photoftheday #picoftheday #instalike #beautiful #bestoftheday #love

A post shared by Rui ( on

Be Unique

It’s easy to follow a formula on Instagram, however many accounts are often rewarded for being unique and having their own twist on things.

Try to post content you think will be intriguing for users.

Envious of Tony Stark's all-glass office and wish you had your own? You can start with this #Bastron Transparent Touch Glass #Keyboard, which features touch gesture, transparent keys, and LED illuminate design. \\\ more on

A post shared by Design Milk (@designmilk) on

Here’s another great example of a YouTuber doing an interesting challenge:

I'm starting a YouTube challenge series where I have to turn THIS PENNY into $1,000 by buying and selling (aka flipping) stuff. The first episode goes up tomorrow– how much 💰 do you think I was able to make in 66 minutes? #comment

A post shared by Ryan Trahan (@trahan) on

Stand For Something

Be opinionated and stand for what you believe in. This can be a great way to resonate with followers that have the same views.

Just remember that can also attract negative attention, so be considerate.

So grateful to @viennatouristboard & @austrianairlines for inviting us to @lifeball_official and finally getting us to Europe. We can't wait to go on another trip. WHERE SHOULD WE GO NEXT? 🌎 #myaustrianmoment #viennanow

A post shared by John Halbach (@johnhalbach) on

Appeal to a Wider Audience

Sometimes our accounts are quite specific to the point that they only get attention from a specific segment of users (for example Knitting photos).

Sometimes it can help to go more mainstream with certain posts to appeal to a wider audience (and increase your likes/engagement).

Cant get enough of this #goldenhour sunshine as May comes to a close and we move into the thick of summer. Photo by: @wheresmyofficenow #adventureon #nomadgoods . #essentials #minimalinsta #designmatters #refinedstuff #techrefined #refinedstuff #redefine #goldleaf #goldenhill #californiasun #californiakid #californiadreamin #horweenleather #madeinusa #leatherwallet #leatherwallets #goldenhourlight #landscape #westfalia #homeiswhereyouparkit #vsco #adventuretime #getoutstayout #optoutdoors #StayAndWander #adventuremobile #builtforadventure

A post shared by Nomad (@nomadgoods) on

In the example above Nomad Goods posts images of activities that their customers might use their products for (i.e. camping or hiking). You don’t always just have to show your products, try to show the bigger picture too.

Invite Guest Poster or Take Over Another Account

A great way to reach a new audience is to invite a popular user to take over your account for a day.

Vice versa if you’re a brand you can also invite an influencer to post on your account for a specific period of time.

Today we are taking over the @superdrugloves Instagram! Don't forget to follow along for a closer look at the Chasing the Sun collection and an exciting competition to win your very own @popandsuki makeup case 👛 🙌🏼 #tanyaburrcosmetics #superdrug #takeover #newin #tanyaburr

A post shared by Tanya Burr Cosmetics (@tburrcosmetics) on

Feature User / Customer Images

The Fifth Watches does a really good job of this. They run an ongoing competition to grab user generated content from their 5th Fam members.

They then re-use this content which shows their product being used by real users in beautiful settings.

Very smart 🤓

Inception featuring The 5TH by @framedstreets. Wait for the kick. #the5thfam

A post shared by The 5TH (@the5th) on

Be Funny

Everyone loves silly content that makes them laugh or smile. Don’t be afraid to step outside your boundaries and show your humorous side.

Work of creative engineers 🌳 Everyone must protect the nature and look after it 🍀

A post shared by I Had Thoughts™ | Art Page (@ihadthoughts) on

Using #hashtags For More Likes

Hashtags can be a great way to have your content seen by users who aren’t following your account (as they get listed in #hashtag searches).

There’s no need to go overboard with your #hashtags though, try to keep them on-point and relevant to the content.

A great Instagram #hashtag hack is to leave majority of your hashtags in the comment section after you’ve already posted your image.

Take Advantage Of Local #hashtags

Look at some popular locations or #hashtags from your city and see who the top accounts are.

It’s a great way of connecting with people that are nearby and getting more likes.


Use Popular or Trending #hashtags

Whilst using popular #hashtags doesn’t directly lead to more likes, it increases your chance of getting featured or noticed by users browsing those #hashtags.

Which, in turn, can lead to more likes on specific photos.


Surfing #hashtag

There are around 6,060,495 posts on Instagram with the hashtag #avocado.


Instagram Avocado

The top 20 most popular #hashtags right now are:

  1. #love
  2. #instagood
  3. #photooftheday
  4. #beautiful
  5. #fashion
  6. #happy
  7. #tbt
  8. #cute
  9. #followme
  10. #like4like
  11. #follow
  12. #me
  13. #picoftheday
  14. #selfie
  15. #summer
  16. #instadaily
  17. #friends
  18. #art
  19. #girl
  20. #repost

Use The #like4like Hashtag

This is a #hashtag that people us if they want to swap likes with one another. Simply use this #hashtag then like the post of anyone who likes yours (and they will do the same).

A revista @vejario de hoje saiu uma matéria super interessante sobre um treino inovador que chegou no Brasil e é exclusiva na barra na @bodypulsebr na matéria fala um pouquinho da minha história e como esse treino tem me ajudado a manter a minha forma 💪 • • • • • • • #digitalinfluencer #dicas #lookdodia #model #sempreemfrente #menos25kg #exgordinha #happy #revista #veja #vejario #likesforlikes #like4like #hotel #wlyg #modaparameninas #lookdodia

A post shared by Yasmin Miranda (@yasmirands) on

Use Branded #hashtags

Many brands use branded hashtags to engage with their followers by encouraging them to tag their own photos with the hashtag. It’s a great way to create brand loyalty and a community feeling.


#thefrankeffect Hashtag

Branded #hashtags are fantastic way to collect all user generated content from your brand into a single place

#thefrankeffect is a branded hashtag created by Australian beauty brand Frank Body.

Tag Yourself At Locations

The add a location option allows you to tag your post with a specific location. Users can then filter by location to see all the posts by users.

Similar to #hashtags this can be a fantastic way to collate photos from your customers if you run a physical location like a cafe, gym or hotel.

His and hers meals… Mexican salad for me with crunchy beans, avo and poached egg. Coffee rubbed wagyu burger for the boy.. 🍔🌶🍳 @industrybeans #melbourne #industrybeans

A post shared by Lola Berry (@yummololaberry) on

Do you have your own business? We’ve got your back, check out our guide below on how to: Create a location on Instagram

Tag Influential Accounts

If you work with influencers or friends make sure you use the Tag friends in a photo feature. This notifies the user that you’ve tagged them and can increase the number of likes (due to the increased visibility).

Try to be relevant and non-spammy with this technique i.e. don’t tag unrelated people in your photos

How to get more likes on Instagram

Types of Posts to Get More Likes

Share Behind The Scenes Photos

We’re a curious race, people love knowing how things work – you only have to look at the rise in popularity of Twitch and live streamers on YouTube.

If you love the people you work with, don’t be scared to show off how amazing they are! This will help to develop your brand personality and create a more emotional connection with customers.

You didn't sneeze but this picture just blessed you

A post shared by RiceGum (@rice) on

Another way of showing off your culture is to introduce your employees or the people that make the magic happen behind the scenes.

A few studies have shown that Instagram photos with faces are 38% more likely to gets likes, so you should use this to your advantage.

Sat hi to this smiling face this morning, @stackedcafe bringing the goods until 1pm today! ⠀

A post shared by STACKWOOD (@stackwood_) on

Show Progress Shots

Take your users along on your journey – it might be art or even fitness related but regular updates that show your progress are a good way to give you users a peek into how you operate.

This creates a more emotional connection with followers and will increase the percentage of users liking your posts.

🔫🔫🔫PEW PEW!!! Trying to blast through the rest of this new one for my approaching September show with @coreyhelfordgallery 🔫🔫🔫 #art #painting #wip #progress #sneakpeek #lasergun #stilllife

A post shared by Kristen Liu-Wong (@kliuwong) on

Take Photos With Your Products In The Wild

Think about ways you can project your brand image across Instagram, is there a logo or something else you can take photos of and feature in posts?

🙌 snapped by @lulubibilala

A post shared by Brother Baba Budan (@brotherbababudan) on

This coffee shop Brother Baba Budan regrams photos of customers that snap their coffee cups in interesting places around Melbourne.

Find Fun Ways to Engage Your Followers

Canadian designer and photographer Andrew Knapp takes creative photos with his Border Collie, named Momo. The dog is often hidden among crowds of people, nature or buildings – leaving the task of finding him up to you.

This is a fantastic way of challenging, interacting and engaging with your followers. You can even do cool things like asking users to click like once they’ve found the dog.

Find Momo in these pictures! To make my books, I shoot way more photos than we end up using. I send them over the @quirkbooks and together we curate what becomes the final product. Here are a few that were shot for my latest kids book and never used. Also, the print shop closes tonight! Link in profile 😉

A post shared by Andrew Knapp (@andrewknapp) on

Feature Your Customers, Clients or Partners

One of the biggest trends of our increasingly commercialised modern society is personalisation. It offers your customers a look at a more genuine side to your business or personality.

By featuring customer success stories you can interact with your followers on more personal level, this portrays that you actually care and aren’t some robotic organisation that has no face.

Mornings with @vanessa__xx 🍃☕️ A cup of our morning cleanse is the perfect start to your day ⭐️ #babesdrinktea #beatthebloat

A post shared by SkinnyMe Tea (@smtofficial) on

Incorporating Video For More Likes

Create Engaging Videos

They say a picture is worth a thousand words, so what about a video? We all know that videos can convey much more information and emotion than an image, so don’t be afraid to use them.

Some ideas:

  • Behind the scenes videos
  • How to videos
  • Videos with customers

Because you asked🤓 Friday gift here for you all😊 Today I'll teach you how to make an avocado rose! 👍🥑🌹 #tutorial #howto #friday #tgif #friyay

A post shared by Healthy Eats 🍀 (@clover_cinnamon) on

If you have fancy editing skills like Zach King you can make videos that will amaze your users:

What a wild ride! ✈️ Helping my friend out of a sticky situation. @aaronsanimals should know not to fly so close to the trees 🌳 Somehow, this happens way too often and I'm the one who bails him out. Luckily, I always come prepared. #DontTryThisAtHome #MeetAnOwner like me and other real @Subaru_USA owners on #ad

A post shared by Zach King (@zachking) on

Loop Interesting Videos With Boomerang

Boomerang is a way of quickly sharing a video that is unique and resembles a GIF but is also easy to digest.

The app is now built directly into Instagram and allows you to create a quick loop of a video, which is a very simple way to get creative on the fly.

#PAS17 is tomorrow! The #Dreamliner Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 TEN engine is looking good on the static display. #parisairshow #paris #787 #rollsroyce #boomerang

A post shared by The Boeing Company (@boeing) on

Use Instagram Stories

Your photo gallery is where content can be perfect and polished, but Instagram Stories are raw and in the moment.

You can get really creative and show a different side of yourself and your business. You can also use Instagram Stories to direct your followers to your post to get more likes (there’s a final swipe up step at the end).

Using Instagram Stories to Get More Likes

Go Live On Instagram

Like Facebook, Instagram has also launched its live platform to allow people to live stream. You can use Instagram live to host a Q&A, do a webinar, broadcast an event or to share a snippet of your daily life with your followers.

It’s also a great way to engage with your followers and let them ask you questions which you can reply to directly. The possibilities are fairly endless and the kind of broadcast is up to you. It’s again a great way to promote your brand and direct them to your recent posts.

Using Instagram Live Video to Grow Likes

Increasing Your Own Activity For More Likes

Increasing your engagement on posts isn’t always about the content you post, but it’s also about how you interact with your followers.

Let’s talk about some ways to change your Instagram behaviours in a way that helps you be more efficient and drive more results.

Follow & Engage With Other Users Posts

Use the explore feed to find people with interesting posts about relevant topics, particularly on #hashtags that you like to use. All you need is one big account to mention you.

Make sure you actively engage with your own followers and other users by following them, liking and commenting on their posts.

Follow Accounts on Instagram

Instagram is the perfect platform for businesses to interact with potential and current customers. Targeted engagement can help you to build your brand and promote it. Try to run promotions and shoutouts by finding users in similar niche and try to help build each other’s audience.

Try to have a routine of following, commenting and liking a certain number of posts each day.

Stick to a Schedule

You should be posting regularly to keep your followers engaged. The trick is to post just enough. If you post too infrequently your followers will forget that you exist and you won’t get many likes when you actually post.

However, posting too often will quickly become annoying for your followers which will lead to fewer people liking your post and unfollowing you.

It’s generally recommended to post at least once per day, and no more than 3 times per day, on Instagram. A daily post is a good reminder that you’re still active and care about sharing on social media.

Before you start scheduling Instagram posts, you need to find out more about your followers and target market. When are they most active on Instagram? When are they online?

There is really no best time to post to Instagram because different followers will be active different times and in different time zones. Instagram users are usually very active in the morning, at lunchtime and in the evenings. You can try to understand when the best time to post is for you if you look at your Instagram analytics to see when followers are active the most.

How to get more likes on Instagram

The quietest day on Instagram is Sunday, so you have less competition. Try to switch it up and see which times work best for you!

Running Giveaways to Get More Likes

Everyone loves free stuff. Giveaways are fun and engaging way to encourage more likes, followers and to develop a relationship between you and your audience.

A giveaway doesn’t have to expensive, you can just choose a simple prize to start off with. It’s easy to set up and run. Once you have done it and it’s been successful it will be easy to do it as often as you’d like.

Check out our guide for how to use Gleam to run an Instagram contest:Running a Successful Instagram Contest

Liking to Enter

Asking users to like a post is a valid way to ask users to enter your contest (provided you host it on Instagram itself).

Simply find a prize, add your CTA, launch your campaign and watch the likes roll in.

Competition closed. DOUBLE PASS GIVEAWAY TO @goodfoodwine! 🎟🍷 WIN a double pass to this years Good Food + Wine Show! To enter: 〰 Like this post + follow @perthgrub 〰 Tag a friend you'd take with you to the show! Both accounts must be following @perthgrub. Enter as many times as you like! Winner announced June 29 2017, 8pm WST 🎉 Good luck! #PERTHGRUB

A post shared by Perthgrub (@perthgrub) on

Commenting to Enter

You can also ask users to comment on a post to enter, it could be to answer a question or give feedback or simply to let you know that they entered.

WIN WIN WIN! Our WINTER STYLING competition starts today! Enter for your chance to win this fabulous prize pack of a Runwave Curling Wand, Juuce Heat Shield and Juuce Dust Up. Simply like our page and tag 3 friends who would love to warm up with our Winter styling kit. #hairjamm #juuce #curlingwand #heatshield #dustup #stylingkit #competition #win #haircare #australianmade #australianowned #winterstyling #winteressentials

A post shared by Hairjamm Pty Ltd (@hairjamm) on

Using Specific Tactics In Your Posts

There are many ways to get more likes on Instagram, many of them can subtle psychological plays on words.

For example having a call to action is a way of telling your followers exactly what you want them to do. I’m sure you’ve seen plenty of YouTubers ask their fans to smash the like button and whilst it may feel cheesy, it does in fact work.

Double Tap to Like

This is by far the closest thing to the smash the like button that you’ll see on Instagram. In fact, many people don’t realise that you can double tap to like a post.

This strategy was widely used by Foundr to grow their Instagram account to 100k+ followers in just 6 months.

Fail often. 👊 Double tap if you agree and tag a friend that needs to see this!

A post shared by Young Entrepreneur Magazine (@foundr) on

Ask Questions

There’s no better way to drive engagement than to ask you users questions. Most posts are simply visual, so a post that prompts an action is more likely to attract a user’s attention when scanning through their Instagram feed.

You can ask questions in the post description or even put the question in the photo itself:


A post shared by Whisper (@whisper_app) on

Post Quotes

A lot of big accounts use motivational quotes to fill the gaps between normal posts. Motivational quotes work exceptionally well on Instagram as often people will like the post if they agree with it.

Let your hard work do the talking . – 👉Follow @billionaire.mindsets👈 – 📷 Credit: Unknown | ©️All rights and credits to the respective owner #billionairemindsets – #entrepreneur #entrepreneurlife #entrepreneurlifestyle #entrepreneurmindset #motivational #motivationalquotes #inspiration #quote #quoteoftheday #goals #passiveincome #mindsetgrowth #mindsetofaboss #mindset #positivemindset #entrepreneurs #quotes #wealthy #businessman #businesswoman #millionairelifestyle

A post shared by Quotes | Motivation | Inspire (@billionaire.mindsets) on

Use Faces

Photos with faces are 38% more likely to get likes than those without, so use this to your advantage.

Tury passione fragole 🍓

A post shared by PAOLA TURANI tury (@paolaturani) on

Create Image Carousels

Carousel posts provide an excellent opportunity to showcase your brand’s unique narrative. Carousel posts are a way of promoting products and services, but also a beautiful way of telling stories.

Tips for carousel posts:

  1. Think about your audience.
  2. Grab attention with the first image (get your message across right away).
  3. Make them swipe (encourage engagement with other images).
  4. Create a scene (write interesting copy to accompany the images).
  5. Leave them wanting more (put a “learn more” or “continue reading” button so the followers will finish the story on your landing page).

Stand up, speak out, be heard. Vote today!

A post shared by ASOS (@asos) on

Comment Below

Team work ✊️ Who else loves team work? Comment below👇 #motivateddream – Follow Us (@motivated.dream) For More.

A post shared by Motivated Dream (@motivated.dream) on

Tag a Friend

You can ask your followers to tag their friend in your post for more engagement.

Rose #detoxwater by @theskinnyconfidential 🌹 Tag a friend who would like this!

A post shared by Drink Your Vitamins (@dropbottle) on

Use The Layout App

Instagram has an app called Layout which allows you to add some interesting mirroring and kaleidoscopic effects to your photos.

Iceberg Square#50shadesofbondi #ig_sydney #fmspad #layoutphotos #frommyperspective

A post shared by Libby (@li_bby) on

So, there you have it!

We have just gone over 40+ ways to get more likes on one of the biggest visual content platforms in the world. Just remember that having a large number of likes is pretty useless if you don’t take the time to really engage and interact with people to convert them into followers.

Enjoy this post, we’d love it if you could share below:

Get These 40+ Expert Tips From @glemampp on Increasing Likes Per Instagram Post

Best of luck with your Instagramming!

More Resources For Instagram

Thea Gasparyan

Thea is a Growth Intern at Gleam. Leave her a nice comment below if you got something out of this post ☺

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