Last updated: August 17, 2017
UPDATE: Sadly, Instagress has been shut down by Instagram. For those of you looking for a similar tool, we just reviewed an Instagress alternative called Popamatic. It uses real people to do the work for you and so there is no chance of Instagram putting the smack down on this service.
Click here to check out Popamatic.
That said, the closure of Instagress does bring up some interesting points when it comes to social media software. Remember, tools like Instagress are exactly that – tools. They can be used for good or “evil” and it’s up to you to decide which.
We think a good rule of thumb is to learn how something is done – the process – and then figure out what tasks you can assign to tools so that you can scale your efforts without adding extra time.
For instance, on Twitter and Instagram, a follow first strategy to grow your account is effective. In fact, it’s probably the best way to grow a following fast, assuming your not Justin “The Biebs” Bieber or some such celebrity.
So if you implement a follow first strategy, it makes perfect sense to use a tool to help you save time and effort. You’ll be accomplishing the exact same task and getting the same (or better) results in less time. Who can argue with that? (There’s a comment section for those who can – good luck.)
The other side of that coin is there are things that tools cannot and should not be used for on social media.
For instance, Instagress and some of the other Instagram services have the functionality to auto comment on photos. This is something that’s not a process you would do on your own. At least I hope not.
Would you take the same generic message and copy and paste it into any and every photo you come across on Instagram? Of course not! Half the time it won’t make sense and the other half it will be completely transparent that it’s not a genuine comment.
So, again, keep in mind that just because you can do something with a tool doesn’t always mean you should.
Instagram is HOT.
The platform has over 500 million active users per month.
It’s one of my favorite platforms for my fashion blog Shortofheight because of its visual appeal. To date, I have over 60,000 followers for Shortofheight on Instagram.
Look at companies like Kapten & Son. They are dominating Instagram for their business with over 450,000 followers.
This is just one example. There are plenty more out there.
Here’s what I learned. If you want get followers on your Instagram account quickly, you need to be active.
Of course, this can be done manually or with automation.
I’m a huge fan of doing both. After all, even if I’m asleep, I still want activity on my Instagram accounts. That’s why I recommend automating half of the tasks. That’s eight hours of activity NOT wasted.
Automating tasks on Instagram can help grow your accounts twice as fast, maybe even more. And to do this I highly recommend using Instagress.
Instagress runs your account on autopilot 24/7, so Instagram is working for your business, even when you’re not!
In a nutshell, Instagress can follow, unfollow, like, and comment for you round the clock. These activities help you attract followers to your account even when you are asleep.
How powerful is that?
This guide is for those of you out there who are new to automation or haven’t used it very much.
This Instagress review and guide is a bit technical and a lot to take in all at once. I recommend you bookmark this post so you always have this info available.
Before you begin:
It’s a good idea to go through these tutorials from Instagress first. They will give you a better understanding on the most basic functions.
I’ll also explain some of their features below.
To get started, always follow these two tips:
Tip 1: To avoid looking like a spammer, I recommend switching off COMMENTS. You should only leave comments manually because it allows you be more relevant and sincere instead of leaving general (boring) comments that don’t attract attention.
Tip 2: Start with SLOW automation, as we go over below. This will start you off with minimal automation. You’ll want to familiarize yourself with this automation before you scale up to make sure things go smoothly.
After you connect your Instagram account, you will have the ability to:
My advice is to ignore ‘comment.’ You can choose any of the combinations above. I tend to pick either like only or like and follow/unfollow at the same time.
Here’s why Instagress is so effective for getting more Instagram followers for your business:
Targeting and filters will probably be the two sections you’ll spend the most time on, so pay attention.
With targeting, you’ll be able to target based on
Tags: Based on hashtags (GOLD)
Locations: Specific location
Followers: Your followers or someone else’s followers (GOLD)
Following: Who you follow or another account follows
Likers: People who have liked users’ photos (GOLD)
Commenters: People who have commented on photos
If you want to understand these features better, just scroll over the “?” symbol on and it will give you a better understanding of what’s going on.
It’s very handy and explains what you need to know about each feature.
I prefer to pick my targeting based on hashtags and followers, or likers and followers.
You should just stick to the default and pick SLOW. If you go too fast, it may signal to Instagram that you’re automating your account – an Insta-no-no – and your account may start to seem spammy.
This is the second place you’ll be spending most of your time. There’s a lot to take in here, so strap in for this part.
Here are some basic features I would pick:
Media age: 1 day. Doing this will select new photos that are one day old. There’s no point to interact with old photos.
Media type: Photos
Min likes: 0
Max likes filter: 100. What this does is pick the pic with a certain number of max likes. Go for lower numbers instead of interacting with photos with a high number of likes
Max followers: I tend to key in less than 3,000 followers because these users are following a smaller number of people and will engage with you more. It’s up to you to choose the number that suits your Instagram account.
For the rest, I usually leave them at ZERO. Doing this will ignore those features.
Avoid this section.
Always leave comments manually.
Follow cycle means the number of people you will follow before you unfollow them. I tend to pick about 1,000-2,000. This way it allows them time to follow back before you unfollow those who aren’t following you.
Also check “Don’t follow same users” and “Don’t follow private users.”
Pick the same number you would pick for following. Then make sure you choose your unfollow source to be Instagress.
These are hashtags you want to target when using Instagress. Pick semi-popular hashtags.
I wouldn’t go with popular hashtags such as #OOTD, #Fashion, #Fitness, etc. because those tend to have more spam.
You want to like pictures that are genuine from people. You need to do your homework on this. The good news is, you can start with one tag and they will suggest other hashtags to include. Pick those that aren’t used too often.
Next, add about 30 hashtags.
If you’re a local business on Instagram, this section is extremely important. Add the locations you want to target.
These are the people you want to target. For this, I pick accounts that are semi-popular. I don’t advise targeting celebrity Instagram accounts.
For example, a proper engagement rate would be around 10%. If they have 6,000 followers with 600 likes, that’s a good signal that their Instagram account is active.
Target those pages. While they may not convert as well, the quality of likes/comments is higher.
To get the most out of this, I recommend more than ten usernames to target simultaneously.
Accounts you want to blacklist.
Using this feature will auto stop when you hit a particular action. For example:
Follow counter = 600
This means it will stop when you have followed 600 people with Instagress.
I tend to ignore this feature.
Last but not least is the “SCHEDULE” feature.
You can find this schedule feature right at the top. It’s a tad hard to locate if you don’t know where to look.
This is a very important feature because it allows you to ‘pause’ your activity.
If you do both manual and automation, switch your Intagress to pause when you’ll be using it manually. Here’s an example below.
Even if you automate the entire process, choose a few random hours to ‘rest’. That way in Instagram eyes, you’ll look more human compared to a bot that will like, follow, unfollow a certain number of people.
As I mentioned, I’m a huge fan of both manual and automated activity when using Instagram for business. I’ve seen great results from them growing multiple accounts from scratch to over 60,000 followers.
I do recommend you use Instagress with caution. Do not push it, especially if your account is fairly new. Always use it on a backup account before using it on your main account to get a feel for the best way to use this awesome tool.
So what do you think? Have you used Instagress before? Will you now armed with all these killer tactics? Let me know in the comments section!