Using Instagram Location to Find More Followers & Customers

Did you know that you can use Instagram location (hashtags and geotags) to find and connect with new customers and/or followers?

Oh, you can, friend. You certainly can.

How might someone use Instagram location to generate leads?

Let’s say you’re an ice cream shop in Brooklyn New York looking to attract more local foot traffic. A simple Instagram search of #brooklyn brings back 19,859,285 results. 

Geotags on Instagram

From these results, you can then begin looking through profiles and taking note of those who are relevant to your target audience. Once you find someone, as illustrated in the image below, you can use Instagram’s Related Channel feature to find other similar leads.

Using Related Channels on Instagram

For more specific targeting, you can use geotags to find people who have indicated to Instagram their current location. Whereas hashtags can connect you with people who were only in a location long enough to create an Instagram post and tag it, geotags are much more likely to connect you with people who are currently active in your area.

Simply type the location into the search bar and click on any option with a pinpoint.

geotagging for business

Instagram hashtags for business

When looking through the search results for your desired geotag, note who has posted recently in that location and make them the first people you contact.

Another way to find people currently in your area is through location-tagged Stories, which are often recommended at the top of your Explore page.

Contacting your leads

When reaching out to someone, especially if that person doesn’t already follow you, your first message has to be perfect. For suggestions on how to optimize your Instagram DMs, have a read through our guide 36 Ways Anyone Can Optimize Their Instagram Messages.

An example DM when first contacting someone might be,

Hey! I own a kick-ass ice cream shop in Brooklyn, New York [introduction]. I saw that you were recently in the area and just wanted to offer you a free first ice cream cone [unique value propostion]. All I’d ask is that you post about your experience afterwards [request]. Just show me this message next time you’re in the area and I’ll hook you up [CTA]. Cheers!

You could then keep track of who comes in and shows you the message to understand which locations are producing the most foot traffic into your business.

Using Instagram location to connect with more followers and/or customers, accelerated.

The beauty of the methods above is that they only require the Instagram app to work. The only downside to them is that they can be time-consuming.

To more quickly find and connect with potential customers, you can use a tool like AiGrow. In addition to hashtag-use and competitor connection, AiGrow allows you to automatically engage with people on Instagram based on their location.

AiGrow gain Instagram followers based on location
AiGrow’s targeting options.

Whereas on Instagram you have to research each location one by one, with AiGrow you can target multiple locations at once.

The process is simple: search for any locations relevant to your target audience, add them to your AiGrow targeting, and hit “Start Growth” to automatically begin connecting and engaging with channels in your chosen locations. See the image below for reference.

While you have the option of selecting such wide-ranging locations as “Los Angeles, California”, this does not always guarantee that you will target all of the Los Angeles. For example, when I searched for the geotag “Los Angeles, California” on Instagram and opened the location in Google Maps, this is actually where the geotag is located:

Instagram geotags

This is to say that even though you search for posts generally tagged in “Los Angeles, California”, the results likely will not show posts tagged in all areas of Los Angelas. It will only show posts from the specific region that Instagram considers to be “Los Angeles”. This is important to understand because targeting only by general locations like Los Angeles places an unnecessary limit on the number of people you can reach.

Instead, we recommend using Google Maps to find all the individual regions in an area and including them in your location targeting one-by-one, as illustrated in the screenshot below.

The more regions (neighborhoods, landmarks, cities, etc.) in a larger area you include in your location targeting, the more people you are likely to connect with, and thus the more followers or customers you are likely to gain.


So there you have it. If you’re a channel or brand looking to expand their followers or customers, using Instagram location is a no-brainer.

For those interested in the accelerated portion of this article and the tools required, you can sign up for AiGrow for free right here.

Have you effectively used Instagram location to grow your following or attract more customers? How’d you do it? Please share in the comments in below!

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