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What is Instagram Organic Reach?

Organic reach on Instagram has been staying pretty stable, it's not going anywhere. Here are 12 ways you can increase it for your account.

Ben Kazinik
By Ben Kazinik

Updated April 16, 2024.


Is organic reach on social media platforms dead? Some experts (and disgruntled brand owners) may think so but studies show quite the opposite picture. According to the Social Status, the average reach on Instagram is 14.26% which pretty damn strong.

What does organic reach mean and why is it important? It's the way you can evaluate the quality of your Instgram content and how well it reaches your target audience, without investing more money in ads.

What does organic reach mean on Instagram?

Organic reach on Instagram refers to the number of unique users who see your content without paid promotion. It's a measure of how effectively your content penetrates your follower base and beyond, relying solely on the platform's algorithm and the natural interaction of users with your posts.

High organic reach is indicative of content that resonates well with the audience, compelling them to engage with likes, comments, and shares, further amplifying its reach.

For example, a post that goes viral due to its relatability or shareability can achieve extensive organic reach, often surpassing the account's follower count. This organic visibility is crucial for brands and creators aiming to establish a strong presence without heavily investing in paid advertising.

Psst: want to improve your organic reach on Instagram? Hire one of our top Instagram experts.

How to calculate organic reach rate on Instagram

The organic reach rate on Instagram can be calculated with the following formula:

Organic Reach Rate (ORR) = (Organic Reach / Total Followers) × 100

This metric helps to understand what percentage of your followers are actually seeing your content organically. For instance, if you have 10,000 followers and a post reaches 2,000 of them organically, your ORR for that post is 20%.

Tracking this rate over time can provide insights into how changes in your content strategy impact your visibility on the platform.

What is a good organic reach on Instagram?

A "good" organic reach rate on Instagram varies by account size and industry, but generally, rates between 10% to 20% are considered strong. However, due to algorithm changes and increasing content saturation, many accounts see lower rates, around 5% to 10%.

Benchmarking against similar accounts in your industry can provide a clearer picture of what constitutes good organic reach for your specific context.

Instagram reach vs impressions

Marketers get confused with these two terms. While both metrics are important, reach indicates the total number of unique users who have seen your post, whereas impressions measure how often a post has been seen in total. If a user sees your post five times, that counts as one reach and five impressions. Understanding the difference helps in analyzing user behavior and the spread of content.

12 Ways to improve your organic reach on Instagram

So, how do you improve your organic reach? It doesn't just come from slapping a few Instagram Stories or Instagram Reels together. You have to create a comprehensive social media strategy that includes putting out high-quality content and engaging with your audience.

1. Post consistently

Posting consistently on Instagram (and really any social platform) is key to maintaining visibility and engagement with your audience. A regular posting schedule keeps your brand fresh in the minds of your followers, ensuring they remember and interact with your content.

Consistency helps establish a rhythm that followers can expect and look forward to, which can significantly boost Instagram engagement rates and organic reach over time. It also allows for more opportunities to analyze what content performs best, enabling a more data-driven approach to content creation.

Source: Later

Expert social media managers will tell you that consistency doesn’t mean posting several times a day. It means finding a frequency that is sustainable for your content creation capabilities and keeps your audience engaged. Whether it’s once a day or a few times a week, the key is to be regular and predictable.

Moreover, leveraging Instagram’s various features and creating different types of content, such as Instagram Stories, Reels, and IGTV, in addition to regular organic posts, can provide a varied content diet for your audience. This not only helps in keeping the feed dynamic and interesting but also caters to different user preferences, maximizing engagement across the platform's different content types.

2. Grab attention in the first 3 seconds

The first three seconds of your Instagram post are crucial in capturing the audience's attention. Users often scroll through their feed quickly, and catching their eye immediately can make the difference between a viewed post and a skipped one. Utilizing striking visuals, intriguing beginnings of videos, or compelling headlines can hook the viewer instantly, prompting them to pause and engage with your content.

Engaging content that grabs attention quickly often tells a story or offers something of immediate value or interest. For instance, a video might start with a surprising fact or question, a bold statement, or an eye-catching visual effect that makes someone stop scrolling. This immediate engagement is critical in increasing the overall view time and interaction with your post, which in turn can boost its organic reach on the platform.

Ways content creators can improve engagement:

  • Start with the most captivating image for your video thumbnail
  • Write a powerful hook in the opening lines of your Instagram caption
  • Add engaging text to your thumbnail

The goal is to make sure they stand out and encourage further interaction.

3. Use the right hashtags

Using the right Instagram hashtags can significantly extend the reach of your Instagram posts to relevant audiences. Hashtags act as discoverability tools, connecting your content with users interested in specific topics.

By incorporating trending and relevant hashtags, you can increase the chances of your posts being seen by a broader audience, including those who don’t follow you but are interested in the content you are posting.

It’s important to use hashtags strategically. This means choosing the ones that are specific to your niche, as well as mixing popular and less competitive tags to maximize visibility. Using a combination of broad and niche-specific popular hashtags can help attract both a wide audience and those who are particularly interested in your content's specific subject matter.

Pro tip: creating a branded hashtag can be a powerful tool for building a community around your brand and encouraging user-generated content. Followers using your branded hashtag can amplify your reach, as their content will be associated with your brand, introducing their own followers to your account. This network effect can substantially boost your organic reach and foster a sense of community and loyalty around your brand.

4. Optimize your captions

Optimizing your Instagram captions can significantly enhance engagement and organic reach. Captions provide context to the visuals, add personality, and give your brand a voice. A well-crafted caption can compel users to engage with the post by liking, commenting, or sharing, which in turn signals to Instagram’s algorithm that the content is engaging and should be displayed to more users.


Effective captions often include a call-to-action, prompting users to interact in specific ways, such as asking a question to encourage comments or directing users to click on a link in the bio. They can also narrate a story or provide insights that add value to the image or video, enhancing the overall user experience and engagement.

The key is to align the tone and content of your captions with your brand identity and the preferences of your audience, ensuring they resonate and drive engagement.

5. Test all Instagram formats

Trying out different Instagram formats, including carousel posts, Instagram Stories, Reels, IGTV, and live broadcasts, can greatly enhance your organic reach and engagement. Each format offers unique advantages and caters to different user preferences, allowing you to diversify your content strategy and engage with a wider audience.

Source: Studiotale

For example, Instagram Stories provide a temporary, casual way to share updates and engage with followers, while IGTV and Reels allow for longer-form content that can delve deeper into topics.

Testing out different formats can help you discover what resonates most with your audience, providing insights that can shape your content strategy.

6. Know your niche

Understanding and catering to your specific niche on Instagram is crucial for boosting your organic reach. When content aligns with the interests, needs, and preferences of a targeted audience, it resonates more deeply, leading to higher engagement rates and stronger follower loyalty.

a screenshot of a cell phone with the contact view button highlighted
Source: Later

For instance, if your niche is sustainable living, sharing tips, stories, and insights about eco-friendly practices will engage an audience interested in sustainability, which could drive more likes, comments, and shares, amplifying your content's reach organically. Use an analytics tool to identify your audience demographics and create pieces of content that help you keep your audience engaged.

7. Provide value to your audience

Providing value to your audience is paramount for increasing organic reach on Instagram. And this is true for any social network. Value can come in various forms such as educational content, entertainment, inspirational stories, or practical tips that directly benefit your followers.

Content that adds value is more likely to be shared, saved, and engaged with, which in turn signals to Instagram’s algorithm that your posts are worth showing to a wider audience.

For example, a cooking-related Instagram account might share quick recipes, cooking tips, and ingredient insights, providing immediate value to followers interested in culinary arts. Similarly, a fitness influencer could offer workout routines, health tips, and motivational advice, engaging an audience keen on fitness and wellbeing.

Providing consistent value establishes a relationship of trust and reliability with your audience. When followers know that they can consistently get valuable information or entertainment from your account, they are more likely to engage with your content regularly, enhancing your organic reach over time.

8. Engage with your followers

Engagement is a two-way street on Instagram. Actively interacting with your followers by responding to comments, participating in conversations, and acknowledging their feedback can significantly enhance your organic reach. Engagement fosters community and loyalty, encouraging more interaction from followers, which in turn boosts your content’s visibility in their feeds.

Regular engagement helps you better understand your audience, allowing you to tailor your social media content more effectively to their preferences and needs.

When you engage with your followers, it encourages them to spend more time on your profile and interact with your content. This increases the likelihood of your posts appearing in their feed and being shared with a broader audience. This organic interaction not only strengthens your relationship with your audience but also amplifies your reach on the platform.

9. Encourage user-generated content

User-generated content (UGC) is a powerful tool for boosting organic reach on Instagram. Encouraging your followers to create and share content related to your brand or niche can lead to increased engagement and visibility. UGC acts as social proof, validating your brand’s value and appeal, and can attract new followers while keeping the existing ones engaged.

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Hosting contests, challenges, or campaigns that incentivize followers to post their own content with a specific hashtag can generate a wealth of UGC. For instance, a fashion brand might encourage followers to post pictures of themselves wearing the brand's clothing with a unique hashtag, leading to increased visibility and engagement.

Sharing UGC on your own profile not only honors and appreciates your followers’ contributions but also demonstrates a genuine community around your brand. This can significantly enhance your brand’s authenticity and appeal, increasing your social media presence as more users discover and interact with your content.

Tips on sharing UGC:

  • Make sure to share only high-quality content
  • Embed UGC into your product pages (eCommerce)
  • Hire influencers to create short-form video content

10. Collaborate with other accounts

Collaborating with other Instagram accounts, whether they are influencers, brand partners, or complementary businesses, can significantly expand your organic reach. These partnerships allow you to tap into each other's audiences, introducing your brand to potential new followers who are likely to be interested in your content.

For example, a fitness brand could collaborate with a company that sells protein bars. They could share audiences, benefiting both parties by cross-promoting content that aligns with both brands' values and audience interests.

Collaborations can take many forms, from joint giveaways and contests to shared content series or Instagram takeovers. These activities not only provide fresh content for your followers but also generate excitement and engagement, increasing the organic reach of your posts.

These collaborations could turn into long-term relationships and networks that continually benefit all parties involved. Regular collaborations keep the content dynamic and engaging, encouraging repeat engagement from followers and sustaining organic reach growth over time.

11. Post at the right time of day

Boosting your reach is not just about posting relevant content it's also about posting it at the right time. Do your research on your audience and find out which times they are most active on the platform. Then you can strategically schedule your social media posts to get maximum engagement.

Source: Sproutsocial

12. Boost your posts with Instagram ads

While the focus of this post is on organic reach, incorporating paid ads strategically can complement and enhance your organic efforts on Instagram. Boosting posts can help bridge the gap during low organic reach periods and introduce your content to a wider target audience.

For example, promoting a post that has already performed well organically can magnify its reach exponentially, tapping into new audience segments that are similar to your current followers.


Paid promotions should be selective and strategic, focusing on content that has the potential for high engagement or aligns with specific marketing goals, such as lead generation or event promotion. This approach ensures that your investment in paid ads is effective and contributes to your overall brand growth and engagement strategy.

Additionally, paid campaigns can provide valuable data and insights into audience preferences and behavior, which can be used to refine your organic content strategy. By analyzing which paid content performs best, you can identify themes, messages, and formats that resonate with your broader audience, informing your organic content decisions and helping to improve overall reach and engagement.

Work with the right Instagram expert to boost your reach

Your social media marketing strategy depends on reach. Without it, you won’t be able to reach prospective customers and turn your social media campaigns into quality traffic and leads. Sometimes it's hard to nail the balance between post frequency, proper engagement and finding the right content ideas.

That's why you should hire the right Instagram expert that will be able to work with your in-house team and grow your Instagram account. Let's match you with an expert that has proven experience in your niche and a successful track record working for similar brands. Reach out to us and let's get you going!