How To Automate An Effective Instagram Bot That Isn’t Spammy.
Before we get started, I think it’s important we clarify one thing: Yes, there are SUPER spammy bots on Instagram that cause very unpleasant user experiences for all of us.
Instead of empowering people to create more spammy bots, this article aims to demystify how Instagram interaction automation works so more small business owners have the knowledge and tools to grow their business through the platform, like I have, and do it in a way that won’t negatively affect other users or their accounts, given Instagram’s latest crackdown on inauthentic activity.
In other words, this article will not teach you how to automate a bot that comments or follows other people’s accounts. That’s the sort of activity that people perceive as spammy and, ultimately, it isn’t an effective way to grow your Instagram business either.
From my personal experience growing Instagram accounts like @pinlord, @potteryforall, @macramemakers, and many others, it’s possible to automate certain interactions on that will help grow an account at an above-average rate without generating a bad user-experience for other people on the app. It’s how @potteryforall has gained over 100,000 followers in 12 months.
It’s doesn’t require being a “hacker”, it’s just about understanding how interaction automation functions and putting in the work required to consistently execute the right strategy over a long period of time.
Here’s how you do it:
Start with the essentials.
What a bot does is interact with other people’s Instagram accounts so you don’t have to do it manually. Here’s a video that explains it simply:
If programmed correctly on an Instagram account with differentiated awesome content, a bot is like rocket-fuel! It will multiply your rate of growth because it’ll allow your already-great account to be discovered many more people that you could have never reached if you were doing all of the interactions manually.
On the other hand, an incorrectly programmed bot on an account that doesn’t have delightful content will likely ensure that your Instagram appears spammy because many more people will receive an irrelevant interaction from an account they dislike (yours). It’s a terrible first impression, and worse of all, it’ll be a big waste of your time, energy and money because it simply won’t generate any substantial growth.
So, before you start your bot endeavors it’s important that you make sure your Instagram is a well-designed rocket, ready for some bot rocket fuel. The absolute essentials for one are:
Have an account with a differentiated visual grid and content that gives people value.
How your account looks at first glance is often the only way people decide whether or not to follow you once they discover your account after receiving a “like” from your bot.
The better you are at executing top-notch visual content that gives people real value, the more effective your bot will be at converting interactions into Follows and the faster you’ll grow because your account will be more visually-differentiated to all of the other accounts creating similar content or selling similar products to yours.
A simple way to execute that is by having a well-executed and differentiated visual grid (like the accounts in the photo below) and creating thoughtful content that gives people value (you can learn more about how to do that by reading this article about how to optimize your content to increase your Instagram engagement rate as well as this one about why your Instagram account isn’t growing).
Know the hashtags and accounts that your target audience cares about.
To automate an effective bot you’ll also need to know the hashtags and accounts that your target audience pays attention to the most.
Who are the people on Instagram that will find your account valuable? Which accounts do they love to follow? Which hashtags do they check most often?
The more clearly you know what type of person will find your content valuable and the more accurately you’re able to identify the accounts and hashtags (here’s a great article on how to find the most effective hashtags for you) they pay attention to the most, the better “Targets” you’ll automate your bot with and the more effective your bot will be at converting interactions into Follows because each interaction is more likely to be relevant (we’ll delve into what bot “Targets” are later so don’t worry if you don’t know what that means right now).
Once you’ve spent time ensuring that your Instagram account has a visually differentiated grid and you have identified the accounts and hashtags your target audience cares about the most, it’s time to find the best bot for you.
The best Instagram bot.
There are many (and I mean MANY) websites out there claiming to provide the most effective bot services for your Instagram account. I’ve tried most of them and so should you, but currently, here are the most effective (and safest) ones I’ve used in the following categories:
(Btw, I change this portion of the article frequently because Instagram changes all the time and this influences which services are the most effective. Currently, Instagram has implemented new changes that most automation providers have not been able to adapt to. This means that most bot providers might malfunction or simply not provide results. If your current bot provider isn’t working for you, make sure to check back here for updates on the latest automation software I’m trying. Also, if you try a bot provider and it doesn’t work, I’d recommend that you continue trying new oned until you find one that works for you. Different bot providers will work for different accounts. The last update was November 2nd, 2019)
The Most Reliable & Effective: When it comes to the Instagram automation software industry, it’s important to know that there are new automation services popping up all of the time and most of them usually have crappy or non-existent customer service and most of them tend to go out of business quickly because they can’t adapt to Instagram’s changes. Starting at $15, Instamber is currently the most reliable because they’ve made the biggest strides in adapting to the latest Instagram algorithm changes so their service actually works. This tends to keep your account safer than other services that haven’t adapted and their interaction services are more likely to be stopped by Instagram (this means your account is also more likely to be flagged by Instagram). They also offer a new feature in which you can automate the process of viewing stories, which greatly increases your reach and results as well as features that enable you to schedule and automate posts and respond to DMs, which will help you not have to use your app as much and this will keep your account safe.
If Instamber doesn’t work for you, I’d recommend trying Instazood or Boostgram. They are one of the longest-running companies in the industry and they have a proven track record of delivering great customer service, so even if they don’t have the most effective automation, at least they have customer service that will make an effort to solve your problems.
I’ve also included a guide to how to automate a non-spammy bot through Instamber at the bottom of this article.
The Cheapest & Most Versatile: Starting at $6 p/month Instagrambotfollower.com is by far the most versatile and robust Instagram tool out of all of the other services listed in this article, especially at this price. They offer simple and effective interaction automation like everyone else, but on top of that, they have a bunch of other features like post scheduling and DM automation which can be useful if you want to use it as your all-in-one service to manage your Instagram activities. Another element that I think really sets them apart is that they have a clean and easy to use interface, which can be helpful if you’re automating a bot for the first time. The only downside I’ve found with them is that they don’t offer an easy to access customer service, but that’s to expect at this price-rang.
If you don’t like not having customer service, try Insta Captain. They the same UX but better functionality when it comes to targeting as well as customer service but also a higher price.
What To Do When You’ve Tried Everything, Have a Budget, but Can’t Grow Your Account: Starting at $750 per month, Social Sensei is the most expensive option in this article but they manage everything for you by hand, with a dedicated account manager. Basically, what a fancy agency does, but cheaper and likely more effective in terms of growth. Apart from automation, they do your content strategy, account management, hashtag research, automated posting, and most other account growth needs. It’s like hiring an in-house social media manager, but it’s manager remotely. If you’ve tried all growth tactics, have a budget, need to grow your Instagram but can’t figure out how to do it…they are a good first option to try before hiring someone.
Feel free to try them all, but in an effort to give you as much actionable information as possible in this article, I’ll be showing you the specific strategies and parameters I use on my Instamber account at the bottom of this article.
But before we start, it’s important that I make one thing clear…
DON’T automate comments and/or follows! They create spammy bots.
A comment on Instagram is a positive interaction only when it’s relevant to the content of the photo.
Given that a bot will interact with hundreds of photos each day, it’s impossible to program a bot that will create context-relevant comments for all of the photos and contexts it’ll come across. Instead of avoiding comment automation, pushy social media marketers ignore the fact that they are creating unpleasant interactions and program bots to comment generic and vague phrases like “great shot” or “Keep up the great work!” to try and get someone’s attention. This type of automation is what creates the spammy bots you and I despise on Instagram.
In the same vein, a follow on Instagram is a positive interaction only when it’s perceived as a sincere and organic by the person you’re following.
Given that a bot will interact with hundreds of accounts each day, it’s impossible to program a bot that will mostly follow people who will clearly perceive it as a sincere and organic follow. Equally as annoying as comment automation, pushy social media marketers program bots to follow hundreds of account that they don’t personally know in order to get people’s attention. This is also the type of automation is what creates the spammy bots you and I despise on Instagram.
Don’t be a pushy social media marketer and don’t automate comments or follows. Apart from it creating ill-will with most people you’ll interact with, it’ll likely get you flagged and downgraded by the Instagram algorithm, or even shadowbanned given Instagram their latest efforts to reduce these inauthentic activities.
ONLY automate likes. They are a non-intrusive way to make people happy and be discovered.
The way to automate an effective Instagram bot that isn’t spammy is by only sticking to “like” automation. Why? In comparison to comments or follows, likes are a subtle nudge that only shows up on people’s activity feed. Most of us don’t tend to have ill-will against a “like” from a person we don’t know, and in fact, we’re usually pretty happy or at least indifferent to an extra like in one of our posts (Instagram is also highly incentivized to be more lenient with like automation since it increases engagement rates on the app and all they want is for people to use the app more)! And unless you’re someone who has thousands of followers, most of us still check our activity feed to see who liked our posts and discover new Instagram account this way.
Effectively automating likes through a bot is the same as paying Instagram to have your account shown on people’s home feeds through a sponsored ad. It’s an activity that creates hundreds of opportunities for your Instagram username to be discovered by people who didn’t know you existed.
The goal here is to program a bot that, through liking, creates as many discovery opportunities as possible with people who are likely to tap through your username and perceive enough value in your account to give it a Follow.
The better you are at programming your bot to find those people, the faster your account will grow.
Alright, now that you know the principles of automating a bot, here’s how you implement them…
Automate effective likes on Instamber by doing the following:
For illustration purposes, I’ll show you how I automate a non-spammy bot for my account @macramemakers on Instamber.
Alright, so once you’ve set up your account, here’s what you do:
1. Activate their dedicated proxy:
Instagram prevents some accounts from making actions (likes, follows) because when you use a service like this one, they are created using an IP address and location different than yours. To resolve this Instamber, allows you to activate a dedicated proxy from them. It costs $.75, but if you don’t want to pay that, you can always set up your own (which is way more complicated if you don’t know how to do that).
2. Set your promotion actions.
Once that’s activated and you’re in the dashboard, go to your Promotion section, select Settings, and under the Actions tab, only leave the Viewing stories + likes box checked, set your Minimum liked to 1 and your Max likes to 3, and hit SAVE. This means that your account will randomly like between 1 and 3 of other people’s posts and view their stories. By doing this, that person will see your username up to 4 times (3 in their activity feed and 1 in their who viewed your stories screen) in a way that appears organic to them, which greatly increases the likelihood of them viewing your account.
3. Set your promotion filters.
In the filters tab, select that gender, language, and age guidelines that best fit your target audience and then do the following:
- Check Skip used accounts: This will make sure you don’t interact with people you’ve interacted before. It reduced the likelihood of being perceived as spammy.
- Check Skip 10% accounts: This helps mimic human liking behavior.
- Set max followers to 5000 and max following to 7000: These are the thresholds of follower and following numbers in which account holders still view their activity feed (if they don’t view the likes you’ve given them, your interaction will be wasted).
- Check Skip private users, business accounts and accounts with phone numbers: You skip them because they are less likely to follow you vs accounts that don’t have these characteristics.
- Include the black list and stop words that are important for your account and hit SAVE.
4. Add your targets.
Click on the + New Promotion button and add the target Instagram accounts who’s followers your bot will interact with and the locations and the hashtags who’s taggers you’ll interact with (for some accounts, locations will be irrelevant).
Here is where having a clear and specific target audience becomes important.
Which are the Instagram accounts that have the highest density of your target audience? Which are the hashtags and locations that are tagged by the highest density of your target audience? Those are the accounts, hashtags and locations that should be your targets. The better you are at identifying the right targets, the more effective your bot will be.
I’ll use my own Instagram @macramemakers as an example.
My target audience is Female macrame makers and enthusiasts from the age of 25–40 in the USA.
From my research, the Instagram accounts that have the highest density of followers that fit those characteristics are @modernmacrame, @emily_katz, @niromastudio, @macramania, @the_forestfern. The hashtags that have the highest density are #macramewallhanging #macrameplanthanger #macramedecor #macramemaker #macrameartist. And locations don’t apply to me. These are my targets.
Once you’ve entered them all, click on Add Promotion.
5. Start automation.
Once you’ve set your guidelines and included your targets, you’ll be all set. All that’s left to do is Start your promotion and your account will begin interacting with other accounts so they can discover you.
6. Check your stats.
It’s also going to be super important for you to constantly check your Statistics (it’s the button next to Settings). There, you’ll see how your bot is performing and converting. If after a couple of weeks you’re not seeing good results in your stats page, it might be because you haven’t chosen the right targets to direct interactions to so try changing them. Your stats page is where you’ll measure how good of a job you’re doing so it’s going to be essential.
7. Follow their usage advice.
And last but not least, make sure you follow all of Instamber’s best practices to get the best results and avoid being flagged by Instagram. Automation is no longer as simple as it used to be, so if you don’t want to get flagged, follow the requirements that these services give you and don’t cut corners. They are the experts on what is required!
8. If that doesn’t work for you, use their Manual promotion (Hot Clients) feature.
The Instagram anti automation measures are getting stronger by the day and soon you might not be able to automate at all. Because of this, this Hot Clients option is the only practical solution if traditional automation doesn’t work. Via this method, users can target the a target’s audience’s posts manually and interact with them. Instamber collects users’ target posts by its filters so that the users can see them choose them and interact with them. They dedicated some feature like comments, sending direct messages and likes and you can apply some actions on the collected posts. Although you’ll need to spend some manual time on this feature, it’ll be more effective than doing it by hand on Instagam and likely getting blocked by doing that also.
And that’s it! That’s how you automate a non-spammy bot on Instamber.
If you find yourself struggling at first, don’t worry, it takes all of us a while to get the hang of this! If from reason or another your automator isn’t working, contact the bot service’s help team (or try another of the bot providers I recommended in this article). In general, they are usually very helpful, reliable and will be able to tell you what you need to resolve your issue.
And don’t forget! Instagram is continually changing and each account is unique, but the principles of automation will remain the same for any service. What’s important is that you always keep in mind that the keys to success are:
- Creating an account that has awesome content.
- Having a clear and specific target audience.
- Continually testing and tweaking your bot targets and filters to maximize conversion rates.
- And more importantly, being empathetic and programming your bot in an organic (human) way.
We have more than enough spammy bots on Instagram…
PS — this article, like all other articles about this topic that you’ll find on google, contains affiliate links to the services I recommend. That being said, I have personally evaluated all of the companies I include in my article as well as constantly revisit them and change my recommendations accordingly. In the industry of Instagram automation, the effectiveness of these companies changes depending on their ability to adapt to Instagram’s changes. Because Instagram changes all the time, which companies are effective and which are not, change all the time. That is why I constantly edit my article as well as clarify the dates of the latest edits so you can keep checking on my latest recommendations.