How You Can Buy Instagram Shoutouts

Instagram is growing – and so are the possibilities of advertising. We’ll explain the concept of ‘Instagram shoutouts’, which requirements have to be met for this and whether the whole thing can be done in an easier way.


What Are Instagram Shoutouts?

Shoutouts are a type of paid advertisement. Influencers – influential Instagram users – advertise a lesser known account on their own page through the use of a shoutout. Thanks to their reach and some nice words, they effectively contribute to the growth of the other channel.

Instagram shoutouts often come in the form of a screenshot. Sometimes, however, you also see videos or a link in the bio published under the account name. Usually, the shout-out remains visible on the profile for 24 hours. By mentioning the username, links or hashtags, the influencers direct their own followers to the other account.

Instagram shoutouts are not to be confused with Instagram mentions. The latter is actually only a mention with @ or hashtag, in the description of a photo or in a comment, for instance. A shoutout, on the other hand, also shows the content of the other channel – as a screenshot of a post or as an exclusively produced video.

What Are The Differences Between Shoutouts And Instagram Ads?

Influencers and advertising customers usually come from the same niche. For example, if the latter wants to advertise their dog salon, then a co-operation with an account about cat trees wouldn’t make any sense. Instagram shoutouts are, therefore, a targeted advertising measure, as they are only shown to users with similar interests.

That is how the difference of Instagram ads can best be described. For while Instagram ads tend to appear randomly in a user’s newsfeed, the shout-out is more of a recommendation on a thematically related account.

The influencer did get paid for the shout-out; however, they also make their choice carefully. After all, they post the contents of another account on their own one – and that’s quite significant.

For this reason, many Instagram users don’t consider shoutouts as advertising. Instagram ads, on the other hand, can be annoying in the newsfeed and are also easily identified as advertising by the label ‘Sponsored’ and the obvious sales language used.

Instagram shoutouts appear more subtle, more approachable and have a trustworthy, authentic flair thanks to the personal recommendation. No surprise, then, that influencer marketing is so popular. Collaborations and word-of-mouth advertising are simply more effective than traditional ads.

Instagram Shoutouts: Requirements And Approach

Are you totally convinced by Instagram shoutouts? Then it’s time you ask yourself some important questions.

Can Your Account Inspire Influencers?

The harsh reality? Instagram shoutouts are not for everyone. Some niches are so small that there are no suitable influencers. At least this means that there is hope for you to become an influencer yourself. If only you had a few more followers...

Number Of Subscribers

As a matter of fact, the size of your own account plays an important role. Even if shout-outs are remunerated, influencers also carry a certain amount of risk – and are therefore justifiably demanding. If you only have a few followers and the interaction on your photos is barely worth mentioning, your account will unfortunately be irrelevant to an influencer.

After all, the influencer puts in a good word for you. If your page doesn’t fulfill this in any way, the influencer will lose credibility. By the way, this applies even more to your content.

Quality Of The Channel

Take a critical look at your photos. Do you have your own imagery? Is there a concept behind your photos or does everything seem randomly thrown together? Are you gifted with photographic skills and familiar with the most important techniques?

And – what do you display in your images? Whether it’s a company, a product or a hobby – the thing that matters is how you portray it. Do your photos make you want more? Or do they tend to be uninspiring? If the descriptions match the content, do you make use of original hashtags?

These are all questions that an influencer will ask themselves when asked for a shout-out. If the page doesn’t (yet) meet their standards, chances of a collaboration are slim.

Where Do You Find ‘Your’ Influencer?

You seem a little dejected. The selection criteria is tough, that’s true. Perhaps it’s a comfort to you that you should scrutinize the influencer just as critically. Your three most important key questions are:

  1. Does the influencer suit my niche?
  2. How many followers does the account have?
  3. How high is the engagement rate?


Influencers spring up like mushrooms. A short Google search for the top influencers of 2019 provides numerous entries and lists with the most influential accounts. But that doesn’t need to be of any interest to you – unless they are a perfect match for your product. This following approach promises you more success:

Finding Your Own Niche

Identify hashtags and keywords that best describe your product. So far, so good. The actual work begins with the evaluation of the results. Because now you have to filter out those accounts that are a possible option for your shout-outs.

Don’t just pay attention to the content, but also to the age, gender, country of origin and the language of your target group. What good is an account that is subscribed to by well-off people from a fancy neighborhood when your customers are still at college and live in a cheap apartment?

The target audience absolutely has to match. Much more important, however, is the number of users, right?

Interpreting The Number Of Subscribers And Interaction Rate

The number of subscribers indicates whether an account can be described as influential. However, don’t let the many zeros behind the 1 dazzle you. A lot of Instagram followers promise a lot of resonance.

More significant, however, is their activity. If a channel has one million followers, but its posts only receive 100 likes on average, the interest of the users is, obviously, almost non-existent.

Your main focus should be on the engagement rate – the relationship between followers and interaction. This can be easily interpreted by looking at videos. An account with 40,000 subscribers seems insignificant at first. With 4,000 to 6,000 video views and several thousand likes, however, this account becomes pretty interesting.

By the way, moderate follower numbers also have another advantage: these influencers don’t get showered with inquiries and generally do not demand as much money as the ‘celebs’. Double luck for you!

How Do You Establish Contact?

If you’ve located a few candidates, you can simply send your request as a direct message. As uncomplicated as that may sound – naturally, there are a number of pitfalls that you might come across.

Constant Dripping Wears The Stone

Imagine somebody asks you for a shout-out. What would you do if the username seems completely unknown to you? Correct, you’d do some research. And you’d then notice that the account neither follows you nor comments on your posts.

Therefore, the first rule is: follow, like, comment! Why should the influencer show any interest if you obviously do not do so yourself? But don’t overdo it! If you practically stalk the chosen one for a week, then send out the direct message and then do nothing anymore, your actions are anything but credible.

Give it some time! Follow the account, like the content that really appeals to you and leave genuine comments – without revealing your intentions.

Careful Planning Is Half The Battle

Your request should be well thought out. Take as much work as possible off of the influencer’s back. Take a screenshot of your favorite photo or produce a small video of your bestseller. Slow sellers should best be left on the shelf. If it already doesn’t inspire your customers analogously it will flop in the digital media all the more.

Identify the day of the week on which your shout-out is most likely to be noticed and also set a time for it. The more you think about it in advance, the more professional you will appear to your influencer. Last, but not least: Communicate in a clear and friendly manner, even if the shout-out doesn’t get the desired response or you receive a rejection.

Instagram Shoutouts: Is There An Easier Way?

Would you have thought that the recommendation of an influencer requires this much work? The rigorous analysis of one’s own account, the lengthy search for an influencer, the weeks of preparation?

Fortunately, Social Media Daily has already saved you most of the work. If you don’t want to wait for your own shout-out any longer, feel free to contact us!