Tips from writers who are turning Instagram followers into Substack subscribers, and taking back control of their audience
Perhaps this works with very large IG accounts, as if they manage to transfer to Substack even just a percentage of their followers that still means a lot of views and possible readers/subscribers.
Trouble is that won't work if your IG is small. Instagram doesn't really like people driving traffic outside their platform (from IG to Substack, in this case), and I've noticed my views dropping dramatically ever since I started linking back to my Substack in my IG stories from my small account. A few days ago a reel by notjustanalytics about this very issue confirmed that, too... 🤷🏻♀️
Thank you for sharing Substack team and thanks for writing articles like this to help out new writers :)
I love these articles and find them really useful, but they are not relatable to most people. Substack Writers usually features writers/creators with more than 10k subscribers and followers, it would be interesting to see how to showcase emerging writers. I appreciate the expanding stories, but I think success can look different and I would be super curious on other ways in which you see success, or simply an original idea, happening.
This is interesting - I'm someone who writes a midsized Substack constantly thinking about how to expand, including whether that includes more time creating content for social media. That being said, I far prefer the longform capability Substack provides to write to my heart's content and find it allows for a closer relationship with readers.
This is a lot to take in but very helpful. I guess there are some of us whose work doesn’t fit visual media. It’s hard when you might be hesitant to be on camera. Might take the plunge to drum up a bigger IG following. Who knows.
I’ll start backwards. Follow me here:
IG/Meta is the worst platform for censorship. Hope Substack continues to support free speech! I interviewed artist Arthur Kwon Lee about how he got banned on Instagram: https://yuribezmenov.substack.com/p/how-to-make-art-great-again-arthur-kwon-lee
These are great, now I wish I had a bigger instagram following
I also moved here because I felt that my content was being shared with no retribution on instagram. I wanted to dig deeper and create a community that felt cosy and intimate. And I am managing pretty well thanks to this amazing platform. However, I do feel that most people showcased here have huge followings already and it would be interesting to see how this is for people who have around 2000-10000 followers. I think the way in which Substack will showcase emerging creators (and not only established people) is one of the things I am most curious (and hope) to see evolve.
Yes, yes, yes! As someone with an existing instagram platform, moving the bulk of my work to substack has been one of the BEST choices I have made for my small business-- both financially and creatively. Thank you for this amazing platform, @Substack!
This is OK but rather not extensive. In my article I have gone in more detail how to drive more traffic from Instagram and all other social platforms. Hope it’s helpful to you.
I did manage to amass a decent following on Instagram a while ago, but the algorithm lost interest in me when it became all about hyperactive short-form videos. Instagram Reels was bad enough, but as we all know, in 2025 Reels was followed by Instagram Spaffs – even shorter videos with a maximum length of 0.5 seconds. Not only did this to a huge rise in ADHD diagnoses, but it also caused people to start speaking over 500% faster as they became used to trying to cram entire messages into half a second. In the worst cases, as a result of thinking and talking too fast, some users experienced Full Brain Shutdown (FBS).
You can read the rest of my memories of Instagram here: https://danielpiper.substack.com/p/remembering-instagram
If they are able to bring people over from Instagram, must mean they be good. Because people on Instagram never click links.
Any tips on relaunch for current substack if we never did a big push at the beginning? Thanks!
I'm interested in working with Threads when it comes over to desktop. IG is nowhere near as toxic as Twitter/X, but it's also not super useful for linking straight to an article. Threads is pretty much custom tailored for that.
Thanks a lot. I’ve decided to reshape my Instagram from a profile to a Substack showcase and in a few days I removed all my 5000 pictures and I’m just leaving there Substack posts and notes and links. From a hundred viewers that I usually had I went up to thousands. Wild how the algorithm got played.
This is a great set of tips. As someone planning to launch my Substack newsletter soon, I really appreciate it. However, I'm not on Instagram—never have been. Instead, I mostly hang out on Twitter. Yes, I know, Elon Musk has done a lot to ruin the place. But I don't see the bad stuff on Twitter, because I only look at tweets from a carefully curated list of people. And I like the rough-n-tumble character there, and the very immediate connection to what's happening in the news. Plus the fact that the emphasis is on words, not images.
Now a lot of your suggestions—making a personal video for your launch, etc.—can also be implemented on Twitter. Any chance, though, you could make a version based on how users of other social media platforms should best go about getting started on Substack?