Skip to Content

Hack the Instagram Algorithm: How to Connect with your Tribe


pinterest graphic

Instagram is such a great place to find and meet other people who share your same interests. Over the past few years we’ve cultivated genuine friendships behind the squares. And we’ve found so much inspiration!


Instagram has a way of not always showing the accounts you want to regularly see. The algorithm determines whether you’ll see a friend’s posts in your feed when you’re scrolling. If the algorithm determines that a post isn’t “feed worthy,” it’s just not going to show up. But you may be interested in what your friend is sharing! In fact, you may want to see ALL of that person’s posts.

We’ve tried all sorts of methods to try to stay in touch with and see the accounts we love, but none of them have been particularly effective. Even turning notifications on for a particular account isn’t 100% reliable. Other ways we’ve tried using tools within the app have been clumsy. Ultimately, Insta wants to be in control of what you see.

What we Tried that Hasn’t Worked

Here are some of the methods we’ve used to try to stay connected with our Instagram friends. Each method has presented problems.

  • DMs with a group of friends who drop an emoji in the DM to let everyone know they’ve posted
  • Scrolling through our feed (so. many. ads…)
  • Creating a Saved folder in the app with a post from the accounts we love the most to help check their account
  • Scrolling through our Following tab

A few weeks ago while putting together a list of accounts that we were collaborating with for a seasonal home tour, we discovered a new, super easy way to stay connected. We’re so excited to share our hack with you!

How we Hacked Instagram’s Algorithm

Since we share our Instagram account (and blog, and email, and Facebook…), we’ve started using Google Keep. We can create notes there with hashtag groups, to do lists, email templates, etc. One night when we were both at home, we were trying to decide which accounts we wanted to invite to join our home tour. We started a list of the Instagram account names in Google Keep so we could both see the accounts.

And then we had a total light bulb moment! What if we put the direct link to our friend’s Instagram accounts in one of our notes? We could tap straight through to quickly and easily see the accounts we want to stay connected with. We tried it out and it worked perfectly.

Connecting with your Tribe on Instagram

Want to hack Instgram and stay connected with all the people and accounts YOU choose to see? Just follow these six simple steps to create your own lists.

1. Go to an account you want to include in your list.

screenshot of an Instagram profile

Tap on the three dots in the upper right corner of each account you want to include in your list. This opens up the dialog box pictured below:

screenshot of an Instagram profile

2. Tap on the option to Copy Profile URL

3. Open up your Preferred App to Store Notes

We chose to use Google Keep for ours because it’s tied to our Google account so we can both see and edit the note seamlessly. The images below use the Notes app provided by Apple ios.

screen shot of Notes app on phone with instruction step to hack Instagram's algorithm

With your app opened, simply paste the URL that you copied from Instagram into the note.

4. Edit the URL

Instagram likes to be a little Big Brotherish and tries to track all of your traffic and interactions. Notice all the code after the account name in the image above? That’s solely there to track any interactions coming from that link. Simply delete all that code up to and including the question mark.

screen shot of Notes app on phone with instruction step to hack Instagram's algorithm

5. Give Your Note a Name

Giving your note a name will let you easily find your list. We’ve created multiple lists to help us stay connected.

We have a shared list of other blogger’s accounts we want to engage with daily. Then we have another shared list of “big” accounts we want to be sure we see and engage with. And since we have different styles and design tastes, we each have our own list of accounts that we find inspiring.

screen shot of Notes app on phone

6. Add More Accounts to Your List

Now, just repeat steps 1 through 4 and add all the accounts you want to include in your list.

screen shot of Notes app on phone with instruction step to hack Instagram's algorithm

We’ve been using this method with great results since putting our lists together. We hope this Instagram hack helps you to engage and stay connected with your favorite peeps too. Tell us your results in the comments, and be sure to share this article with your Instagram friends!

More Posts You May Enjoy:

Pin it to Remember it: