Getting more and more Instagram followers is not everyone’s cup of tea. I have loads of friends who created Instagram accounts and have never posted an image, much less a caption. “It’s unrealistic to live your life in tiny square grids,” they tell me. Others refuse to buy into the idea that a person’s highlight reel resembles anything close to their everyday reality.
It’s a valid point but for everyone who has opted out of Instagram, there are millions of others who see the real value of the platform’s unique ability to connect with like-minded people. On an Instagram account like this one, you can find a tribe, share personal memories, inspire others, launch a business, sell products, and services.
The latter point is where I want to spend some time explaining.
1. When It Comes To Getting Instagram Followers, Don’t Confuse Popularity With Profitability.
Once you can separate popularity from profitability, you’ll find that building a business on Instagram has even with 1,000 followers can be a real possibility. In fact, don’t think that the platform is only about the likes, the number of followers you have, and /or boosting your ego.
If you are building a brand online, you want to make sure that your dream customers turn to your Instagram account for a reason. Your role is to provide valuable content each time they land on your page, which in turn can move the sales needle for you,
I’ll always keep preaching three things about Instagram.
Instagram (IG) is a very important platform so don’t forget to include it in your marketing strategy as a way to add value to your followers’ lives.
As you start to grow your IG page, always be mindful to take the followers outside of the space and onto your own assets: website, blog, sales page, etc. This an be done via clear CTAs (Calls To Action)
You can make $10,000 in with 1,000 true fans or earn $0 from100,000 followers who leave nothing but emojis on your posts. When it comes to the kind of people you are attracting to your page, never forsake quantity for quality.
2. Why Are You On Instagram?
I’m a data freak. I like seeing what posts are doing well and what time of the day is performance the best. I don’t always stick to the metric because, well, LIFE. Still, I want you to know that as important as the numbers and the data are, there is an even more fundamental fact you should be looking at and asking yourself when you want your first 1,000 followers i.e WHY?
In your drive to get your numbers up, your WHY should be clear. You need to be curious and determined to know your WHY in an obsessive way because it will give you a sense of purpose during times of slow growth.
Remember this: Curiosity = discovery = sustainability.
To discover your WHY you need to get clear about your purpose on Instagram ask the question again and again and again. ‘Why am I here?”
You should do this exercise at least 5 to 7 times. It’s the only way you can know for sure that you’ve navigated all blockages, resistance paths and you’re being completely honest about why. You’ll want to show up every day on the platform even when engagement is initially low, and posting paralysis becomes a thing you have to overcome.
3. Growing Your Instagram Followers Will Take Work
When you have figured out why you created your Instagram account and who you want to serve, your next step is to create a content marketing strategy that is going to get people to your page.
Now don’t expect growth to be super fast. For some, depending on your industry, your personality, and your consistency, growth may happen with the speed of Usain Bolt. For others, it’s a molasses-like crawl but your race is your own. You have to make sure when your dream customer lands on your page they like what they see.
In figuring out why you created your Instagram account and who you want to serve, what you’ve done is given yourself a clear direction which is the first step in creating a content strategy. This will help get your dream followers to your page.
4. Content Matters, So Get Started This Simple Way
I know there are newbies starting an IG account for the first time. If you’re there, then my biggest advice is to create 9 high-quality posts that speak to who you are and what you do. Consider it your first handshake with the people who you want to turn into followers. Your first nine grids should be populated on your account and be ready to go before you begin your engagement strategy.
Your high-quality images should serve to inform your dream customers about your brand, your Why, maybe even a bit about your process. If these nine grids are ill-conceived, for instance, if you have one or two pictures, if your captioning is not authentic and /or feels sloppy then you will have lost before began. You simply won’t appear to be legitimate.
Listen, our feeds are super cluttered. There is so much stuff out on Instagram, which means you have to work a tiny bit harder to make your content stand out and be meaningful. Most of all you have to make it interesting enough for someone to stop on your page, and really engage with what you. Engagement makes you algorithm proof (more on that later)
You can offer your tribe (depending on your business) interesting wellness ideas or home decor inspiration or maybe provide motivation for their career or business. Oh, and don’t forget to show up as yourself and get out of your own darn way. I truly believe that when it comes down to getting your first 1,000 followers, it is about finding and creating content that is and value-adding. Showing up as yourself is also crucial. People want to invest in you as much as want them to invest in your products and services.
5. Engage. Engage. Engage
Finally, one of the biggest tips I want to leave you with is to make sure you are always engaging. Sure, you have to come up with good captions and take good photos but let me share this secret. It’s my biggest one yet and even I don’t do it often enough.
Engagement is the only way to build an active community on Instagram. And by active I mean a tribe who loves your content so much, they share, comment, and save your posts. Even better, you get them to convert, head to your blog, buy your products, or subscribe to your email list.
Lean in for a second. Engagement on Instagram is more important than your follower count next to your name. Believe me when I say this: 1,000 engaged followers is more important than 10,000 scrollers!
Good Engagement Makes You Algorithm Proof
“Strong engagement makes you Algorithm-proof and ensures your message is getting to the eyes and ears of your ideal customer.”
I know your next question. How, Judette. how? And the answer is super simple.
When you have an account that is under a thousand followers, it’s going to be really hard for it to show up on the explore page of other accounts. You have to be strategic so you have to connect more than ever.
REAL TALK. If you spend an hour a week writing captions and taking photos or creating content using your Content Success Box in Simplify then I want you to spend double that engaging with other accounts. This is so overlooked. Yet, it really is the best way to get your name out there and to build community. At the end of the day getting Instagram followers is not just about a number and having that vanity metrics on your profile. It’s about actually making connections with people that you care about.