Social media marketers salivate at the idea of growing their Instagram followers quickly, but it’s important to grow your following in the right way.
Instagram is a part of daily life for people throughout the world. With high volume and its sleek visual format, it’s the perfect way to engage with others and build a brand.
Businesses too have noticed, seeing the medium as a great way to market to new and potential customers, especially for those under 35, as over 70% of users fall into this demographic. With over a billion regular users and 500 million who use it on a daily basis, the platform is second only to Facebook as a place to attract engaged users.
With such a huge audience, it’s no wonder businesses and marketing professionals have noticed.
Where to Start?
There are really only two ways to gain followers for your Shopify store on Instagram, you either buy them or grow your following “organically”, through methods that will draw in people who actually choose to be there, and who will be much more likely to buy your product.
Buying followers is a bad idea; stay away from it. According to Shopify, the best way to increase your followers is by increasing the engagement rate with quality content, and grow a massive following over time—one that’s full of real fans, not inactive fake accounts.
It’s important to understand some basics. Social media marketing is not just about making posts go viral, which is essentially word-of-mouth advertising on steroids. Understanding how to get your posts in front of the intended audience means looking at when you post, how often, the quality of the content.
Timing is Everything
Good times to start are 5 pm GMT on Wednesdays and between 4-5 pm GMT. For those looking for consistent engagement, post between 11 AM and 3 pm GMT.
Depending on your target audience, tweaking these posting times will help glean when to best interact with your audience. Looking into post analytics at what times people react to your posts will be helpful in understanding when your target audience is online and engaged.
Ensuring posts are done at a consistent time will set up an expectation among followers. For example, if you decide the best time to post is on Saturdays, just before midnight, then make sure you schedule a post for that time.
Just like with written content, the quality of the content in your feed needs to be consistent as well. Stock or amateurish photos won’t help grow followers who are looking for their own interesting content.
Creating a compelling bio is an easy way to get people to follow you on Instagram. No one wants to follow a boring person. As limited characters are allowed, brevity is important. Concisely showing your business and what it does or what it sells will help attract followers, and thus customers.
Along with written content, an eye-catching profile photo will help. For businesses, using your logo makes sense, as it creates consistency with branding. A photo of a product that’s sold by the company or a headshot of the company’s founder will also work.
Along with a bio, getting noticed on Instagram, as in life, demands you stand out from the crowd. Developing a unique personal style and voice will help you get noticed and gain followers.
For businesses, aligning this style with branding efforts and company goals shows what you’re all about. Posting about similar topics, color schemes, and even the language you utilize ensures that the message is getting across to the people who you want to see it.
Developing a style takes time. Learning what works and what doesn’t with your audience won’t happen instantly. Just pay attention to what your followers, and potential customers, like and follow down that vein. Looking at what others are posting, especially those with similar audiences, and you’ll figure out the best types of posts for your purposes.
A really good way to get people to notice anything on social media is to develop positive relationships with “influencers”. These are accounts that have very large followings, and whose followers tend to react to the content of the influencer posts.
Reaching out to influencers within your industry can get you valuable followers who will be more likely to become customers. By offering them a product to review, by commenting on their accounts, or tagging them in a relevant post you can draw an influencer’s attention. And a mention by a powerful influencer will help grow your account with relevant followers.
Creating Your Story
Clever titles and captions draw in followers. Just like the titles on magazines at the grocery store checkouts that proclaim that Lizard People are taking over the world, a clever title can amuse and increase followers.
But a title without a good story falls flat. Instagram stories create a compelling reason for people to follow, to see what happens next. It creates a slideshow that can show off your products, or your product being used in different ways, or even in different places.
Building Your Brand
Along with creating stories, there are a number of “little” things that a business can do to help it grow followers:
- Cross-promoting and collaborating benefits not just your business, but others as well. Promoting a brand of beer, for example, with a pizza from a local pizzeria will benefit both the brewer and the pizzeria.
- Engage with your audience. It’s called social media for a reason. Like people’s comments when they comment on your post. Comment back. In other words, act like they’re potential customers because that’s exactly what they are.
- #Hashtags help attract potential customers with specific interests. They’re used for building community and for branding. Changing up your hashtags is important as well. Just like with life, variety adds spice. And relevant hashtags like #howtogetorganicInstagramfollowers might be relevant to, say, this piece of content.
- Videos tell people who you are and what you’re about. are a great way to tell your story. They can show off your brand and style more than a still life photo. And you can actually state who and what your business is.
- Tagging locations in your post also helps get you noticed. If you have a product that’s sold across the country, or across the world, sharing a photo of that product in that location can help people find where to get your product.
This article Organically Grown Instagram Followers: From Farm to Fork appeared first on Entrepreneurship In A Box by Dragan Sutevski