It’s no secret that establishing a solid Instagram following is a must for your personal brand or your business. Instagram is no longer just a place to put some pictures from your vacay to Belize. It is a business tool that, if used correctly, can really launch your person brand or business into success.
But, the secret lies in how to make that happen. It’s not as easy as it seems to garner a true Instagram following. Sure, you can pay for bots to follow you and like your photos, but that isn’t going to get you the engagement you need to keep your numbers up and truly build your personal brand or your business.
Instead, you need to focus your attention on building an Instagram following that is loyal, that is full of real and engaged followers who truly care about you.
So how exactly do you do that?
Here, the top tips to build a loyal Instagram following that will make you stand out as a leader in your industry.
How You Can Build a Real Instagram Following
1. Don’t Get Too Sales-y
Though a great deal of Instagram is used for business purposes, let’s look at the reason that people get on the app in the first place: to be social.
People are curious about what is going on, what trends are hot right now, where their fave celebs are hanging out, what they may have missed out on last night, and what fun they can get into tonight.
They do not go on social media with the sole intention of buying something, so make sure that any content you create for your business does not have an overly sales-y vibe to it. Sure, you arethere to sell your personal brand or your business, but you can go about it in a way that makes it fun for your followers, rather than an overt sales pitch.
This means staying up on trends and knowing how to keep your tone and your brand relevant and fun.
Also, make sure that you are giving your audience a chance to learn more about you and your lifestyle, not just your products or services. The more personal of a connection you are able to develop, the more loyal your followers will remain.
It’s a good idea to only focus 25% of your posts on selling your products and services, and using the other 75% to develop that personal connection via engaging and exciting content that your audience will connect with on a personal level.
Simply posting your content and walking away thinking you’ve done your work is a big no-no.
It is vital that you engage with your followers if you want to keep them coming back for more. Engaging with them is also a great way to get some serious cred.
We’ve all experienced the magic of our idols responding to our comment on their Instagram page, so we all know how special it makes you feel. Even if it just took a few seconds, they took the time to acknowledge what you said and show their appreciation for your interest in them by responding.
So, you should do the same for your followers. Regardless of the comment they leave, take a quick moment to respond. This will not only bring joy to the person who left the comment, but will allow other people to see that you engage with your followers. And this will make them want to stick around for more.
Are they upset about something you said? Find a tactful way to respond. Are they commenting on how obsessed they are with you? Share some love back.
The importance of engagement cannot be stressed enough. We recognize that takes time, but make time for it and you won’t regret it.
3. Establish an Aesthetic
This aesthetic needs to be one that will interest your followers and one that will also be consistent. Your goal is to have people scroll through Instagram and, in the feed, immediately be able to recognize a photo as yours.
As stated in the same Entrepreneur.com article, “You only have a few seconds to communicate what your brand is about and entice a viewer to tap the follow button before you lost him or her to the next shiny image.” And you do that with a solid Instagram aesthetic.
A great tool to use in keeping your feed cohesive is Planoly. With this app you can see what photos will look like in your grid, and can also schedule your posts to go live via the app. Planoly takes the headache out of making sure you’re manually posting at the right time, and also gives you an overview of your feed. You’ll be able to see how the new picture you’re planning to post will look with the rest of your feed.
4. Share Stories
The addition of Stories to Instagram has massively changed the platform’s game. While the feed remains to be a highly-curated, well-planned work of art, Stories are a great way for you to keep your followers engaged in a different, more raw and authentic way.
Use Stories to provide a “behind-the-scenes” look at what you do. Do you have a photoshoot you’re working on today? Share Stories of what that looks like. Your followers will love this opportunity to see more of your life and a deeper look into what it’s like to be your personal brand or your business
Stories are also a great way to gather feedback from your audience. Allow them to provide input on what they’d like to see from you, and how you can make your profile something that makes them want to stay engaged.
5. Stop, Collaborate and Listen
Vanilla Ice was way ahead of his time on this one. When it comes to garnering a loyal following on Instagram, a great way to do this is via collaborations.
Here are a few reasons why a collab is a winning idea:
- Fresh perspective and ideas. By bringing someone else into your Instagram posts, you are opening up the opportunity for new ideas and new content. This is always welcome in the ever-changing Instagram world.
- Wider reach. When you collaborate with another business or brand, you are reaching a greater number of people than you would on your own. This means you’re getting the potential to attract new fans and get some new followers out of it.
- Provides value. Combining powers with another business or brand gives your followers value they otherwise wouldn’t get. And providing value is what will keep them coming back.
Joining forces with another brand or business on Instagram opens up the right doors to let new loyal followers in.
You may be feeling a bit of information overload right now, so let’s take a quick moment to recap what you learned from up above.
Here are the top ways for you to build a loyal Instagram following that will get your personal brand or business the exposure it needs:
- Use 75% of your content to engage followers and only 25% of it to sell products, services, or your personal brand.
- Engage with as much of your audience as possible on a regular basis.
- Figure out your “look” or aesthetic and use it cohesively throughout your social media efforts.
- Utilize Instagram Stories to give followers a more personal look into the life of your business or personal brand.
- Collaborate with other businesses or brands to gain more exposure, get some new ideas, and create added value for your followers.
By implementing these secrets into your Instagram content strategy, you will undoubtedly see an increase in not only your engagement, but in your following that remains loyal and true to your personal brand or business.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed with the idea of getting those loyal followers everyone’s after, CloutUp MGMT is here to help. We provide services that drive organic and targeted traffic to your account so that you can build the loyal fanbase that will build a strong brand. Our team works to target your desired audience and grow your account without the use of bots or spam. In short, we are here to get yo CLOUTUP.