Instagram is one of the most popular social media platforms in the world today, and also the perfect niche to grow your branding and become relevant worldwide. Let’s take a look at some tips to grow your followers, and establish your brand without any annoying spamming.

Lies go the short way; truth goes the long way

Branding in social media is a tricky endeavor. Most of the time you are going to be dazed and confused with how to get people to stop by, take a look at your account, your products, and get engaged with your content. It’s such a common issue that if you learn how actually to master this ability, your qualitative advantage with your competitors is going to be phenomenal.

Why Instagram?

According to Instagram, the platform has over 700 million active users interacting every day. And according to a recent study carried out by Instagram itself, by March 2017 over 120 million Instagram users visited a website, got indications, called, and sent emails or direct messages to obtain more information about a company or a service. This data makes exposure in this platform hugely visible and therefore, becomes the perfect place to grow your brand and gain more clients. Besides, it’s completely free of charge.

Why should we avoid bots, spam, and shortcuts?

Well, as much as Instagram is a great platform for business, it is also a place where users interact with each other to have some fun and show the world about their "world". In such an environment, it is very annoying to get bombarded with spammy comments automated by bots, and furthermore, it can get you into some awkward situations when your bot comments on the wrong photo just because it has the target hashtag. Besides, it will create a ghost following that won´t engage with what you’re posting and, in the end, won’t turn into more sales or fans. Another key thing to evaluate before going to purchase followers is that other users can tell - and it is far worse to have fake followers than not having them at all. For example, if you have 10k followers and your posts have 50 likes and 5 comments, you’re obviously someone who bought followers, and leads the clients to say, "I’m no longer impressed, I don’t want your product".

These are the organic and real tips to gain followers

Let´s take a look at some of the tips and recommendations we have researched and proven to be true and real.

#1 Create and post quality, unique content EVERY DAY!

What most people don’t realize about branding on Instagram is that it is a platform that will hold together all kinds of companies, artists, and regular users, and once you’re part of the race, you’re competing with everybody on all budgets. So, you can´t miss the appointment, and new content has to get uploaded every day. The posts you create being a small brand will be the only image people have of you and your products. You have to go all-in and stand out from the rest using creativity rather than money. If you don´t know where to start, just check companies like BuzzSumo and Pinterest to find great ideas, and then concentrate on them.

  • Quality: The quality of your posts is the most relevant factor, and is very likely to bring in organic traffic, so you should worry about what you will publish. Here are some tips:

    • Polish your photos - The overall vibe of Instagram is to have people post pics they just took with their smart phone and play with them. To go beyond expected and be truly visible, you can upload professional photos, polish them with other photo-tweaking apps, and then post them.

    • Write great captions - The captions under the photos can be meaningful to some, while remaining irrelevant to others. The thing is that we want them all to like our photos, so concentrating on producing the perfect caption is a must. The key is to make it  related to the photo, but adding value to it. Another important thing is a call to action statement for added engagement. If you have a hard time feeling inspired, just look here for some examples.

  • Unique: This is just as important as the quality of what you are posting, the ability to stand out from the crowd and be yourself. Let’s take a look at some tips:

    • Make them laugh - An often underrated side of the engagement is to do it through humor. Make your customers and fans laugh from time to time just to keep your account entertaining.

    • Mix it up! - This is another key trick. Just mix up the content you’re publishing, from behind the curtain content to full HD close-up photos, to short funny videos done with your smartphone. Make your content unique like you and your brand.

    • Keep it real - People like to share and socialize through these platforms. Bring the true character of your brand and personality by curating the content in a way that shows every aspect you want to show. Don’t overthink posts. Just make them flow.

#2 Follow relevant accounts

Have you ever heard of an influencer? Well, this is exactly where you should aim all your shots. These are people who already influence your targeted audience. There are many ways to do it: you can follow their followers, or you can just go ahead and pay them to advertise your products, or brand, by publishing photos of them using, wearing, or hearing it. The second option can be really expensive if you go for a celebrity, but you can find some influencers with a mid-size audience (400K - 1M followers) who might do it for little money, or maybe even in exchange for some of your product. A good strategy would be something like ‘I would love to send you my best hoodies for you to keep, can you take a picture wearing them and post it in your account?’

#3 Use Hashtags (lots of hashtags)

This is a tip that will work great for Instagram, but won’t be as good for Facebook or Twitter. The relevance of using hashtags is really due to the search function in the app that allows people to search content related to their interests . So, if you want to attract an audience that is looking for hoodies, you can just go ahead and use #hoodies. The key element here is to go for fifteen to twenty-five hashtags per post. For example, if you manufacture great hip-hop oriented hoodies, you can go #hoodies #hiphop #alternativeclothing #awesome and so on. Don’t limit yourself and be creative; there’s no going wrong by adding more.

#4 Go crazy with the DM

This is a technique that has been widely promoted by entrepreneur and social media marketing expert Gary Vaynerchuk on his YouTube channel. In few words, it’s about sending direct messages to relevant accounts - people you want to do business with, potential consumers, or even radio stations if you’re a musician. Offer them a trade, in which you give them added value of some kind. Here´s the explanation in Gary´s words.

Social media marketing is the best way to spend whatever money and time is available for advertising and establishing your brand. The time to do it is right now, when the cost for these kind of ads is very low, and the ROI can turn out to be way more than you would expect. The most important thing when trying to attract fans, customers and business is to concentrate on content quality, because if you reach out to all potential customers with average or even just good content, you’ll be wasting your time.

Since the  number of followers is not as important as how much engagement you have with them, please go ahead and tell us what worked for you and what other tips would you like to add to our list. Use the comments section below!

 

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Ilmoitettu 10 elokuuta, 2017

EdwardSuez
EdwardSuez Henkilökunta

Sales & Marketing Guru

Edward is the Sales & Marketing Correspondent for Freelancer.com. He is currently based in Sydney, and is a self-confessed ice-cream fan.

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