Hi there! I see you out there in the vast land of social media, trying to grow your audience. Do you ever feel like you make a post on Instagram and it just floats out there into the abyss never to be seen again? You're waiting for the likes and comments to roll in because you know you posted great content, but nothing happens.
You're trying to grow your following, but you've been stuck at the same number for weeks. You'll gain a few and then lose just as many. Why do people have to follow/unfollow?! It can be so frustrating, right?
I've been there, girlfriend. I spent years trying to grow my home decor page before I finally hit my stride and starting seeing consistent growth each week. Now I'm right back at the starting line trying to grow my new coaching page.
It's hard. Really hard.
You wonder what you're doing wrong, and you can't figure out that darn algorithm. And why does it have to keep changing so much? It makes you want to give up sometimes, doesn't it?
At some point, you might have even considered buying likes and followers.
Please don't do that! It hurts your engagement. Authentic growth is the key to success, so please don't let your account become full of bots and fake people. That will make you look spammy too.
Instead, try these three tips to growing your audience.
Note: This post contains affiliate links.
1) Make It About Them
It can't be that easy, can it? Well, it is. As much as you might think you have to talk about yourself and all the wonderful things you know, you can't do that all the time and keep an engaged audience. People need to know you relate to them and understand them. Talk about them and their needs in your captions. Ask them questions and get them engaging. You'll see the difference.
Rule of thumb: for every three posts you make, let two of them be about your audience and only one of them be about you and how you can help with your products/services.
2) Brand Your Content
Yes! A branded feed looks more cohesive, more professional, and more visually appealing. Create a brand story for yourself, including the colors and images you love (you can use the free version of Canva for that!) then translate that brand story to your feed. Make sure you create balance and symmetry among your squares. Don't just post a bunch of quotes back to back. Break it up with different types of photos. You can use apps like Planoly to lay out your grid and make sure it looks good visually before you start randomly posting pictures.
Note: Branding your feed will help people remember you as well.
Don't just drop your post and log off. You need to spend a few minutes engaging with other people who have used the same hashtags. Click on the tags you've used and like and comment on some of the other photos. You can even follow your favorite hashtags to make sure you don't miss anything. Make sure you're also responding to any comments or DMs you're receiving. People want to know you care about them and what they have to say.
For tips on the best hashtags to use, check out the hashtag library in my business academy.
If you post consistently, using these three tips, you should start to see a difference in your engagement and your following.
Think of your Instagram account as the gateway to your website. It's the wrapping paper around the present. It needs to be appealing. Make sure your personality and brand message shine through. When your feed resonates with people, they will be more likely to click your links, visit your website, and buy your products.
As much as we'd like our Instagram account following to skyrocket overnight, it's just not going to happen. I'm sorry to say it, but it takes consistency. You've got to show up and be the voice your audience needs to hear. No matter what service or product you offer, there is an audience for you. You've got to be out there so they can find you. Be a #scrollstopper by standing out! Get creative with how you're going to deliver your message and show up consistently on your feed and in stories.
Make It Easier With Automation
You can use tools like Hootsuite, Later, or Tailwind to schedule your posts in advance. It can be a real time saver! You don't ever have to post in “real time” again. Spend a little bit of time scheduling your posts in advance, and you won't be having to come up with a caption and list of hashtags on the fly.
If you do use a scheduling app, don't forget to hop on Instagram and engage with your audience and other accounts you follow at some point during the day. Your comments should always be authentically your voice and be meaningful. Just dropping a, “love this shot!” comment is not going to help you grow a loyal following. Tell them what you love about it, let them know you appreciate their message, or remind them they're doing a great job.
Talk to your audience like you would talk to your bestie. People will warm up to you much quicker if you don't sound so stiff and businesslike. Instagram is full of fun little squares that provide insight into our lives. Let your followers see the behind the scenes, pop into stories and show them what you're working on, and have fun with it!
Repeat after me: My feed does not have to be perfect.
It doesn't have to be perfect. It just needs to be real.
Be relatable and your audience will start showing up more and more. You'll see.
Now get out there and get to posting!
P.S. See how I branded my coaching page on the Boss Girl Launchpad Instagram account.