Why isn’t my instagram growing? Why are people with a fraction of my talent growing as fast as the roadrunner and I’m here like Wile E. Coyote stuck with no instagram growth WHATSOEVER!
Instagram is a finicky rubik’s cube. You rotate and swap, and once you think you solved it, another unmixed pattern pops up making you as frustrated as a dying battery remote control.
It’s no wonder why so many of us have a love-hate relationship with instagram, especially if you’re constantly thinking “why isn’t my instagram growing already?”.
The best practices of instagram growth for business boils down to one thing: thinking like a content creator.
Your content needs to be as irresistible as a nut to a furry little squirrel.
If your instagram follower count is stuck, then you’re in for a ride. I’ll wait till you clean your reading glasses.
What do big instagrammers know that I don’t?
Alright sure, maaaaybe some bigger accounts struck a bit of luck by having one post go viral.
But relying on ‘virality’ on instagram is kinda like hoping you’d win the lottery by buying one lonely ticket. Sure, you could get stupidly lucky, but are you really gonna go big that way?
Even instagrammers who managed to get one post go viral - an upward trajectory of growth on instagram is simply not possible without consistent posting.
And sure, you can have mad talent at the service you’re offering. But believe you me, unless your instagram page looks as glammed as Hallmark’s storefront on Christmas eve, people won’t pay attention to you.
So big instagrammers place as equal importance (if not more) on how to present their services than providing the service itself.
I’ve worked with artists, yoga instructors & tattooists with mad talent you’d think they can win in an artist’s version of “American Idol”. And yet they’re pleading for clients.
Your talent becomes irrelevant if your instagram feed barely gives any of your work justice. “Don’t judge a book by its cover” is bogus advice when it comes to online marketing - or any marketing for that matter.
People will always pay more for the prettier packaging! And baby, you got some instagram packaging to do.
Now that’s not to say that every single image needs to be instaperfect! People are getting over it.
But you should be fixated on posting images that makes your dream client see themselves in your feed.
Big instagrammers are successful in making their dream followers or customers feel seen.
I mean think about it.
Why are Asian, Black and Arab communities fighting Hollywood so hard to be cast on screen? Because they wanna feel represented. It’s a human need.
We quickly use Instagram as a billboard you’d pass by on a highway.
But instagram isn’t an advertising vehicle. It’s a communication one. And unless you want that little car to drive faster, making your dream client feel heard will grow your account that much faster.
But why are people less talented than me bigger on Instagram?
We think of instagram like a 2-ingredient brownie:
post an image + use hashtags = get followers
Instagram is actually more like a slightly complicated chocolate cake recipe. You have many different ingredients to watch out for. Kinda looks like this:
Good image + conversation-starting caption + hashtags + engaging + reposting + instastories + DMing people + collabs + going live
And because of this complexity, typically big instagrammers have reached their status because they’re so passionate about many things that content creation satisfies.
Going big on instagram relies on producing content so good, you’d think it’s part of a special edition magazine article.
Creating good content is tricky cause it’s more competitive than ever, especially with global lockdowns resulting in crazy internet and online traffic.
Creating content that truly stands out involves:
Having a “photographer’s eye”
Being a good copywriter
Being a little film-maker
Becoming a social butterfly
So ultimately, people who genuinely have a passion for all these tend to far excel someone who doesn’t.
You might be a photographer who’s solely interested in just photography.
Or a yoga teacher who’s heart and soul breeds only yoga.
And unless you have a genuine interest in design, copywriting, marketing and all the other ingredients instagram involves, growing on the platform will become as challenging as walking on grass with sharp stiletto heels.
How hard is it to grow on instagram?
I get that instagram growth can feel like climbing Everest, but the formula to growing is simple. Notice I didn’t say it’s easy though.
It’s kinda like wanting to lose weight. You know you need to eat mindfully and exercise. It’s a simple formula, but it’s tough, right?
But I bet you’ve known friends or family, who went from Michelin man bod to being shredded like the Terminator even when it seemed impossible.
Ok, so here’s how to get your instagram post at the top of the feed.
Focus on engagement, not followers.
This is how the instagram algorithm works.
Instagram sees your post and exposes it to a small group of your followers. If those followers engage with that piece of content, then instagram will start expanding it to even more people.
Think of a game of poker. Instagram sees you then raises you if more people are interested in your content.
And how does Instagram know that people have an interest? By measuring your engagement.
When instagram detects that more people are saving your content, that’s what will drive your post to the top of the explore page.
Why does my instagram followers keep going up and down?
Disgruntled by being stuck on that same instagram follower count? Or maybe you’re asking yourself “why do I keep losing and gaining followers on instagram” every DAMN day?
The truth is you probably aren’t.
Instagram deletes fake followers and bot accounts on the daily. So you just might be under the impression that you’ve lost a follower, when it probably wasn’t a real follower to begin with.
And here’s the other thing *disclaimer: tough love ahead*
When you fixate on followers, you’re no different than becoming the high school’s queen Bee. You’re the popular kid & everyone knows you, but how many genuine friends do you really have?
Chasing followers is kinda like wanting the biggest friend list on facebook. It won’t mean anything.
It’s about serving the followers you already have! How? By creating exceptional content.