I decided to take a minute to sit down and write the top ten methods that I used in order to grow my Instagram page organically. I have had a lot of you reach out to me over the years to ask me how I grew my page into what it is today and I thought that giving you some insight on my journey might be helpful to any of you who are thinking of starting your own. When I first started ‘essiebuff’ I was unsure that this platform would turn into anything, let alone what it is today. However, I stopped doubting myself and have met so many amazing people along the way and have created a space that I am truly proud of. Below are some methods that I have personally used on my page, these methods may not be fool proof and may not work for everyone but for me they have made all the difference.
Engagement is a huge part of making a successful page and can make or break whether or not your page continues to grow. Always take time to look at other profiles that have similar likes and interests and comment, like, tag, and share with these profiles. This is a great way to show others in your instagram community that you are interested in their work and to expose yourself to their followers who may also be interested in following your page.
Taking the time to not only engage but to make real connections with those you connect with on Instagram can be life changing. I am a part of a group of fourteen girls from all over the world that have a shared love of essie polish. Together this group has given me a place to ask questions, get support (personally and professionally), share my love for polish, and has opened up doors for great opportunities, like visiting Loreal and the essie Headquarters in NYC. Making connections like this has also helped to grow my page, as we share one another’s work monthly across all of our social media accounts in order to share our love for polish and in turn help to promote each others content. Creating connections with others can be a great way to help promote your page and you can make some amazing friends while doing it!
Putting out work that is 100% authentic to you and your style can be beneficial in helping to grow your page. I like to believe that a lot of my followers have stayed loyal and have continued to follow me because they like the content that I create and feel that it is authentic and something that they can’t necessarily get somewhere else. Obviously a lot of us share the same polish colors, nail art looks, collections, etc., however the way that the information is delivered in an honest and original way is something that I feel followers hold to a high standard and consider important when deciding what pages to follow and stay following.
I believe that making sure you are passionate about the theme of your Instagram is one of the most important things that you can do to retain followers. If your page is dedicated to something that you do not 100% love then it will not succeed. You need to have the passion and the want to continue to talk, share, and answer questions about your theme and to continue to create content for years to come. When you are passionate and want to succeed, your followers become avid supporters and also want to see you succeed. Others who view your page will see this passion seeping through and will want to follow your page to be a part of what it is you have created.
Staying on topic can be a hard thing in this day and age, especially with all of us millennials who are constantly multi-tasking. For me Instagram is not a place to get side tracked and I believe that in order to have a page that prospers you must stay on topic. I do share small tid-bits of my life (photos of my cats, breakfast items, travel plans etc.), however I make sure to never over do it and to always stay true to the core concept of my page, nails. Consistency is key and if a follower follows your page because you post about nail polish and they love nails but then one day you begin posting about a vastly different topic such as cars, they may become uninterested in your page and chose to unfollow you. Staying consistent and on topic is key to having a growing page.
Stay active by replying to direct messages, comments, questions, and concerns. One of the main reasons that I started this page is so that I could share my knowledge and love for nails with others. This starts with being active on your page and taking time to reach out to followers who have reached out to you. Responding shows that you care and are passionate about your page and that you want to help your followers and share your knowledge with them. Staying active seems like a simple enough thing to do, however when lives get busy and hectic it can be hard to respond all the time. When you do have time it is always nice to go back through to make sure that you are up to date and there aren’t any messages that you have missed. Being active is an important part to get followers and to keep followers.
Create A Business Profile
I recently decided to change my Instagram from a personal profile to a business profile. At first I was concerned that this might not be the best idea as I was unfamiliar with what exactly the pros and cons of a business profile vs. a personal profile were. Once I began to see how the business profile worked I was immediately happy with my decision. Having a business profile gives you the opportunity to view the insights and statistics of your page. This means that you can view what days of the week your page is viewed the most, what time of day your page is visited the most, and other things like how old the majority of your viewers are. Knowing the day of the week and time of day that your page is more active can help you to plan when to post your content. In return this planning can help you generate a larger return in activity on your post and can potentially get your page viewed by more potential followers if it gets moved to trending on the explore page or trending on the pages of the specific hashtags that you use. Making your page a business profile can be very resourceful and can help you to gain a following with the knowledge that you learn from the statistics portion of the profile.
Stay True To Yourself
Don’t give up and no matter what stay true to yourself. A vast majority of the people on the internet won’t like your content, but then there will be a small amount of people, a niche if you will, that will be just as passionate as you are. Don’t give up because of the people who aren’t interested, become motivated to share what you love with those who also love it. I was so scared to start my account and almost didn’t because of fear, but if we let fear rule our lives we will miss out on some of the greatest opportunities. Always stay in your own lane and don’t let the fear of striking out keep you from doing what you love.
Supplement Your Page
Supplementing your Instagram profile with a blog can be a huge part to your success on social media. Having a blog gives you the opportunity to give your readers more information that you may not be able to fit on Instagram. This can mean lengthier posts about a topic that you have touched on on your Instagram page. Now your followers will have a way of getting more information on a specific topic that you have shared that interests them. A blog isn’t the only way that you can supplement your Instagram, you can join twitter, snapchat, youtube, etc. in order to reach followers. Having multiple social media avenues can help you to cross promote your content and can potentially help you reach more followers than you would have initially.
Invest In Your Page
Over the years I have not only invested time in to creating a page that I am proud of but also money. I’ve spent countless hours painting my nails, sketching out possible nail art looks, coming up with new ideas for posts, etc. I have also spent money on investing in new lighting and light box equipment multiple times, new shelving/storage for my collection, on items for giveaways for my followers, and on my entire collection of almost 300 essie polishes. I’ve invested time and money all because I have wanted to. My desire to have a successful page has given me the drive to want to invest in my page and in the long run it has made all the difference. By investing you create content that you are proud of for your page. This not only pleases you but in return it also pleases Instagram users and can help get them to click the follow button if they haven’t already or to continue following you and never want to stop.
I hope that these techniques are something that can help those of you who already have Instagram pages to further grow your following and can give insight to those thinking of starting a page about what some of the key methods can be for a successful Instagram. I am a huge believer that followers should be grown organically and not through apps and websites that can give you robot or fake followers. Hopefully you will use this post as a guideline to help you in your future Instagram endeavors. Please feel free to reach out to me with any questions or to inform me of techniques that you use to grow your following!