How To Become An Instagram Influencer

Instagram is no longer a platform for just neat photography and friends. It has become an essential part to creating a business. It’s an incredibly powerful platform to market your brand and create a new stream of potential customers.

So you’ve just started your first Instagram or maybe you’ve had one for a long time and want to become an influencer, yeah? Most think it is an incredibly easy task but have they tried this feat? probably not.

In this article I’ll review several ways many top influencers have reached their status and the strategies behind their growth.

START WITH AN APPEALING PROFILE

Let’s start with the basics. First, you need to setup your new account or tweak your existing one.

If you’re not already a known person or celebrity then it will be a good idea to come up with a good username to max on engagement and fit in with the niche you’re planning on penetrating.

Leading me to my next point.

-YOUR HANDLE

It is vital that your username fits your account as this will be the first impression you give to your potential followers.

For best results, you want something catchy and relevant. If your name isn’t available try options with underscores or periods. The shorter the better.

-YOUR PICTURE

This is basically your logo, so use something clear and recognizable.Do not overly clutter your composition as details will get lost in such a small image. If you use your face, think about whether you’re smiling or serious. This will set the tone of your account.

-YOUR BIO

Unless you want to stay anonymous, putting your full name in your bio makes you seem more approachable.

Try to sum up your essential information in as few words as possible. Emojis and hashtags are a good way to save space and also add some personality.

English is the most used language on Instagram, so if you’re looking to attract a wide/global audience, use both English and your native language.

CROSS-PLATFORM PROMOTION

Having a link to your website or blog to increase traffic is a good way to show brands you have other active channels of promotion and that you’re serious.

If you’re looking to be contacted by potential sponsors and partnerships, adding your email to your profile is definitely recommended.

You may also add your phone number, but with this you run the risk of receiving unwanted or spam phone calls.

START FOLLOWING

If people are interested in your account, they’ll start to check out who you’re following and look for similar accounts.

Who you’re following is an extension of your bio as it shows your interests.

Be careful to not follow too many unrelated accounts, as this will clutter your feed and will cause your identity to be a bit undefined.

BRINGING VALUE WITH YOUR CONTENT

In order to become Instagram famous, you’ll need to bring valuable content to your audience. Without this, you will not succeed.

End of story.

Think about the famous people you’re already following. Why do you follow them? You like their music? They have great pictures? They’re funny?

Start by thinking what type of value you can bring to your followers in order to get them to stick around.

Begin experimenting which content you post receives the most engagement and most importantly, make sure you’re passionate about it.

Instagram is now at over 1 billion monthly active users. That’s a massive portion of the world using Instagram almost everyday.

It it will be hard to stand out but it is certainly very possible.

CREATE YOUR OWN #INSTAFAMOUS HASHTAG

If you come up with your own hashtag and use it in all of your posts, people will have something to recognize you by.

Not only that, but people will be able to discover you through your hashtag while exploring Instagram.

This is a great feature of Instagram and will help keep you relevant.

Using this feature will help you build a community and make your account look more professional.

This will help get your own followers to start using your hashtag and in turn will have theirs checking it out too and seeing what its about. And that will lead to them engaging with your account.

Your hashtag could be your account name, your product, service, or program you’re promoting.

BE ACTIVE

The key to getting a lot of new and engaging followers is to be very active on Instagram.

Post a lot, make sure to select only high quality images.

With the right content, you can even post up to four times a day. Just be sure to spread them out so you don’t flood your followers’ feed.

The more you post, the more likes, comments, and engagement you’ll receive from your followers.

Always be sure to like and comment on their posts as well.

POST AT THE RIGHT TIME

It is very important to post within high engagement times.

Such as the early mornings, usually when people are getting out of bed and getting ready for work, and in the evenings when people are on the way back home and are getting ready to relax and eat dinner.

This can definitely vary with the type of audience you attract and your location around the world.

So if you’re in the United States but most of your followers happen to be from the UK, you would have to time your posts according to their engagement times and when they are most active.

JUST BE YOURSELF

I believe that being approachable and genuine will always work in your favor.

If you take this too seriously or are faking it, it will seem like a job.

Also, you have to be original. Instagram is saturated already, so you need to be able to set yourself apart from everyone else.

I’m a bit of a snarky and sarcastic guy who loves my dog and the outdoors, and that’s precisely what you’ll see on my page. Being yourself makes everything so much easier!

Just remember, there’s no way to be perfect. Either way, perfect is boring. So there’s no need to add a ton of filters and edits as if you are.

It’s all about inspiring others and making them feel good about themselves.

Lets talk about the money

Besides being inspiring and motivational, we all love money, right?

Well that’s exactly what brands and businesses of all shapes and sizes will begin to want to throw at you when they realize your a perfect influencer for their niche.

A lot of people have asked me, how many followers does someone need to become an influencer?

Well, people tend to fixate on follower count and that is not what it’s all about.

Engagement is a much more important factor, especially to a brand’s point of view. This refers to how followers interact with a post, whether it be by liking, commenting, sharing,etc.

Let’s say we have a swimsuit model with over a million followers.

If you look at the comments that she attracts through her posts, a lot of them are from thirsty ogling guys that are more interested in what is under her swimsuit than the actual bathing suit itself.

This will tell you what her million-plus followers actually consist of, and a swimsuit brand would be better off partnering with a smaller influencer with less followers that are actually involved and interested in the fashion.

So in terms of which influencer is better for the swimsuit brand, the smaller account would win.

Another great question I always get is, how much do influencers normally make for their promotion or partnerships?

In order to really do this, you’ll have to have built a pretty decent sized following.

And for the love of god, please do not buy followers, as this will always result in low engagement and brands will see right through it.

Influencers with a follower count between the hundred thousands and low millions can charge anywhere between $500 to $2,000 just for ONE post.

A takeover campaign could earn anywhere from $2,000 to $10,000, depending on how long it will go on for and the number of posts.

Being signed for a whole campaign is a much longer and much more rewarding commitment.

This package includes ads, in-store imagery and a set number of posts for the period of the campaign.

Which could earn you around $20,000 to $30,000!

SWITCH FROM PERSONAL TO BUSINESS

On Instagram, there’s an option in your settings to turn your personal profile into a business profile.

In order to do this, you need a Facebook page. If you don’t already have a Facebook page, I definitely recommend making one either way.

Having a Facebook page for your Instagram account is just another avenue of promotion for you altogether.

Once you create your page and switch your profile to a business account, you’ll be well on your way.

With a business profile you have many features you don’t get with a personal one.

One of the things I like the most, is that you can see your impressions. Impressions is how many times someone has seen your posts. But that’s not all!

You also have reach. Reach is the number of unique accounts that have seen any of your posts.

Another great feature is interactions. With interactions you get to see the amount of profile visits and website clicks. Being able to see the amount of people visiting your profile is a huge plus. With these features you’ll be able to tell if your active enough and if your followers are engaging with your account.

With a business profile, you also get to see how many followers you’ve gained throughout the week while also being able to see where they’re from, their age, and whether they’re men or women. With this feature, you’ll know what type of audience you’re attracting and whether you need to change the type of content you’re distributing.

PROMOTIONS

This is another special feature that comes with a business profile. While it’s not always 100% recommended, it’s definitely very effective when it comes to business.

I really like promotions because if you’re a small business or brand, you get to advertise your product or service to a whole new audience and it doesn’t even cost that much!

With promotions, you can choose your daily budget and the exact audience you would like to target. You can also see how many clicks and impressions you get, to see if your promotion is working.

Most successful promotions involve videos or appealing images that don’t have a lot of text on them. Promotions with a lot of text will almost always be denied by Instagram.

SET A THEME FOR YOUR FEED

Your page’s feed will be the first thing someone sees when they click on your name. It is also the first impression created when they checkout your account.

Have you ever seen those grid layouts? The ones where 10 different posts create an image in the account’s feed. This is an awesome way to capture your potential followers’ attention!

Another great way for you to make a great impression is to have a color scheme.

For example, with our Social Goat account, we have a mostly blue and purple type of scheme going on.

First, you choose a color that may consist of your brand or the persona you’ve created for yourself on Instagram. Then begin using this color in all of your posts, whether it be with background, text, or small logos/watermarks in your images.

Creating a theme and sticking to it is not completely necessary to the success of your account. But it’s definitely appealing to the eye, right?

Drop a comment below and let me know if you’ve seen other ways of capturing attention with your feed!

DO NOT BUY INSTAGRAM FOLLOWERS

As I mentioned earlier in this article, buying followers is a huge no-no.

I’ll admit, it has it’s advantages but none that outweigh the cons.

Some advantages may be that potential followers will think you have a large community and would like to be apart of it, not knowing your followers are fake and non-existent.

But for the most part, buying fake followers is a bad idea. Especially if you’ve just started out and only have six or seven posts.

Think about it, if a new person comes around and decides to checkout your account, they’ll think ok this person seems popular maybe they’re worth following.

Except, once they see you’ve only posted about 5 times and only have 14 likes on your post, they’ll see right through it.

This is especially true for potential partnerships with brands. If you’re going around trying to find leads with your 40k fake followers, they’ll just brush you off and leave you with a bad reputation.

Brands can almost always notice if you’re an influencer with a real community or not.

The first tell-tale sign, is your like to follower ratio. If you’ve got 40k followers but only 50–80 likes on your photos, it’s obvious.

Social Goat

It is highly recommended to use Social Goat, a trustworthy organic Instagram growth service that will expose your account to a much wider audience and skyrocket your growth. They create a plan dedicated to your account and are available 24/7.

IN CONCLUSION

In all, you want to make sure to be personable. You want to grab people’s attention with your captions . So stand out and be genuine.

Encourage engagement! Ask questions, interact with your audience through comments and give likes and comments back to your peers.

You want to see your followers as a community. Post things that will resonate with your followers and will make them want to tag their friends.

Partner with other influencer’s to double your exposure. As you’ve both got a different audience to gain. Be scientific by keeping an eye on your stats to see which posts perform the best.

Brands will expect you to be aware of your stats and to have them outlined with other good selling points on your account.


ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED ON SOCIAL GOAT

On my next post, I’ll be writing about Instagram do’s and don’ts. Link will be here, when available.

If you found this article useful, leave a comment below and let me know what you’ve learned.

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Need more help with growing your account? Or more tips relevant to this post?

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Eric@socialGoat.co

- ERIC RODRIGUEZ