Find Your Niche
Passion sells. If you love doing something it shines through. Before setting up an account, think about what it is that you feel passionate about. Is it photography? Fashion? Food? Sharing parenthood with other parents? What do you want to concentrate on? Once you know your niche, you know who you will be working towards attracting to your page.
Post Quality Content
It can be tempting sometimes to post anything. You scroll through your latest photos in your phone or on your camera and just share it. Don’t. Each post is important and each post should aim to be better than the last as you keep learning, keep developing, keep improving. Make sure your photographs are of good quality – ask people for tips if you are unsure. Posts should be eye catching, appealing. Depending on your niche, what are you writing? Are you consistent? Are you trying new things? Are you spell checking your content before uploading? It is good to consider that most large-scale companies are tagged by creators thousands of times a day, yours needs to stand out, you need to be doing something different, something to catch the attention of the people responsible for the PR.
It can be hard as an influencer; you see others come along with thousands of followers and you wonder how they got there, you’re eager for numbers too. But I want to tell you right now, continue being you, be authentic and honest and if you’re doing points 1 and 2 correctly, your followers will come to you in time. PR companies would rather an influencer with 1000 true, real, engaged followers on an Instagram influencers page, than 10,000 fake followers consisting of purchased followers, followers gained in loops or follow for follow numbers (PR companies do check your followers). Meaningful connections are worth so much more. Devoted followers will learn to trust you, they’ll test out your recommendations and they’ll not hesitate to purchase something you highlight as being good in the future. It is these people that will engage on your posts too and engagement is worth so much more than follower numbers. Followers don’t just happen overnight. If you continue being you, relatable to your audience, transparent and dedicated to your work, the followers will come.
Engage with People
If there is something, I have learnt most over my time as an influencer, is that the more I comment on other peoples posts within my niche, the more followers I gain and the more people that comment and engage on mine too. Most people on Instagram and Facebook read other people’s comments, if you’re commenting on posts, more people have the chance of finding you. I also find that companies can feel your passion for an item or their business as a whole and begin interacting with you themselves. I personally gained a lot of PR work through lockdown which I think was based on my ability to comment more on posts with the extra time I had.
Use Hashtags Carefully
When I first started my Instagram account I was given the advice to always use the full 30 hashtags, copy and paste them to save me time and I’d get loads of new followers. At first it worked a little bit, the hashtags were bringing something my way. As I’ve developed as an influencer, I’ve come to learn that hashtags are a bit like followers; you need quality and not so much quantity. Choose hashtags within your niche, be careful to check which hashtags are banned by Instagram (over 60,000 to be precise). If you use a banned hashtag, your post won’t appear on timelines. I recently did a review on a bakery and was shocked to find that #buns is a banned hashtag, there are lots of others to be wary of. Look for hashtags in your local area. Don’t always use a hashtag that is incredibly popular eg. #love. Your post will get lost in thousands of posts with that hashtag, that get uploaded every second. Another thing I’ve learnt recently is that hashtags on carousel posts (posts where you add more than one picture on Instagram) do considerably less well than the same hashtags used on a stand-alone picture. That being said, if carousel posts are your thing (like they are mine) do not let this stop you. Remember, your passion gleams through your post and it is that which engages and keeps hold of your followers,
As cheesy as it sounds, just be you! Share your passion and interests and follow the above 5 points and you will be flying high in no time.
You can find Kelly on the following platforms where her niche is review blogging for families within the West Midlands, predominantly Birmingham area. Her main passion is reviewing theatre shows (Birmingham Repertory Theatre, The Alexandra Theatre and Birmingham Hippodrome), Ballet by Birmingham Royal Ballet, New restaurants, bars and attractions and anything family orientated including books, toys and food!
Written by Kelly Johnson from @SmallHouseBigTrips