There’s been a lot of discussion on the blogging community recently about how a lot of bloggers, influencers and Instagrammers rely on paid followers: they pay around 50€ to a provider who then directs bots and perhaps even couple actual followers in their direction.
This makes the game quite unfair because brands, who are looking for influencers to work with, rely on the faked information when they decide to contact bloggers and Instagrammers according to the number of followers visible on their account.
I get flooded with e-mails shouting “We can help you boost your Instagram following by 700.000 followers in a week for only this sum of money!” The prices are usually so low that it’s easy to grasp these deals, and I have to admit, I have been tempted as well. But then again I know that 80-90% of those “followers” are bots… And what would I need them for?
And here’s the deal: There’s something extra lovely about the blogging industry because it’s probably the only industry where there is no real competition with actual losers and winners. Instead, it’s an industry full of creative people who do what they love and share their knowledge without a 4-digit price tag.
Yes, some bloggers earn much more than others, but as long as you’re a genuine person with honest will to provide your readers and fellow bloggers inspiration and advice, nobody looks down on you. And even if we don’t earn anything but joy for creating something beautiful or exciting we’re ready to share our secrets to one another without bias or fear of them outshining us.
Everything I mentioned there popped into my mind after reading an email newsletter from Melyssa Griffin, an online educator and social media expert. She’s kind enough to provide her followers advice on all kinds of blogging and social media matters. This time she provided her findings on how to grow one’s Insta following.
I jumped at the challenge because growing organic and genuine following on Instagram is crucial but it’s also very slow and time-consuming. I do not want bots to follow me and I absolutely can’t stand those follow-unfollow types (those are usually companies).
So far I have attempted to grow my following by posting good pictures with a lot of hashtags and attempted to keep my feed somewhat consistent. I recently also started to search for interesting accounts and followed them, which means that those people then (sometimes) follow you back. This tactic got me about 10 followers in 2 weeks, so not such a big haul.
Thankfully I love a challenge. Challenges are the best opportunities to learn something new. So, from the 6 tasks that Melyssa set in her newsletter I chose to concentrate on the following 3 points:
Get Social – Find accounts to follow and interact with them by commenting in their pictures, etc.
Brush up on those stories – Post interesting Insta stories daily.
Create a theme for my feed – Keep the pictures that I post consistent in quality and colour-scheme.
Not too bad, eh? But, as often happens, the first excitement quickly turned to doubt and I went ”Erm, how embarrassing if I fail and my following only grows with, like, 20 people in a week. My friends will see that, will they think I’m a complete loser?”
Basic, right? But then I thought, what the heck! I’ve got a job I get no inspiration out of and learn nothing new in, so why shouldn’t I try this one out? And failing is exactly when I get the light bulb moment that I will need, IF I even end up failing. And if I don’t fail, then that’s my following increased, which is a win.
So, I decided to go for it, no matter what, and record what I do and how it affects my following on Instagram. You can check out how I’m getting on by following me on Insta and reading a more in-depth analysis here on the blog.
I will post the first observations from my week of boosted gramming here this weekend, half way down the week, so tune in then! And to keep up with my progress don’t forget to follow me on Instagram ;)