Home Blog Page 5

Instagram Spam Is Killing Your Engagement. Here’s What To Do About It

3
Instagram Spam - Stop Instagram Spam

Are you fed up of those Instagram spam comments on your posts? And those spam followers with no profile pictures, offering more followers for free? Frickin’ spammers.

We’re in that boat with you.

How about instead of thousands of us climbing in that boat to escape them, we jump out of the boat and do something to stop them?

Instagram is my favourite app but it’s also becoming more popular for those damn fakes.

Did you know that there are potentially 24 million fake Instagram accounts? I know… that shocked me too.

So what can we do to get rid of them? How can we stop Instagram spam?

Make our profile private? But that could potentially hide us from new followers and customers…

Ignore them? But they’ll just keep on coming and filling up your comment section.

Delete the comment? Yay! Our post looks better now… but just wait until you post another…

The spam won’t get any less annoying unless you do something about it. And this is where I’m here to help.

But first…

What Does Spam Mean On Instagram?

Or another way of looking at this: What is a spam account on Instagram? Are there any giveaways?

It’s actually not that hard to figure out what Instagram spam is. Some of it is obvious from a mile away but some can be more subtle. It’s those subtle ones which might take a bit of extra work to confirm it’s spam, but like I said… it’s not that hard.

Whether it’s a comment or a follower, the same giveaways apply to both.

To be sure, just click on the profile name of the account.

No profile picture? This is a huge giveaway…

How can you have a profile picture when you aren’t a real person?

The answer is, you can’t… It’s spam.

Zero posts on the profile? Because they have nothing to post! It’s spam.

If the comment they leave on your post says something along the lines of ‘gain 1000 followers’ or ‘free followers, click here’ then this is definitely spam.

Why would clicking a link make 1000 genuine people follow you? Answer is… it wouldn’t. Nothing is that easy these days.

Follow for follow is tricky one. These could be genuine people in the same niche as you trying to build a following of relevant people and create their own community. I mean, if you’re into cars, surely you’d want to follow similar accounts and you’d want those accounts to follow you back and engage with your posts? Exactly.

This is a problem though when random people start commenting ‘follow for follow’ – these accounts generally just want new followers and they aren’t likely to follow you back.

These people will have ‘salesy’ type bio’s on their profile.

You’ve seen them before right? ‘I can’t believe I got 1000 new followers just by clicking this link! Try now for free’

Yeah those ones.

And then there’s those that direct you to naughty sites. These aren’t exactly what you want to see on a Monday morning whilst you’re eating your cornflakes and scrolling your Instagram feed is it?

Nope, thought not.

And last but not least, those comments or bio’s that claim they can make your Instagram grow through the roof or even make you famous. The ‘you’d be perfect for the role in the next TV series of Game of Thrones’ or ‘the next top model’. Well I hate to break this to you, but it’s pretty obvious that they aren’t real.

On the plus side though, these spam accounts or auto bots won’t steal or compromise your data.

That’s one bonus, hey?

But… if you have one of those moments where you don’t recognise a bot or a spam account and you click the link they are posting all over your account, or the link in their bio, this could be pretty bad.

These links often lead to malicious websites or apps. And you don’t want that.

One way to stop this from happening is to have a poke around in your ‘Following’ list. If you’re pretty ‘Insta-famous’, it can be a lonnnng task going through all of them. But ho-hum.

So anyway, if you come across an account with almost no posts or followers but they’re following thousands of account, it’s pretty certain that they’re a bot.

Do a quick block and report and job done.

3 Types Of Instagram Spam (And The Ugly Spammers Who Do It)

Spammers tend to fall into three categories. But at the end of the day, a spammer is a spammer and no matter what type, you don’t want your page associated with them.

Firstly we have…

The Passive Spammer

These are the accounts that have any combination of no profile picture, no posts, one post or a highly seductive profile picture with a bio that says something about clicking a link to get more followers.

These are the accounts that do nothing other than follow you in the hope that you’ll fall for the sales jargon in the bio and believe that clicking the link will actually make your Instagram page grow through the roof.

Then there’s…

The Aggressive Spammer

These, like the passive spammers will follow you and hope you click the link in their bio, but to make extra sure that you have seen their follow, will comment on your posts to get your attention. They’ll either ask you to check out their profile to help you gain more followers, or they’ll direct you to a link to gain followers.

They’ll do this on as many posts as they want – the way they see it, the more comments, the more people see them and the more clicks on the link they get.

And finally, there’s…

The Tit-for-Tat Spammer

These are a little bit different from the other two, because these are usually normal people rather than bots.

These are the people who comment ‘Like for Like’ or ‘Follow for Follow’ – they basically want to trade with you. If you like their post, they’ll like yours. If they want to spend all day trawling through accounts asking for likes, then good for them. But I’d rather not have them all over mine.

Why Is Spamming Bad?

So now you know what spamming is and who the spammers are, so what?! I hear you ask.

‘They’re doing no harm so why can’t I just ignore them?’

Well you could just ignore them, but I don’t think you’ll want to. Their comments under your post distract your followers from your content.

Instead of reading your caption that you spent 20 minutes composing to make sure it sounded just right, they’re reading the massive comment underneath about gaining followers.

And… before you know it, they’ve clicked on the link in the comment and bam they’re away from your page and they haven’t even left you a like.

And we all like likes, right?

So what about fake followers? Why are they so bad?

Well, I’m glad you asked.

Fake followers, whilst making your follower count so much higher, can be a bit of a pain when it comes to organic growth.

That is, normal people choosing to follow you.

I’ll show you how the thought process goes…

The girl with 50k followers getting only 100 likes on her picture she posted at peak time… “Hmm that’s a bit fishy. Maybe she is buying her followers to make her seem more popular? Maybe I won’t follow her then, her posts are probably fake too. That’s probably not even her real name.”

And then wait until Instagram does one of their deep cleans where they wipe out those fake accounts, that’s when your follower count will drop massively so your 50k is now actually only 35k.

That sucks I know.

So the moral to the story is, unless you want those pesky bots and annoying tit-for-tat spammers damaging your work, fish out the fakes and sink the spammers.

So, how do we do that exactly?

How do we stop Instagram spam?

Well I’m afraid there isn’t a cut and dry answer.

Whilst Instagram are working behind the scenes to remove those accounts, you need to play your part to keep the boat afloat.

The easiest thing to do is to turn a blind eye and ignore – make your account private… but like I said before, that’s game over. You’re basically throwing your paddles in the sea, floating around and seeing where you end up. Just waiting for people to find you and request to follow you.

You won’t attract new followers and your posts won’t show up on the hashtag pages. So it’s pretty pointless using them.

The best thing you can do is report the spammers. Find them and make Instagram aware.

So how do I do that? I hear you ask.

Simple.

Report them.

How to Report Instagram Spam

Whether it’s a spammy comment or a fake follow, reporting them is super simple.

When you get a spam comment on your post, before you delete it, report it AND report the account.

Click on the profile picture next to the spam comment. This will open their profile. Then click the three dots in the top right corner and choose ‘Report’ and then ‘Block.

It’s as simple as that.

And for comments…

Swipe left on the comment until 2 tabs appear on the right. The left tab will be a kind of stop sign with an exclamation mark in the middle. Click this and report the comment.

[one_half_first][/one_half_first][one_half_last][/one_half_last]

Done.

And then if you don’t want the comment hanging around, swipe left again and hit the trash symbol.

Comment deleted.

It’ll take less than a minute of your life but will prevent your profile or post getting taken over by fakes and spammers.

It’s also a good idea to report spam comments from other people’s posts too. You’re basically flagging the spam accounts to Instagram before they get to you.

Of course, nothing is going to completely remove spam. Spam is always going to be lurking in the background and will pop out every now and again.

Sorry to break it to you but that’s just how it goes.

Spam comments seem to come in waves for me. I can go months without a single comment and them bam. Every single time I post, within seconds they comment.

‘Get new followers, click the link in my bio’

Erm… no thank you.

Report and Delete.

How Can I Prevent Instaspam?

In all honesty, not a lot.

99% of the time, spam is the work of auto bots creating their own API. (That sounds technical I know but it’s nothing to worry about).

There are so many bloggers and influencers facing this problem now, the bigger their account gets, the more spam that pops up.

The best thing you can do is report it just like I’ve explained above.

There are some sites that talk about apps which automatically remove any spam from your account.

Omg that sounds amazing!

But do they work?

Well that’s up for debate.

I’ve heard many a story of the app working wonders for some people and then doing nothing for others.

Plus there’s the added issue of Instagram playing games and switching up the algorithm every now and again.

You know how it goes, you just manage to get into routine of posting, liking and following and your account is starting to grow nicely and then BAM. Engagement drops.

Well the funny thing is, it’s the same for bots. The creators program them to match the app and then BAM, new algorithm that you have to spend ages learning about before you get back to your same level of engagement as before.

So just give the bots a break okay?

Ha… just kidding. Report Report Report!!!

And just in case you want the low down on Instagram’s view of abuse and spam, head over to the Instagram Help Center: Abuse & Spam.

Orrrr…you could…

Stop Spam On Instagram Through Comments Settings

Did you know that you can automatically filter out certain comments on your posts?

Nope, me neither… well until I started to write this post.

Hats off to Instagram though because this is a handy little feature!

If you click the cog in the top right hand corner of your profile (what used to be the three dots), scroll down and click ‘Comments’. This brings up a new screen where you can tailor which comments Instagram will remove from your posts!

[one_third_first][/one_third_first][one_third][/one_third][one_third_last][/one_third_last]

Amazing!

So, the first option is to just hide offensive comments. If you want Instagram to decide which comments they think are offensive and remove them, then swipe right on the little button to the right of ‘Hide Offensive Comments’

But then you can go even further than that… If you swipe right next to ‘Enable Keyword Filters’, a box appears underneath which lets you type in specific words which you want Instagram to remove from your post.

[one_third_first][/one_third_first][one_third][/one_third][one_third_last][/one_third_last]

Get it? Ok, here’s an example:

You post a really good picture of a banana.

And someone goes and ruins it by commenting ‘Hey, great apple!’… Not cool man. It’s clearly a banana.

But if you go to ‘Enable Keyword Filters’ and activate this, you type ‘apple’ into the box underneath and click ‘Done’, then that person tries to type their comment about apples, and bam. Instagram stops them in their tracks.

Clever hey?

Alternatively, for those lazy people out there who don’t want to sit typing out all the possible combinations of offensive words, they can swipe right on ‘Use default keywords’ which appears underneath the text box. This will basically leave it up to Instagram to decide which words are offensive and make sure they never appear on your post.

So… What Is Instagram Doing About Spam?

Instagram are clearly aware of the problem with spam. They do regular automatic and manual sweeps of fake accounts, often making users’ followers plummet overnight.

But I’m sure you’ll agree, a few less followers is a lot better than fake users and bots all over your feed…

How To Stop Your Account From Taking Part In The Instagram Spam Scandal

Wait, what?

My account?

But I’m not spamming?

That’s what you might think, but actually, seeing a lot of spam comments on your posts might be a sign that your account has been compromised.

One way to prevent this from happening is by deleting spam comments as soon as you see them on your post. If they’re removed as soon as they’re posted, then spammers won’t think that your account is a great place to post their spam.

Ok… but how do I get my account back?

Great question.

Well, it could have been plain and simply hacked.

This happens all the time.

You aren’t the first, and you won’t be the last.

First thing to do is check your passwords. Change them regularly. Mix them up. Make words up that can’t be guessed.

Don’t go for the name of your pet and your birthday.

It won’t take long for people to figure that out, it’s not rocket science.

‘But my password is super strong, they never would have guessed that!’

Well in that case, remember the link you clicked?

The one that was left in a comment under your post?

The one that promised you lots of free followers?

Or the one in the bio of that account?

Yeah?

Well that’s how they got you.

They pulled you in, promised you thousands of followers and took your account.

The thing is, you might not even notice it’s been compromised until you get banned from Instagram for posting spam.

And you didn’t even realise…

So, the moral to the story is…

  • Change your password. Regularly!
  • Don’t try and get ‘free followers’. It really isn’t worth it.

Something else you might want to check is your authorised applications. You can only do this on the desktop site though, so you need to get yourself to a computer.

It’s super easy so it’s worth checking anyway, whether you think your account has been compromised or not.

  • Go to Instagram.com
  • Click your username and choose ‘Edit Profile’
  • Click ‘Authorized Applications’

From there you should see any apps which you have authorised to access your Instagram account.

If anything is there which you don’t recognise, or no longer want to be there, just click ‘Revoke Access’.

Easy as that.

Now let me talk you through some pretty useful apps below, and then you go ahead and check your apps.

Online Tools – Apps

So, there are some apps which claim to dig out the fakes and the spammers and remove them from your account for you.

Personally, I can’t say I’ve tried these as I’d rather control my account myself, but those who have tried them have had some pretty good results.

First up is Insta Ghost. Just like it says on the tin, this app picks out the ghosts. The users who have become inactive, and no longer comment or follow.

The only problem with this is that finding them is as far as it goes. You still have to report them to Instagram yourself.

But hey, it does half the job for you!

IGExorcist shows the ghost followers and then gives you the option to unfollow them.

Easy peasy.

There are a couple more apps which do the same thing but I’m not going to go into them here.

I do want to mention ‘Smart Moderation’ though.

Smart Moderation is basically an app which uses artificial intelligence to get rid of spam and comments.

You can program it to do exactly what you want. Whether it’s hiding comments, deleting comments or blocking people. This app has got you.

You can read more about this app here.

So. That’s the what, how and why of spam.

If you follow what we have talked about above then you’re taking steps in the right direction to help stop spam on Instagram.

You’re helping to keep it a place where you can carry on growing your account, posting nice pictures and attracting the right kind of followers and comments.

And just to make you feel a little bit better… The spammers don’t just target normal people like you and me.

Nope.

The celebrities get their fair share of fakes and spam too. And this can have detrimental effects on their brand or business.

Imagine following a huge clothing brand on Instagram and then they start posting spam comments on your posts.

Erm… no thank you.

Unfollow.

I’m not buying from them again!

Exactly. How bad is that?!

In 2014, when Instagram had a massive clear out of fake followers and spam accounts, millions of accounts were deleted. This was great – less spam and less fakes. Woohoo!

Well, not woohoo for everyone.

Akon (he’s a rapper. Sang Lonely? Remember that one? Yeah? Good.), yeah well he lost more than half of his followers who happened to be spam accounts. And then after that, people started to accuse him of buying followers! He went on to delete his account after that.

See how bad they can be?

That’s why you need to do something.

Report. Report. Annnnnd report.

Food For Thought…

Sometimes certain hashtags can attract the spam too. Certain bots monitor hashtags and as soon as you post something under a specific #, they spot you and make a move and you’re on their radar.

The same goes for following or liking certain accounts or posts.

If you want to learn how to stop this from happening, check this out.

So, just to wrap it up.

Spammers will always be there. There’s nothing you can do about that. Keep reporting, check your account security and mix up those hashtags.

The Shotgun System To Sell Services On Instagram

2

No…there are no Shotguns here…but…I called it that because this blog post is going to give you everything you need in knowing how to sell services on Instagram…and…like a shotgun, it’s gonna show you how to hit people hard, and fast.

If you’re struggling to sell your services on Instagram, this might be the most important blog post you’ll ever read.

In fact, I’d go as far as saying that what you can find here might change your business marketing for good, so…

Whether you’re just starting out on Instagram and wondering how the hell you use it to sell your services effectively…or you’re a seasoned pro who just needs to be reminded of a few key things, then do yourself a favour and read about a bunch of kick-ass ways to…

Sell Services On Instagram With The Shotgun System

Look, I’m not gonna beat around the bush here because…if your business involves selling services…you’re probably busier than all those 9-5 slaves…and…let’s face it, you don’t have time to be reading a novel-sized blog post.

So, with that in mind, let’s start with something easy:

Share Content Your Customers Want To See

[one_third_first][/one_third_first]

[one_third][/one_third]

[one_third_last][/one_third_last]

What do your customers want from you?

Let’s say you own a hotel and obviously, your goal is to get people to come and stay for their holiday.

And…considering you’re in charge of the Instagram page, you decide that you really like all of these motivational quotes that you see on pages across your Instagram feed. Maybe they’ll motivate people to come and stay with you? (See what I did there?)

So, you go on posting these quotes until you’re blue in the face and there’s tumbleweeds rolling through your reception area.

Not good.

But if you take a step back…

What do you think your customers want to see?

They want to see the room they’re staying in…

They want to see the views from the balcony…

The hotel gym, the pool, the bar, the meals you offer.

They want to see happy customers.

Basically, they want to see what you offer. And that’s not just for hotels. If you’re a web designer, they’ll want to see websites you create. If you’re a car detailer, they’ll want to see examples of cars you’ve worked on. If you’re a makeup artist, they’ll want to see…faces with makeup on?  Whatever.

You just need to find a way of showing what you do, or the results of what you do. It’s really that simple.

Educate Your Customers

Now, I’m not pretending that everyone goes to Instagram for an education. As great as that would be, it’s not gonna happen.

But, you can still offer tips and advice every now and again to those who would want it.

Think about it like this: Some of your customers will want to know how you do what you do. It might even make some of them recommend you to a friend. Imagine someone being so impressed with the fitness advice you offer as a Personal Trainer, that they recommend you to their friend Alan. Before you know it, you’ve got a new client and the reason is…drumroll please…you offered tips.

The key with this is to use it sometimes…but not often – we’re not trying to start a new college course here.

So, you’re probably wondering: “How often do I use it then? Don’t leave me hanging like this!”

Fear not mon petit bijou, I got your back.

You should use it as part of your overall content plan. So, let’s say every 5th post, you offer a tip, or some advice.

The consistency will not only work for you, but it will help your customers to expect that content from you every 5th post. If it’s something they really enjoy, they might even turn on post notifications for your account (the holy grail of engagement in case you’re wondering).

And, better yet, you get a chance to use an exclusive hashtag. So again, if you were posting a tip every 5th day, you could use #5thdayfitnesstips, then your customers can look at that hashtag for all of your tips in one place. Awesome.

If you need some inspiration for what to post here, try answering these questions:

  • What drives my business?
  • What are the biggest takeaways for my customers?
  • How will these tips help my audience?

Answer those…and…you’re probably gonna find it’ll be so much easier to sell services on Instagram.

Leverage Your Location

If you’re a brick and mortar business, you better be using geotags on your Instagram posts.

It’s kinda the key to the castle because you have hungry customers around every corner, and you could be advertising to them…for free…right in their homes.

The perfect example for this is a local bakery. If you spend some time every day posting pictures of cakes, pastries and breads…what do you think is gonna happen when the hungry guy who lives 5 minutes away sees them? His belly starts to rumble. He thinks he should just go and make himself some food, that’ll save money. But…your delicious-looking cakes have got inside his head. He goes back. Checks his Instagram again. And sure enough, there it is. His favourite cake…

Sold.

He turns up 3 minutes later (yes, he ran) and buys that cake.

So…

If I ask you now: How does geotagging sell a service on Instagram? You know the answer, right?

But…

If the question is how do you geotag on Instagram? Well, I’m gonna have to cover that now aren’t I?

There’s a few ways to make the most of your location. And to be honest, you should be using all of them. Your customers need to know where you are.

The first is to just include your location in your bio. Simple.

The second, is actually geotagging your location when you post. When writing your caption, look slightly below that box and you’ll see another few boxes. The one that says location is our target here. All you need to do is type in your location and bam, done.

Then finally, you have location-specific hashtags. This might take a little more effort because, not every location is going to have a very active hashtag. Especially if you live in some small town somewhere off the East Coast of Who-Knows-Where.

But, it can be worth your while because, your local customers still might search for the hashtag, and if they do, you can be the top post every damn day.

Make Sure You’re A Business Profile

This is kind of a given but a lot of businesses I talk to don’t even know it exists. The business profile setting.

Even if you’re just a personal Instagram account, you should have your profile set to business because there’s a whole host of benefits if you want to sell services on Instagram.

You get access to analytics that will tell you your impressions, reach, profile views, time of most activity, best content for engagement, best day to post…and more.

That kind of information is absolute gold dust if you know how to use it. And trust me, you should take the time to find out.

On top of that, you get to add your contact information, which nicely transforms into your very own contact button on your profile. That gives your customers the ability to contact you without having to go searching through your website, or ending up in you direct message filter folder.

Head to your settings at the top of your profile page, then scroll down towards the bottom, you’ll see a button giving you the option to switch to a business profile. Hit that and follow the steps.

Easy as pie.

Make The Most Out Of Your Link

I’m going to cover this in a lot more depth in a future post so…

For now, all you need to know is your link should go to a landing page that is optimized to convert visitors into buyers.

And…

You should make sure that your link doesn’t look in the slightest bit like spam.

For example, this looks like spam:

https://affiliatebootcamp.com/retire-in-100?cf_affiliate_id=642597&affiliate_id=642597&aff_sub=instasecrets&aff_sub2=sellservices&nopopup=false&noautoplay=false&cookiepreview=false

You’ve got no idea where it goes…other than it says affiliatebootcamp.com …but…some links can look a lot worse than this, when they might have perfectly good intentions.

You see…all those numbers, equals signs, ampersands and random words make you question.

But THIS doesn’t look like spam:

bit.ly/affiliatebootcampinsta

See that? You know where you’re going, you’ve got a good idea what you’re gonna see and you can be pretty sure you can trust the link. And that trust, is key for being able to effectively sell services on Instagram.

Videos Still Rule

[one_half_first][/one_half_first]

[one_half_last][/one_half_last]

Like the section on giving tips, you can show what you do, in your own unique way, by using a video.

If you’re a coach, take a video of some of your clients.

Or…if you’re a personal trainer, show the progress of the people you train.

And…if you’re a chef, show your best dishes being prepared.

I’m sure you get the point.

Basically, you can use a video to show results of what you do – show how your customers benefit from the work you do.

And as a result of all that, you can show videos of testimonials. What have your customers loved about working with you? What results did they get? Would they recommend you?

Ask them to give a testimonial and most will be willing to. Just remember…ANY testimonial you use needs to be 100% real and genuine. But, I’m sure you knew that already, right?

Videos work. Period. So go out, make some videos, upload them, and see what your audience think.

Your possibilities here are pretty endless…if…you can be creative.

Breaking News

Possibly the best way to now sell your services on Instagram is using Instagram live video.

Why?

First, you get to engage with your audience on a more personal level, in real time. Now, I’m not going to even mention the fact that people love watching other people live their lives…but…it seems to me, you could take advantage of that fact right there.

Then, you could hold a good ol’ Q&A where your customers, followers, or potential audience can drop questions into that little comment box…and…you can reply instantly. That smells to me like you could knock people off that fence their on if they’re “thinking about buying”.

And finally…I saved the best for last: You can use instagram live to inject a bit of sales psychology into your marketing plan.

A typical reply thrown at me at this point is something like: “Uh, what?”

Man oh man, I shouldn’t be giving this away for free…but…what the hell, I’m feeling generous. Let me put it this way: the very act of being “live” makes people want to tune in.

You hijack their brain and activate an automatic response of them watching and paying attention to what you have to say – aka you got their attention.

Then, let them know what you do and throw a few benefits at them of what they’d get by working with you – you got their interest.

Now, you hit them hard with the best promotion or discount you’ve ever given…and…to really bring home the bacon…you tell them this discount only applies to people who get in now – while you’re live. If they don’t take action now, they miss the chance at that price.

Tell them again about more benefits…lay it on thick…and repeatedly ask for action.

Look at that…did we just sell services on Instagram? Uh, yeah we did.

So, next up…

How To…

This one should be easy.

Your customers will pretty much hand this type of content to you on a silver platter. They’re basically gonna help you sell to other customers. *Jaw drops*

All you have to do is share a photo or video of a common issue – then provide solutions either in the caption, in the post, or in your next post.

So here’s an example:

A customer asks how to use a certain feature on Photoshop – you, being a designer, shows them. Now, you might think that they’re not gonna stay a customer for long if you keep helping them, but…

If someone approaches that customer asking for a Photoshop expert, 9 times out of 10 they’re gonna think of you. They’ll give your name.

And before you know it. You have an army of people referring new customers to you.

Easy peasy.

Before we get into what you should do next…let’s sum up how to sell services on Instagram:

  1. Share content your customers want to see
  2. Educate your audience
  3. Leverage your location
  4. Switch over to a business profile
  5. Make the most of your link
  6. Use videos as much as you can
  7. Use Instagram live for offers
  8. Create how to posts and content

What Should You Do Now?

You need to pick a few (or all) of these tips to sell services on Instagram. Go back through them and make a plan for each. That way, you know you’re following it step by step.

You’ll probably find one or two pieces get more engagement from your customers.

Once you see that, stick with those more often and you’ll soon have clients lining up at your door, Starbucks in hand, ready to throw money at you.

P.S. – If you’re still struggling to get more followers…or…you’ve hardly got any at all yet…then make sure you check out our article to get 500 followers on Instagram in less than 14 days

How To Use Instagram Live Video

2

…This Instagram Live Video Guide Is What You Need To See

If you’ve not seen Instagram Live then you must have been hiding under a rock. It’s a pretty new feature and if you aren’t using it… you should be.

Basically, Instagram Live lets you stream a video to your followers in real time, creating that oh-so perfect combination of urgency and engagement.

Yep, no time for retakes or edits. You’re LIVE.

Sounds scary, right? It’s not so bad…

People aren’t expecting a perfectly scripted, professional video. They know you’re live and that’s why they’re watching. They want to see you being you. Not a polished video that’s been rehearsed several times – that’s not exactly spontaneous and fun is it?

Show your human side and your followers will form a bond with you and keep coming back for more.

Your Instagram Live video disappears as soon as you’ve finished streaming…but you have the option to share it to your story so it can be replayed for the next 24 hours – just like your story. And in the same way, the more you update your story, the more you stay at the top of your followers’ feed… so stay active!

Why Go Live?

Well, aside from it being one tactic to get you your first 500 followers on Instagram

Disappearing videos means that only the people who watch you at that time will be involved. This creates a sense of urgency.

People don’t like to miss out – going live will encourage your followers to watch you as soon as that notification pops up.

That’s what you want, right? Of course!

It’s like the exclusivity club – if you don’t watch the live stream then what have you missed out on?!

You can go live anywhere at anytime – perfect for letting your followers get to know you and sharing moments that can’t be caught in a picture and posted to your page.

And if you want your followers to get to know you and you want to get to know your followers, live gives you the chance to interact directly with them…

How? Easy.

During a live video, viewers can comment throughout, just like on Facebook live.

This is the perfect opportunity for you to answer your followers’ questions, ask your own and engage with them on a personal level.

I mean, if I’m watching a live video and someone sees my comment and speaks directly to me – I feel awesome!

Say hello to people watching who aren’t already following you and when you start to see regular names popping up, say hi and ask something that shows you remember them. This will make them feel valued and show you care about your followers.

There’s so many ways that going live can help your brand or business.

But first… how do you know who your audience is and what they want to see?

Are they a loyal fan just jumping in on the video to see what’s new?

Or are they a newbie who have never seen you before?

If you have a business, the loyal fans will know a lot more about it and about you personally – that makes it easier to jump straight into business talk.

But what about the newbies? They don’t know who you are..

Well this is where your strategy comes in.

Strategy? Oh that sounds daunting.

Well actually it’s quite simple.

Your strategy is catering for both.

But how do I do that?

Easy.

Mix it up while you stream. Try to throw in something for the loyal fans and for the beginners.

That way you have both of their attention the whole way through and you’re probably pleasing the people in the middle too.

So, from a business-y point of view, Instagram Live has a lot of the same benefits as Instagram stories but with some extra features which can be a bonus for your business.

Like I mentioned above, Live means you can connect on a personal level with your customers and fans. It helps them get to know the real you – no edits or filters.

And why is that good?

Because if they like you (and they probably will), then they’re likely to trust you. And what follows trust?

Loyalty.

So next time you’re launching a product and you’ve used an Instagram Live video to tell how amazing it is, your loyal fans are already getting their wallets out.

And filming a live video to generate sales uses a lot less time and effort than writing an advert and promoting it everywhere, right?

Right.

Another useful thing on Live is the viewer count. You can see how many people are watching at any time.

But how does that help?

Simple. If the viewer count is dropping as the stream goes on, change it up.

If it’s going up, then you know you’re doing something right.

This will also help as a general pointer for marketing as you’ll have an idea of what people are interested in and what they really don’t care about.

What Can I Use Instagram Live For?

So now we’ve got the Why out of the way. Let’s move on to What you can use Live for.

If you think that Live only has a few uses and can’t help your brand or business in any way then I’m sorry to say but you’re wrong.

So let’s look at just a few of the ways you can use it.

Let’s kick it off with the behind the scenes stream.

This is always a popular stream. People love to know what goes on behind the scenes, no matter what your business does… I do! (And I can’t be the only nosy one out there!). If you tell me you don’t, then you’re lying…

Give your viewers a guided tour of where the magic happens, show off your store or warehouse or feature some of the staff – give them a wave! Show the process of making your product or sending the product out to the customer – this is a great way to engage with your customers as they can relate to the process – they’re the final piece!

Have you ever done a Q&A? Well why not?

This is the perfect opportunity to find out what the customers like and don’t like and what they want more of.

And it’s so much quicker than sending an email to every customer asking for feedback. No one wants to type you a long email explaining what they think works well and what doesn’t. Heck, they probably won’t even read yours!

But during a live stream… ‘well I’m already in, I could just leave a comment’.

See how easy that is…

And they will probably stick around to see if you read it out or answer their question.

Next you could try showing a product and how to use it. Treat it like a mini tutorial… a product demo.

This is your chance to convince those customers who are thinking of buying something but aren’t quite sure, that they need your product.

They can see the product in action. And for most people this is a game changer.

Imagine a brand new makeup product being launched, or a brand new watch. You see the products online or in a post on Instagram and think, hmm, yeah that’s nice.

That’s it.

Whereas on Live you can give a demonstration of the makeup – show the coverage and the glow and suddenly… Wow! I need this! Take Kylie Jenner for example… She shows off all of her makeup range on live videos…

And the watch… you show someone wearing it, show how the light bounces off it and give a full 360 view whilst explaining all of its features and again – more sales.

People like proof. So if they can see something working or being used, they’re more likely to be interested.

There’s so many accounts out there selling the same products, so sometimes another picture of a watch is just another picture of a watch. Make your brand stand out with Live and use it to get more sales.

Have you run a contest or giveaway on Instagram before?

Live streams are the perfect opportunity to announce the winner.

Let people know when you post the contest that the winner will be announced on whatever day Live at whatever time.

This should entice people into watching and will provide you with an audience who are going to be watching until you announce the winner.

Before you announce the winner, use the opportunity to talk about a new product or answer some questions. You’ll likely get more engagement whilst people wait for the announcement so make the most of it!

And just like streaming a demo of your product, if you provide a service such as fitness or beauty, then why not stream it live?

Show your skills in action and give your followers a taster of what they could get from you.

Another idea for using live to increase engagement is to share celebrations and milestones with your followers. If you’ve made it to 10k Instagram followers, jump on live and show how happy and thankful you are. Share the moment with your followers.

If you’ve just celebrated the business’ 1st birthday, jump on Instagram and get them involved! Use these opportunities to share a special promotion or discount with your followers as a thank you – but exclusively offer it in Live. This will again create the urgency to watch your live video next time you stream in the chance that they will miss out on something otherwise.

It all sounds great, right?

How To Go Instagram Live

It’s super simple. In fact it’s simpler than posting on your feed.

Step 1: Swipe right on your home feed to open the camera feature. (Or if you’ve already got a story, tap to view it and click your profile picture in the top left corner with a + sign).

Step 1

Step 2: Swipe left across the bottom of the screen to change the camera setting from Normal to Live.

Step 2

Step 3: Press the button to start the Live Video!

And you’re live! (Well, Instagram checks your connection and gives you a three second countdown – so if you’re not 100% ready, you still have time to sort your hair and check your teeth – I can’t be the only one that does that, right?)

See…

It’s as easy as 1, 2, 3.

Your followers will get a notification that you’ve gone live so they can watch you.

If for any reason you don’t want your followers to get a notification then you can turn off notifications in settings.

In any case, a colourful ring will appear around your profile photo to tell people that you have a story or you are live. People can just tap your profile picture to view it.

Your profile icon with the colourful circle will also appear on the top of your followers’ feeds with everyone else who has a story or is live. This makes it super easy for people to just scroll through all the stories or live videos at once.

(Don’t forget to check which way your camera is facing! And don’t forget you can toggle the direction whilst filming, just like when taking a picture

Now before you do go live, I recommend checking your Instagram story settings to check who can see your story. You can do this by clicking the settings icon in the top left of your screen before you click to go live (the icon looks like a cog).

Story Settings

When you’re live you can see how many people are watching your broadcast at any time with the counter at the bottom of the screen. It also gives you the name of the users who have joined the stream.

This little feature helps you keep track on how engaged your audience is – you can see if people are joining and then leaving straight away or if they’re staying for the show.

Credit: Instagram

Comments

You also have the power to stop people from commenting using the magic three dots on the bottom of the screen. So if you want to build some hype or have a specific Q&A section of your stream you can turn them on and off throughout the video to suit you!

But… any keyword filters that you’ve turned on will also apply to comments on your live video.

If you spot a super awesome comment you can tap and hold it to pin it to the top of the comments. This way, anyone viewing the video will be able to see it.

There’s always going to be that worry that someone is going to leave negative comments – those three buttons allow you to control that. But if there’s someone watching who you don’t want to, well you have the power again… If you tap on the number of viewers on the screen, you’ll notice that each name has a small ‘X’ next to it… Yeah?

Just tap that ‘X’ and that person has been kicked out. It’s as simple as that. And no one has to know!

Ending Your Live Stream

So when you want to end your live video, simply tap the end button at the top of the screen and that’s it!

A summary of your analytics will appear on the screen telling you the number of viewers etc. If you’re planning on including live videos into your brand regularly, it might be a good idea to screenshot this analytics screen as a reminder of how successful this video was. You can then compare these results with the next one and the next one and then build up a picture of what type of videos your audience likes more. And then you’ll be able to provide more of the content they like which means more views!

Credit: Instagram

If your story is public or if you have added a hashtag or location to it then your story or live video might even appear at the top of the Explore page. If it is appearing here, then you’ll see the location or hashtag page at the top of the list of people who have viewed your story. This gives huge exposure as way more people than just your followers will view it.

There’s also the chance of way more followers as a result… so fingers crossed!

If you don’t want your story or live video to appear here though, simply tap the ‘X’ at the side of its name and it’s gone!

So your live video was super successful and you wish you could watch it back to remember exactly what you said and pick out those good bits… Well actually you can do that! When the video has ended, simply tap the ‘Save’ button in the top right corner of the screen and it will save to your phone.

It will not save to the app or your profile though, just to your phone. And it won’t save who was viewing it or how many viewers you had, so remember to always take that screenshot we talked about earlier!

Instagram has recently added a new feature which allows users to share their Live videos to their stories for 24 hours after it has ended – just like a regular story. If you want to do this, simply swipe right on the ‘Share your video for 24 hours’ message which appears after your video has ended and tap ‘Share’. This allows anyone to view your live video as many times as they want for 24 hours afterwards – perfect for those who missed it!

How To Get The Most Out Of Live

There’s no point planning out a Live stream, what you’re going to say, what you’re going to ask and what you’re going to share, if no one is going to watch it, is there?

No…

So promote your live video before you broadcast it.

The goal is to attract as many viewers as possible to your stream. Like with your posts, the more views and engagement your stream is creating, the more likely you’ll end up on the Explore page as Instagram recognises that it’s popular and might be of interest to others too.

Once your video is over, it’s gone. No one will see it again – your followers can’t watch a replay. They have that one chance to see it – so make sure they do.

Let people know a couple of days in advance that you’re going to be live. Your fans (and yes you will have some) will remember the date and time.

Cross promote on your other social media accounts and even get your friends to promote your live video on their accounts too.

The more hype you try to build, the bigger your audience and more engagement.

To get more people to tune in each time you go live, reward them.

What? How do I do that?

Easy.

You need to make sure that they realise your live video is worth their attention for the whole stream.

Rewarding them can be simply giving them a discount code at the end of the stream, or giving them early access to a part of your website before it has gone live.

This will not only make your viewers feel valued, but make them click to view your live stream next time in the hope that they’ll be given something else.

You could also consider giveaways that are only available whilst the Live stream is running. Give viewers a discount code to use on your website which is valid for the length of the stream and for a small amount of time afterwards (this gives those people who want to watch the full stream chance to watch it and still get the discount). This makes your stream definitely worth watching and makes the offer exclusive!

Using Live For Business

Incorporating Live into your Instagram business strategy can seem quite daunting, especially if you want to maintain that professional image.

But like I talked about earlier, it doesn’t have to be scripted and perfect, you’ll find that more customers can relate to you and your brand when they can see the real you. People like personality – so show this. You’ll be surprised how this is reflected in your engagement.

So, lets look at some ways in which you can use Live for business.

Q&A Sessions

Just like with your brand (or even personal account) you can use a Q&A session for your followers to get to know you – the founder/face of the business or to get some feedback from your customers. You don’t need to come fully prepared with the questions and the answers because that will be boring.

Take advantage of the comments feature and let your viewer engage with you.

And… if there are any awkward silences, take out those FAQ’s you’ve brought with you (I didn’t say don’t come prepared at all) and rattle some of those off. This might also prompt some questions from viewers who weren’t sure what to ask.

Tutorials

Whether you sell a product or a service, a tutorial is a great way to show people more.

Demonstrate how to use the product, or different things you can do with it which they probably hadn’t thought of…

That new liquid lipstick – hey look at this… it doubles as an eyeliner!

Or, if you offer a service such as personal training, show off some exercises that people can try at home. Whatever you try, you’re delivering value.

People like value and the more you provide, the more they will come back. It also shows that you aren’t just selling something for the sake of it – it’s something you’re passionate about and you know your stuff!

Behind the Scenes

Just like we talked about earlier… show people where the magic happens. Let people in on the secret. The more personal your business is, the more trust your customers will have in you.

Takeovers!

You must have seen these on some of your favourite accounts?

This is basically where one of your team or an influencer in your industry takes over your Instagram for the day. They stream the live videos, they post the pictures, they engage with the fans.

These are super popular because not only are your followers getting a ‘behind the scenes’ kinda look by following someone round for the day but they’re getting to know one of the people they follow on social media.

And… it’s likely that if the influencer chooses the products they love and features them on the stream, the viewers will want those too! (Yes, I have been one of those viewers…).

Build up the takeover to become an event. Build hype!

Remember, the more people talking about it, the more engagement, the more follows, the more sales.

Easy, right?

Promote New Products

As there is that sense of urgency around live – you ain’t there, you ain’t in the loop – well take advantage of this and use if to build hype around your new products. If Live is the place where you’re giving sneak peeks of new products or new designs before anywhere else, then people won’t want to miss it.

If you want to build even more hype, just give teasers… Tell your viewers little bits about the product, but not the whole thing. Then use this opportunity to ask people to sign up to your website for more info, or to share a post and when shares reach a certain level, more info will be published.

This gives your live stream that element of exclusivity, making people take action right there and then instead of waiting and thinking about if they want to.

Collecting Email Addresses

So you’ve advertised you’re holding a Q&A right?… All you need now are some Q’s and then you can give some A’s.

One way to do this beforehand is to ask people to submit questions via email and then you’ll answer them on the Live Stream.

You got it… you’re killing two birds with one stone.

You’re collecting email addresses (increasing your leads) and you’re creating a content plan for your stream (so you have to do less work thinking of questions and you have a heads up about what people really want to know!).

Get Ideas For Your Next Product or Project

Whatever you’re using the Live Stream for, the comments should give you an idea of what people like and what they don’t like. So should the number of views – you might notice you attract more viewers for streams showing one product than another. Use these analytics combined with Q&A’s etc. to help decide on future products.

With all of these, don’t forget to include a call to action at several points throughout the stream. Most people won’t stay to the end – we all know this – but you still want your message to reach them, right? Yes. So CTA CTA CTA! (CTA = Call to Action).

But What About Small Businesses?

Should I really bother with Instagram Live Video? I only have 200 followers…

Yes! You should!

It doesn’t matter how many followers or potential customers you have. Going Live and giving them that personal touch and insight into your business and your personality is making them feel valued.

If your customers feel valued and get to know you on a personal level through Live, why would they go to your bigger competitor? They probably wouldn’t.

Some bigger businesses can’t respond to or engage with everyone just because of the size of their audience – it’s physically impossible. Well unless they streamed live 24/7 – but even then, some businesses would struggle.

The difference is, you can. You have that advantage of being able to talk to your customers on a personal level and that’s what some people value.

I Don’t Have A Brand And I’m Not A Business

Live is still something which can be used to get more likes and follows on personal accounts. It’s the perfect way to engage with your followers.

Use it to share moments of your day or to let people know you’ve posted a new Youtube video. It’s the perfect way to get your message across to everyone at the right time.

And it could be just for fun!

Bit nervous about going live alone? Don’t worry… Instagram has now added the feature of going Live with a friend… Phew. Less pressure on me!

It’s super simple to add a guest to your live stream. Simply tap the ‘New’ icon at the bottom of your screen and then ‘Add’. This will let you choose one person who is currently watching, to add to your stream.

Your screen will then split into two and your friend will appear below you! Everything else happens like normal, comments, likes etc. but your friend can now also see the same screen as you.

Cool, right?

If you want, you can give your friend the boot at any time, or, they can leave when they’re ready.

Multiple Live Streams In Business

Just like I have explained about inviting a friend to go live with you, this double stream feature could also be a great Stream option for brands or business.

Try streaming with a colleague in another location… Or try adding a customer to your live stream to give a testimonial of your product. This is the perfect opportunity to show authority – if someone who has used and benefitted from the product is telling you about their good experience – you’re more likely to trust that, right?

You can easily add or remove who you want so you’re still in control.

Can I Choose Who I Go Live To?

Apart from removing people from viewing your live stream, you can’t select who you go live to.

Buuuuut all is not lost…

You can send a ‘disappearing’ picture or video directly to a friend or a group on Instagram – just like a picture or video you would post to your story, but it disappears after they have viewed it (Kinda like another app we all know and love so much… ).

To do this, swipe right on your home screen to open the camera then tap or hold the big button on the screen to take your picture or video. Then tap the arrow and choose who to send it to.

Your friend has the chance to replay the picture or video once but once they’ve done this, it’s gone forever!

Remember, you can only send disappearing pictures or videos to the people who follow you.

How To Rapidly Get 500 Followers On Instagram…Without Getting Naked

4

So…you’re on Instagram now…and…usually…the first question to hit you over the head is: How to get 500 followers on Instagram as fast as possible.

If that sounds like you…you’re definitely one of us. One of the people looking to grow their account, feel popular, impress clients, earn money, or…get free shit from brands.

But…do you really know what you’re doing?

Do you know how to get more followers?

How to do it quickly?

Instagram is a minefield recently, even us experts are pulling our hair out over the constant changes…but…that doesn’t mean you should jump over to the dark-side and consider throwing money at fake likes and even faker comments…or worse…buying your first 500 followers. Listen carefully when I say this: Don’t do it. It’s a bad idea.

And, even if you ignore me and do it anyway…whether you like it or not…your real number matters.

I mean, I don’t know about you but I’d take 500 real buying customers over 10,000 fake spam accounts – who are gonna do nothing for my bank balance – any day of the week. So that real number means you need to shoot for real growth…but…what if you can’t do it?

What if you take weeks, or even months to get your first 500 followers?

I’ll tell you exactly what: You’re left wondering if you can actually do this.

You’re left wondering if this social media marketing biz is actually what you want.

And you’re left thinking maybe that dream of living a 4-hour work week in a beach house can have it’s ass kissed goodbye.

So what’s the alternative?

Well, you can stick around here for the next 13 minutes and get some knowledge bombs dropped on you, repeatedly.

Your first 500 Instagram followers are ready and waiting.

 

How To Get 500 Followers On Instagram… In 14 Days Or Less

Here’s the deal: You can take your first 500 followers like candy from a baby if you just follow these steps.

And yes, the order matters.

So, at the risk of losing a few of you because I sound like your high-school teacher…try to stop yourself from acting like the bratty kid who skips to the end.

Anyway, here’s the first thing I want you to realise:

 

It’s All About The Theme

I’d love to dress this part up and pretend it’s something fancy…but…it’s actually pretty easy. Pick a theme – a style – and stick to it.

Wait…what the hell is a theme?

Well, without making this sound completely redundant, it’s just the colour scheme, content style, font style, layout and overall look of your feed.

Here’s a couple of examples:

[one_half_first]

@ni_sa_

[/one_half_first]

[one_half_last]

@travelawesome

[/one_half_last]

It’s obvious that there’s different themes here. Each stands out, each has it’s own attitude and each…is consistent.

So, the question is: How do you find…and…choose, your own?

Hold right there…before you let your mind run away with ideas…stop for a minute and just think about which styles you’ve seen and liked. You don’t HAVE to create a whole new style.

No-one wants you to re-invent the wheel here. It’s pointless and let’s face it…too much like hard work.

But…

There Is A Simple Way To Do This

Just use InkyBee or Keyhole to find the top 10 Influencers in your niche.

First, open each page up one by one. What do you notice? Do they have a theme in common? Does there seem to be anything in common? Which one jumps out at you the most?

All you have to do is find one…choose it…and…stick with it…got it? Awesome.

Let’s move on.

Oh, before we do, here’s a PRO tip: Once you’ve decided on your content and theme – create a months worth of posts to guarantee you don’t “change your mind” after a few days. We’ve all been there (it’s actually called shiny-object syndrome…I have it…it’s where you constantly find something new – that you think is better – and then you do that for a while before…again…finding something else new – and better – and so on. Trust me…it becomes exhausting).

But seriously, sometimes, you DID make the right decision the first time round.

So, now that we’ve taken care of how our feed will look, we need to set a goal. And, like any goal, you should…

Aim For The Top

Think about it: What is your aim?

Why are you here? (And don’t say because you want to know how to get 500 followers on Instagram…that’s cheating)

Whatever the reason, write it down. You’ve joined Instagram to get something. And you need to be clear what that something is. If your aim is to get more followers, that doesn’t really count. 22,200 people search for that same question every frickin’ month. That’s not specific enough for what we’re here to do.

And why’s that? Simply because…there’s a reason you want more followers.

Is it popularity? More customers? More leads for your clients? Is it to get free stuff?

I don’t care what it is right now…but…whatever it is, write it down.

Then…take the leap! You’re not here to just set a goal, write it down then move onto the next thing like you don’t  know what to do next. The truth is – by the end of this article at least – you will know exactly what to do next.

But…we’re not at the end yet, so it’s probably a good time to let you in on a little secret. At some point in this process, we’re gonna get pretty hostile and pick a fight. But, we’re gonna win because we have an advantage…because…first, before we make our move, we…

Research…Then…Destroy (Eventually)

Okay, this isn’t as aggressive as it sounds.

But…the end goal is to steal your competitors audience and customers. I can’t sell you the pretty picture where there’s “enough to go around” because, I’m old school on this one, you’re here to win. Just think about this:

[one_half_first]

  • Jeff Bezos didn’t start Amazon thinking he wanted to share customers with other online stores – no, he wanted to price most online retailers out of pretty much EVERY market.

[/one_half_first]

[one_half_last]

  • Mark Zuckerberg didn’t start Facebook thinking he wanted to be just another social network that people could sign up to and browse from time to time – no, he wanted to infect your life and steal you from pretty much every other form of entertainment out there.

[/one_half_last]

 

No…these guys came to win. In fact, their companies are still trying to win, even though they are winning.

So what do we do?

Well, we get it into our heads that we’re here to win. We want to (legally) steal our competitors customers and we want to leave those punks crying into their Starbucks Caramel Latte that they now can’t afford.

Because, that’s just war baby.

Back to it. Let’s see how we can do…

A Little Competitor Research

First up, pick the top 10 influencers we found earlier using InkyBee.

Now, we need to use a few more tools for this part, so get some tabs ready.

Pull up SocialBlade…and…make sure to choose Instagram in the search bar. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve missed that and frustratingly swore at my laptop for lying to me about an account not existing in the database.

Once you’ve done that, throw the names of the influencers in, one by one.

You can ignore most of the stuff that shows up for now…and…just hit “Detailed Stats”. This will bring up the follower changes every day for the past 30 days.

What we’re looking for here is consistent growth. So we want green numbers every day and we want…mostly…consistent numbers. Like this:

“But, why? What does it all mean?” I hear you say through small baby-like tears.

Well, consistent “similar” numbers every day usually signals natural growth. And yes, that’s what we want.

If, on the other hand, you see losses some days, small gains, and then huge increases on the odd day, you’re probably looking at a crappy account. Not always…but…surprisingly often…that’s someone who’s likely buying followers. Fake followers.

We DON’T Want To Copy Them

In fact, if possible, trip them up. Like…make them fall over or spill their coffee…or…or…or, something.

They’re the real reason Instagram keeps having to change it’s algorithm – which…don’t worry…you’ll find out can be a complete nightmare.

So, yeah, we don’t like them. And we sure as hell don’t want to do ANYTHING that they’re doing. It’s not working for them, it won’t work for you…and…you risk getting the boot from Instagram.

Now, I know you might be thinking: “Well hold on a darn minute. What if they bought a shout-out that day?”

And you’d be right – that is possible.

But…it doesn’t change the fact that their growth isn’t natural. They’re buying it. And, I’m guessing you don’t want to throw money at your Instagram repeatedly. I sure as hell don’t. So, I stand by what I said.

Anyway, here comes the fun part:

Creating Sexy-Ass Content

This completely depends on your niche. (Mostly.)

I mean, quotes seem to work no matter what…but…they’re getting less and less effective. Now, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t use them because they still destroy most other post types when it comes to engagement. But, just be aware of it

So, if quotes are your weapon of choice:

Or…you could go with a more unique, special-to-you, business-like approach.

I’m talking about: Product shots, client results, travel photos, designed items etc. – This is all completely unique to you and could be your ticket to the big show.

Here’s what to do if you’re taking pictures like those:

  • Use a good camera (or phone – it’s pretty scary how good photos from a phone can be these days) – Pro Tip: set your phone camera to “square” mode to make sure it’s perfect for Instagram.
  • Use an editing app like Facetune
  • Keep to your consistent theme that you decided on earlier

And that’s it.

At this point, we’ve covered a lot…so…you’re probably considering going off for a coffee…or…heading out to walk the dog. Well, I hate to break this to you…but…if you do that now, you’re gonna be missing out on the more “juicy tricks” to getting to 500 followers quickly.

Oh good, you’re staying. Let’s press on with what I promised…

 

Growth Time

Now, it’s time for the fun stuff.

How do we quickly get 500 followers on Instagram? Like this…

Find Ultra-Targeted Hashtags

“Do you mean like #luxury, #entrepreneur and #quote?”

No, no, no, no….NO! These hashtags are the reason people aren’t picking up new followers anymore without doing some pretty shady shizz. Let’s face it, these hashtags are dead. They don’t do anything for anyone anymore…unless…you already have a huge page. In that case, go right ahead. But…for someone starting out, they’re useless.

And, by useless, I mean…literally…useless.

Time and time again I see “experts” recommending you use very popular, high traffic hashtags to try and boost your reach. It’s not gonna happen.

I’m sorry, but it’s not.

These hashtags have so many accounts posting to them that your post will be buried before you’ve even managed to click back to your home screen. And guess what? Those accounts that have buried you are 10-100-500x the size of you…you’re picking a fight you can’t win.

Sure, you could win the lottery and end up with some sort of miracle…but…for most of us, that’s never the way it pans out.

So…the burning question on everyone’s lips is: Where do I find ultra-targeted hashtags?

The answer: With a LOT of time and energy. I’m talking hours of research. Now…don’t let that scare you off just yet. After all, this is your chance at free followers, customers, advertising, and…well…money.

Let me explain: The real kick-ass hashtags that will benefit you are out there, it’s just that you’re not going to find them on the crappy “hashtag apps” that everyone uses…or…by scrolling through blogs hoping you eventually stumble upon a goldmine.

Instead, you’re gonna have to sweat a little. Well, a lot. Thankfully, not right now, because you’re reading. (Saved you from that pain for a bit longer. You’re welcome.)

So, here’s a quick list of ways you could do this:

Start With Your Biggest Competitors

What hashtags are they using?

Are they relevant to your niche? If they are, great…we found them on the first try!

Most experts at this point recommend just copying their hashtags and using those…but…the problem with that, if it’s not glaringly obvious to you already, is that you’re going to be competing with huge pages again. Not good.

Ok, so can we improve on that?

You bet. Instead of just blindly copying a list of hashtags, you could…

Spend Time Finding Smaller Accounts

…and…copy their hashtags instead.

Ok, that’s a better plan. In fact, if you find a bad-ass account like this…it’s probably a great plan.

But wait. What if the smaller competitor you find has copied their hashtags from the big pages we found before? Then we’re back to square one of being buried.

Argh.

Now, I was going to let you in on the best way to do this…and…the only way that avoids you tripping yourself up like this. But I’ve changed my mind. The fact is, it’s something you need to do…but…it would take this blog post in a different direction and I don’t want to do that.

(So make sure you plug your email into the form on the right of the page so you can let me know if you want me to send you this in secret.)

The bottom line is: You want to look for hashtags with less than a million posts on them…but…the lower and more specific you can get…the better.

Onward:

Use Follow-Unfollow…The Smarter Way

I’m going to give you a little piece of hot information here to make up for keeping the hashtag secret under lock and key.

Ready?

The follow-unfollow method does still work…if…you use it cleverly. Or else, you’re just asking for Instagram to slam it’s fist down again. So…how we be clever?

Simple. You play the game slowly.

Sure, this might take some time but the problem most people run into with this one is they follow hundreds of people at a time…randomly…with no thought over who might actually follow back. Come on, Instagram is a billion dollar company…you think they don’t know it when you’re spamming the follow button and following random pages with one photo of a goat on?

Simply running down a giant list of names tapping follow until you get blocked…then…an hour or two later, repeating the process…is NOT the way to do it.

I’m sure you’ve probably heard of that technique by now. Hey, you might of even tried it already. But I’ll say it again: It’s not the way to do it.

Instead, you should head to a competitor account that has less than 500 followers – the lower, the better.

Then, once you’ve done this, you can follow their followers…slowly. Be sure to keep your eyes open for any other accounts you come across in that list that seem to be similar to yours. If they’re also in the same niche, make a note of their username to hijack their list later…or…Pro tip: open their profile, save an image, then continue down the list following as you go. (The benefit being that their account is now saved in your folder for you to use later.)

So…

To Sum It All Up…Step-By-Step:

  • Target Your Followers
  • Choose A Theme
  • Set A Goal On The Top Spot
  • Research Your Competitors
  • Don’t Copy These “Fakers”
  • Create Amazing Content
  • Find “Big-Win” Hashtags
  • Use Follow-Unfollow The Insta Secrets Way

Pretty good stuff, right?

Well, actually…we’re not done with the knowledge bombs yet…

Not By A Long Shot

So, we’ve got some growth happening now, but can we do better?

What if we start to ask: How to get 500 followers in 7 days or less…that’d be better, right? I think so. So, if you’d rather do that: All you need to do is…

Look out for Part Two of this post…where…I’m going to show you how to take your account to 500 followers…1,000 followers…or even 10,000 followers…faster than you thought possible.

P.S. If you want to get Part Two delivered straight to you, before any of your competitors see it first, then throw your email into the form on the side of the page and make sure to whitelist our email address.