Post consistently (at least once a day)
One of the best ways to build your following is to be consistent with your content. According to a study of over 100,000 social media accounts by Tailwind, a visual marketing tool, profiles that posted seven or more times a week (or at least once a day) get more likes and gain more followers faster than those that post less frequently. They found that you can double your follower rate by increasing your frequency of posts from once per week to once per day. Instagram has even recommended posting 1-3 times per day!
Key Takeaway: Post frequently and be consistent.
Establish a posting schedule
While posting often is a great way to grow your following, it can become overwhelming to create a large amount of content every day. In my experience, the best way to stay consistent without feeling overwhelmed is to create a posting schedule. By creating a schedule, it is easy to stay on track with your posts and keep your followers engaged.
If you are posting multiple times per day, be sure to space out your content. Think about spacing your posts by at least a couple of hours, and try to post at times your followers are most likely to be online.
You can take this one step further by creating your posts in advance and scheduling them with a tool such as Later. Later that lets you upload Instagram posts from your desktop will save you a ton of time (not to mention frustration) when trying to get your photos from your computer to your phone.
Our most commented-on Instagram posts are all contest posts, where we gave out gift cards! Giveaways are not only great for increasing the number of followers but also for interacting with your base. There are many ways to have your followers enter the giveaway, but one of our favorites is to invite your followers to tag a friend in the comments.
Here are some tips to make your contest a success:
- Write a clear description that explains eligibility, entry restrictions, the prize, deadline, and when the winner will be announced
- Ensure the prize is relevant to your audience
- Higher value prizes tend to have higher engagement, but if this is your first giveaway, it might be best to start small
Communicate with your followers
A great practice is then to engage your followers by liking or replying to their comments to your posts. Since they took the effort to check out your posts and commenting on them, it feels great to reciprocate by continuing the conversation. It is important to be honest and friendly and answer questions/comments to the best of your ability.
Use your analytics
One of the key ways to grow your social media following is to post high-quality content that your followers will engage with.
Using analytics is a great way to find out more about your audience and see which posts they are most likely to like and engage with. When you look at the stats ask yourself: Do you notice any trends? Does a certain type of image get more impressions or engagement? Post more of those images and see if your followers continue to like and engage with them.
Collaborate with other vendors
A great way to get your name out there is to collaborate with other sellers on the platform. This could be as simple as showcasing their content on your social media channels and tagging them. It can also be as complex as hosting Facebook or Instagram lives together to chat through issues or successes related to your small businesses. Or something in between, like a joint giveaway!
What to avoid
Building a following takes time and effort. Along the way, you might be tempted to take shortcuts, but the following are unethical and could lead to a ban from social platforms:
- Buying followers
- Buying engagements
- Following and un-follwing accounts