I began my content creation journey on Instagram in May 2019. It's been a little less than 2 years but I only started taking it more seriously since November 2020. Since then, I have grown from 1000 followers to 6000 followers.
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But what happened between November and today which resulted in such growth? What did I start doing right? What was I doing wrong before?
Here are my top learnings so far on what ACTUALLY made a difference:
When I first started out, I was making these digitally drawn programming concepts which were certainly high quality (at least I'd like to think so) but required so much time and effort.
I believed that since my posts were so 'high effort', I didn't have to post frequently. In fact, my content creation process was too 'high effort' for me and I would not post for months on end. This result in great inconsistency.
Learning #1: Put out high quality posts consistently.
Later, I figured out a system that worked for me which wasn't too hard or too easy. I automated a lot of the steps required and created a more efficient system for myself so that it wasn't too hard for me to stay consistent.
Earlier, I had a mindset that using hashtags was tacky and if I used them I would look desperate. But I was so wrong!
First of all, how are people going to find out about my content? And if they don't even know about me how am I going to grow?
Now, I have adopted a hashtag strategy that works for me.
Another mistake I was making was copying the exact set of hashtags every single time. This resulted in my hashtags reach being ineffective. Now, I type them along with my caption when I am posting to avoid having the same hashtags every time. Though most of the hashtags I use will be the same but their order differs. Also, I make sure that I add a couple of new hashtags to the mix which are more relevant to that particular post.
Doing this, made my reach almost double than before!
Learning #2: Hashtags are your friends.
Here are some rules I live by today to build stronger connections and friendships with people on Instagram:
- Reply to all of my comments. If someone took the time to leave kind words on my post, the least I can do is to thank them.
- Go to my post, view public shares, and DM every single person a thankyou note for sharing my post to their story.
- Take out some time and interact with other people's posts and stories.
- Go to my DMs, and reply to the messages as well as look through my requests.
Learning #3: Do not just chase vanity metrics, build a community.
Earlier I used to talk nothing about myself. Just post my content and leave. This made my page look like a, well, just a page. It lacked that 'human' touch. It didn't feel like there was an actual person behind the account. Now, I make sure to add a little personal touch every now and then. It could mean showing my face more often or even sharing behind the scenes of my life in my stories.
This has helped me build friendships on Instagram and connect on other levels than just my niche.
Learning #4: You have to be social on social media.
I hope you learned something today. Thanks for reading 🙂 I will be writing more on my blog about how I have created and automated my content creation process as well as share my growth strategies in the future. So stay tuned!