The Players of Instagram
Do you know you you need to rock with and who you are wasting your time with people who are not helping you grow on IG?
There are over 1 billion people on Instagram.
Over 40 million Instagram users have over 1 million followers.
Over 100 million accounts have over 100K followers!
Yes, over 100 million Instagram accounts have over 100,000 followers.
When I heard that stat on HBO’s Fake Famous documentary, I was like, “well damn, @BlackWifeLife ain’t special?” Wrong, it’s still special.
But this further confirmed that there is room for everyone to eat in this game called social media. Don’t let someone tell you that the industry is full or there is no more room for you or your idea.
There is room, but only for something a little different. You can’t enter this game with a carbon copy of someone else’s idea. The days of selling one framework, messaging, template is going to fizzle out sooner than later.
It’s time to learn a new way to grow. You are already doing it, but you are just doing it a little wrong, not fully wrong, just a little.
No one can survive on Instagram alone; it takes an audience (whether it’s yours or not) to further your reach and grow.
You are already interacting on Instagram, going down rabbit holes of friends, influencers, and the ‘gram heavy hitters. So we can check that habit off the list. But now it’s time to tweak it.
You need to start interacting with the right players of Instagram and stop wasting time playing in other people's comments and DMs.
*Note* This is only for people trying to grow a following around a business, brand, theme, etc. If you on Instagram to show how poppin’ your lifestyle is, keep going boo, but this strategy isn’t for you.
Ok, so boom. Here are the players.
Now let’s talk about who is included in each group and how you should interact with them.
These are celebrities, musicians, actors, major reality TV stars, business moguls, athletes, entertainers, etc.
Ex: The Rock, Diddy, Reese Witherspoon, Oprah, The Kardashians, etc.
You should NOT be spending much time on these profiles, if at all, honestly. They have enough eyes on them already, and they do not need yours. I wouldn’t even suggest you follow them while building your empire because you will get distracted. Diddy put up a video the other day that had me lost for at least 30 minutes.
But if you must, rarely engage with this group. I’m talking once every other week. There is nothing that these people are doing that you cannot find out from a group chat, the news, or from your friend who loves to post and share celebrity news on their IG.
Bottom line: VIPs cannot help you grow your brand. If anything, create content that is so bomb that they recognize it and come to you.
Insta accounts with 100K-1M followers.
Now we are getting a little closer to the sweet spot. Most people with over 100K followers are on Instagram to make money or use their following for personal or business benefits.
These individuals make money by posting content on Instagram, selling ads, landing major corporate partnerships, etc. These folks at once were small fish in a pond, and depending on when you discovered them, they still could be socially approachable.
A way to tell this is if they are still engaging in their comments. If someone is still responding to most of the comments on their post, this person is worth your time. If not, treat them like a VIP.
Interact with this group occasionally. Follow a few people in line with your brand/theme and mainly watch and observe their social moves; when something aligns with what you are doing, comment. Not to engage with the owner of IG, but to engage with those who are engaging. That is the secret sauce.
If your IG page is poppin’ and your bio is right, start chatting with folks in the comments. When they click on your profile and see that you have similar content to the one they were commenting on, they will be intrigued.
Insta accounts with 3,000 - 100,000 followers
Now we are in the money spot. The real gems are with accounts that are between 2K-5K. Here’s why:
They have super loyal followers who love to chat
They are trying to grow their IG; any engagement helps
Most are willing to do and try anything that helps them achieve their goals
If you have freebies to offer, this is the group to share this with organically. But never start your conversation with a sale; it needs to be genuine and organic.
Start by engaging in the comments with them and also chatting with others in the comments. The more you show up on their profile, the more they will be like, “hmmm, who is this.”
Watch their IG stories; respond. Join their IG lives. You don’t have to watch the entire live, pop in there for a few minutes, send some emojis, make a few comments, and bounce. But if they are sharing anything content-related while on live, you should stay.
Any engagement you give to them helps, which in turn helps you.
You could be commenting and engaging with these accounts often. At least 1-2 times per week. It doesn’t take long, no more than 15- 20 minutes.
Stick around, and I will teach you how I engaged with over 100 accounts per week in less than 3 hours a week.
Regular Insta Accounts
< 3,000 followers and/or someone on Instagram to be on Instagram, no business goal or follower count.
Treat the person with 60 followers as if you would treat the person with 100K followers. These accounts are very loyal when they feel you are engaging authentically. Comment & engage frequently. This is how you grow an authentic following.
If you can consistently grasp the attention of 2500+ people, then others will pay attention to you. There is a reason someone doesn’t just wake up and become the CEO of a well-known company. Everyone starts somewhere. And if you want to play the long game, start here.
I got my first 1000 followers interacting with micro and regular accounts. Living in their comments, responding to their stories, and boosting them up like I was their best friend.
But if you do this, make sure when they click on your profile, you have something they would be interested in.
Accounts that provide you with information and/or entertaining media.
These accounts can be VIP status (ESPN, FoodNetwork, etc.), or they can be Micro status (your local news or city insta page).
I live in Columbia, South Carolina; we have Insta pages dedicated to attractions in the city. The account has roughly 43,000 followers, and they are consistently re-sharing content from locals and visitors of the city.
Have you ever engaged with your local Instagram page? Why not? If you are making major moves in your city, tag them in your journey or chat it up in the comments.
Local Instagram pages are hidden gems; people forget all about them.
There is a 6th wo(man) on the Instagram players game, but you will have to stick around to learn who that is. I guarantee that you’ve never included this player in your strategy before.
Now you know all the players and a few engagement tips, the question is what next?
Before you start using any suggested tips, you better make sure your IG page has the following.
At least nine engaging posts. Someone should be able to click any of your latest posts and know what you do. Not every share is a sell, but it needs to be engaging and make someone want to scroll up or down on your feed. But don’t do any of the following if you do not have at least nine posts ready to go.
A business account, not personal.
Follows; at least 100.
Need help getting your first 100 follows? Stick around to learn more.