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How to Build a Loyal Instagram Audience

I absolutely love sharing my blogging tips on Affordable by Amanda! In this post, I am sharing my best advice for building a loyal Instagram audience. 

With over 4 years in the blogging industry, there has never been a better app than Instagram for sharing content and growing a brand. Let's dive into how you can achieve a loyal Instagram audience today!

I have all of this information circling my head about Instagram and growing an audience and it feels so cathartic typing it all out for other bloggers and social influencers to read online.

As someone who spends copious amounts of time interacting on social media platforms and reading posts on influencer-based Facebook groups, I've realized that I needed to sit down and write out some more advice.

How to Build a Loyal Instagram Audience - Affordable by Amanda - Blogging Tips for 2019

This advice should explain in detail how an up and coming Instagram user (influencer, content creator) can build a loyal Instagram audience. Instagram plays a huge role in the social media industry, there is no doubt about that. Brands rely on Instagram to market their products and even launch new ones. Influencers rely on brands to make money in return.

This business method of creating mutually beneficial relationships between brands and influencers continues to pave the world of online marketing. More business, small or corporate, continue to dive into online marketing with social media at the forefront. No business can survive without a social media presence in 2019!

Brands need influencers to promote their products and services just as much as influencers need products and services to promote in exchange for contracts and financial gains.

So, how does an influencer create a great profile to attract brands to collaborate with him or her?

The answer: with an engaged audience! 

Let's see how YOU can build a loyal Instagram audience starting today.

1. Provide Helpful and Personalized Captions

An easy approach to growing an Instagram following with the current algorithm with loyal followers includes crafting some eye-catching captions. Your caption must be interesting and even slightly controversial! I love sharing some insight into how my day is going and if something out of the ordinary happens, I usually start my captions out describing the situation and how I plan on tackling it.

For example, if you are having a "blah" day where you didn't really get around to checking a lot of things off your to-do list, tell your audience! Sharing your real-life experiences could not be a smarter move. You need to HUMANIZE your Instagram. Nowadays the more accounts that share the not so fun aspects of life are thriving because the people behind the phones are open to sounding vulnerable to their audience. Of course, people love seeing stylized content and over-the-top pictures, but what about the behind the scenes stuff? Are you willing to share the ugly sides of yourself, so to speak?

Your captions are your opportunity to share some real-life experiences or drama that other people can easily identify with! Captions are the #1 way to create a loyal Instagram following by exploring several different caption options to connect with the people who choose to follow you. Honestly, Quigley (Casey Goode) taught me how to craft the perfect caption formula and I will share some tips of hers here.

Some caption options:
  • Use capitalization to your advantage by stating a one-liner that hits a chord with your followers such as, "WHY YOU NEED TO SHOP THIS BRAND" or "HOW TO EDIT YOUR IG PICS". 
  • Tell a story! Share something that happened to you in the past with your followers and wrap up the story with what you learned.
  • Add a call to action! Tell your followers to "save this post" for later so they can read it again and again. Tell your followers to follow the "link in bio" or "swipe up in stories" to find out more information on what your photo references. 
How to Build a Loyal Instagram Audience - Affordable by Amanda - Blogging Tips for 2019

How to Build a Loyal Instagram Audience - Affordable by Amanda - Blogging Tips for 2019

How to Build a Loyal Instagram Audience - Affordable by Amanda - Blogging Tips for 2019

2. Do Instagram Story Giveaways

Another fun way to create an engaged audience is to thank them for following along by giving away some goodies on Instagram stories! I love it when the bloggers that I follow do this, too. I've even won a fun gift bag filled with Lancome highlights and a beauty blender from Rachel Martino, one of my favorite New York City bloggers.

Even if you want to gift your loyal followers with a Starbucks gift card, treat them to something quick and easy! A Starbucks gift card is a great way to say "thanks" and give back to your community of loyal gals and guys. Plus who doesn't need an extra cup of coffee or tea in the morning? I know I always do! Especially if it's a free treat from a blogger I love to follow.

I've also seen a couple other bloggers gift some beauty and fashion favorites on their stories. Danielle from the blog Danielle Gervino creates small gifts each week to send off to one lucky follower. Giving back to your audience for sticking around and staying up to date on your Instagram will also end up helping you in the long run! Even if you don't think about it this way, by giving away freebies, you are creating a long line of potential happy customers who are willing to listen to what you have to say. In return, your customers are going to take your word and opinion on a product or service and hopefully check it out on their own time.

Instagram stories are also growing at a rapid rate in popularity. When they first launched, I know a ton of people who were devoted Snapchat users swore they wouldn't touch IG stories, but now I think Instagram has changed the game in regards to quick video content. I can't go a single day without posting something to my own IG stories! I love how creative I am these days with my custom story templates (thanks, Canva!) and it's a great tool to cross promote new blog posts. The swipe up features are excellent for redirect my audience to visit my blog page, shop an item, or follow me on Facebook.

How to Build a Loyal Instagram Audience - Affordable by Amanda - Blogging Tips for 2019

How to Build a Loyal Instagram Audience - Affordable by Amanda - Blogging Tips for 2019

How to Build a Loyal Instagram Audience - Affordable by Amanda - Blogging Tips for 2019

How to Build a Loyal Instagram Audience - Affordable by Amanda - Blogging Tips for 2019

3. Create Your Instagram Branding and Stick to It

A strong, loyal Instagram audience will recognize your brand when they see it. If you haven't already outsourced a branding consultant, you might want to do some research to look into it. Or, if you have a creative background with designing and access to apps like Canva and Over, you can always take on the role of a graphic designer and develop your own branding color schemes and concepts.

There are plenty of tools available out there for free or for a monthly fee so you can create the branding of your dreams! I personally love using Canva to make my blog graphics and even my Instagram story templates. I stick to the same font family and colors when I share Instagram graphics on my stories.

After some trial and error, you need to determine what colors and graphics work best for your brand. 

Testing out a couple of variations on your platforms will be your first step to narrowing down the choices! It can feel overwhelming to play around with colors, logos, fonts, and themes, but I promise that once you narrow down a few options your branding will come to life.

If you need assistance finding your design rhythm, you can outsource help from other creatives. I love looking through Blog Pixie for pretty feminine fonts and designs! She also offers ever ything from Instagram highlight covers to blogger templates. Don't be afraid to outsource these high-quality branding items! Not everyone has the skill set or time to build a website from scratch, which is why I recommend doing your research to see what you can outsource.

4. Share What You Truly LOVE! And Your Fan Base Will Grow

This tip may sound like a no brainer, but what's the point of sharing photos and videos online if you aren't sharing what you truly love?

Building a loyal Instagram audience takes time, patience, and the right mix of content that screams YOU! Since you are ultimately the one in charge of creating the content aspect of your Internet life, it's really important to hone in on what you post.

It's also a great idea to share what you love on your feed and in your stories. I personally take advantage of my stories by implementing plenty of behind the scenes action videos of prepping for a photoshoot or shopping for new clothes. 

I love utilizing stories to give my audience an even closer look into my daily life and connect with them on that separate part of the app, too. There are plenty of times that I will post to my Instagram stories and receive dozens of direct messages from my followers which continues the conversation. It also helps my engagement when I reply to these messages! Hint, hint! Always taking the extra step to respond to your followers is a huge must-do. In order to build a loyal Instagram audience, you need to show that you genuinely care about the people who choose to follow you.

The major takeaway: be yourself and your tribe will follow! 

There are moments in the past where I felt hesitant to share my struggles with acne or anxiety with the world. For one, these are two huge insecurities of mine!! The personal growth I've experienced this past year has also impacted my life for the better. Knowing that I am able to open up about my personal life more and more has also changed my relationship with my audience as they truly have turned into friends.

How are you growing a loyal Instagram audience? share in the comments!

4 comments

  1. What great and easy to follow tips! I am working on humaizing my Instagram and creating more relateable captions xoxo

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  2. Great Advice, I loved when you mentioned to humanize it, great tip!

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  3. Love your outfit and the audience inspo is top notch! Thanks for keeping it real babe! So cute!

    ReplyDelete