The Design Twins Share Insights Into IG Success
What creates a successful IG account? Incorporate these proven, powerful insights into IG success and find joy along the way.
How Do You Successfully Create and Grow Your IG Account?
What creates a successful Instagram account? There are as many different pathways to success as there are successful feeds. I am fascinated by the different pathways because they are as unique as the people themselves. This is my story. It is my personal path, one I have enjoyed and continue to love. I devote myself to my Instagram account because of the intrinsic rewards.
Additional rewards have been a bonus and a blessing, but not a goal. I didn’t set out to be rewarded in any other way. Perhaps that is the main reason for my success. Even if you don’t have tons of free time, even if you have other motivating factors, I know you can still apply all that I have learned to help you achieve your goals. Here are my most powerful insights into IG success.
Insights into IG Success: Motivation
Originally, I began my account to share pictures of my home and make friends. Both these factors remain very important to me. It is as much about the friendships as it is the pictures. However, over time I evolved. I began to hear God calling me to use my platform to share His love and truth. Now, sharing my spiritual strength is very high on my motivation. I also love to use my platform to help others, whether it is for their businesses or simply to spread the word about their wonderful feed.
Keys to success: I am choosy, and I always stay authentic to who I am and my beliefs.
Insights into IG Success: How to Begin
Honestly, beginning is the hardest part. Everyone begins the same way, with zero followers and an empty gallery. I always tell people that the first 1000 was harder than the rest, and it’s true.
- How do you attract people?
- Why would anyone want to follow you?
You need worth before anyone (besides your dear friends and family) will follow you. So, you must create a gallery.
Create a Track Record
You can’t put the cart before the horse. Creating a consistent cohesive-looking feed is number one. To me, (and I hope most of my followers) my words are as important as my pictures. But Instagram is predominantly pictures first, words second. Your pictures should not be all over the place. Otherwise, people won’t know what they are following.
Key to success: Show consistency and something of outstanding value and your audience will find you.
Insights into IG Success: Activity
Interaction is everything. You must be willing to give, give, give before you receive. While you are busy creating something of value on your own page you must reach out and connect. This is very time consuming, but it is also rewarding. I searched and followed people who were successful in the home decor community. These people were modeling for me what success was. It was important for me to follow, study, and learn.
During this phase I was a student, and they were my teachers. Even now when I follow someone new, I act like I am meeting them in real life. You wouldn’t “stalk” someone without at least saying hello, would you? Be friendly. If you want to make friends, be a friend.
I usually introduce myself and tell them why I love their feed. I am building a relationship; one I am committed to. It’s rare to see people use this technique, but this is authentically me.
Key to success: Engagement is king and it must be two-sided.
Insights into IG Success: Authenticity is Essential
On Instagram just as in real life it is utterly imperative that you be yourself. Be yourself and be your best self. Take all your beauty, love, generosity, humor, and goodness and don’t hold any of it back. Think about this. Each comment is an opportunity to stand out and truly connect. Will you waste it and blend in, or will you use it to powerfully connect? People can see through phoniness. Be real but be as gorgeous as can be.
Key to success: Give what you hope to attract.
You are meeting people but without your facial expressions, without body language and without tone of voice. Therefore, all you have to make an impression and to express yourself are words and emojis. Instagram is no place to hold back and no place for shyness. You must be all you can be. Let your personality shine or you will be lost in a sea of mediocrity. It is no time to blend in.
Key to success: You must stand out.
Insights into IG Success: Get Involved
Direct Messaging is the behind the scenes activity on Instagram. There is a lot happening back there. Be proactive and reach out to people. You can DM individuals and propose ideas or share swaps. My philosophy is it never hurts to ask.
Key to success: Use DM to interact, get personal, and create real bonds.
Insights into IG Success: Make the Most of Each Post
Each post has two avenues to attract, or two points of power: The picture and the message. If you choose to skip one, I believe you are missing half your potential influence. To make the most of each post the picture should tell its own story without anyone needing to read a word. Many don’t slow down long enough. It should be unique, beautiful, inviting, and captivating in some way. Lighting, details, something that draws the eyes visually to pause.
Next, share something with your message. Add value. You message can be light and cheerful, or it can be words of wisdom. It could be a personal story that helps present yourself as a real person and helps people connect with you. Your caption can be humorous and witty, spiritual and uplifting, didactic and informative, something that ties your readers closer to you and says, “I am worth reading” and “I am worth following.”
Key to success: Be a storyteller with both your photos and your words.
Insights into IG Success: Define Your Niche and Stay Consistent
Each post has power, power to grow your feed and power to hurt your feed. Therefore, post carefully. Remember the rule of consistency. All your photos do not need to look alike. However, I recommend defining your niche and continuing on that path. For example, if you want to be followed in the home decor community on IG don’t post pictures of your teenagers playing basketball.
Keep the personal, non-decor photos for your personal feed. If part of your niche is more lifestyle and you regularly include artistic photos of your home decor with your children also captured that is totally fine. It is consistent with what you are offering. People who love that will follow and won’t be shocked into unfollowing.
Also, pay attention to what does well. The reaction of my followers to each and every post is valuable information. They will tell you whether they want more of that type of post or not in how they like or don’t and how they comment or don’t comment. If you don’t pay attention to how your followers react then you are halting your own success.
Key to success: Post within your niche.
Insights into IG Success: Hashtags
Hashtags are considered “insights into IG success” because they are an integral part of the Instagram platform. To ignore them is a mistake. Hashtags are the IG search engine.
Instagram allows up 30 total hashtags per post. We suggest using 25-30 on every post. You can add them to the bottom of your actual post. I like to put a little distance visually between my words and these tags.
I recommend using hashtags to help the visibility of your post. You should always choose appropriate tags. Using random tags that don’t apply is considered spam by Instagram. Now that people can follow hashtags you risk being reported if your post doesn’t seem to fit with the hashtag.
Choose some specific and some general. You can get ideas for which hashtags to use by looking at people you follow and pick and choose ones that apply to your particular post.
Keep in mind that hashtags with over a million posts are extremely hard to get seen in. Smaller hashtags give my posts a better chance to be seen. My best advice is to vary your hashtags for every post. Choose 30 specific and appropriate hashtags in a variety of sizes, some under 5,000, some under 50,000 and the rest under one million.
Key to success: Use hashtags to help get your posts seen.
For more Instagram success tips, read Peg Fitzpatrick’s blog post, “Instagram 101: 7 Key Steps To Instagram Success.”
Enjoy the Journey
As anything in life, you get what you give. Instagram is no exception. Don’t expect overnight success. You will most likely be disappointed, even frustrated. For me it is a labor of love and a lesson in patience. My number one insight into IG success is enjoy the journey, for it is the greatest reward.
If you feel joy in the process you will exude joy to others you encounter. Give what you hope to attract. Go spread joy!
To continue reading more insights into IG success read our other Instagram blog posts:
Stay tuned for future posts in this series.