Growth hacking is all about finding brand new ways to grow and engage a user base across multiple marketing channels. Entrepreneurs use this to grow huge followings of engaged users either for their own business or on behalf of other brands.
But how can you take advantage of growth hacking to succeed on Instagram?
Instagram has an active monthly follower base of over one billion users. You need a substantial following to kick your Instagram progress into overdrive. The hardest part is building up those first hundred followers. Think of it like compound interest.
So, should you buy followers to do it?
Yes, you can buy Instagram followers, but you need to ensure the source is kosher. You need to make sure that the followers you’re buying are from a source of real, active users. Bots are only going to get your account banned.
Make sure you do your research to ensure that the followers you buy are interested in your field of expertise and that they’re real, active users.
Piggyback Off Influencers
Quality over quantity is something you’ll hear regularly in marketing. But growth hacking is about achieving a huge growth figure in a short space of time.
One of the best ways to do this is to pinpoint influencers on Instagram. Obviously, when you’re small, these influencers aren’t interested in your content unless you pay them a few hundred dollars for the privilege. But you can take advantage of their user bases.
After all, influencer marketing alone could be a $10 billion industry by 2020.
Targeting their userbases with comments, follows, and other forms of engagement can yield big results for your brand.
Yes, it can be tedious, but simply waiting for others to discover you won’t work.
Create a Consistent Narrative
Brand consistency is key to the success of any business, and not just on Instagram. The average increased revenue resulting from brand consistency is 23 percent.
So how do you create a consistent narrative through the content you post on Instagram?
It’s about telling a story. Posting funny memes won’t give you anything more than a short-term boost. The narrative has to be clear and consistent.
This means you need to focus on your audience. Find out who they are, where they come from, and the stories they like to hear. Crucially, you want to find out what they want for the future.
Take the sporting band Nike as an example. They create a narrative of extraordinary athletes breaking down barriers because they know that’s what their audience dreams about and wants to hear about.
In other words, it’s about touching people’s hearts.
Use an Army of Micro Influencers
The problem with your conventional influencer is you’re either too small for them to care or you can’t afford to pay them hundreds of dollars for a single Instagram post. The alternative to that is micro influencers.
Here are some facts you need to know about micro influencers:
- They have thousands of followers but often haven’t monetized.
- They haven’t become a major influencer, so they still command trust and authority in their circles.
- They have a smaller but more engaged audience.
To give you an example of the power of micro-influencers, the retail and entertainment industry saw an increased engagement rate when using micro influencers.
In many cases, you won’t even have to pay micro influencers. A free product sample is enough for many micro influencers who have never even dreamed of earning money from their Instagram feeds.
Create Brand-Centric Over Product-Centric Content
The number one reason why people unfollow a brand is because of self-promotion. People hate ads, and they don’t want to see them anywhere.
That’s why you should growth hack using a brand-centric approach. Your product should not be center stage. An engaged following that loves your brand will look for your products anyway.
People don’t hate bad advertising; they hate all advertising. It’s a fact. As a marketer, you need to get over that. One study even proved it, with 88 percent of Americans saying they either didn’t care for ads or outright hated them.
Therefore, you need to focus on your brand and banish the self-promotion because your target market is guaranteed to hate it.
Last Word – Growth Hacking Must Have a Long-Term Plan in Place
The weakness of growth hacking is that the incredible results gained tend to fizzle out sooner or later. You need a long-term plan in place to maintain that following and those high engagement numbers.
This is why you have to balance quality and quantity.
But it all goes back to the classic lessons of finding your audience on Instagram, providing them with engaging content, and doing it consistently. Growth hacking is just about doing it in a shorter period of time.
Have you tried growth hacking before?