Six Strategies for Gaining Instagram Followers

As Instagram continues its meteoric rise in both monthly user base and saturation metrics, it makes sense for businesses to get on board. Statistics show that engagement rate on Instagram is much higher than either Facebook or Twitter. Not making Instagram a part of your marketing campaign is a mistake your business cannot afford to make.

With that in mind, here are a few strategies on how to grow your Instagram following:

Post Daily

Get into a regular flow when posting to Instagram, but don’t inundate your followers with content. A few times a day is probably the ideal number. Quality content combined with consistency will do more to drive up your number of followers than flooding their feeds will.

Share on a regular basis so you can discover what works best for you and your business. Provide creative, engaging content, and you’ll be rewarded with not only more supporters, but followers that are interested in your content.

Promote User Content

A great way to promote user content is to take fantastic content from other creators, and put it on your Instagram account. Be sure to give credit to the original producer of the material, though. Show off the unique and uncommon stories your users have to tell, and when you do, make sure to add hashtags that point back to your business.

Photo Contest

Photo contests are a fun way to share your brand while gathering photos from followers under a theme. Be sure to get involved in the contest yourself while sharing it across multiple platforms. But don’t be in a hurry. Allow users time to hear about the contest and participate.

Make sure the rules are clear and concise, so you avoid confusion with the contest. If you’re unsure of how to proceed, find a business to partner up and double the audience.

Understand Hashtags

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Hashtags are an essential part of Instagram, and using the right hashtag can make the difference between a post that falls flat and one that shoots to the top of your followers feeds.

To determine the appropriate hashtags to use, peruse the content of those similar to your own. You can search for and record hashtags that are relevant to your brand, then use them in your content to drive traffic to your business.

Filter Selection

Instagram filters are fun, but also a little confusing. Which ones should you use to drive views and engagement? Pay attention to the responses you receive depending on the filter you use. Some tend to lead to more views, while others may contribute to a higher number of comments. Play around with them and find the ones that work best for your business.

Engage

Really engage with your followers. A list of all the greatest tips and tricks will be helpful, but they’re never going to compete with rolling up your sleeves and getting dirty on the platform. Be intentional about leaving thoughtful, engaging comments, like photos that strike you as meaningful.

Find new people to follow on a regular basis, interact with them, and respond to their questions and comments. Doing so will result in natural and organic growth for your Instagram platform.

Gaining followings on other social media networks can feel like you’re beating your head against a wall, but that doesn’t have to be the case with Instagram. Create engaging, quality content and connect with your followers.

The way you engage with your followers will have a direct impact on how your account increases. If you’re willing to help others, word will spread, and growth will occur. For additional help, you can check out DFY’s lead generation system.

Free or Paid Traffic? Which is Better?

Many affiliate marketers think that they can simply get on the Internet and build their business for free – especially with social media.And there are a lot of “gurus” out there teaching “free” online traffic strategies. So let’s discuss…Which strategy is better for you, “free” or paid traffic? Most affiliate marketers want big commissions, but they’re not willing to sacrifice anything in the process.They want to spend as little time as possible and invest as little money as possible.

With online marketing, there are endless options to advertise. Many new affiliates get caught up doing “free traffic” like blogging, email marketing, making YouTube videos, and the list goes on…But what they don’t realize is that even though free traffic doesn’t require a financial investment, it requires a HUGE time commitment – and never forget that TIME is your most valuable asset.

The good thing about paid traffic is it’s pretty much instant. 

With paid-traffic, you can see results immediately. You could go right now and place a Facebook Ad, and you would literally be getting clicks within 24 hours.Plus, when you spend money on an ad, you can monitor whether it works or not, how many clicks it gets, your number of leads, and how many sales you get. You can track all of these metrics.

But with the so-called “free” traffic methods, like blogging for example, very few people will tell you that blogging takes a ridiculous amount of time. And search-engine-optimization (SEO) can be very complicated these days. It’s a pretty steep learning curve for the average person getting started.

If you want to make it to the million-dollar level, you need to be investing real dollars, because you understand that it’s the only way to scale your business.

Nobody will ever get a million dollars in commissions on free traffic. It’s very hard to do.And when you really think about it, there is no such thing as free traffic, because your time is worth money. No matter what, you will always end up paying for it.I think you should do paid traffic from the very beginning, and hold off on free traffic like blogs until you already have a good list of subscribers.   My first big payday…

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I will never forget my first payday with online marketing. The hairs on my arms stood up on end as a rush of excitement ran through me.

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Meet soon!

 

How to Hire A Players

“I noticed that the dynamic range between what an average person could accomplish and what the best person could accomplish was 50 or 100 to 1. Given that, you’re well advised to go after the cream of the cream. A small team of A+ players can run circles around a giant team of B and C players.”

~ Steve Jobs

Hey,

I want to give you a tip which I first heard from a guy called Eben Pagan about managing people.

It’s especially useful if you have virtual staff.

And it’s really easy to do, for both you and the person reporting to you.

Here it is:

Get daily updates.

I’m not talking about updates which take 30 minutes to prepare.  I’m not talking about micro-managing a person right down to the point of knowing what time they went to lunch.

I’m talking about just a short 5 minute update, on 3 items.

Here’s how it looks:

You’ve just hired a new staff member.  They’ve been onboarded, and given some training on how to do their job.

You then send them a short message:

Hi [name], welcome to the team, I’m looking forward to working with you.

I have one request for you, which will help me to help you in your new role. 

It’s very important that it gets done daily, and it should only take you 5 minutes at most.

At the end of each day, I’d like you to send me a short message and answer the following three questions:

1.)  What were the main things you accomplished for the day?
2.)  What were the obstacles you encountered (if any)
3.)  Do you have any questions you need answered?

Please don’t spend more than 5 minutes on this each day – this is just to give me an overview, and so I can help you in the role.  Again, please make sure it gets done each day.

Thanks.

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The first thing you’ll notice is that a surprisingly large number of people struggle with this simple request.

In my experience, close to half the people I’ve asked to do this over the years will not be consistent in doing it daily for even their first 30 days.

So you will likely need to remind them a few times.  But if you need to remind someone more than 3 times in their first 30 days, that’s a big warning sign.

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Some people may say this is micro-managing.

It’s not.  It is perfectly reasonable for you as the business owner – and the person paying their wages, to ask for daily updates.

With this simple request, you can help that person get up and running in their role, and also evaluate quickly if they are going to be a good fit.

Whether you’re running a virtual team or have people coming into your office, get the update in writing.

Face-to-face conversations often drag on, and if you have a lot of staff, you could easily burn up a couple hours a day on this – which is totally unnecesary.

Getting it in writing is faster for everyone.

Plus, in the case where you’ve hired the wrong person, it’s good to have it in writing.  When you have to confront someone about their non-performance, you can sit down with them and go through the daily updates.

It will be immediately apparent to both of you that it’s not a good fit.

And in the case where someone could not be depended upon to provide the daily update (despite you reminding them up to 3 times that that it needed to be done), then it’s just obvious to everyone it’s not going to work out.

“If I can’t count on you to give me, the owner of the company, a simple daily update on what you’re accomplishing each day – then how can I depend on you to perform in this role.”

But let’s be clear;  requiring these daily updates is not about tripping someone up and coming up with reasons to fire them.

It’s to evaluate their performance, get to know their work style, and to get information on how you can best help them succeed in their new role.

If you have less than 10 staff currently, then it’s fine to have them all sending you these daily reports.

But if you have 50 or more… then it’s going to be too much information for you to process and stay on top of.

So each person can send their daily updates to their team leader / manager.

How big should each team be?

I like Jeff Bezos’s 2 pizza rule.  “If you can’t feed the team with 2 pizzas, then it’s too big.”

8 – 12 people is about right.

Also, these daily updates don’t need to be ongoing forever.  They are particularly useful for new staff in their first few months.

But as people prove they are self-starters and can be trusted to get their work done, then you can be a little more relaxed on requiring these daily updates.

 

 

 

Business Marketing with an Instagram Photo Contest

An Instagram photo contest is a great way to promote your business while having some fun. A photo contest can lead to new followers while your company is giving back to the Instagram community.

But running an Instagram photo contest isn’t always easy, and can be a bit confusing. Here is a short guide on getting the most out of a photo contest, should you choose to do so.

Target Your Market

Define your target market before kicking off your photo contest. A contest for families who enjoy camping is going to look a lot different than couples who look for new and exciting places to visit in the city. Determine who you intend to engage with, and gear your contest toward them.

Team Up

Finding a partner for your Instagram photo contest can be a benefit for both businesses. Not only can you gain more followers through this method, but you’ll also receive additional exposure. Most of these types of partnerships require participants to be followers of both accounts before they can enter. Keep things simple though. There’s no need to team up with more than one business per contest.

Avoid Confusion

Make sure your rules for entering and participating in your photo contest are clear and concise. Include an ending date and time, and offer step-by-step instructions for participants, including limitations on number of entries.

Call to Action

Provide your followers a clear call to action, so that they are fully aware of the necessary steps required to enter the contest. The primary purpose of your photo contest is to gain followers or increase your exposure (but make sure you have fun too!). The two most common ways to go about doing this is to have contestants tag a friend or post a picture.

Tag a Friend – For this type of call to action, have participants tag a friend to enter the contest. When the friend sees your post and competition, they will join and tag more friends.

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Post a Photo – Contestants with this type of call to action post a photo and use a specific hashtag to enter. This will allow you to track the entries, and pick a winner when the time comes.

Keep an Eye on Submissions

This is your contest, so it would behoove you to be aware of how it’s progressing. Decide how you’ll monitor your contest, whether manually or by using one of the many tools available for just such an occasion. Decide beforehand how you plan on following your contest, so you’re not scrambling to decide while submissions are rolling in.

Declare a Winner

When your contest comes to a close, it’s time to pick a winner. Some contests use a poll, while others may use a group of judges. No matter what method you choose, select a winner and notify them through Instagram.

Promote the winner on your Instagram page, but don’t forget to give credit where credit is due. Cross-promote on other platforms. Announce the results on your Twitter, Facebook, and web pages as well.

Repeat as Needed

Running an Instagram photo contest doesn’t have to be a one-time occurrence. You can have a weekly or monthly contest. Explore your options, find what works best for your company and adjust as needed. Discover a way to build habits with your followers while creating momentum with your contests.

Instagram photo contests are an excellent opportunity to have fun with the platform while building up a following. Be creative and engaging with your contests to have the most success. Not only will you expand your audience, but you’ll also have fresh content that may inspire your next photo contest. For more tips, check out DFY’s lead generation system

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