Hey BellaStylistas!

It’s almost 2019 and if you aren’t on the way to reaching 10K followers+ on Instagram you need to be very worried. Why 10K? 10,000 followers is very important because this is the number of followers where you can include links in your stories and highlights. This allows you to start using your content to drive traffic from your followers. 10K is also the cutoff number that brands consider when working with smaller, micro-influencers. If you aren’t at 10K yet, you are losing out on so much money making and brand building opportunities. As more content creators continue to flock to Instagram and the algorithm continues to change, it will only get harder to achieve success on this platform.

I’ve consulted for global beauty brands like L’Oreal, Estee Lauder, Jumia and more on social media and influencer programs in Nigeria, Ghana, and Kenya. So grab some chamomile tea and fret not, these tips will be sure to help you gain thousands of followers before 2019, if you follow it very closely! I just launched my YouTube channel where I share tips on growing as an African entrepreneur. Don’t forget to subscribe for more tips! 


Look So Good Even Your Mama Won’t Recognise You

Every time I meet with a beauty brand, I tell them to focus on three things: Visuals, Content and Engagement. Visuals are a huge part of your Instagram growth. So important, that we already have a post where I’ve shared some in-depth apps, tips, tools, and tricks here


If Your Followers Aren’t Brought to Tears, Are You Really An Influencer?

Maybe not tears, but good content helps drive strong feelings and emotions. There’s so much content and noise out there and you need to find ways to drive your audience’s feelings and emotions. For example, people like feeling like they are part of some secret club. Content that also plays to your followers’ FOMO (fear of missing out) is also great which is why you see such a high consumption of vlogs and behind the scenes content. This may seem counter-intuitive, but you’ll also see content trends that highlight the fear we all have of not being successful or go broke. People also like following content creators that are funny and create self-deprecating content.

I’d like to address polarising content. A lot of us are afraid to go against the grain on social media. Rapper Cardi B was just featured in W Magazine where she mentions her first interaction with Kris Jenner. “Kris told me, ‘People are going to talk badly about you, but it doesn’t really matter as long as you’re making money,’” Cardi told W. “And it’s true. If you read the online comments, it seems like everybody hates the Kardashians. Each and every one of them. But how can that be true if everything they sell sells out?”


It’s a community, duh!

If you just go on Instagram to post your content and close the app, then no wonder you are not growing. Instagram is a community and it rewards you for engaging on the platform. If you remember anything, remember that you need to trick Instagram into thinking that your followers are your friends. In that way, your content will be at the top of their timelines.

The CEO of top instagram clothing brand, FashionNova revealed in a WWD article his secrets to IG success. By talking to his customers, who are usually 16 to 35 years old, in a language that’s familiar and familial, Richard Saghian has honed in on the Millennial generation’s need to be seen, heard and validated.” According to WWDSaghian calls his customers #NovaBabes or #NovaStars and when they tag pictures of themselves wearing the product on Instagram, Fashion Nova likes and comments on each post and sometimes reposts the image on its account. 

Here’s a list of tactics influencers like the Kardashians and brands like FashionNova use to increase engagement:

  • Like and comment on everyone’s post that likes your post or follows you
  • Use IG Stories to your benefit and update frequently, so that you are at the top of the highlight reels
  • Collaborate! We see a lot of collabs on YouTube but not as much on IG, so try going live with a buddy.
  • Set up a newsletter list and send content frequently. You wanna make sure you are able to reach your followers if something ever happens to your Instagram page.
  • Advertise. When you release hero content or announce a major project, this could also be a good time to use advertising to amplify your content.

Going viral on social media is just something that cannot be manufactured. It’s about being the right person, the right time and the right audience discovering you. Remember to take it one day at a time and take simple steps to grow your presence on the platform.