In recent years, Instagram has exploded in popularity not only amongst everyday people but with marketers as well. Influencer marketing has become one of the most innovative and effective digital marketing tactics and it’s no wonder that more and more people want to get in on this action.
In this article, Samuel Lozano talks about how to become a successful influencer on Instagram’s platform.
What about Instagram makes it so attractive for influencers and influencer marketing?
Influencer marketing yields great results for brands because followers are generally very loyal and will place a lot of weight on a review by an influencer. It is also easy to amass a large scale following on the platform, and through the use of hashtags posts can easily reach a very wide audience.
Instagram has also changed so that you can include links in stories, along with calls to action such as “buy now” or “click here to find out more”. People will then be taken to the website of the product.
What are the traits you think someone needs to be successful as an influencer on Instagram?
Anyone can become an influencer – the key is to post great content and post on a daily basis. You also need to engage with your followers. Of course it is easier if you simply take great photos that people like looking at, but you can also document a personal challenge or journey, or artworks.
What are the most important ‘first steps’ that someone needs to take to become an Instagram influencer?
Decide what your passion is, whether it is fitness, travel, modelling etc., and make sure your account is congruent with that topic. You need to add value to your followers’ lives in some way, which can be as simple as telling a joke or giving them a nice picture to look at, but inspiring them in some way is also very powerful.
What is the most effective way to “tempt” a brand to adopt you as an influencer?
The easiest way is once you hit at least 5,000 followers you can start reaching out to brands via Email, Direct Messaging or Facebook. You are also likely to have brands make contact with you once you have enough followers to be deemed an influencer.
If you pick a niche to operate in – say, lifestyle – then you will be tempting to brands in that category (clothing, food, fitness etc.). This can help to make you more valuable to these companies, but you need to be careful not to close yourself off to too many opportunities.
The more specific you are, the more valuable you are to brands that fit your niche, but the overall number of companies you can attract declines.
What are the biggest mistakes you see people make on their path to becoming an influencer?
- They don’t have a clear account that tells you what their niche is – if followers or brands are confused about the nature/purpose of their page then they make themselves less valuable as influencers.
- They don’t implement growth strategies – in other words, once they get to the stage where they are paid to promote products they lose sight of what attracted their followers in the first place and start to lose relevance.
How do you think the nature of influencer marketing will change over the next few years?
It is estimated that influencer marketing will grow to a 10 billion dollar industry, so the only changes will be further growth – and possible Instagram algorithm changes. So far changes to algorithms have served to make it easier to commercialise accounts, so we can expect this to continue as well.