Instagram is one of the most popular social media platforms on the planet, with over 1 billion active users in January 2020, and almost 500 million users logging in daily1. While it started out as a social media platform where you could connect with friends and share photos with them, it has now become a serious content marketing, networking and audience building tool.
Popular influencers all over the world are using Instagram to carve a name for themselves, and you can do the same too. However, to become truly ‘Instafamous’ in a short space of time, there are a few mistakes that you need to avoid at all costs. Here’s a close look at these mistakes:
Collaborating with brands that are not a good fit
Brand collaborations provide the bread and butter of influencer marketing. Such partnerships serve as the major source of income for most Instagram influencers. Even though money can be a great temptation, don’t be afraid to turn down brands that don’t seem like a good fit. “I often turn down brand partnerships because I do not like the product, or it doesn’t fit with my brand”, declares Laura Izumikawa.
Only work with brands that seem to a natural fit for your personality. In the long run, you will grow the most with brands you feel comfortable working with. Ultimately, being Instagram famous is about working with a few brands that are right for you, not working for numerous brands that don’t fit your style.
Losing track of your competitors and idols
“There are a lot of people that want to become influencers, and you have to beat your competitors to have success. Try to always publish the best news and try to write things before the others2,” advises technology enthusiast and influencer Antony Vitillo.
It is a good idea to know what other influencers are posting for their respective followers. By monitoring how your competitors and idols are interacting with their followers, you will get a better understanding of what type of content gets the most shares. Besides, you can learn from their mistakes and get inspired by their success stories too.
Going overboard with sponsored content
Posting too much of sponsored content can spell the devastation of an Instagram influencer. If your followers only see sponsored posts every time they visit your profile, they are likely to discredit your reputation as an untrustworthy and greedy influencer. Eventually, big brands will take notice too, and this could hurt your overall stock.
The idea is to strike the right balance when you post. Renowned influencer and founder of ‘Style Bee’, Lee Vosburgh says, “Personally, I try to keep my brand partnerships and sponsored content well spread out,” she says.
Sponsored content can be a good way for Instagram influencers to earn some extra money. However, you should try and avoid spamming your feed with sponsored content. Rather, strike the right balance, as suggested by Lee.
Letting haters bother you
‘Haters always gonna hate’. There’s much truth to this modern and profound saying as far as influencer marketing is concerned. Naysayers, trolls and other petty-minded, envious souls might try to bring you down at every opportunity they get. However, all you need to do keep your head down and maintain focus. Learn to take even the harshest of criticisms with a pinch of salt.
Emily Schumann of ‘Cupcakes and Cashmere’ fame observes, “For those comments that are simply said to be mean, I remind myself that the person is most likely projecting their own insecurities and it’s actually not about me.” For budding influencers, these are very wise words indeed.
Not disconnecting every now and then
If you become ‘Instagram famous’, there will come a time when you will be flooded with attention. Brands will want to work with you, followers will send you personal messages, and as more and more people keep discovering you, things might become a bit chaotic and unnerving. At times like these, remember to disconnect yourself from time to time. Find the right balance between engaging with your fans and recharging yourself with some downtime.
Carin Olsson, who goes by the famous Instagram handle ‘parisinfourmonths’ states, “I think the most important thing is to be able to disconnect from time to time. To not be online or connected all the time. To have moments where you just enjoy and relax.”
Taking yourself too seriously
Once you’ve truly become ‘Instafamous’, remember to stay grounded at all times. Oftentimes, success can get into one’s head with disastrous consequences. Too much arrogance or self-importance can quickly demolish a social media influencer’s career.
Instagram influencer and entrepreneur Sarah Jane Adams puts it best when she says, “The day you start to believe your own bullshit is the beginning of the end.”
So, learn to take successes and failures in your stride. Always be humble and thankful when good things come your way. On the flip side, when faced with disappointments, hold your head high and don’t lose hope as things will get better for you eventually. Remember the old saying, ‘This too shall pass’.
To sum it up
Influencer marketing is here to stay, and Instagram is at the very forefront of it all. All over the world, Instagram influencers are shaping opinions and dictating the buying patterns of their followers. In such a scenario, you should ensure that the aforementioned mistakes do not derail your efforts towards becoming famous on Instagram.
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