When I first moved to Calgary I had just started using Instagram as a business tool and had 500 followers. I was intimidated by the 'big city' and wanted to make a good impression. So just before moving here I bought 500 fake followers for $2.99. Yup, I'm admitting it guys. I sold out. I wanted to make a good first impression. But the thing about fake followers, they may initially impress but they are easy to spot and don't engage. And they most definitely don't come into your business. It was a reflection of my insecurities at the time.
I also used a bot. Some of you may not know what that is, quick lesson, a bot is an application that performs an automated task, like liking and commenting on photos. I thought it was genius, it was like hiring someone to do my engagement. Something that would go like and comment on photos for me... the down side, I learned quickly that #blowout isn't always about hair😉. But it helped, so I thought. It was at least engaging with real accounts. I still did a lot of my own engaging but the bot worked when I couldn't.( like the time my client asked why I was liking photos in the middle of the night) It gave me greater exposure but not the integral authentic engagement I wanted. I didn't have control (and I can be a control freak) and the bot would engage with accounts I didn't want to be associated with. That's when I stopped using it. I wanted to make sure that my tactics lined up with my values.
I'm sharing this because there are a million different Instagram hacks, tricks, tips to 'getting more followers' or 'increasing your engagement". And I'm not saying any of these are wrong or bad. I'm just putting light to the fact that there are so many opinions out there make sure you do your research on whose voice you listen to.
For me, It all changed the day that I asked myself "Who and what am I as a business and who I'm targeting? Focus on that."
Before that moment I drove myself to exhaustion trying to 'keep up'. I put crazy expectations on myself as to how often I had to post, and how much I needed to engage, etc. My life became about being on my phone 24/7. I had this fear of falling behind. I started comparing myself to others. I was focusing on everyone else rather than on my goals and what I wanted to achieve.
When I finally let go of all that pressure, the pressure that lead me buy fake followers in attempts to impress others, I literally felt a weight be lifted off of me. Like I could breathe again. Like I was free and had control again.
Does anyone understand this feeling? Like you've been a slave to this imaginary Instagram master thats really never exsisted. But it's only once you're free from yourself that you realize you were free all along.