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6 Hacks to Get More Followers on Instagram

6 Hacks to Get More Followers on Instagram

Reaching 500 millions users during 2016, Instagram has quickly become the second most popular social networking site. Originally created in 2010 and developed by Facebook since 2012, Instagram is an online social networking service that allows users to ‘follow’ each other whilst sharing photos and videos.

On Instagram, like all social media sites, being popular has become extremely relevant – especially for brands and small businesses. So to help everyone grow their Instagram following I’ve put together this article of 6 tips for getting more followers on Instagram.

1. Interact With Your Followers

This is one of the easiest ways to get new followers. Not only because of the fact that it will make your account visible to more people, but because when other users see that you interact with your following they’ll be more likely to follow you. I mean who doesn’t want a little more attention?

At the start, doing this while you grow your account should be easy as you don’t have many followers. It will get harder as your popularity starts increasing though. However, it won’t be long until your followers realize that you won’t have time to reply to every comment or message.

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2. Post Exciting Content

One of the keys to gaining a lot of followers on Instagram is to post awesome original content. People often use the internet to get away from their own lives for a little.

So you have to be there to excite people and make them laugh. Ultimately, let them take a step out of reality for a short period of time. Try to post interesting photos or videos that your followers aren’t likely to see anywhere else. You’ll be surprised how many followers you start getting just by posting original content.

3. Post Regularly

If you’re wondering why you don’t have many followers on Instagram but are only posting maybe once or twice a week, then we may have found the problem. Regular posts are what keeps new Instagram users coming to your page. If you aren’t posting quality content consistently.

You will find some of your followers may get frustrated or bored waiting for your posts, no matter how good or rare they are. If you have to, write down a schedule and try to stick to it so your followers know when to come back to check for a new post. However, be careful not to post too often or post poor content as this will make people unfollow you.

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4. Use Effective Hashtags

Hashtags are what generally draws new users towards your account. They may seem simple but using them effectively and consistently over time is crucial if you want to increase your success on Instagram. Generally choosing hashtags that are shown in or described in the picture is a solid strategy.

However, be careful when using really popular hashtags, as you’ll likely go unnoticed. For example, #dog is used so often you’re likely going to get lost in the crowd using it. Instead, you should try and choose a hashtag that is still popular but has a specific audience or a niche waiting to view your photo, in this case #dogsofinstagram is a better choice.

You may have to do some research to find out which hashtags are relevant to your niche or type of account, but there are a few hashtag analytics tools out there, like Keyhole, that will help you find them.

Also be wary of adding too many hashtags, as this just comes off ‘spammy’ and needy, and may end up causing you to lose followers. A good technique is to post your hashtags as your first comment. That way your post will still get noticed in the explore feed using the hashtags but your profile won’t appear spammy as they’re not in the caption.

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5. Give Back And Be A Follower

Don’t just expect to get followers, go ahead and visit other people’s accounts and become a follower. It’s one of the best ways for them to notice your account as you’ll pop up in their notifications.

If you’re following our other tips, they’ll more than likely be impressed with your account and will happily follow you back. Of course, you can always unfollow them later, but be careful, if they find out they’ll probably return the favor.

6. Buy Them

This is one sneaky little hack that I think most Instagram users are now probably aware of but only a few decide to try. Regardless, it’s certainly the quickest way to add followers to your account. I’ve tried it myself and got some followers from an Instagram service, Gramlike, and the process is pretty simple.

You just pay, give them your username and they add more followers to your account. However, it should be noted that the followers you get aren’t actually real, they’re fake followers who won’t like or engage with your content! But they are useful in helping you attract new followers via the principle of social proof. As the more followers you have the more important you must be, right? Nonetheless, it’s a nice little shortcut though it is probably more suited to businesses and high profile people with money to blow.

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Whatever way you choose to grow your followers on Instagram, just be sure not to neglect your old ones or you’ll end up taking two steps forward and one step back.

Featured photo credit: StockSnap via stocksnap.io

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Last Updated on March 15, 2019

How to Be a Leader Who Is Inspiring and Influential

How to Be a Leader Who Is Inspiring and Influential

When I began managing people 15 years ago, I thought having a fancy title was synonymous with influence. Over time, I learned that power is conferred based on likeability, authenticity, courage, relationships and consistent behavior. When leaders cultivate these attributes, they earn power, which really means influence.

Understanding influence is essential to professional growth, and companies rise and fall based on the quality of their leadership.

In this article, we will look into the essentials of effective leadership and how to be a leader who is inspiring and influential.

What Makes a Leader Fail?

A host of factors influence a leader’s ability to succeed. To the extent that leaders fail to outline a compelling vision and strategy, they risk losing the trust and confidence of their teams. Employees want to know where a company is going and the strategy for how they will get there. Having this information enables employees to feel safe, and it allows them to see mistakes as part of the learning journey versus as fatal occurrences.

If employees and customers do not believe a company’s leadership is authentic and inspiring, they may disengage, or they may be less inclined to offer constructive criticism that can help a company innovate or help a leader improve.

And it is not just the leadership at the top that matters. Middle managers play a distinct role in guiding teams. Depending on the company’s size, employees may have more access to mid-level managers than they do members of the C-suite, meaning their supervisors and managers have greater influence on the employee and the customer experience.

What Is Effective Leadership?

Effective leadership is inspiring, and it is influential. Cultivating inspiring and influential leaders requires building relationships across the company.

Leaders must be connected to both the teams they lead as well as to their own colleagues and managers. This is key as titles do not make a person a leader, nor do they automatically confer influence. These are earned through trusting relationships. This explains why some leaders can get more out of their teams than others and why some leaders experience soaring profits and engagement while others sizzle out.

Eric Garton said in an April 25, 2017, Harvard Business Review article:[1]

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“… inspiring leaders are those who use their unique combination of strengths to motivate individuals and teams to take on bold missions – and hold them accountable for results. And they unlock higher performance through empowerment, not command and control.”

How to Be an Inspiring and Influential Leader

To be an inspiring and influential leader requires:

1. Courage

The late poet Maya Angelou once said,

“Courage is the most important of all the virtues, because without courage you can’t practice any other virtue consistently. You can practice any virtue erratically, but nothing consistently without courage.”

Courage is required in the workplace when implementing new strategies, especially when they go against professional norms.

For instance, I heard Lisa TerKeurst, bestselling author and founder of Proverbs 31 Ministries, explain her decision to move away from her company’s magazine. While the organization had long had a magazine, she saw a future where it didn’t exist.

In order to make the switch, she risked angering her team members and customers. She took a chance, and what started out as a monthly newsletter, has grown into a multi-dimensional organization boasting half a million followers. Had Lisa not found the courage to change the direction of her organization, they undoubtedly would not have been able to experience such exponential growth.

It also takes courage to give and receive feedback. When leaders see employees who are not living into the company’s mission or who are engaging in behavior that may undermine their long-term success, one must risk temporary angst and speak candidly with the colleague in question.

Similarly, it takes courage to hear constructive criticism and try to change. In business, as in life, courage is necessary for being an inspiring and influential leader.

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2. A Commitment to Face Your Internal Demons.

If you feel great about yourself, enter a leadership position. You are likely to be triggered in ways you didn’t think possible. You are also likely to receive feedback that may leave you second-guessing yourself and your leadership skills.

The truth about leading others is that you get to a point where you realize that it is difficult to take people to places where you yourself haven’t gone.

To be an influential and inspiring leader, you have to face your own demons and vow to continually improve. Influential leaders take their personal evolution serious, and they invest in coaching, therapy and mindfulness to ensure that their personal struggles do not overshadow their professional development.

3. A Willingness to Accept Feedback

Inspiring and influential leaders are not afraid to accept feedback. In fact, they actively solicit it. They understand that everyone in their life has a lesson to teach them, and they are willing to accept it.

Inspirational leaders understand that feedback is neither good nor bad but rather an offering that is critical to growth. Even when it hurts or is an affront to the ego, influential leaders understand that feedback is critical to their ability to lead.

4. Likability

Some people will argue that leaders need not worry about being liked but should instead focus on being respected. I disagree. Both are important.

When team members like their boss and believe their boss likes them, they are more likely to go the extra mile to fulfill departmental or organizational goals. Likable leaders are moved to the front of the line when it comes to being influential.

Relatedly, when colleagues feel management dislikes them, they experience internal stress and can spend unnecessary time focusing on the source of their manager’s discontent versus the work they have been hired to do.

So, likability is important for both the leader and the people she leads.

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5. Vulnerability

Vulnerability is critical for being an inspiring leader. People want the truth. They admire leaders who can occasionally demonstrate vulnerability. It promotes deeper relationships and inspires trust.

When leaders can showcase vulnerability appropriately, they destroy the illusion that one must be perfect to be a leader. They also demonstrate that vulnerability is not a dirty word; they too can be vulnerable and ask for a helping hand when necessary.

6. Authenticity

Authenticity is about living up to one’s stated values in public and behind closed doors.

Influential leaders are authentic. They set to live out their values and use those values to guide their decisions. The interesting thing about leadership is that people are not looking for perfect leaders. They are, in part, looking for leaders who are authentic.

7. A True Understanding of Inspiration

Effective leaders are inspirational. They understand the power of words and deeds and use both strategically.

Inspiring leaders appropriately use stories and narratives to enable the teams around them to see common situations in an entirely new light.

Inspirational leaders also showcase grit and triumph while convincing the people around them that success and victory are attainable.

Finally, inspiring leaders encourage the teams they lead to tap into their own genius. They convince others that genius is not reserved for a select few but that most people have it in them.

As explained in the article True Leadership: What Separates a Leader from a Boss:

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“A leader creates visions and motivates team members to work together towards the same goal.”

8. An Ability to See the Humanity in Others

Inspiring and influential leaders see the humanity in others. Rather than treating their teams as mere tools to accomplish organizational goals, they believe the people around them are unique beings with inherent value.

This means knowing when to pause to address personal challenges and dispelling with the myth that the personal is separate from the professional.

9. A Passion for Continual Learning

Inspiring and influential leaders are committed to continual learning. They invest in their own development and take responsibility for their professional growth.

These leaders understand that like a college campus, the workplace is a laboratory for learning. They believe that they can learn from multiple generations in the workplace as well as from people from diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds.

Influential leaders proactively seek out opportunities for learning.

The Bottom Line

No one said leadership was easy, but it is also a joy. Influencing others to action and positively impacting the lives of others is a reward unto itself.

Since leadership abounds, there is an abundance of resources to help you grow into the type of leader who inspires and influences others.

More Resources About Effective Leadership

Featured photo credit: Markus Spiske via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Harvard Business Review: How to Be an Inspiring Leader

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