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Having a "large" number of followers is important in today's social media landscape.  We all want more followers for multiple reasons:

  • We want more people to see our posts
  • We want more people to know that our salon / stylists exist
  • We want to share our artistry with as many people as possible
  • We want more new clients
  • It makes us feel good

So is there a quicker way to grow our Instagram following than just posting multiple times a day, using great hashtags and hoping people find us?  YES!  Growth happens best when it is done on purpose.  There are many techniques that are out there to grow your following, but we have found that growing your following is more than just adding as many followers as possible.  Adding 1,000 followers in your target market is more valuable than 10,000 followers that are not in your target. 

We have utilized the following strategy for many of our clients, and it has helped then grow their Instagram accounts exponentially with followers in their local target market.  This takes approximately 15-30 minutes per day and can be done by anyone with access to the business Instagram account.

Follow these sure-fire steps to  grow your Instagram following with your local target market:

  1. Determine your target market. You first need to figure out who is in your target market.  Where do they shop locally?  Where do they go to the gym?  Are they in school?  Do they like local artists?  Where do they eat?   Once you have some of this info, you can start your journey to adding followers to your Instagram Account!  Your list of local businesses may look like this: Shopping--Whole Foods, XYZ Boutique, XYZ Jewelry. Dining--Local Restaurant #1, #2, #3, etc. 
  2. Log into Instagram with your business account
  3. Look up the businesses you listed in Step 1. Where are your target market clients doing business or what are they following?  Ideally you will find a dozen or so that have at least 1,000 followers.
  4. Start following each of the business's followers. Yes, the people that are following that business. Because these are probably the people you want to follow you! I recommend following around 200 per day. Do this for 5 or 6 days in a row.
  5. Start an unfollow campaign. Instagram only allows you to follow 7,500 people.  It is important to start an unfollow campaign if you are planning to use this strategy long-term. Unfollow all of the accounts that did not follow you back, 500 per day max.
  6. Rinse and repeat: Steps 4 and 5!  When you have exhausted your list, start a new one!

This is a quick and easy way to get in front of your target market and hope they will follow you back. You should see a follow-back rate of between 5-10%  if you have defined your target market properly. So for every 100 you follow, 5-10 will follow you back. Over the course of a year that can add up to over 5,000+ followers in your local target market. 

About the Author: Lucas Renfroe is a founding partner of Salon.Marketing, a digital marketing agency specializing in the salon and spa industry.  Lucas also owns Roots Southern Salon, with his wife Susan, in Savannah, GA.  He works with other salon owners on a daily basis to overcome the challenges of leveraging Search Engines to generate more new clients.  You can reach him at lucas@firstpagelife.com.