This is such a funny one, and I almost can’t believe I’m writing it, but it’s actually the initial inspiration for the whole series. When I first started in my business, Instagram was not that big of a deal – I actually thought it was just a photo editing app and had no idea I was posting anything to my feed for about a week!
Over the last few years, it has really taken off and become the medium of choice for creatives, and especially photographers, everywhere, and for good reason. Instagram carries with it an inherently natural way to display your work, no matter what it is. It’s easy to get lost in all the prettiness of scrolling and now with the Stories feature, you can immerse yourself even further in the app. If you’re not careful it can be a huge time waster as well – one I have been learning to manage over the last few months.
When I first started getting followers it was fun. A random friend would find me here, or a new client would follow me. I looked jealously at other people’s followers. They had over a thousand and I remember thinking I would NEVER be able to reach that mark. Now, as I look at my 1,800 followers and counting, all my envious thoughts just make me laugh.
You see, The Honest Truth is that a majority of most people’s followers – especially when their accounts range in the thousands – are either spam or fake accounts. Of course I have a tribe that follows me and genuinely interacts with my posts. But every day when I get more followers and take a look, most of them are not potential clients. I have been found a few times by brides or families on Instagram, but most interaction is with other vendors or people that live in a foreign country with an unpronounceable name.
This is evident even in my interactions. My posts average anywhere from 80-120 likes on average, which is generally considered pretty good. My Instagram stories are usually viewed somewhere around 100-150 times by different people. Again, it is pretty cool that over one hundred people care about my day-to-day life. But compare that with the actual followers I have, and the numbers don’t look so great after all. This is true of anyone with a big following, and even some that don’t have nearly as many!
The point of all this is not to hate on Instagram or the people that do follow me and interact. I love that little app and I love the community on there. But when you look at someone else and see their numbers, just know that it may not be as impressive as you thought. Above all, don’t feel bad because you haven’t reached a certain benchmark – just because someone else has does not mean their business is better than yours in any way. You never know who their followers really are :)
And that, friends, is The Honest Truth about Instagram. (Come follow me here if you aren't already doing so!)