I’m going to tell you right away what the one thing that turns your Instagram followers into raving fans. That thing is to be more real.
To be more real means to be more honest, open, and vulnerable. It means showing the sides of you that you’re too afraid to show because you don’t want to be judged. Being more real means that you finally show who you truly are, on Instagram.
It doesn’t mean that you show every side of you. You’re not going to spread any hate, be a pessimist online, and you’re not going to rant about one of your least favorite family members. You can rant to your partner and they’ll still love you, but on social media you’ll simply be seen as annoying.
People aren’t following you, your brand, or your business to get rants. They’re following you because they either want to buy from you or they want to get value from you. You just need to be real in the process while keeping in mind that social media is not your diary.
The question now is: How do you be more you on Instagram? How do you be more “real”?
How to be real on Instagram: The one thing that will turn your followers into raving fans
1. Share the ordinary, mundane parts of your life
You’ve probably shared dozens of pictures of yourself and an influencer on the beach or uploaded stories of the views from your various hotels. You’ve shared pictures of great moments you’ve been able to live because you work hard. While you should continue to share those, your followers would like to see that it’s not all luxury and glamour.
Share also the moments where you’re just reading a self-help book in your undone bed, having late breakfasts at home, or taking a break from work by walking your dog. People relate to ordinary moments, and it reminds them that if someone “ordinary” like you can reach a certain level of success, they can too.
2. Show the work
Like I said above, you’ve shared a lot of great moments. You’ve earned to live and share those moments, but the truth is that isn’t your life a lot of the time. Most of it is spent working. Upload a story of the view from your hotel, but take a picture of your laptop on your lap as you lay in that hotel bed, editing the slides for your big speech at a conference tomorrow.
Share the book you’re reading, the pencil and the notepad, the spreadsheets, the mess. Show the funnels you’re making at one-thirty in the morning or the writing you’re getting done a five-thirty in the morning. Show the work.
3. Show off your failures and mistakes as much as your successes and wins
Don’t stop sharing your successes and wins, but share your failures and mistakes just as much—maybe even more, because we all know that we mess up more than we succeed. If you’re constantly sharing the successes, you might unknowingly be making your followers feel as though you never mess up, and because they look up to you, then when they fail, they’re going to feel like they’ll never be able to amount to where you are.
You might be afraid to share your mistakes because you don’t want to be judged, but there’s nothing wrong with failing. We both know failing is good, so share it. Conquer your insecurities and do it for your followers.
4. How do you deal with bad days?
Your Instagram profile makes it look like every day is a good day. Of course, that’s not true. Every now and then, we all have bad days; usually for no reason. We wake up and we’re in a bad mood. What if on those days, instead of plastering on a fake smile and taking a picture of your coffee and writing a caption that says, “Ready for work!” when in reality you wish you could bury your head back in your pillow, you share that instead.
Tell your followers that you’re having one of those days, and then let them into your life on a bad day. Show them self-care. Upload pictures and stories of you re-reading your favorite book, buying your favorite hot chocolate from the coffee shop across the street, and then taking a bath. That’s something everyone will be able to relate to—self-care on a bad day.
5. Share your past struggles and how you overcame them/current struggles
What’s a problem or struggle you currently have? Share it with your followers, not only to be more real, but to gain insight and help. Ask a question, and your followers will gladly provide you with solutions. They’ll love that they can help you after everything you’ve done for them.
You can also share past struggles and how you overcame them. Your followers will love to know what you’ve struggled with for two reasons. One, they could be struggling with the same thing and your solution could help them out. Two, you’re being open, honest, and vulnerable by telling people what your problem was. It’s hard to do something like that, and you’ll gain respect for it.
6. Introduce people to your family and closest friends
Introduce your followers to the people you love most—your parents or siblings, your best friends, your favorite aunt—as if you were introducing them to your friends.
In the caption, you could write about what that person does and what you do together. This makes your followers feel like you really care about them because you’re taking the time to introduce them to your favorite people. Plus, they love getting to know you!
7. Share the small things that make you happy
This point is short and sweet. Just share pictures and Instagram stories of the small things that make you happy. Not the huge successes or the fancy places you’re staying at, but the small things like your favorite song, or the rain, or your favorite sitcom, the one you watch to wind down at night.
It’s these small things that will make your followers smile.