I Just Hit 5,000 Instagram Followers. My Take on Automation.

Last Update: April 30, 2019

Today I cracked the 5,000 follower mark, so I thought I would give you an update as to the things that I have learned within my short residence within the Instagram year.

Although I created my Instagram account back in 2015, I didn't start using it until February of this year. In this short period I have immersed myself into the platform to try to determine the human behaviour, as well as the algorithmic behaviour. The two key driving factors of any social platform like Instagram. Carson has also created an Instagram account and we have actively been engaging in the platform and discussing our findings.

You can check out both of our Instagram accounts here.

https://www.instagram.com/wealthyaffiliatekyle (mine)
https://www.instagram.com/wealthyaffiliatecarson
(Carson's)

We have many years of experience developing algorithms here at Wealthy Affiliate and are constantly thinking about human behaviour in a way that will lead to more interaction, more positive interaction, and more AUTHENTIC interaction. We are developing our understanding of the internal Instagram and how it "most likely" works based on this knoweldge.

As I have been building a following, I have been very critical of my own activities and even those activities of some "influencers". I have been working to define what a winning IG strategy, and one that will lead you to a weak following with very little interaction.

I asked myself a few simple, yet important questions.

  • What would they be thinking when they are developing this algorithm?
  • How would they be working to limit low quality posting behaviour?
  • What would they be doing to promote quality users and quality posts?
  • What does an engaging and quality post even look like to them?
  • What elements of the Instagram platform can be automated without being punished?

I could write a 20,000 word article on these topics alone from what I have learned thus far. So instead of me focusing on all of them at once, I really want to hone in on the idea of automation. Is it good or is it bad for your Instagram following, your Instagram clout, and your reputation in the eyes of Instagram.

Some folks are probably going to disagree with what I have to say, that is completely fine. However, these are my findings thus far and I think I can make valid and very strong arguments AGAINST automation, and a lot of really powerful arguments for authentic interaction within the platform and the actual app itself.

Automation Sounds Good, But Isn't.

There are many tools and platforms for automation, but I have moved away from them. I know lots of famous Instgrammers are using them, but not as much as you probably would think. Automation has a time and a place in any business and there are some things that you should be aware of before using automation on Instagram.

(1) Instagram KNOWS When You Are Automating. The first thing you should realize is that when you automate, you are using the API, which means that Instagram is going to know what application/service is sending the data to their platform, and when it is sending it. This means they also know your account is using automation.

There certainly won't be any positive rewards for doing this, in particular if this is something that you could be manually doing through the IG interface. If they wanted you to post comments automatically, follow automatically, like automatically, or post feeds/stories automatically, they would offer these features right within their interface.

Automation removes humanization, and humans are what make the like/engagement engine of Instagram tick. Every time you come back into Instagram to post a post, that to Instagram is another marketing opportunity to you. If you are using automation tools all the time, they are going to miss out on this opportunity (which is likely happening billions of times over the course of a month.

(2) You Shouldn't Automate Comments/Engagement. When you automate comments, you are moving into an area where you are posting "junk" on other people's profiles. Yes, some people like this engagement, but others will delete it or worse, mark you as spam (which can hurt your reputation in Instagram).

The automation tools give you creative control over you comments and I suppose you could be "somewhat" relevant if you are really granular with how you set these up, but at the same time it is never going to speak directly to what the image is, it is going to be nothing more than a guess, based on relevant tags.

The people posting use all sorts of tags and when you set up auto comments, you are relying on the end user.

(3) If it Doesn't Feel Authentic, Then You Are Doing it Wrong. Sometimes automation feels awkward, and it feels as though you are performing actions that will feel totally robotic. If that is the case, there is a good chance your followers and those that you are engaging with on Instagram will think the same thing...and certainly Instagram algorithms are on the look out for low quality and irrelevant communication

Use your intuition. If what you are doing doesn't feel as though it will come across as being authentic, it is going to hurt your brand and reputation within IG in the short and long term.

(4) The Follow/Unfollow Approach is a Dead End Street. A common tactic to grow a following on Instagram is to follow as many relevant people as you can through automation, and then hope for follow backs. Then, you automatically unfollow all of these people after a set time period (that you can set-up within most Instagram automation software). This leaves you with a bunch of "followers" and not that many people you are following, giving you a good follower to following ratio.

The problem is that your following is completely fake and unauthentic. This is called gaming the system and Instagram can easily determine which accounts are doing this and give them very little exposure. This is why you see people with 100,000 followers that get 300-400 likes. It is because they are cheating the system, and they ultimately have little to no clout.


The problem with automation is that many people are drawn to it because it makes things easier or more efficient. There are many ways to do things easier in life, but the end result isn't always better.

I can appreciate the fact that you want to save time on social, so you can dedicate it to other aspects of growing your business and not everyone can afford a social media manager (most of whom haven't a clue what they are doing). The reality is though there is a trade off with automation that I think will lead to lower quality growth over time.

My recommendation, in particular when you are getting rolling with Instagram is to avoid automation. You are going to get a much better sense as to what works within the platform, what stories are getting the most views, what hashtag combinations are working best, what types of images lead to the most likes, and what sort of reaction your posts is having with the Instagram algorithm.

I would love to hear your feedback though. If you have any experiences contrary to mine, or if you have any stories/strategies to share in relation to Instagram, please leave them below.

Join the Discussion
Write something…
Recent messages
Bluette Premium
Kyle, totally agree on automation, but would like to ask a question. I am using Tailwind for scheduling the posts only, and it is a half manual process, you just prepare your posts in advance, you get notification when it is due , you copy the comments and hashtags and long press on the pic to share to Instagram. Is that still ok to do?
Comments and likes I do not automate , but do it myself.
Reply
BikiniBadass Premium
I would like to know the answer to this also. I used to use Buffer for another account, but couldn't seem to get anymore that 500 followers. With my new WA Insta, I was planning to use Tailwind, but now I'm not so sure.
Reply
Bluette Premium
I like Tailwind just for postings, hashtaggs and all, I find it very hard to use the mobile, as my typing speed if I use a computer is very fast, makes it easier to write longer posts. I only have 740 something followers myself, simply because people unfollow you automatically if you don't follow them back, that is ok, those are usually the accounts you don't need anyways. Plus need to come up with more personalised approach, mine it is not at the moment, time will tell.
Reply
ownonlboss Premium
Tailwind is fine to use. Just a premium thing to organize stuff. You do write all your posts yourself in Tailwind to schedule them to post later. This is perfectly fine, for scheduled posts will make sure that you post at the right and exact time that your audience is watching.

The automated stuff that Kyle is referring to, are the auto-responder bots you can install for Instagram or Twitter that automatically thank someone for following in a DM or reply a tweet on something automatically.

He also talks about bots that do the follow-unfollow tactic to try to grow their following.

I agree totally that you should instead do the messaging and DM'ing manually (if at all). The impact is way better and people will see whether you are a serious and authentic person or not.

And follow-unfollow tactics are illegal on Twitter and Instagram and can get you banned, yet many do this en-masse because they think they will get more followers by it.

The idea with Twitter and Instagram following is as follows:
- If you got more following than followers you are a follower.
- If you got more followers than that you are following, you are an influencer.

Twitter/Instagram treat followers and influencers differently within the algorithm.

Steven
Reply
Bluette Premium
thank you , I thought it is ok to use. Totally agree at what you posted here on automatic response , you can see it straight away, obvious and disturbing. I had a post about Eco friendly laundry liquid that saves 13 plastic bottles per year per household, and got two responses, one said " I think your pictures are better than before" , and another to contact them and like their account that has nothing to do with the topic. So, yes, it is a Social Media after all. thanks for your time and comments. 😉

Milla
Reply
herinnelson Premium
Hi Kyle! I never really thought too much about automation, so I've learned a great deal from your post! I always wondered why people followed me on Instagram, then unfollowed me in a heartbeat. Pretty slick. I would have to agree with you that automation is cheating the system. It really shouldn't be allowed.

Congrats on your followers. One of them is me!

Erin :)!
Reply
ownonlboss Premium
not sure whether automation is banned, but people using follow-unfollow techniques put themselves in danger, for that is bannable offense.

Steven
Reply
shermand2268 Premium
Thanks for this, Kyle. I've been using automation for some time, but have recently started to consider moving away from it. I heard one social media "expert" say that if you're using an automation tool on Facebook, they won't give your post any exposure at all. I wonder if that's true, and whether it's true for other social media platforms as well?

I have two websites plus two YouTube channels, so the thought of doing social media posting manually is daunting to say the least. My feeling is that if it is, in fact, actually useless to post with automation (for example, if the network knows it's automated and won't give it any exposure), then obviously I need to stop automation. But if I can still get a fair amount of exposure, and use the automation to provide far more content for my followers than I can manage by posting manually, then I need to keep automation.

As I said, I'm just starting to think this through and at this moment I don't know what the right answer is. Your input is greatly appreciated.
Debra
Reply
ownonlboss Premium
There is nothing wrong with a tool like Tailwind where you write your posts manually and schedule them for posting at the right time and date.

There is something wrong with auto-follow-unfollow bots, auto-DM by new follow etc.
It's likewise not great if you use the options on Instagram to automatically post to Twitter or Facebook. The result will never be optimal.

Twitter and Facebook are different platforms and have a different way of communicating than Instagram does. You cannot really put the same message out on each platform and so automation (even if the platforms come with them themselves) in this form isn't even a good thing.

Better to write all your content yourself and create them for all the specific platforms.

It sounds like a lot of work, but in a way if you create 1 piece of content, you can use that same piece of content to create different small bits of information or image or video material that you can post in each their own format to the different platforms.

Using the software that lets us schedule it, will still be fine for it will just help you deliver that manually written message at the right time.

Also note that every platform will have a different kind of audience of your audience and hence they might want it delivered at different moments of the week/time.

Hope that clears it a bit up.

Steven
Reply
Alena10 Premium
I have to make this short, trouble with my phone,and have a.lot of writing to do. I agree,with what you are saying, I'm not a follower,really I'm just really learning the computer well what
I can't get on my own ,you guys are helping. The piece you just
Let me read was very informative,and I didn't get bored half way through it.Now let me tell you something there is about 3 out of the 6 review s I tryed to do, 3 of them were to long ,or.boring.
Laney
Reply
Tguth Premium
Hello,

Kyle to my understand of this I get a lot of fake people trying to run the spam scam. When it come to this issue.
I am on Instagram a lot. Get a lot of it with people using the automation.

I simply do not use it my self. Truly think a lot of people would think that I am fake.
Not give me a fair shake. But I also follow a lot of people that vape.

"Yes" "Yes" you hit the nail on the head.
Senseless me me to use something like that when I have not seen any good come out of it. It might work for some people and they might like it.

But I am trying to build a true business. No, I cant afford, a Media Manager at this point. But I can see through the mudd.

Thanks,
Kyle,
Truly, Timothy
Reply
AlenkaV Premium
Congratulations!

I've really enjoyed following your account from the first week. Thank you for sharing fab posts.

I took another approach, thinking that a business account needs to stay that - a business account (since I have my personal/singing Insta account as well).

But on closer inspection, and especially after this post, I've decided to make my account more about me (I am an opera singer, and a soprano at that, so this is not a difficult shift ;) ), and already, after a few days, I have more followers and more engagement on my posts.

Now, I have no idea if this is going to do anything for my promoting WA there... and this is the part that I struggle with the most:

How to find the right audience for what WA has to offer?

My followers are mainly other internet marketers or my friends... So, no idea how my Insta activity is at all worthwhile (at least not at the moment), and maybe I should work at it for a year at least and then see what happens?

Thanks again for the great insights in your post.
Best,
Alenka

P.S. And, of course, no automation software in sight on my account.
Reply
PastorDre Premium
I hope it works out for you. All the best.
Reply
Petra4 Premium
There are quite a few musicians/singers here on WA and its platform. You are able to follow them?

Promoting WA? Ask yourself why you had joined WA in the first place? If you can answer this question, then you will also have your answer.

PS: because you are an opera singer, doesn't mean that you don't (or can't) have any side interests. You will soon see that the two (2) will blend in time . . .

If you want further clarification &/or ideas, then let me know :)
Reply
AlenkaV Premium
Great, thanks. I was thinking how to find followers who are not on WA?
Reply
EddieSand Premium
Good and useful advice. Thanks Kyle.

Last year I decided to grow my instagram and committed to not automate.

I also did not follow a bunch of accounts.

As of today I have a consistent 490+ followers and only following 22.
You can see @eddiesandmarketing

There is one free app that helped me stay focus on growing my instagram account. It’s a grading system that shows me what area needs to improve.

When I first downloaded the app My grade was a C+ and now My grade is a B.

The app is only for iOS device and it’s called Command for Instagram.

Thanks again for sharing your instagram success.
Reply
wealthysage Premium
Thx for sharing your thoughts, Kyle, very insightful. I've been a user of Instagram for many years and have accumulated almost 90k followers across my 5 accounts using entirely organic approach and without using automation or becoming addicted.

The bots are ruining the experience for genuine users and I dislike in particular the risk of addiction and the follow/unfollow routine that you mention.

I note you fail to cover the issue of addiction that algorithms present, will you cover this in a future post? It's something pertinent to WA of course and equally applicable here as on IG. It would therefore be useful to know if there is a policy on this?
Reply
mcb247 Premium
I must admit I haven't used Instagram lately as I have been focusing on creating blogs and other content. About a week ago I got asked to review a site that looks at hashtags on Instagram and of course my thoughts turned back to whether I use this platform again.

Things have probably moved on since I was last one there, but I did use the follow - unfollow way of building my account, but found it uncomfortable so stopped.

I will be following you and Carson and looking at what you have posted etc.

My one question would be do I start a fresh account or continue with my old account ?

Thanks
Martin
Reply
EdwinBernard Premium
Thanks for this thoughtful report on your Instagram experience. You confirmed my own beliefs against automation.

I had set up a second account for business purposes in IG, but it lay dormant for months until it disappeared.

However, I have noticed I receive a lot of likes in my social account from random people who I have no intention of following. In fact I have deleted many of those.

Social media to me is to socially interact with people in an authentic manner. I used to do that on IG every day until I joined WA. Have no time for that so I go on every two days or more. The friends who I make comments on must think I have forgotten them. I make posts I usually get a good response from my followers as well as strangers. Only 364. I only follow 571.

Eventually I would like to use Instagram as a platform to grow my business. All in good time. Too much else to focus on now within WA.

Great IG pics. I followed you and Carson. Hope you don't mind.

Cheers!

Edwin
Reply
MutsumiC Premium
I appreciate you for not pushing the automation on here and keeping the consistent integrity throughout all the previous training and in your words. It really makes me feel good to belong to WA knowing that we are a group of hard-working people putting out quality contents that actually do help people rather than just putting out "junks" like you said. Thanks for your post. It somehow gave me a sense of hope and faith again.
Reply
Karin13 Premium
Thanks fo sharing. I am still mostly in the dark on using Instagram. I have an account, but I have only ever accidentally made three posts to it. I say accidentally because I have no idea how I did it! I guess I have not given that platform much of my attention.

As fas as automation goes, the only thing I "automate" on anything is my signature which I copy and paste so I don't have to keep typing it over and over! :)

Best wishes,
Karin 😁
Reply
NeilBrown Premium
Hey Kyle, the only thing I can think of that is in the form of automation is tailwind, by them scheduling your hash tags for you and posting at a pre scheduled time, is this one of the automation tactics you are talking about or is there other ones? I am kind of feeling in the dark about instagram .
Reply
ownonlboss Premium
Kyle, to be honest I thought, before I read your post, that your post was going to be about how to truly build your Instagram up, not so concentrated on not using automation.

I totally agree we shouldn't use any form of automation.

Social media is all about the old form of word-of-mouth relationship building thing. Relationships are important for us humans.

You cannot automate that. Robots are impersonal and standard messages will very quickly fall through. They do not create authenticity.

So instead of using any form of software, spend a bunch on social media and interact with the people or profiles that best fit your niche. I could explain what to do here, but I much rather hear it from you - or from Gary Vaynerchuck, who applies this and preaches this on a daily basis.

Steven
Reply
Jadatherapy Premium
Thank you for sharing Kyle much appreciated

Oh now I know why some days I will get a load of followers and then a few says later they are gone.

I use Instagram every now and again. I need to learn more about it and good job that you are keeping us updated.

Have a great week

Jennifer
Reply
tbowyer Premium
Hi Kyle.

I absolutely agree—automation feels tacky and false. It's like those letters we've all received, I imagine, from companies which ostensibly love us and want to be besties:

"Dear Mr Teyi Bower"

Er, yeah. If we're going to be best pals forever, how about learning to spell my name properly for a start?

The thing is, no one can automate caring, and it is the caring which reaches past people's defences and touches the heart.

Regards,
Reply
Calh60 Premium
Kyle, thanks for sharing your experiences and observations with IG. I have not moved along far enough to be using social media yet to gain traction, however, I will keep this in mind for when I do.

By the way, I am following both you and Carson on IG and have really enjoyed your posts. If it helps and this is coming from someone who has no clue about automating social media, both of your posts are authentic with some really awesome stories and images.

Thanks,
Cal
Reply
Kyle Premium
Awesome, really glad you are enjoying your activities. We are simply being authentic and sharing our stories. Since we are not branded to anything specific (we tie in subtle WA promotions), our feeds are not really "themed", but depending on ones niche you should be making your theme of your posts somewhat relevant.

For example, if you were a beer blogger, you would want to post content that was relevant to beer.
Reply
Linda103 Premium
Thank you for the insights. I still don't 'get' Instagram. Do people really have hours spare every day to browse on there? When they do what are they looking for?
Is it better to give up Facebook and focus on Instagram? I ask this as FB limits post reach so much now and its very time consuming.
Is there an Instagram training?
Apologies for so many questions.
Reply
Kyle Premium
Yes, over a billion people do unfortunately. It is the world we live in, it is the "in between" minutes that people now spend doing this, instead of well, um, talking to one another.

There are several posts here on Instagram, there is no specific training to it yet though. That is going to be coming soon. :)
Reply
Linda103 Premium
That's my problem then, I like talking too much.
I will get on with the training and then get to Instagram.
Thank you Kyle.
Reply
Kemdi12 Premium
this is very true indeed
I just really started getting into Instagram and I saw many wonders that made me scratch my head
I currently have 91 followers and 95 people are following me. And I get 40-50 likes on average. But They are rare cases where I've got 250 and even 1k likes on some of my posts.
But my point is I'm still growing so it's ok, however, I notice my other competition and I saw they have like 18k followers and following just 200 (and even less)
But they are averaging the same amount as me so it didn't make sense at all
I also noticed what Kyle discussed about people following then after some days they unfollow due to automation. That's really sad cause I always keep track of people who follow and unfollow me daily so I was able to catch what was going on immediately.

The best way I've seen to get more followers and likes is by engaging with your niche in comments and also posting regularly with #hashtags.
These two things have great effects.
I don't believe in automation if it wasn't built thru hard work
I will like to know what everyone does to get more followers tho

Thanks, Kyle for posting
Really appreciate
Reply
BeccaAuthor Premium
How do you see who unfollows you?
Reply
Kemdi12 Premium
I do it manually since my number is small right now
But I have an app called instatrack that lets me check the people that follow and then unfollow me if I don't have time to do it the manual way
However, you have to pay tho
Reply
Kyle Premium
That means you are getting great engagement Kemdi, that is a really good sign here. Nice work.

If you grow authentically while retaining that engagement, you are going to do great. :)
Reply
TDomena Premium
I really appreciate reading your insight on this. It helps a lot with understanding how the creators of platforms think. I think this is a gamechanger for how I'll pursue social media going forward. Most people teach you how to do social media from the efficient angle, but the most important metric in business is the relationships, so I love how you've illustrated the creation of the algorithms with that purpose in mind. Thanks so much for posting this!
Reply
Selenityjade Premium
Wow! Crazy! I'm against most automation myself. However, I do have my Twitter and FB linked so if I post to one it posts to the other. I know IG will let you do this except for some reason it posts privately on my FB personal account and it doesn't show up pretty on Twitter. I'm messing around with Hootsuit for this.

Do you think that kind of automation is okay? Using things like Hootsuit and IFTTT to synchronize posting?

I refuse to automatically message people or follow back. Or follow or comment.

But posting once for multiple accounts is a time saver!
Reply
AlexEvans Premium
Hi Kyle, thanks for the insights, I have taken your advice and jumped in, sitting at zeros across that board at the moment, so a work in progress, then again we all have phones so we are all photographers now.

I came across a lady who has 100k of followers, who built it a day at a time, she had some good advice, which I have taken on board, in that, decide what you want to achieve from the get-go, she created a book from the content that she was creating and then sold the book to her tribe.

I lot of hard work from the sounds but she had a targeted audience and created content that resonated, people just started to follow based on the content, from the sounds of things, which was just chick meme kind of stuff, which I find amazing.

Congrats on hitting that milestone.
Reply
Chezbrown Premium
Alexander what are you under so I can follow you. Xx
Reply
Kyle Premium
Exactly the approach you want to take. Organic, long term growth, but a following that will have your back for some time to come. Building your tribe, that is a good way to put it. ;)
Reply
Anushia-9 Premium
Congratulations on a significant milestone, Kyle!

I've yet to open an Instagram account, but intend to do so when I reach that point in the training.

Coincidentally, I reached a significant milestone myself today - 20,000 followers in Twitter.

I've not started trying to monetise it yet, but will be looking to do so quite soon. It will be interesting to see how many of the Bulgarian massage parlour girls and sugar-daddy seekers are interested in learning affiliate marketing.

Cheers and beers,

Steve H
Reply
Kyle Premium
Awesome, congrats on reaching the 20K mark on Twitter! ;)
Reply
Klock Premium
Anyone looking to grow a large targeted engaged audience on instagram i can help you. I personally have 1.1M followers on instagram. Kyle hmu would love to help you become instafamous wealthy affiliate has had a major impact on my success as a businessman would be a pleasure to assist you in this venture.
Reply
AlenkaV Premium
Yes, please.
Reply
BeeEng Premium
I've ran IG before for quite a few campaigns in the past. Most of them being (a color other than white) hat and nothing close to looking for constant followers. If you are running crash and burn sites and just looking for some quick exposure to a large group of people this method is OK, but not great. It's also for the most part free. Depending on your automation tool.

Now for what most of us are doing here on WA this is not a viable method of growing your social account. the follow/unfollow method can help you grow but your settings need to be on the low and slow end and you need to be pulling some followers yourself with your own fingers. Never ever use automation for comments or likes. All that should be done yourself.

Kyle you totally have the right idea about IG, but there are still some tips and tricks that you might not have seen, yet. My past experience using IG for (ahhmm)ack hat work has led me to believe that unless you are selling a flash deal it's almost pointless to use IG for gaining active content readers, but there is a flip side.

My only free advice. Use IG to bring them to your Youtube.
Reply
PeteWeaver Premium
Hi Kyle,

Some years ago. I had a membership at Commission Ritual, the founder was Brian G. Johnson. I created several niche sites and monetize them with google adsense. During that time there was a plugin that created auto content, to your blog, mostly YouTube videos and comments.

It was slick, You're were able to walk away from these sites and the plugin would continue providing the content. But google changed their algorithm and many of these blogs were sand boxed. And many websites were googled slapped.

I don't trust automation and I don't trust google either because they both can shut you down with no questions asked.

I believe in auto-pilot or creating a system where it takes you away from the grunt work. Hire Somebody!

It will free you to do the things you do best: communicating with your members. In other words, as long as it allows more of you rather than less of you, I think automation is good.

For instance, when I was younger, a new technology came out called the answering machine and no one wanted to talk to a machine.

But it allowed you to expand yourself to reach out or to be reached by your callers.

Great Post Kyle.

I was truly inspired to make a comment. I hope I didn't write your ears off.

Pete Weaver
Reply
Cinderella5 Premium
Great article and I definitely agree with you I spend time of Instagram everyday just commenting and engaging though I have not reached the 5 000 mark.

Which is new as I have discovered from you, this rule has changed from the actual 1,000 but I will definitely work towards that.

I build my followers from manually engaging and it’s exciting to see what my Son explained a few days ago you brought it to light 💡 I noticed my followers dropping so I asked my Son and he explained there are people who dupe others I was so upset but he told me not to worry but to keep on doing what I am doing.

He is 22 years old and he is on Instagram like 24/7.

Thank you and I will pat his back and listen when he gives me advise he must know something I don’t.

Great 👍 Post.
Reply
Bald Eagle Premium
Great post.
I don't automate but then I'm not on there that often either.
I found that having to continually insert hashtags was real time consuming.
I guess the answer to that would be to have a spreadsheet with specific hashtags for specific interests and then to simply copy and paste them.
I do like IG though which surprised me
Reply
jillxyz Premium
Hi Kyle, I m sure you would have connected with “influencers “. Do they really contribute to better connections? My budget is sparing so I haven’t walked this path. Guess what I’m asking is: Is it necessary to spend money in this arena, to get say 1000 followers more rapidly?
Cheers AJ
Reply
Kyle Premium
Well you can spend money and this MAY increase your following if done right. I wouldn't over invest though unless you have a solid game plan, and a relevant audience you can target and attract.

I am going to be covering this in future trainings. :)
Reply
jillxyz Premium
Thank you. My budget is sighing with relief! Look forward to the training. Thanks for your time. Cheers AJ
Reply
Nadia27 Premium
Hi Kyle
I only use automation to schedule and post on Instagram. Which helps me gain time to focus on other things.
I have a friend who did total automation and shoutouts, the result was so bad. It's like you will get followers but they are just a number, they are not interested in what you are doing, no engagement. Sometimes I think those accounts are fake or inactive.
To build a real business on Instagram, it's all about the human experience, there you will see how your business will bring revenue even with only a 1k followers.
Thanks
Reply
Kyle Premium
Yeah, that can work. I am not totally against that, if you are posting in a way that leads to engagement, and that after you post you are following through and engaging in the content.

But yes, completely fine. Of anything, feed posts and automating that is fine.
Reply
Nadia27 Premium
Yeah. Thanks and congrats! ( Sorry I didn't say that before)
Reply
Wdcope Premium
Seems from what you are saying Kyle, that one could use automation but do so with the understanding you lose not only an authentic following but noticed in the wrong way by IG.

No one wants to look bad on any Social Media platform. Stay on the right foot, and it is a winning process.
Short cuts work short term, as they say, no long term win!
Reply
Kyle Premium
Exactly, shortcuts usually lead to short success...you see this within any platform where people try to automate the most critical "human" elements of their business. It simply does not work in most cases.
Reply
SondraM Premium
Well done on the 5,000+ followers.

Your observations are very interesting. I would hope that honest, real life interaction will always end up being what wins true friends,customers, and followers.

I set up an account and have been gaining followers even though I have not been able to upload any pictures yet. (Issues with iPhone not being updated. Can't update until I go to a wifi location vs my cellphone hot spot. )

I'm not to sure what to think about followers who are following just a name without a face or any involvement on the platform. That is weird.
Reply
Kyle Premium
Well initially Instagram was likely rewarding bots and automation, they saw a decline in the quality of the interaction within their platform, and they started to "devalue" accounts and their corresponding exposure.
Reply
NateThomas7 Premium
I have been testing this out as well (although I have WAAAAAY less followers). My work is best done late at night so much of my Social Media posts were going unread. Instagram being the exception.

No matter when I post, people will find it and I get a few likes each time. Baby steps, but it will get there.

What about the other Socials? For Twitter, I do have it schedule for random times of day and it seems to have helped my following there.

Thanks for this post. Cheers!
Reply
Kyle Premium
Yeah, that is the thing. You will start to see trends with posting times, and days of the week as well. I have a lot of information and stats on the best types of pictures, the best tags, and what sort of story strategies lead to the best viewership.

I will be posting more as time goes on, my next "insta post" is likely going to be at the 10k mark. :)
Reply
NateThomas7 Premium
That is impressive...I only have 4,987 to catch you right now :)
Reply
laurenjean Premium
Yes!!! Thank You Kyle, for telling it like it is. I completely agree with you and have exactly the same reasons for not automating.

As a result, I am following way more accounts than are following me, and I'm fine with that. It's not the "in thing" but it's authentic.
Reply
Kyle Premium
that is fine, it is authentic. If you start to brand yourself, using good tags, and use it with consistency, you certainly will be able to build out your account.
Reply
LauraFuller Premium
Kyle, I agree with you.

I made the mistake of using automation. I now have 10k followers and 4922 following. I am in the process of cleaning this up but in the mean time I have stopped using it.

So NO automation for me ever again.

Once it is clean I will interact as a human.

Laura
Reply
Kyle Premium
It happens, don't worry Laura. Moving forward, you can focus on authentic communication. ;)
Reply
wmac Premium
Thanks Kyle for this important update. I agree Automations on IG is fake and your followers can spot it.
Reply
Kyle Premium
Yeah, it is pretty obvious. You can automate when it appears to be real, and it feels authentic. Not impossible, but you will know if you are doing something that feels awkward.
Reply
Anthonyhu Premium
Thanks for the nice information.
Reply
Kyle Premium
:)
Reply
dynamite69 Premium
Thanks, for the 411 (:) How much is a social media manger that know what he/she doing? "not everyone can afford a social media manager (most of whom haven't a clue what they are doing)".
Reply
Kyle Premium
I wouldn't recommend it. Honestly. Even if you are pulling many millions per year, you are likely to run into a social media manager that is learning from a book, versus someone that can help you grow your influence.
Reply
dynamite69 Premium
Thank You, will try and learn for myself 👍🏾
Reply
MiaL Premium
Thanks Kyle. I'm still yet to embrace Instagram. One of these days I will ...
Reply
Kyle Premium
Well do it when it makes sense to you and your time schedule. Don't want to force anything, and your website is your business and should be your priority. :)
Reply
brichnow21 Premium
Great post, Kyle!
I haven't embarked in social media as yet, but the personal connection, is what makes WA genuine.
I love seeing the passion of your mission, through your writing!
Thank, you, and your Influencers!
Barb
Reply
Kyle Premium
Yes, that is my goal with anything I do. To be personable, to show who we are and what we stand for, and to evoke a positive tone regardless of what I am doing.
Reply
brichnow21 Premium
We appreciate all you do, Kyle!
Barb
Reply
Lazyblogger Premium
Wow Kyle! I would love to get a peek at your weekly schedule. 145 post on one social media, that is awesome. And you have to pay me and many others tomorrow.. Lol.

Thanks for the update.
Reply
Kyle Premium
I just post once per day now to my feed, what I do is I save a bunch of posts at a time as drafts in IG, and then grab one each day, write a quite description and away I go.

Initially I was spending 3 hours per day on IG, now I am down to 45 minutes to an hour.
Reply
Lazyblogger Premium
Ok! thanks for that.
Reply
TopAchiever Premium
I have so much to learn on this platform especially the # tags and how to use them, as well as how and when to use the @ function...
Reply
Kyle Premium
The tags are just keywords that define what your image is about. It helps for organization and you ideally want to use the most relevant tags as possible, and keep them unique.

You won't get good reach under broad tags, in particular if you don't have authority. Just like Google, if you try to tackle a broad keyword with a new website you won't get much rankings.
Reply
TopAchiever Premium
Thanks for the clarification Kyle, makes a lot so sense now.
Reply
Igor13 Premium
Hi Kyle!

Thanks for the Instagram update!

Automation is certainly an interesting option for many users, I guess. But, according to your research and opinion, it is not a good way to go.
Unfortunately, I don't have any experience on Instagram yet. In fact, since Google+ is closed I need to start engaging more on social media in general.

As soon as I start Instagram and have some results, I will let you know. Since then, I will follow your updates.

Thanks for sharing your Instagram insights!

Best regards,
Igor
Reply
Kyle Premium
I am certainly not totally against it. If done right, it could be a useful application. I just worry and I have seen early on that Instagram will not reward this sort of activity.

API's for automation within a overwhelmingly user driven system remind me of the disavow tool that Google created many years back for backlinks. They used that to "quarantine" those that were gaming the platform, and the same can likely be said for most of the automation activity on Instagram. It tells them who the gamers are, or those that who are not truly engaged in the platform.
Reply
MKearns Premium
Yes, garbage in = garbage out. Best to identify your quality followers and get them to convert themselves!
Reply
Kyle Premium
Very true!
Reply