influencer marketing

How to be Unpopular in the Instagram World


Instagram has become an app favourite for people around the world. It’s a great platform to use for growing your brand and/or business with a massive, captive audience, as long as you use it right! As important as it is to know what to do on Instagram and how to use it. It’s just as important to know what NOT to do, and what you can do to stay popular in the Instagram world!

Using Bad Quality Photos/Videos

No one is asking for National Geographic photography, and you also don’t always need a professional camera! Taking photos from your smartphone is a great and cost effective way to post photos and videos onto your Instagram account.

But when you are using your smartphone, making sure your photos are crisp and are high-quality images is what is most important. Instagram is all about aesthetic, if they are not pleasing to the eye, people won’t like like them or want to follow you or your business.

Spamming Inboxes

This shouldn’t be an issue anymore, but for some reason it still is! Selling your products and/or services on Instagram is totally fine. When done right, Instagram is a great way to find customers, engage with them and build your own community of followers!

Messaging prospects on Instagram has to be done carefully, and without “spamming” or bugging them.

An example we always like to use: You wouldn’t go into a bar, walk up to a girl, and say, “Hey, want to get married?” That’s just not something you do. You take them out to dinner and get to know them first (etc.).

You don’t sell to prospects like that in person, so why do it on social media? Overall point here, don’t do it. Promise?

Going Too Off Brand

Like I said earlier, Instagram’s main element is aesthetic. When you create an Instagram account for your Personal Brand or Business, you have to make sure you are sticking to your brand or business’ brand.

“How do I keep up my brand consistent on Instagram Hayley?”

Well, keeping up with brand consistency isn’t as hard as you may think. No matter what, you should be using high-quality images on your Instagram. Adding your brand colours, the same Instagram filters, themes, quality of photos, designs (etc.) is exactly how you keep consistent in your Instagram page.

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Here are some examples of local companies in Barrie, Ontario that are doing great on Instagram!

Homestead Artisan Bakery

With 2,728 followers, Homestead Bakery does an awesome job at creating an aesthetic and beautiful Instagram profile. (To the right).

They make sure their Instagram content is consistent with their delicious, bright, high-quality photos of their products. Homestead Bakery is posting content as frequently as possible, and doesn’t post anything that isn’t relative or relevant to their brand and business.

Check them out at @homesteadbread on Instagram or online at

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The Faris Team

Local real estate team, the Faris Team, has a great Instagram with beautiful, high-quality photos of the interior of homes.

Their Instagram has 2,859 followers who are highly engaged with their content!

Another way that the Faris Team uses Instagram to engage with their followers is using Instagram Story Highlights. Instagram Highlights are great for showing people past Instagram Stories that highlight your business or brand.

Check out the Faris Team at

Forgetting to Caption Your Photos

NEVER forget to caption your photos! Adding captions to your Instagram posts attracts more engagement onto your posts and your page. Even adding small captions does more than writing nothing. Ask a question, tell a joke, share a story, create a call to action!

Whatever you do, don’t leave your post blank. It gives no incentive for people to engage with your posts, and engagement is what you want!

Ignoring Your Followers

If you’re receiving comments or messages on your Instagram posts, don’t ignore them! Become comfortable with engaging with your followers. Get to know them more, start conversation, engage!

Forgetting Hashtags

When creating your Instagram captions, don’t forget to hashtag! No, this doesn’t mean hammer out 50 hashtags into your post. Pick 1-10 relevant hashtags and add them to your caption. Using hashtags on Instagram is important, this is because it will get your posts noticed by anyone who follows the hashtag or views them. The more views, the more likes and follows on your Instagram page!

Not Using Instagram Analytics

Don’t ignore your Instagram analytics! If your Instagram account is a business account (you’ll need to link your account to a Facebook Page for this), you have access to some basic, but useful analytics.

In the Instagram Analytics, you are shown the age, demographic, sex, time they are most active and more of your followers.  You can also see the impressions and reach of each of your posts, to see which ones were most engaging with your Instagram followers. Keeping an eye on all of this will help you to more consistently choose the right kind of posts for your followers.

Looking For More Engagement on Your Social Media? Here Are 2 of the Best Social Media Contests That Work!

Contests are proven motivators. Running contests on your social media can help you grow your followers, likes, interaction, engagement, and build email lists in a short period of time with little effort.

According to research, social media accounts that hold Instagram contests grow their followers 70% faster over three months on average, than accounts that don’t. That’s a big deal. If you’re not running at least one or more of these contests on your business’ social media, you are a part of that 30% not growing and engaging with your potential followers.


So, we decided to give you three of the best contests that you can run to boost your social media for your business.

Follower Giveaways

People LOVE free stuff. One of the best ways to run a social media contest is to give away a prize or product to one of your followers on one of your social media platforms. The best platforms to use or this contest is either Facebook or Instagram and run the contest at random because it’s where people are most interactive. When posting this contest on your social media, the most successful way to get people engaged with your social media is to make specific rules for your contest.

Let’s say Shirts and Skirts, a young, female based retail store, decided to run this campaign. A great way for them to run it on their social media would be to post a high-quality photo of the item or prize, let’s say that it is a floral shirt, that Shirts and Skirts is giving away to one lucky follower. They may want to write something on the post like the example below:

“We LOVE #flowers! We’re giving away a floral shirt to ONE lucky winner. Be sure that you’re following us, like this post and comment your favourite flower emoji to be entered to win! Winners will be messaged this Friday at 11pm!”

You can also run variations of these posts. Other examples of is doing this includes “12 day giveaways”, “Repost this photo and tag us” types of giveaways. Giveaway contests are great for generating more followers, likes on your posts, and creating more engagement on your social media resulting in more leads.


This contest can be both a long term or short term challenge, but is slightly more work than just doing a giveaway. A great thing about challenges is that your followers can participate in them and feel connected or a part of your brand/business.

The most important part of this contest is to think about how you can offer people ways, even small, to achieve success. What problem can you solve in their lives that this challenge can help solve and will result in moving them closer to buying your product? This challenge should be to inspire your followers to take part of this challenge for self-fulfillment. To let people find what your doing on social media, hashtag your challenge on every post.

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As an example, let’s say “Jenny’s Gym” wanted to run a challenge contest all over her social media platforms (Facebook and Instagram). Jenny decided she wanted to help people get more into shape this summer, but also while promoting her gym. To do this, Jenny posts a high-quality photo with the caption:

“This year is the year! We have officially kicked off our #FitForHawaii weight-loss challenge! We’re giving away a trip for two to Hawaii! Between June 1st and July 1st we want to see you get that summer body. Visit our website for details!”

On her website, people can sign up for the #FitforHawaii challenge to receive weekly emails of ways to win at that challenge and weekly motivation. During the month of June, Jenny posts updates or motivation to continue and not give up and do a draw from the participants to win the trip.

By creating this, Jenny’s gains more followers, likes, builds an email list, testimonials, Jenny is promoting and providing a place for the participants to come and complete their challenge.

When Running a Contest, Remember…

Before you run a contest on your social media, always do the following:

  1. Set objectives/goals

  2. Check out other contests (even your competitors’)

  3. Choose the type of contest you want to run

  4. Pick a unique hashtag that relates to your contest

  5. Decide on the contest prize

  6. Choose which platforms you want to run your contest on

Most importantly, have fun with it!

BLOW UP Your Business With Local Micro-Influencers

What are Local Micro-Influencers, how do you find them, and how can you use them to grow your business? 

By this point we all realize that social media is important for growing a business, there's no doubting that.

You've also likely heard about "Influencer marketing". If you have't it's basically when someone with a large social media following, partners with a brand/business to create a single or multiple pieces of sponsored content.

Essentially by paying someone with a large following to promote your products, you can get in front of a large audience in a very organic way.

Think "word of mouth" at scale... 

Because influencers have built great relationships with their following, the people that will see your product/service will trust the recommendation far more than a traditional ad.

The problem local businesses have when working with a large influencer is the cost, with top influencers commanding 6 figures or more per promotion. Talk about blowing the budget...

But don't worry...if you're a local business and not an international brand, there is an even better way for you to get the same effect as influencer marketing, for little to no cost.

The Alternative To Regular Influencer Marketing

It's called Micro-Influencer marketing!

A Micro-Influencer is an influencer on a much smaller scale, they usually have between 1,000 and 10,000 followers, although opinions vary give or take a few thousand.

The idea behind Micro-Influencer's is very much the same as with larger influencers, but with a few added benefits.

1. Micro-Influencer will promote your business for free or for very cheap in exchange for free product, service, or commission on sales.

2. Their following is much more intimate, mostly composed of friends, family, and locals.

3. Because they don't often get brand deals (yet) their following is not bombarded with ads, so they're far more receptive to sponsored content.

These are just some of the benefits of working with micro-influencers.

But what about that whole "Local" thing? 

Local Micro-Influencers are simply Micro-Influencers that live/work in the same region as your business.

So if you're a car dealership in Toronto, you would look for car photographers or vloggers with a following of 1,000-10,000 that live within Toronto.

The benefit of local influencers is that they're "following" or "audience" will be primarily based around your place of business. Hence the term "Local Influencer".

Local influencer marketing is essentialy a word of mouth referral, but the person giving the referral isn't just telling one or two of their friends, they're telling thousands! 

How to Find Local Influencers

So you now you get what a local micro-influencer is, and it's important, but how do you utilize them? What exactly do they do, and how do you find them?

Well first let's start with how you find local influencers.

You can find local influencers in a few ways:



That's how you find local influencers, but what do you do once you find them?

Once you find them you need to reach out, and provide them with an offer. Maybe it's free product, free service, discounted venue, or perhaps an invitation to an event. It all depends.

Sometimes you can leave it up to them, tell them your goals and let them be creative with how they promote you, but you'll have to make it worth there while, and usually that means compensation.

But if you're a little more creative, you can get influencers to work for free. How?

By providing them with a fun and engaging framework to be creative.

Host a local event, go on a coffee run with them, bring them in for a tasting, it depends on your industry but the concept is simple.

Create a fun event that they can't resist attending. Make them feel exclusive and special, and once they get there, it's in their nature to document and share. 

They'll wan't everyone to know about this super cool event their at!

Launching A Local Influencer Campaign?

Launching a micro-influencer campaign can be as simple or as complicated as you want to make it, and the process to do so will vary depending on your business.

For example, if you sell fitness clothing, you might just want to send a few influencers your clothing, have them take photos in it, and share with their following.

But if your a restaurant the approach is different, maybe you invite a few influencers for a "VIP Tasting" in exchange for them documenting the event and sharing it online.

For more information about my take on local influencer marketing, check out this video!

Feel free to leave a comment under this blog or in the video, and I'll be happy to answer any questions that I can!