We're Erica + Jon, professional photographers, Mr + Mrs and Mom + Dad. We like to share insights into our industry, behind the scenes and stories about our life and chips + salsa obsession.
More followers = better social media marketing right!?
This is one of the easiest myths to believe! Something about that follower count constantly ticking upwards is almost intoxicating. It gives you a feeling of validation. That what you are doing is right and good and that people value you. Because of those seemingly positive feelings, it’s so easy to make your follower count the main focus of your social media marketing plan.
It begins to be tempting to consider purchasing followers or employing bots to work your social media game for you. While these can actually increase your follower count very effectively, they don’t increase your marketing in any way at all! Because they aren’t genuine followers – people who have taken the time to look at your content and make a conscious decision to follow along – they aren’t truly engaged. At the end of the day the money is spent, the follower count is up, but you’ve likely seen very little increase in leads coming from your social media – if any.
We were on a branding photoshoot recently talking with a client about their social media strategy and how they grew their audience. They acknowledged that out of their 10,000 plus followers, only 7,500 were genuine because they had purchased followers early on without knowing how ineffective it would be in the long run.
We looked at each other and smiled. Because we get it. We’ve been there. Although we’ve never purchased followers or employed bots, we know and understand why that would seem like such a great strategy! But what we’ve learned about so many things is that the shorter path doesn’t always yield the greatest results. We wanted a large social media following because who wouldn’t feel great about that – right?! We would! But we’ve found that the key to effective social media marketing is providing good, high quality content on a consistent basis. We’ll be honest, it’s definitely the slower approach. But we also know firsthand that it’s the most effective.
We don’t have the largest following in our industry – not by a long shot. So how can we talk like experts on this and be so confident? Because – that’s the point. We don’t have the largest following in our industry, but we do have a social media marketing strategy that continues to produce 75% of our leads every. single. month. Photography is our full-time job. We have no other sources of income. We have two kids and all of the normal American family costs of living. And still our Instagram account generates enough leads to keep our pipeline full and allow us to keep living our dream.
That, to us, is more important that the total number of followers we have on our pages. It’s the quality of our followers that matters most. People who are engaged. Who truly follow along and keep up with what we are doing. Those who cheer us on and desire our services. And no purchased follower or bot generated follower can have that kind of impact.
That’s a big reason about why we are so passionate about working with brands and businesses to create amazing content for their digital marketing strategies – because we know just how impactful the investment in quality content can be for a business’ engagement. So before you let the sum of your followers dictate your feelings on your social media marketing plan, remember to choose quality over quantity any day. Continue to produce that honest, truthful and engaging content on a regular basis, and watch your handwork deliver positive ROI’s as you build real community with your audience.