They say, "A picture is worth a thousand words." In the world of social media, there's nothing more apt than Instagram that embodies this quote. Instagram has shown us how powerful visuals can be. In a span of just seven years, a simple photo-sharing platform has grown to 800 million active monthly users.

However, it is not wrong to say that Instagram has now evolved way beyond being just a photo-sharing platform. The massive amount of users on this platform has opened up new opportunities for brands and individuals too.

A survey conducted by Influencer Central shows that Instagram influencers rank sixth when it comes to influencing purchases. Another study by Bloglovin' shows that 59 percent of micro-influencers find Instagram to be the most effective medium for engaging audiences.

Due to the growing popularity and fortunes of successful Instagram influencers, many people aspire to become one. Here are some great tips you need to know to be a successful Instagram influencer.

1. Choose your niche

To be successful as an influencer on Instagram, you need to stand for something. Your niche is what defines you. It should resonate with your personality and tell your followers an engaging story. The more authentic you can be in this story-telling, the more followers you are likely to gain.

Boo is a super-cute Pomeranian and the most followed pup on Instagram. Boo's owners selected pets as their niche. Due to their passionate story-telling that caught the attention of pet lovers on Instagram, Boo has become a pet celebrity. He's been featured in books, plush toy lines and several other brands.

2. Be consistent

Once you have decided on your niche, you need to be consistent in your messaging to your audiences.

This does not mean that you need to post the same kind of content every time -- audiences love it if you can mix it up a bit. However, make sure not to go astray. Work out a plan on engaging your audiences using great quality images that are appealing. But always keep your niche in mind while creating your content. Most importantly, provide value in your content.

Cassey Ho, creator of POP Pilates, is one of the top health and fitness Instagram influencers. Although she has ventured into other businesses such as active-wear, she's been consistent with her niche. Because she has been consistent in her story as a fitness lover, she continues to be a top influencer.

3. Network, connect, and promote

If you wish to be a truly successful influencer on Instagram, you need to build an offline presence too. Meet your community members and engage with your audiences at events.

Joining an online Instagram pod can help you build some engagement. However, if you nurture those relationships in real life too, you can create life-long partnerships. Not only will this help you in promoting yourself, but also can help you get great content ideas.

Lifestyle and fashion blogger Janni Delér uses networking and events to generate engaging content for her Instagram followers. In some posts, she combines endorsements and self-promotion so aesthetically that they do not come across as pushy or superficial.

Conclusion

By far, the most important thing you need to be successful as an Instagram influencer is authenticity. If you are not passionate about the niche you have chosen, sooner or later it will start to show. This can have a negative impact on your followers and your brand image.

Similarly, buying followers too will not get you very far. Such followers aren't truly engaged and do not care about your personal journey. The key to growing and retaining your followers is staying true to yourself and engaging them using a compelling story.

Can you think of any other tips for becoming a successful influencer on Instagram? Let me know in the comments below.

Published on: Nov 6, 2017