How to Grow on Instagram Organically in 2020

Although it is on the decline, organic growth on instagram is not dead, just yet. If you wish to grow organically on Instagram in 2020, it’s not too late, but it will take a different approach and mindset and I have some steps to help you with that.

The reason I say that growing organically on Instagram will take a mindset shift is because tips and tricks just isn’t enough when it comes to organic growth on Instagram, especially with the algorithmic change and Instagram removing likes. 

Also, people are just way smarter these days, can detect bs when they see it and run away. Here are some tips to help you grow organically on Instagram in 2020.

  1. Actually genuinely care about the people on the platform

This mindset tip will help with the next tip. When I say actually care about the people on the platform, I mean try to understand people from their perspective. 

Stop thinking about yourself and your wants for a moment, think about what people are going through by reading their comments and empathizing with them, celebrate them, understand them.

When you start doing this, you stop thinking about people as just numbers and as actual people. Again, this sounds obvious, but when I help people with social media growth I hear “how do I gain followers” or “ how do I get my followers to engage or share my posts” it feels as though they see followers as a number to get to where they want, it’s selfish and why they can’t grow on Instagram.

  1. Leave a meaningful comment, without promoting yourself. 

This tip is a banger, this got me from 0 to 500 followers in 5 months organically. Now that you are equipped with the right mindset, let’s talk action.

What you want to do is go to the explore page, type a relevant hashtag to your brand, then click on the “recent” tab and leave  meaningful comments. Read every caption, short or long, read it and respond to that caption WITHOUT promoting your own page.

Do not say:

  • Follow for a follow 
  • Like for a like
  • Check out my page for promo
  • Follow for a discount 

Do not write any spammy or sleazy comments because this will automatically make the person dislike you. 

By leaving a meaningful comment that’s all about the person, this will peak that person’s interest and will think “oh who is this”, they will click on your page and look at your posts’. You will gain so much profile visits and if the person likes you, they will follow you. 

  1. Be Grateful AF that that a stranger is following you on Instagram vs the billions of other strangers on the platform 

This tip is practicing being grateful and realizing that your followers chose to follow you out of the billions of accounts on Instagram. According to Statista, there are 1 billion users on Instagram, which is insane.

This mindset is useful for the next tip I’m going to share, but before we get into the next tip, let’s relish in being grateful for the followers you have now, instead of wishing for more followers. 

Your followers are people, they aren’t just numbers, they aren’t dollar signs and I know this is obvious, but sometimes, the obvious facts go over our heads. 

  1. It goes down in the DM’s

Remember when comments were all the hype, the more comments your posts’ get, the higher the chances of your post hitting the explore page and it’s still a valid tip. However, as Instagram is moving away from likes, artificial relationships and towards more meaningful engagement, DM’s is your best friend. 

DM’s are important because it’s a deeper way to connect with your followers, fans, community tribe etc. This is where you can create meaningful engagement and Instagram will take note of this. 

The more meaningful engagement you build, the more the algorithm will favor you, then your followers will be able to engage with your posts’ even more and have a higher chance of hitting the explore page. 

After someone follows you from my last tip, you can hit them up with a little introduction about your brand, yourself, or platform. Again, do not PROMOTE yourself at all, do not promote your products or services, just have a genuine conversation to get to know that person.

Another powerful reason you should use DM’s to your advantage is because when you build meaningful relationships, your followers will want to share your content more because they know, like, and trust you.

DM’s are powerful, don’t forget that.

  1. Story Collabs 

Story collabs are a great way to grow on Instagram. If you have an instagram bestie, DM them to see if they’d like to collab. What you will want to do is pre-record a video about giving tips in your niche/category, then swap with your insta bestie and share it on your story.

This will allow you to reach an entire new audience, have them get to know you, check you out and follow you, if they like what they see. People are more likely to warm up to you this way because they know, like and trust your insta bestie and thus, your barrier of entry is a lot easier. 

Take away:

Give a sh*t about the people on the platform and build meaningful relationships in order to get that juicy organic growth and algorithmic favor.

How I Manage a Full-Time Job and a Side Hustle

Side hustle over the past couple of years has become culturally popular and common, especially among millennials. In a Bankrate report, more than 50% of millennials have a side hustle. Before millennials there were baby boomers, many of the baby boomers who graduated post-secondary school landed a full-time job with benefits relatively easily, they just needed that nice piece of paper and some experience. Of course, this was all before 2008, when the housing market was not inflating at a crazy rate as it is now and technology didn’t take over the world, life before 2008 was pretty nice.

After the economic crash in 2008, jobs were slashed at an enormous rate, housing inflation continued to rise and millennials were basically f*cked economically and mentally too, I’d say. According to the Brookings Institution Demographer, in 2015 36% of millennials aged between 25 and 34 graduated from post-secondary school.

Now, if you have student debt, trying to own a home and don’t have a job with the pay you want, you bet the other option is side hustling. Then there are those with the entrepreneurial spirit, realised they don’t like their job, their boss or co-workers and want their own business in the field they love. And I’m BOTH! (just over here crying in student debt and living with my parents, don’t mind my sad sack haha).

My Work Week

For those who don’t know me, I work full time as a support worker, my schedule isn’t the usual 9-5 Monday to Friday and I surprisingly like that! My shifts are 12- 8 on weekdays and 11-7 on weekends. I have a rotation shift, I will work 3 days in a row, have two days off, work two days in a row, have 3 days off, and so on, this all adds up to a minimum of 32 hours/week and I have 3 days off. I use two of my says off to work on A.N.Y.thing, one day for researching/studying, and one for errands and relaxing.

My Schedule on a Day Off From my Day Job

Regarding content creation, on my first day off, I work on quotes and stories for Instagram. However, I don’t restrict just two days off for content creation, I will work on content creation day by day because content comes in unexpected ways. On my second day, I spend it researching studying my niche, check out “Day 2 of a Day Off from My Day Job” section for more information. And on my third day off I spend it relaxing. Let’s deep dive into my week!

Day 1 of a Day Off from My Day Job

I wake up at 8 am every day, spend an hour and a half on my morning routine, this includes washing up, breakfast, coffee, Ellen, reading, journaling and I write all the to dos for the day. My first task is blocking about 1-2 hours of quote creation. First, I’d think about quotes, I take inspiration from re-reading my quotes, reading books, past experiences etc., and add them to my list of quotes. I then take quotes from that list, slide them into Canva (not sponsored but I WISH haha) and create my quotes for either the next 4 days or week.

I’m about to give you a story HACK. A lot of times, I pre-record my stories. I have a list of story ideas whether that’s tips and tricks or me talking about side hustle, journey and life! The HACK is changing SHIRTS and LOCATIONS. I will change my shirts and film in different areas of my house or in my car. I will film about 2-3 pre-recorded stories, write out 2-3 tips and tricks for stories, get them all ready for the week, this usually takes about 2 hours.

After I’m done creating quotes and stories for the next 3-5 days, I work on my blog. I will go through my list of blog ideas, sit my a** down, put on headphones and start writing. This will usually take about an hour to 2 hours, I will finish a very rough draft and take a break to edit later. I take a break to eat, or run a few errands around the house and come back to edit for about an hour.  

Day 2 of my Day Off from My Day Job

Once I wake up at 8am, I spend an hour and a half on my morning routine, plan my day again (haha), set up my 3 quotes, their captions and stories. Next, I spend about 6 hours on researching blogs, articles in my niche.

I don’t mention my vision much, but I would love to build a brand and eventually monetize my brand by consulting other business of building brands and community. Sorry, this day is not as exciting, but just a research/study day. I will then spend 2 hours editing my blog!

Day 3 of my Day Off from My Day Job

I will spend this day running errands around the house, like the usual laundry and cleaning. I also go grocery shopping and meal prep because I HATE thinking about what to eat and cooking a meal in the moment. I am a LAZY cooker, I’d rather pop already cooked food in the oven, stove or microwave. AS a result, I meal prep a week’s worth of food, this usually takes about 3 hours. And I usually spend time with my significant other and friends!

My Schedule on a Work Day

On days where I work 12-8/11-7 this is how I schedule my day, so that I can still post 3x that day and have something for my stories. I wake up at 8am, I take an hour and a half to engage in my morning routine.

After my morning routine, I spend 30 minutes setting up my quotes and captions. I write out each caption for each post and save them on my Instagram. I post 3x a day at these times 11am, 4-5 pm and 7-8 pm est. time. After planning and saving my posts’ I will spend 30 to 40 minutes getting ready and packing my lunch and dinner, and post my first post at 11am. On the days where I work 11-7, I will just rush getting ready and make it in time to be out of the door 40 minutes before my start time.

I’m lucky to have a job that has flexible rules regarding phone usage, my managers are amazing and the rule of thumb is we’re aloud being on our phone, but only if we finish our work for the day. Because my quotes, captions and hashtags are already saved on my phone, it’s quick to post them. I try to respond to comments when I have the time or after work.

I also go to the gym 3x a week. If you’ve watched my stories you know I’m a late gymmer! After work, I’ll drive straight to the gym and I’m at the gym around 9pm or earlier, I gym for about an hour to an hour and half, I get home by 11pm and get ready for bed. I am usually asleep by 12 am or 1 am!

Take Away

This blog wraps up my week, but my week doesn’t always go as planned due to certain situations or events that show up! If you’re in a similar situation as I am, I highly recommend taking a couple hours every day to research, test and study your passion(s). I know it’s extremely tempting to take off your bra, change into PJs and watch Netflix, but your dream life won’t be a reality if you don’t show up! I know you are all badass boss’ and can kill it! Keep hustling loves ❤