How many followers do you truly need (as a business/influencer) on social media? The history of micro-influence, the sought-after 10k followers, brand deals and how many followers you realistically need as a business, trying to get clients from your content - We're going there in this episode and I think you're gonna feel inspired when you hear this social media manager's take on it.
Have you ever wondered how many followers do you need to make money on Instagram? Wait... You're not up late at night googling get rich quick schemes are you? (Spoiler: We've all done it).
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Music by Jordan Wood
Hosted by Jenna Warriner, Creator of Magic Marketing Machine
How many followers do you need to make money on Instagram?
How many followers do you need as a business on Instagram?
How many followers do you actually need on social media in order to have a thriving business? How many followers do you need to start getting brand deals? How many followers do you need to get your first paying client or your hundredth paying client on social media? Well, how much time do you got? And ee er, ee er, do you mind if I just drag my soapbox over here and hop up onto it?
Not a very good sound effect. Here's the thing. I get asked this question all the time, and I just, I just jump straight up onto my soapbox to answer it. You've probably asked this question. I, I don't want you to feel bad. I've asked this question. Everyone has asked this question.
And the answer is there is no answer, and also it's probably fewer than you think. There was a craze for a long time where, you know what, maybe it still exists, where people are obsessed with this 10, 000 follower metric. People believe, as soon as I hit 10, 000 followers, then I will finally have a business, then I will get brand deals, then I will be an influencer, then people will respect me.
And maybe that was true for a minute, and if you had a whole bunch of followers, it was easier to get sort of brand deals but then we had the rise of the micro influencer. And suddenly, brands are giving free product in exchange for shoutouts from smaller accounts, accounts that only have a few thousand followers.
So why? What happened? What changed? I'll tell you a couple things. Firstly, when we're talking about firstly like influencer stuff, not so much growing your business, but growing as an influencer, well, , there's a few different ways that a brand can benefit from partnering with an influencer and your audience and getting in front of your audience.
is only one part of it. Another part is you're creating content that they then amplify through ads or amplify on their own, which means they didn't need to pay marketers to make creative for them. They paid you to make the creative and now it looks like a real person and it's just as good as what an ad agency might have come up with and it looks more real and then they get to pay to put that in front of people.
So For instance, I did a deal with a brand here in Canada, a really big telecommunications company. You might have seen it, but I can't remember what I signed about what I'm allowed to talk about, so I won't say their name. And I created some videos for them and some of them, they just wanted to go to my audience because they wanted to access small business owners.
So they paid me to promote their thing and I was down because it sounded like something that I wanted to promote. And then one of my videos, they then. Made into an ad and served it to like over a million people. It looks like it was me because it was on my page, but really they were putting ad dollars behind my video to get it in front of a whole bunch of people.
So it's not necessarily your audience that they want. It's sometimes it's the creative that they want, meaning the video itself.
Here's a reason why micro influencers are sometimes better than big mega influencers.
Say I'm Lululemon, and you are a female fitness influencer with 100, 000 followers. It's reasonable to assume that that a lot of those are actually men who want to watch you not buy what you have to sell. Unfortunately, that's the state of the internet.
As soon as you start to get really, really big, your audience is becoming less and less targeted. But, if you only have a thousand followers, it's reasonable to assume that you know those people, those people genuinely trust you, you've nurtured relationships with those people, they're real people, they're not bots, and they're actual people who might buy a product if you tell them to buy a product.
So there's this mega influencer versus this micro influencer.
I'm going to jump around a little here to make my point, but if you have a... Email list and you have a relatively small email list So say it's like you've 2, 000 people or less on your email list your open rate So the rate at which people actually open the marketing emails that you send them is probably quite high I bet it's like, you know, 70 80 percent.
That's pretty normal for us smaller list to have a high open rate. But as soon as you have a massive list, you have 5, 10, people following you, that rate at which people open your emails gets smaller. You don't have as strong a relationship with that many people. You have a strong relationship with like, you know, half of those people or a quarter of those people.
It's almost like the bigger your following gets. , the more deluded it can become with bots and people who aren't actually interested in what you're talking about, or people who came because you went viral one time and they don't actually know who you are, alright? So you've got mega versus micro. And both have benefits, like there's huge benefits to having a massive following, and Honestly, there's benefits to having a small following as well.
You know, it used to really bother me if people didn't want to work with me because of the amount of followers I have. , just as recently as last year, I had someone say they didn't want to join. magic marketing machine, my Instagram marketing program because I didn't have enough followers and then they looked through my testimonials and they cross referenced it with other people who had taken the program and I don't really think that that's necessarily fair because sometimes the handle that you see from someone isn't the handle they actually used and also people might not apply everything that they learned in the program.
I don't know I just don't think it's really fair to judge me based on that kind of sleuthing or that kind of like detective work. But anyway, they said that some of the people my testimonials were from, they had more followers than those people. And so they weren't going to join the program. And you know, I guess it does still kind of bother me.
But all I wanted to say was, you know, you don't need 10, 000 followers to have a multiple six figure business, right? You know, there's... Super millionaires out there, multi millionaires who don't have Instagram, right? Like, yes, I want you to grow your following so that you have a bigger pool of potential customers to buy from you, but you don't need X number of followers to make sales.
Right now, as of this recording, I've got like, I don't know, 5, 000 followers, something like that, 40k on TikTok, something like that. But I've had my business since I had a thousand followers on Instagram and I've gotten business from Instagram Since I had a thousand followers who were people I knew from a past life My network people I knew from when I was an actor like what it was before I even started using Instagram to promote myself because actually when I started using Instagram, I was just using it as like a regular person Just like so many of us and then I started my business doing social media management and growing other people's accounts And I never paid any attention to mine It's like that thing like, you know You're if you're good at something and you're being paid to do it for other people You kind of just ignore yourself and like, you know a hairstylist who just does her hair up in a messy bun That doesn't mean she's a bad hairstylist.
It just means She doesn't her hair up in a messy bun, , and so for a long time I ignored my own page and then I started working with a business coach and she was like, you know, you should probably look better online. She didn't say that, but you know what I mean? I started. So then I started building my account, but I'd already been doing what I was doing and running social media management for like a couple of years before I really started investing in that.
And. Even just then I was getting clients from Instagram. Just from that little bit I was doing was generating referrals and indirect ROI. So indirect ROI means an indirect return on investment. A direct return on investment would be I make a post that says go buy Magic Marketing Machine, click the link in my bio.
You click the link, you buy the program. I have now got a direct return on the time investment that I put into that post. Really direct, really easy to prove. Look, Instagram made me money. But there's also indirect ROI. So here's an example of that. Um, I just got back from a speaking engagement in Texas and how I got that.
Oh, this is so neat actually. And I'm so thankful for it. But someone who isn't even my ideal client. Follows me on TikTok and she sits on the board for an expo and the expo needed a social media management teacher. This is like a massive expo, like there's three trade shows all across America. Thousands of people attend.
It's a pretty big deal. And she sits on the board and they said, we need a social media trainer, because that's what our people are asking for. And she said, I know this girl from TikTok, and I've used the tips that she shared on TikTok to help me grow my account.
And she has like a quarter million followers. So, someone from the expo reached out, booked me, flew me to Texas, and then I'm standing in a room presenting to people, and that could go in any direction. Those people could become clients, they could then refer me to someone who becomes my client, they could become followers, they could buy my program, like, there's so much potential for indirect ROI.
Even just the fact that I was paid to do this thing is indirect ROI. Right? So you tell me, you tell me, how many followers do you need? Because even if you have a hundred followers, you could be getting opportunities like this just by showing up and showing people what you're made of, what you can do, what you care about, what you're capable of, and what you sell.
One more thing before I let you go. I've been meaning to tell magic marketing machine this. So in our group call on Wednesday, I'll write a note to myself to remember to say this as well, but inside the program, we've got this 15 minute daily engagement strategy, and it's when you check in on everything that needs to be checked in, respond to your comments, do an outbound strategy where you interact with other accounts, and then you put your phone down and you don't check it in. And you don't check on it for the rest of the day. And it's a way to set boundaries around how much time you're spending on your phone. And this engagement strategy can be very powerful. A lot of our members do this engagement strategy and they start attracting people. Actually, you know, what's funny. I didn't film this lesson page filmed at who used to work with me. And when I was launching the course, she was my community manager and she did so much of this engagement strategy for my business all the time that she actually filmed the lesson. And while she filmed it, she was sharing her phone screen and showing the camera, her phone screen.
And she actually was getting followers from this engagement strategy while she taught the engagement strategy. So there's proof that it can work really, really well. And sometimes members say to me, Jenna, I started the engagement strategy, but people are following me who aren't my ideal client. And then they get stressed about that. And I just want to say, you don't always know who people are, what they're up to, what their other accounts are, or that they're potential clients just from their account. You could be talking to the CEO of a company on their personal account and it's just not their business account. And you really can't judge that book by its cover, especially when you're thinking about indirect ROI. Like this person who gave me this tremendous opportunity in Texas, she was not my ideal client.
If I only cared about the leads who followed me as opposed to caring about my community and all the people that I'm interacting with and all the people who are watching my videos, then I would never have been able to have that opportunity. And that's part of the indirect ROI. I know it can maybe sound like a lot to wrap your head around because yes, we want to aim to have lots and lots of our fabulous idol customers following us, but. If other people 📍 are following you, I encourage you to welcome them in as well. And also to remember that you can't judge a book by its cover. And you don't know who everyone is just by looking at their profile. Okay. That's it for me, I would love, love, love if you're new here for you to rate the show and tell me what you think. So I can give you more of what you want to hear about. And there's also a free training linked in the show notes. That gives away my entire strategy of how to get clients from Instagram without wasting hours glued to your phone. That's it from me. And I'll see you next time.