Small Business

How I added 80K Instagram followers in three months organically

by Michaela fong

Small Business

How I added 80K Instagram followers in three months organically

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I am a small European town gal with big dreams who immigrated to Canada and built a multi-six-figure business from my living room floor and kitchen counter! I accidentally grew it into a small business community and became a small business educator along the way.

Now am here to empower, teach & inspire you to grow your business and create the life of your dreams with strategy, confidence & without burnout.


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No, it’s not a scam, my friend. And that’s spooking me out even more! I’ve heard people saying they had results like this, but for some reason, I did not believe it was possible for me. I thought that they somehow tricked the system. Or that they had virtual assistants to help them or their husband was a secret video producer professionally editing all their reels.

Well, here I am, living proof that massive Instagram growth is possible for solopreneurs and small business owners starting from scratch like me and you. It’s safe to say that social media has helped to change my business and life for the best. And you are in luck, because today, I will share with you what I did to grow my account.

small business Instagram marketing

First thing first. Let’s get the facts straight.

I did not pay for the ads. I do not have an assistant – I write, record and edit my social media posts myself. I don’t spend most of my days on social media – I am a small business owner and mentor and have limited time I can dedicate to social media, like most people. Those are all good news. It means that social media organic growth is still possible for busy solopreneurs.

Now, let’s get to the meat! Shall we? Here is what I did to grow my Instagram account (& what you can start doing today if you’d like to grow yours):

1. Find the mentors who walked the path

I am going to be a real honest here. When I started my first social media account to market my small business, I had no clue what I was doing. I wasted wayyyy too much time creating content that no one cared about, gathered random followers (not my ideal customers) and was not getting any sales no matter how much effort I would put into my posts. 

Luckily, I was smart enough to start looking up information and people who were ahead of me. I started listening to marketing podcasts, signed up for courses & coaching and started to understand that growing your small business on social media does not happen by randomly posting about your product/service and hoping to go viral. Trust me on this one, I went viral many times and learnt a lot – the hard way. One thing I can tell you with certainty: going viral doesn’t always mean business growth, especially if you are not targeting your ideal customers with the posts you are putting out there, which brings us to the point #2.

2. ALWAYS create content with your ideal customer in mind

Looking back, I wish I’ve done this earlier. Spending time to study your ideal customer on social media and understand what types of content they are attracted to, is necessary if you want to catch their attention. Creating content with your ideal customer in mind, helps you to be strategic and craft posts that people actually care about watching & want to share with others.

If you are still just creating a content about yourself, your products or your service and asking people to go buy from you – you are probably just wasting your time. No judgement here – I’ve made this mistake, too, and I am sharing it with you, because the sooner you will change your approach to your social media marketing and start creating content around your product/service, the sooner you will begin to attract followers who care about what you are putting out there.

The truth is that people on social media are bombarded with ads and “things-to-buy” so much that as soon as they feel that they are being “sold-to” , they just scroll by. Todays social media user needs to be entertained, educated or inspired in order to watch/read your content. 

So, if all of your posts are about you or your product, now is the time to start creating content around your product/service that your ideal customer would care about watching even if they don’t need or want to buy your product/service right now.

For example, instead of just showcasing your products or sharing the services you offer, share quick checklists & tips that relate to your product & are helpful for your ideal customer

Product-based business example: If you are selling bath salts, record an relaxing evening routine & explain the health benefits of essential oils in your bath salts.

Service-based business example: If you are wedding planner, share wedding planning tips or mistakes to avoid for freshly engaged couples.

PS: If you still don’t know who is your ideal customer, check out my ideal customer ultimate guide I put together for you here

3. Create a system that will help you to stay consistent

You’ve probably heard it too many times by now. But it is so important, that I have to repeat it – consistency is the key to social media growth. Between my Instagram and TikTok accounts, I have over 300,000 followers combined. The exponential growth always happened during the months when I was consistently posting and engaging with the community on individual accounts. 

Being consistent doesn’t mean you have to post 7x a week. It means you stick to the posting schedule that works for you now and adjust later. It means that you show up on your primary social media platform weekly for your audience and provide content they find either entertaining, engaging or inspirational, as well as engage with followers you already have. 

Of course the more often you post, more you learn and the higher the chances for faster growth. But rather than posting every day a week, burning out and then not posting for a weeks – try to create a posting schedule you can stick to, even if that means posting and engaging 2x a week for now.

Wondering how can you stay consistent when you have so many other things to do already?

If you know me, I am a true believer in systems. My accounts didn’t grow by random viral videos. I put a lot of planning, focus and deliberate action into it. My social media planning and posting system allow me to stay consistent, while still living my life and running my business.

Here is a glimpse to my current social media planning system: 

I write a list of content I want to share based on my business goals and promotions. Then I schedule time in my calendar every week to write down specific post ideas, batch record and plan out this content for the week ahead. Last three months (during this massive growth), I posted one feed post a day – switching between reels & carousels while also engaging with my current audience and other related accounts in my niche. 

4. Pay attention to what works and practice getting better at that

Every week I analyze the posts I shared and pay attention to what types of posts have the highest reach and engagement. Then I practice getting better in creating more of that type of content. The improvement shows now, but the only way how I could get here was by going through that journey full of crickets, gaining experience and improving one step at a time.

So, if you are posting and not seeing any results yet, your engagement is low, this is your sign to keep going, it is the only way to get better and understand what is working and what is not for you! Plus you never know when you will hit that sweet spot when you realize you arrived at your destination and finally see results. It’s worth trying, don’t you agree?

5. Set yourself apart

There are already other businesses doing what you do, but no one is doing it the way you do it. Spending time studying your competition and defining what your strengths are and what makes you different will make you stand out in a sea of similar accounts to yours. 

Aaaand that is all my friend. Now is the time to roll up your sleeves, pull out your note pad and start writing down the content you can create around your product/service that your ideal customer would find entertaining, inspirational or educational. And if you need more ideas, follow me on my Instagram at @smallbizbabescommunity where I share daily tips and inspiration for motivated small business owners like you!

Talk soon,


PS: Do you want more people to see your reels & TikToks? Perhaps you are still hoping to go viral, so you can finally start growing your business on social media. I’ve got you! 

I organically grew an engaged community with over 100K followers on TikTok and Instagram, repeating this simple process over and over. And I created my secret viral checklist for youClick the button below to grab yours, so you can start making your reels the right way & grow your business on social media faster.

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DISCLAIMER: Some of the links you'll find in my blogs are affiliate links. If you happen to love something as much as I do and decide to give it a shot through one of these links, I might earn a small commission at no additional cost to you. This helps me keep creating my podcasts and blogs that I hope you enjoy and find valuable. I promise to only recommend products and services that I've personally tried and absolutely LOVE.

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