Amber McCulloch epitomizes conscious influencing. With over 47,000 loyal followers on Instagram, she’s found the right balance between monetizing her influence and sharing valuable content with her audience.
Scrolling through her feed, Amber’s bright smile is the first thing you will notice, accompanied by all the intriguing outfits and style choices she makes. The color-contrast pulls you in, but her confidence guarantees you’ll double-tap.
Who Is Amber McCulloch?
Amber is the face of Style Plus Curves, a hub of content for all things fashion and style-related.
As a Chicago-based plus-size model and blogger, her content comprises a healthy mix between fashion and lifestyle, as she shares her iconic looks — and personal anecdotes — with her audience.
She then monetizes her impeccable fashion sense on her blog, where her audience can shop her looks and learn more about the inspiration behind her outfits.
Finding A Place As A Micro Influencer
Depending on the influencers and users you follow, you may have different terminology for what an influencer is and how many followers a successful influencer should have.
However, since being an influencer is a career choice for many creators, the basic principle is that being an influencer should enable you to do what you love and get paid to do it.
By all accounts, Amber is a success. She has managed to not only build a loyal following, but she continues to grow her following daily through her captivating and aesthetic posts.
But, possibly what makes Amber’s success so engrossing is that she has found the ideal balance between monetizing her following and being authentic.
Although the dream for many aspiring influencers is to reach one hundred thousand or a million followers on social and get the ominous verified checkmark, what aspiring influencers often overlook is the key to one million is growth.
Amber has forged her course so that her journey is not centered on the numbers but rather focuses on quality and relationship building, which is why she is such an unstoppable force.
Her growth journey gives tangible insight into what it’s like to become an Instagram influencer without an audience from a prior social platform.
Amber’s Post Reveal The Secret To Hacking The Instagram Algorithm
The Instagram Algorithm isn’t as easy to reverse engineer as other social platforms, so it’s not often that someone gains thousands of followers just from having an Instagram account. Most influencers have a strong following from elsewhere on the web. However, Amber’s success is based solely on her ability to create captivating looks and captions, which has helped her hack Instagram’s algorithm and catapulted her into influencer status.
Her feed reveals how it’s possible to gain a strong following primarily using Instagram.
If you are on a desktop, you will notice that split seconds before an image loads there is a gray placeholder with plain text. This placeholder reveals what information Instagram’s bots have used as metadata for the picture. This metadata describes what’s in the image and it’s this same metadata that allows Instagram to determine who to recommend your image to.
The evidence surrounding whether captions help with Instagram’s algorithm is purely anecdotal. However, captions can help you get more comments on your images, this ensures your posts are highlighted by the algorithm. Amber has perfected creating captions that tell a story but also allow her followers to share their own experiences in the comments.
Amber often uses tags in her posts, whether to tag brands she’s wearing or brands she’s partnering with. These tags help her content get recommended to users who follow those accounts.
One of the most common tools that social platforms use to determine whether to recommend a user’s content to others is the conversion rate of a post. Amber’s images are vibrant. Even if they appear on your feed for the first time, the composition and personality in each image make them likable – both double-tap likable and genuinely likable.
In many of her recent images, Amber tags her location. This is another way for her to get recognized by users who either have an interest in that location or who are searching for content in that location.
What You Can Learn From Amber McCulloch
Besides hacking the Instagram algorithm through each of her posts, Amber has built her audience through taking specific action.
Curate Content For Your Audience
Amber’s content is made with her audience in mind, not just her existing audience but also those who have her post recommended to them.
As a plus-size model, each of her posts emphasizes having a healthy body image. But that’s not the only aspect of her account. Her feed is all about inspiration, her pictures give her audience ideas about how to dress up, dress down, or style fitness wear regardless of their body shape, which is what her followers expect from her.
Create A Community
Instead of creating a following, Amber’s created a community of supporters. Aspiring influencers often overlook this strategy because they want to become as big and as influential as possible as quickly as possible. However, Amber’s been sharing her posts on social media for several years and, in that time, has defined her purpose online. She brings her followers along to experience her daily accomplishments and her milestones peppering in style inspiration and helping her followers grow their confidence. By clearly defining her purpose her followers can resonate with her and not just look at her as another influencer trying to sell them something.
Develop A Story Brand
Branding is critical on social media, but you don’t need to have a personal brand to be successful. Storied brands work just as well in helping you become relatable to your audience. Amber is a perfect example of how Story Brands work. When she posts, she treats her audience to more of her personal story while inspiring them to create their own. The focus of her content isn’t on her alone, instead, her posts develop into a story arch that gives you insight into how her days work, and motivate you to use her story as an influence.
Be True To Yourself
Amber’s attitude is infectious. Although her content centers around fashion, it also has depth. The ultimate message is to be confident regardless of who you are and be unapologetically you.
The truth is Amber’s growth on social media is partly because she’s combining good social ethics with her innate sense of style. The consistency and frequency of her posts – and the aesthetics of her style – is one of the reasons she’s catapulting as an influencer.
Amber McCulloch sits down with Laura Swan Pollina to discuss her journey as an influencer and share invaluable insights that any aspiring or upcoming creator will find useful, on this week’s Monday for Creators. See You There!
Photo Courtesy of Amber McCulloch