Follow Friday, or Mom Crush Monday, is not as exclusive as it seems.
Follow Friday…you’ve seen them everywhere; the gorgeous foursquare grid of mamas and their smiling cherubs. It seems like all these other mommies literally know everyone on Instagram, have they always been besties? No, no they haven’t.
If you sit back in awe and wonder every time a “Follow Friday” rolls around and that one mom has another set of gorgeous women to parade in front of you while you on the other hand have never had a single woman to put on parade, don’t feel bad mama, we’ve all been there. (No seriously we have.)
Everyone seems to think that these groups magically come together as a bunch of moms who have known each other forever, could give personal testimony to each other’s amazing moming skills, aaaaaaaand would probably even take a bullet for the lady pictured next to her. But because I’m here to shed some light on all things “Social Media Motherhood” let’s just burst that bubble right now.
Most these women don’t know each other. We’re not on first name basis, we’re not besties in real life, we’ve never met before, and we’re probably not even following each other.
There, I said it. Are you happy now? Shocked? Don’t be.
Follow Fridays or Mom Crush Monday’s are a great way to reach out, meet new mommies, but also (potentially) gain some new followers. Let’s not even pretend that we’re all doing this because we just love each other so much. Follow Friday and Mom Crush Monday’s really are a great way to grow your network of mommy ‘friends’ but at the end of the day let’s just be honest and admit that they’re really about the hope of gaining a few new followers.
Speaking of followers…How many will you gain?
Well, that right there is the hard part friends. You may gain a couple hundred, or you may not get a single one. I’ve had both.
It is especially hard to gage how much traffic you receive from Follow Friday’s once your page gets a little bigger and you start receiving regular followers daily; how many actually come from a Follow Friday no one really knows. But again, it can be a great way to make some new friends and reach a different audience.
So, let’s get down to the actual business of it.
How to Arrange a Follow Friday:
Step 1) Ask 4 moms.
Step 2) You’re done!
Ha ha okay it’s a little more work than that, but in essence that’s it. Usually I message 4 moms to start (if I’m arranging the group), and then as you hear back with a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ you can begin to ask more to fill the necessary spot. Also, there is no rules as to how many moms you can feature. 4 or 6 is typical (meaning there are 5 or 7 moms in the group; you plus your desired number), but I’ve also started to see odd number or larger grids featuring 8 or even 12 moms at a time! Make it whatever you want it to be!
After you hear back from a mommy or two, start a group message with the moms you’re planning to feature. Usually we “introduce” ourselves a bit, chat, get to know one another, and have a bit of fun. I don’t like my Follow Friday groups to feel fake when I post them to my followers like “hey, follow these people I don’t even know”, so I always enjoy getting to know moms a bit. I’ve actually made some pretty good Insta-mommy friends this way too
Once you have your numbers settled, make a grid. This is the fun part. At this point you get to stalk each lady’s page to find the photo you like the best and want to feature, this always gives me lots of inspiration for new photos! Most mom’s don’t mind if you just choose whatever photo you would like from their feed, but if you or someone has a preference you can just send it the group to use. I use the Pic Stich App to put all the photos together because it’s free to make my grid, I just watch the little ad that pops up so I can edit it anyway I want (don’t judge me I’m cheap okay?!).
And then of course on Friday or Monday morning post your grid, tag all the other ladies to their photo, and enjoy some fresh faces on your feed.
Easy as pie, right? (I don’t know why that’s a saying actually, pie is really hard to make…Oh well.)
Lastly here are a few other optional tips to help you along.
1) When searching for mamas to join your group try a few moms you regularly interact with or who have a similar amount of followers. There is no saying that if you only have 100 follower someone who has 10k won’t do one with you, it’s just a little more common to see people with similar numbers together. Now, that being said, if you are a bigger account, consider reaching out to at least one “smaller” account every time you do a Follow Friday. I love including some of the accounts that I consider to be hidden gems; because they truly should be seen!
2) Choose a “theme” for your grid. Grids look better when all picture kind of flow together. I like to choose ones of all children, or colorful walls, or “summery” photos so that my grids have a cohesive feel.
3) Recently ladies have started doing Follow Friday’s in their insta stories only. I’m not sure how I feel about this yet, although I’ve been told there is a better follow through rate, I’m not convinced of that. But, it is another fun way to feature mommies! I like to take a screen shot of their feed so my viewers get a better feel of what their photos look like and know if they want to follow or not.
4) Use the appropriate hashtags! #FollowFriday, #FollowFridayMamas, #MomCrushMonday, are all common and safe! Recently the hashtag #MCM (which stands for MANcrushmonday) was “broken”, so don’t use that one! And besides, who wants to be linked to a bunch of smelly guys anyways?
5) Just ask! If you’ve never been asked but are dying to do one just ask! I’ve had some really sweet mamas approach me saying they wanted to do one, didn’t know how, and were embarrassed because of their numbers; don’t be! I know I can come off pretty strong about numbers (because that’s just one of the realities of Instagram), but I love meeting new mommies and I’m always willing to jump into a Follow Friday if I’m available to help a mom out; others are too so just ask!
So there you have it folks, now go on out and start your own Follow Friday group!
Now get out there and rock it mama!
Stephanie Peltier – Honestly Mommy
PS) Truth be told I really have met some amazing women through Follow Friday and Mom Crush Monday so please don’t think I’m bashing it or them at all. I have had some really good groups and some not so good ones, but they’re fun one way or another.
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