In life, it’s very easy to think that certain things will work a certain way. We just have everything figured out. It seems that there are just basic rules that we just need to be clear on and as long as we follow them, everything will fall into place and we will get the outcome that we are looking for.

Well, it would be great if life actually played out that way. But as you probably already know, life is what happens when you’re making other plans. In fact, even if you have the best-laid plans and even if you have everything accounted for, things usually don’t play out the way you anticipate them.

This is due to the fact that there is often a big divide between theory and reality. This applies across the board. Whether we’re talking about academics, relationships, politics, or economics, there’s always a disconnect between how things should work and how things really play out.

This is especially true when it comes to online marketing. In Instagram marketing, it is very easy to understand how following and unfollowing accounts can translate to traffic to a website and how that traffic can then somehow lead to sales. It’s easy to obsess about the dollars and cents this process supposedly produces.

But as mentioned above, there is often a disconnect between how things should work and how things really play out in the real world. You see, just because you target the right people and you produce the right photos, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you have all the ingredients lined up for Instagram marketing success.

Make no mistake. There’s no shortage of Instagram success blueprints and marketing guides that tell you that these are all the ingredients you need. And before you know it, sooner or later, you will make a lot of money.

Again, that would be awesome if that were true. The sad reality is there’s a missing piece here. In fact, it’s not all that mysterious. It’s a basic rule of human psychology that we are often suspicious of new things.

Now, some are more open to new experiences than others. But there will always be this healthy level of skepticism, if not outright suspicion when it comes to new experiences, new content, or new ideas. This is just part of the human condition.

If we did not have this built-in psychological response, our ancestors probably would have died out. We inherited this. This default reaction is baked into our DNA for better or worse. This is precisely the problem you’re going to run into when you try to follow the standard Instagram marketing success blueprint.

You may have the very best photos available and you may be targeting the right people who have expressed the right interest in the right niches with sufficient enthusiasm. So far so good, right? Well, here’s the problem. If your content doesn’t have sufficient social proof, you just wasted your time.

I know that sounds harsh, but it’s the absolute truth. The sad reality is that people are not going to gamble on your fresh content. They have better things to do. When they are scrolling through hundreds, if not thousands of new pictures on their Instagram feed, they’re not going to give you the benefit of the doubt.

If they see that your pictures barely have any engagement or your account doesn’t have many followers, they’re not going to give you the time of day even though on an objective level, your content is vastly superior to your competitors. Sounds unfair, right?

Well, get with a program. Many things in life are unfair so you have to make things fair for yourself by investing in social proof. This means buying likes for your photos, as well as video views for your Instagram videos.

When you do this, you dispel the initial skepticism people would naturally have about your content and this can trigger a chain reaction of natural engagement which will inevitably pull in more organic views for your content.

It then sets in motion a positive feedback loop for your Instagram account. You then end up developing a solid following of people enthusiastic and eager enough to engage with your content, which then leads to positive ROI.

By Eliza