David Thurston: Instagram Followers & The Honest Truth

1.) Many of the best stylists in the world don’t have a lot of Instagram followers (7 of the 10 best stylists I’ve ever met have less than 4000 followers).

2.) Conversely, stylists who have large followings are not always great stylists (however, the truth is that most of them are in fact great stylists).

3.) The important point is that “hairstyling” and “Instagramming” are 2 different skills, and fortunately, the skill of Instagramming can be learned.

4.) In conversation, I’ve heard a great stylist with a small following questions the skills of one of the most successful stylists on Instagram. I’ve also heard a stylist with a large following question the greatness of a stylist who has a small following. Both statements reveal insecurities, are ignorant, and have no place in our industry.

5.) No matter how great of a stylist you are, I cannot stress enough the importance of learning the skill of Instagramming, because a larger following will bring you more clients, more opportunities, and more money. It will also bring your art to a much larger audience, enabling you to inspire more people and make a larger impact on your industry.

6.) The size of your following matters… a larger following tells me that others think you’re worth following, and therefore I’m more likely to follow you too. But, it’s better to have a small following than a fake following. It’s easy to spot those who have purchased followers, and those that do will eventually lose out on clients, opportunities, money, and respect.

7.) To get you started, here are the 3 most important things you need to know: Create great content (practice the skill of photographing your awesome work); become part of the community (make thoughtful comments on other photos you genuinely like); and differentiate yourself (interject yourself and your personality into your Instagram page… this will make your page different than all of the rest, because well, there’s no one exactly like you).

- David at Butterfly Loft

About: David Thurston is the founder of Butterfly Loft salon and Ubungalows Luxury Salon Suites, that combined make up a 10,000 square foot salon and spa located in Los Angeles, California.  He is also the founder of Butterfly Circus, a touring education team made up of some of the most recognizable stylists in the world, who collaborate to put on large hair shows.  David is also the co-founder of Butterfly Loft Academy, a hands-on education company that teaches the latest Balayage, color melt, and vivid/pastel coloring techniques. Follow Butterfly Loft on Instagram.