Things I learned from growing an Instagram following to almost 15K

Things I learned from growing an Instagram following to almost 15K
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“Are you that Queen City chick?”

“Are you that Charlotte Instagram girl?”

“Are you that blogger?”

Yes, yes, and yes. That’s me. But there’s way more to me than that.

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I’m a young woman who wanted to turn my dream into a plan and that’s exactly what I did. But first, some background on how my account @queencitychic started.

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One word, passion. No idea or dream comes to life without it. Passion to me is not being able to sleep at night because you can’t stop thinking about it. Passion to me is making sacrifices to inspire and help others. Passion is following your heart so far that you’re pushed out of your comfort zone. It’s what makes me as a blogger, writer, photographer, stylist, and a social media professional successful.

I knew when I created this Instagram and blog that nothing but success was an option. I wouldn’t settle for anything less. I really think that mindset got me to where I am.

I attended UNC Charlotte for public relations and back when I only had a year left until graduation and a small social media internship under my belt, a blog seemed like the perfect resume builder. It would show my photography, writing, branding, and overall creativity. Well, pretty much, the Instagram just took off from there…

Since January of 2014, and especially the last probably six months, my life pretty much changed completely. I remember one day when I realized I wasn’t dreaming anymore. My vision as a Charlotte native was coming to life.

I used to try and explain to my parents how much the account was turning into a QC phenomenon. They didn’t really get it until our PF Changs waiter recognized me and was raving on how much his girlfriend loved my account.

My passion for the Queen City was spreading and inspiring others. Everyday new residents, old residents, students, and businesses are continuing to follow me. Due to features on other accounts, giveaways, reposts, and hashtags, it keeps building.

Here’s a look at my first fashion feature 100 weeks back in Charlotte Street Style.

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@queencitychic via Instagram

And as the followers keep building up, so do I as a person. In fact, because of my Instagram, I am a changed person. Like I said, I live a different life than before. It only makes sense though, for I have almost 15,000 people following mine.

Call me crazy but these almost 15K feel like family. They support me, believe in me, pray for me, give me advice, compliment me, and much more than this. When I meet QC chic followers all over Charlotte everyday in public, they give me inspiration. Their inspiration is what really helps me grow everyday. It challenges me. Each new person I meet, pushes me further toward my goal. I do not want to let them down.

These kind comments I’ve received from hundreds of strangers will never be forgotten. Especially the one from one of my favorite Panthers, Roman Harper #41, who said he was impressed and thanked me for supporting the team.

But one especially stuck with me. It was a comment from a lady, who was just burnt out on this town. She lost her love for Charlotte and told me that I helped her regain it. By following my account, she saw this place in a completely different light.

These moments are worth all of the negatives.

Wait. There are negatives to eating free, receiving free clothes, and getting important invites to events? Yes, there are.

People aren’t always supportive and nice. We all know this. They can be competitive, mean, jealous, etc. These types of people will keep challenging me. They will keep testing me everyday and thickening my skin. I share a lot of helpful and motivational quotes that touches on rising above “haters” because of this.

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@queencitychic via Instagram

Being authentic and putting yourself out there isn’t easy. It never is. Someone will always have something to say. But if it is for something that you love, it will be worth it.

I actually get a lot of direct messages on my Instagram about advice.

So, I thought I would end with some. My advice to you all is to find what you’re passionate about, and own it. Own it and don’t let anyone tell you not to. Teachers weren’t lying when they told us “you can do anything you put your mind to.”

Thank you, Charlotte, for helping me realize this. Thank you for the moral support. Thank you for believing in me when I had a hard time doing so. This community seriously touches me more and more everyday. It is filled with so much love!

Feel free to join the Queen City Chic Instagram following by following me at @queencitychic.

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