One Million Followers: How I Built a Massive Social Following in 30 Days by Brendan Kane | Book Review

Since Facebook and Instagram doesn´t stop bombarding me with ads for Influencer coaches, I thought I will  - one by one- go through them and write my own thoughts about all the ads and the people behind it down for you! You are welcome!

I just reviewed Marina De Giovanni´s Instagram Accelerator (read it here) and told you if I think it is worth the $197 price tag and today I am reviewing the book "One Million Followers: How I Built a Massive Social Following in 30 Days" by Brendan Kane for you. It currently retails for a very "wallet friendly" $16.

So here we are again: the next face I am seeing all over Instagram and Facebook is Brendan Kane. In his book he wants to tell us, how he gained 1 million followers in only 30 days. A quick look at his Instagram account reveals: indeed Brendan has 1 million followers (however: there is a twist to it that I explain later).

Immediately I felt like I already know what is probably going on here- similar to Marina De Giovanni- Brendan probably must've spend big bucks for ads to achieve that massive following- and so I wrote on one of his Instagram ads:

"The real question is: how much money did you pay for ads to get 1 million followers AND is it really worth it?". 

And Brendan actually responded to me:

"Everything is detailed in the book. Wish the best of luck with your growth." 

Very charming indeed! ;-)

So I decided to order the audiobook... mainly to find out how much money he spend (lol) and it took me about 6 hours to listen to it. BTW: I found it very easy to listen to his -in my opinion- very pleasant voice (but that is personal preference of course).

Here are the 12 chapters included in the book.

One Million Followers: How I Built a Massive Social Following in 30 Days by Brendan Kane

Chapter 1: How I gained One Million Followers πŸ‘ˆIMPORTANT READ!!! 

Chapter 2: Target your Audience

Chapter 3: Choose a Message for the Masses

Chapter 4. Fine-Tune Through Social Testing

Chapter 5: Create Shareable Content on Facebook

Chapter 6: Strategic Alliances



Chapter 9: Growth Drivers for YouTube

Chapter 10: The Realities of Snapchat

Chapter 11:Substantial Business Growth with Linkedin

Chapter 12: Staying Power

As you can see above: maybe not all of these chapters are of interest for you (I found personally the chapters about Snapchat and YouTube not very interesting, but I agree with everything he said in there). Very important (especially if you want answers to his title!) is for sure the first chapter: "How I gained One Million Followers".

Similar to Marina De Giovanni he also drops big names such as Taylor Swift and Rihanna- but other than Marina, he in fact really worked with them. Huge difference, though I don't know if he worked directly with them - or just "for them" with an agent and likewise. And what did he do for them? Apparently he was creating an "innovative application that can automatically turn any Facebook profile into a website in less than 60 seconds". Hm ok then. It´s not that they gained any followers through him, which of course they do not need any help with that. It´s just always a smart move to drop big names- cause it sounds good. ;-)

Brendan opens up in his first chapter- honest and to the point- that indeed he gained his followers through a massive amount of Facebook ads. I applaud Brendan for his honesty to clarify this so openly! (Other than Marina De Giovanni, who claims that she gained followers because of her love for makeup and doesn't really admit it is only because of her massive amount of ads how to gain followers).

How much money did Brendan Kane spend to gain 1 Million followers?

Does he say, how much money he spend to gain 1 Million Followers? Not directly, but indirectly yes!

He clarifies that it costs him about $0.01-$0.06 in ad money to gain a follower in countries such as India or Brazil. He points out that it is wrong to always assume that a follower from India is always "fake" /aka a bot or similar. There are 1 billion people living in India - therefore Brendan claims that this is a huge opportunity to gain "cheap" new followers. He mentions that $7500-$8000 can be enough to gain a massive following. So basically if you get a new follower from India for a cent, you will have about 750,000 followers for $7500.

Brendan admits that in many cases a follower from India might not be desirable (because it won't lead to sales etc- however you could "mix"  different countries (have a couple "cheap" followers mixed with "more expensive followers". But what is the difference here to simply buying cheap followers from India? These are real people that will also (in the best case) interact with your posts!

However, it costs him between $0.06- $0.10 for a follower in the US or U.K. So you might end up spending as much as $100,000 to get 1 Million followers from these markets.

That is why Brendan prefers to mix and match different countries, so he has some "cheap ad followers", as well as some more "expensive followers".

So he must have spend anything between $7500 and $100,000. BAM! 😱


Brendan also recommends to always stick with the bid amount that Facebook recommends (when creating an ad) and he says that can be between $11-$25 a day. He even recommended creating 10 ads per day for each $25!!! In one month this adds up to $7500. He also recommends to never spend per ad more than that- instead rather having more ads with the same bid amount.

That is so much money y'all!

πŸ‘†What is also so very important to know is that the 1 Million Followers that Brendan Kane acquired within 30 days were not followers on Instagram! This is hugely important, because I think most people want to know how to gain followers on Instagram and not on Facebook!

Again if you missed it: his book is about how he gained 1 Million followers on Facebook. And he completely openly discusses that Facebook ads were his secret!

This is important news! Yes, Brendan has to this day 1 Million Followers on Instagram- but they came basically AFTER he spend the ad money on Facebook AND wrote his book how to gain 1 million followers and spend AGAIN big buck in ads.

So basically:

  1. πŸ’ΈHe spends big bucks on Facebook for ads. But with what actually? Back then his book was not even written! I scrolled through his Facebook page and it seems like he used mainly only memes, inspirational quotes and pretty images from all over the world (I don't think these were even his photos!).
  2. He gained 1 Million Followers on Facebook through Facebook ads. 
  3. He wrote his book about how he gained 1 Million Followers.
  4. πŸ’ΈHe spends AGAIN big bucks for Facebook (and Instagram) ads but this time to market his book.
  5. He gains 1 Million Followers on Instagram, which must've taken much longer than only 30 days. Many months at least (which means money, money, money).

So basically - he spend already big bucks BEFORE he published the book and then in a "second phase" AGAIN to market the book.

Instagram on the other hand is a whole new story, as he talks in Chapter 8 about. It does not seem as easy to gain new followers through ads on Instagram. Brendan says that the highest amount of new followers that he ever achieved per month was 50,000 (NOT 1 MILLION LIKE ON FACEBOOK!).

He mentions that it is already huge to gain 20k-30k on Instagram per month (of course it is- I wish I would gain that lol). So basically it is nearly impossible (without being a celebrity like Jennifer Aniston who just gained 19 million followers in 3 weeks) to gain 1 Million Followers in a month on Instagram.

In Chapter 8 Brendan pulls out the old "tricks" how to gain followers on Instagram- but in my personal experience these are a little "dated"- and don't work very well anymore.

He recommends for example:

  • buying power likes (likes from big accounts- this is to get on the explore page)
  • using engagement groups (which is basically fake engagement that looks nice), 
  • using shout out for shout out methods (I don't believe in shout outs - except if a celebrity does it. Check out how Instagram themselve (316 Million followers) did a shout out for Macro Girl in 2018. It got 572k likes but she still has "only" 7k followers.
  • Brendan points out the importance of being on the "explore" page and thinks it is possible to achieve if you connect with big accounts and make them like and comment on your content. 
  • He also goes into detail how Influencers can help you sell your products. This chapter is probably more interesting for brands that sell products than for an Influencer. In my opinion pretty old news being on Instagram since 2013.

It is however interesting to see that Brendan changed his Instagram account in March of 2018 from a business account to a personal account, because if you do that, Socialblade does not show any detailed data (such as how many followers you gained per day) anymore. So here is his data (below) from the beginning of 2018. A time capsule! ;-)

So in March of 2018 he had only 1336 followers. Wow. A year later he has indeed 1 Million followers on Instagram.

I find it btw also interesting that he posts on both- Facebook and Instagram- mainly memes these days. He even mentions in his book, how a friend has great success by posting memes.

Is the book worth a read?

Do I think the book is worth to read? I do think so! I especially recommend it to brands that want to sell a product and are trying to have success online. For $16 I find there is actually some information in there, that might help the one or other company to get a step further if they are ready to invest money for Facebook ads. It goes into detail about how to strategize Facebook ads which might be helpful.

Maybe it is not so interesting if you are an experienced Influencer- however this book is of great value if you also want to become an Influencer coach. This seems to be the most effective way to put ads out there, if you actually can teach something. Or use memes! πŸ˜†

I do really like the honesty of Brendan Kane and how straightforward he literally tells us that he gained his followers through a Facebook ad strategy.

Is it worth spending thousands of Dollars to gain a huge following?

If it is worth however to spend thousands of Dollars on ads, you have to decide for yourself.

As a brand: think about how many products you have to sell to get your $7500 (or more) back! Do you really think people start buying your products only because you have 100,000 (or more) followers? An Indian follower will most likely not turn into a buyer. He basically just "looks good to have".

As an Influencer: how many brand deals do you have to land to get your $7500 (or more) back? It is not that easy- not just the follower number counts to get that brand deal- there is so much more to it. And the competition is immense! There are so many Influencers out there that you have to compete with!

If you are an Influencer, you probably hope that you will get paid thousands for posting a single pic, if you would have 100,000 or 1,000,000 followers. I don't want to destroy your hopes- but the problem about these Facebook ads is, that it is of course much easier to get a new follower if you make advertising for "how to gain new followers" (or memes lol) than if you are paying for ads on "how pretty you are" (meaning just for a selfie or an outfit post).

My verdict is- just like in my review about Marina De Giovanni before- that it seems like the ones that have success with ads on Facebook or Instagram are the ones that want to show you how to gain followers. So if you pay for ads for your products (if you are a brand) or for your outfit post or whatever, the success rate might be much lower.

So here is the clue: if you want to use the ad strategy to gain followers, think about what you have to offer that others don't. Is there something that you can teach others? Do you help your friends oftentimes with something that they are not good at? THIS might be what you can use to put an ad out- as I don't think that an ad can help if the content isn't there (which Brendan Kane stresses also in his book: content is the most important thing to gain followers). Or you put out memes like Brendan.😏

So, there you have my 5 cents to Brendan Kanes book "One Million Followers: How I Built a Massive Social Following in 30 Days".

Did you read it too? Let me know your thoughts below!

The strategy for generating 100k Instagram followers per month

After I wrote this article I asked Brendan how he gained his Instagram followers, since he admits that advertising on Instagram doesn't have the same success rate of getting new follower as Facebook does. He send me a link to a video (message him if you like to see it too!) that explained in detail how he achieved 1 Million followers on Instagram.

With his little "hack" he was able to generate approximately 100k Instagram followers per month. So what did he do? He basically paid big meme accounts (with millions of followers) to do shout outs for him. He paid about $120 to get around 1000 new followers. Makes $12,000 per month for 100k followers. Makes a total of $120,000 for 1 Million followers (in 10 months!) πŸ˜±

He also explains another hack of randomly putting your Instagram account on private, while tagging (or letting other people tag) people in photos or videos, because when they can not see the image or video they are tagged in, they are more likely to follow the account to simply see the image or video.

He stresses that it was worth to pay for these shoutouts for him, because he landed a publishing deal and gets now paid as a speaker (paid of course) world-wide.

BTW you might enjoy my article "How to make money as an Instagram Influencer" and I never ever charge money for any info! ;-) You can also read: Marina De Giovanni Instagram Accelerator- is it worth it?

P.S. English is not my first language and I am sorry if I have grammar mistakes or misspellings in my writing.

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