Tips to dominate your Instagram account
Social media is part of our life and you should use it to promote your business whether you like it or not. Many of my colleagues and coaching clients sometimes complain about social media and they clearly show a love+hate relationship with it. They don’t like to use it, or they have a hard time to be consistent with posts, or they don’t know what to post, or – and this is the worst – they don’t know how to interact and… be social. Which is the goal of social media!
The key is: make it part of your daily life! I will never stop saying this, it’s easier than you think… And, I’m promoting two businesses with two distinct audiences (plus my cat’s account but that’s a different story!)
Let’s take a look at how to promote your business / brand on Instagram which is one of the most used platforms by creatives including us wedding and event planners. I personally love Instagram for its clean layout, there are no distractions, no ads (there are but they’re in the feed, not scattered around the screen) and the navigation is very easy. Recently Instagram changed the algorithm but it didn’t really affect my accounts and I will tell you why. Also, you can send private messages and invite friends to look at specific accounts or posts so it’s very useful for our business. And now, you have the ability to switch any of your accounts that you use for your business to a business account! This gives you access to stats and it’s definitely very helpful to see which posts or pictures or videos work best.
Create your own hashtag
I wrote about hashtags in the past few weeks (you can read the posts HERE and HERE). Today we will work on creating your own branded hashtag. Mine is #ladolceideaweddings which is simple but it has my company name and my specialty which is weddings. Of course, don’t stop at one hashtag. You can use up to 30 in a post and you should take advantage of this: use multiple hashtags to drive more traffic and attract more potential clients to your profile.
Some ideas for custom brand hashtags: industry-related; your brand name; your service area / location; holiday-related. You can post a few of the major hashtags in the post and the rest in a comment. Try to come up with specific ones, not too generic.
Add hashtags as a comment to your Instagram posts
Create a list of hashtags in your Notes app so they’re ready to use and you don’t have to type them every time you write a post.
Remember to type some dots in line before the list of relevant hashtags. That way, they don’t show in the actual comment and you keep a clean layout. When you’re ready to post your content, you just copy and paste the list of hashtags from Notes.
Post like a real human being
Try to be conversational and engaging, not too sales-y and not too pushy. When you are trying too hard to promote your services or sell your products people will unfollow you. They’re not interested in that type of pressure, maybe they’re not ready to buy, they just want to get to know you. Show what you can do first, then you can offer what you have. Make sure you have a link to your website or e-commerce store on your bio. I use Linktree to create multiple links to your Instagram bio. Remember: posts should be about your customer, not about you.
Behind-the-scenes posts are also an excellent way to interact and engage with your followers, people love to see what you do in your daily life! For us planners it could be a walk-through, a meeting with a vendor, working on a timeline, selecting fabrics for linens, etc. Show yourself and talk to your followers.
Get creative with content
People get bored easily and we live in a fast-paced world so we need to draw attention in one second. There are ways to do that: Answer questions (this will invite them to leave comments); Ask them to tag someone who could benefit from the post (this will drive more traffic to you); Tell a beautiful story (pictures are worth a thousand words, aren’t they?) and use the 2,000 characters to touch their hearts.
Establish yourself as an expert
This, again, is something that applies to all social media platforms, If you post relevant content, you help people solve their problems, and you show you know about your industry or your field, then people will start following you. Always stay relevant to your niche and maybe offer something for free, this could be a 7-day challenge or a free e-book just to start the conversation. You will see how people will love to read your posts and follow you.
Post frequently to keep the momentum going
You should make sure that you are engaging your followers without being too annoying. And, of course, according to your availability. General guidelines suggest 2-3 times a day but that doesn’t work for me, that is too much for me. My frequency is 3-4 times a week depending on the account. One thing that you need to remember: once you select the frequency you have to stick with it or you will lose the momentum and followers will forget you because you’re not consistent. This is a rule that applies pretty much to all social media platforms.
If you have accounts that were created for annual events you should still post regularly, maybe once a week, to keep the content fresh and remind your followers that here will be another event next year. You can just post pictures from the previous edition and create excitement, maybe you can add a countdown to each post as the date gets closer, give details on the registration page, tell them what to expect, list one speaker at a time, etc.
Collaboration today is huge and if you have a product to sell you should definitely find someone who can help you sell it by promoting it. Who should this person be? A) An influencer, someone who has millions of followers and they will do whatever this person will tell them to do. Think about the Kardashian sisters. Whenever Kim has some new product that she likes and says “I really like this because…” you can be certain that sales will skyrocket. Do some research and identify who could be a great testimonial for your brand and connect with him / her — B) Your loyal customers. For instance, if you sell calligraphy pens and you mail samples of a new line to calligraphers who are on social media constantly, and they like your product, and they received it for free: What do you think they will do? They will post about it and it will be free publicity for you! You can ask them to include your website or any links to buy / order the products and there you have it, a group of people who are selling for you!
Post great quality pictures
This is one of the biggest fears that my colleagues and coaching clients have: “I don’t have great pictures so I won’t post anything”. Wrong! With today’s smartphones we can take excellent pictures even if you’re not a professional photographer, and with a little of experience we can definitely do a great job. Lighting is very important so make sure you have a great source of light. Keep in mind that people prefer good personal pictures rather than professional images because these would look like magazine ads and sometimes they’re seen as fake. We planners use many of our photographer’s images to fill our feed but it’s always great to add some of your personal shots to make it look human, authentic.
You can also use filters to enhance your pictures, there are so many on Instagram or you can pick extra ones from your phone app catalog.
Mix your media content
Yes, you can create videos too and you have up to 60 seconds for that! I use this option especially for my cat’s account where showing Miss Mocha in action is much more fun than showing a static image of her playing with a toy. Remember that videos are getting more and more powerful!
Don’t forget CTAs
If you don’t continue the conversation all of your hard work and efforts are worth nothing. Be very specific (people love to be guided) and take them to: landing pages; websites; e-stores; Eventbrite or similar for tickets; links to buy your book; blog posts; a scheduler for a free consultation. Again, take advantage of your link in the bio.
Do you need ideas for your social media strategy? Let’s connect! Schedule your FREE Clarity Call with me HERE
Holistic Life Coach, Brain Fitness Coach, and Life-Work Balance Strategist for busy professionals. I blend well-being principles with neuroscience, biohacking, positive psychology, stress management, and mindfulness techniques to implement effective behavior changes.