Instagram. The platform you’re expected to be on as a business owner.
Because you’re offering a solution to someone. Your product or service, is going to help someone. Why not find the BEST way to genuinely market it to your dream audience, in a way that feels aligned with your goals?
The scary part? There is no one size fits all! Just like there is no one out there quite like you!
We asked our followers what questions they had about Instagram and Jenn over at The Aligned Social Media Coach (formally something simple) answered them for you!
Jenn’s goal is to help you find alignment on social media! She has helped countless business owners build their Instagram account in a way that feels genuine and in alignment with their goals and values.
Here we go...
Q: What is the BEST way to be seen on Instagram? Stories, Posts, Engagement?
A: Think about it this way, “How do YOU consume content on Instagram? Do you watch stories or scroll through your feed first?”. The common answer to this question is “I always watch stories first”.
Knowing the majority of Instagram users watch stories first, posting in stories is going to make your business stronger! Instagram stories are the perfect way to test out new ideas, strategies, and tell your audience face to face the benefits of what you’re offering.
Instagram posts and stories should be viewed as one! Together, they can make a positive impact on the growth of your profile and your business!
Q: Should I be hosting Giveaways?
A: Yes! Why not?! BUT! It’s important to keep these key aspects in mind:
Determine the goal of your Giveaway! Do you want to grow your account? If the answer is “YES!”, then it’s important to align yourself with partners who have a similar audience to you. For example, if your audience is typically geared towards women between the ages of 20-40, collaborate with giveaway partners that have a similar audience. This will guarantee that your new followers will be your ideal audience, be in alignment with your business, and ultimately help you reach your goals.
Don’t ask too much of your audience! Choose THREE actions for your audience to take in order to enter the giveaway.
Be mindful of how often you’re hosting giveaways. You want them to be excited about the giveaway! If you host them too often, they might not reach your goal. The industry standard is 90 days between giveaways.
Not sure how to choose the winner without sifting through 1,000 comments? Here is a free platform that will help you choose someone who published a comment: https://commentpicker.com/
Q: How often should I be posting on Instagram?
A: Unfortunately, there is no sweet spot to the number of posts on Instagram. However, here are a few tips to keep in mind:
Post consistently. This will keep you top of mind with your followers.
Quality over quantity! Don’t post just to post!
Determine your key messages for the month (start with 3-5). What do you want your audience to know and what do you enjoy posting? This will help you determine how often you should be posting.
Q: Is Instagram the most relevant platform right now?
A: Yes, and no. First, you need to determine who your target audience is and if they are even on Instagram. Maybe you’re better off Pinning on Pinterest or connecting with them in Facebook Groups.
However, one of my favourite aspects of Instagram is how often they update their platform and integrate new features. From selling directly on Instagram, the food sticker and reels, Instagram considers feedback from their users and updates the platform based on the needs of their audience - It truly can’t get any better than that!
And just to throw in some numbers, at the end of 2020, there were over 1 billion users on Instagram every month and 81% of those users use Instagram to research products and services (https://blog.hootsuite.com/instagram-statistics/).
Those numbers don’t lie.
Q: How can I genuinely grow my Instagram account?
A: This is such a common question and there is a handful of different strategies, but what’s important is finding a way that feels genuine to you! But, there are two things to remember!
Think of your Instagram account as a community. Remember each of your followers is a person, not just a number. Make genuine connections and continue to engage with them on Instagram! If you genuinely find value in what you’re sharing, others will too!
It’s all about the invitation! Invite your audience to engage with your post:
Was this valuable? Share it in your stories!
Save this for later
Tag a friend in the comments below!
It might seem like a no-brainer for us to take those actions, but sometimes people like to be informed of how to take action!
Q: Tips on how to utilize reels!
A: This question really could be a series of blog posts on its own. But this will get you started:
Be unique!! Find ways to showcase who you are and what you do in a way that stands out!
Don’t be afraid to utilize third-party apps (like InShot) to create videos. Don’t feel like you have to use the Instagram app to create reels.
Plan in advance and batch! Set some time aside to plan out your reels (including the caption and hashtags) and create them all at the same time.
Q: Tips on starting a brand new business on Instagram or social media?
A: Consistency, consistency, consistency, engagement, engagement, engagement. It’s all about showing up. Showing up through valuable evergreen content on the feed, showing up on Instagram stories, and showing up in comments!
You have to find a way to stand out. Always remember that there may be others out there doing exactly what you’re doing, but they are not you! You are what makes your business different, therefore you are what makes your social media different. Even if you don’t want to show your face on Instagram stories or your feed, your ideas are your own! Use this to your advantage.
My last little aligned thought:
Start making content around what you want to be known for - not what your audience is giving you "likes" for.
There are SO many articles out there, telling you to grow this way or grow that way. There are certainly best practices, but regardless of how YOU choose to create content, make sure it is in alignment with your goals and values (both business + personal).
It’s easy to get caught up with the new shiny feature or the “10k in one month” concept, but if it doesn’t feel right, I guarantee you, Instagram will feel like a burden and not a community.