Welcome back to Take it Personally! I am so excited about today’s episode because I’ve decided to give you guys a peek into my new course, InstaBranding. It just launched on Black Friday, and the cart closes for it this coming Friday (December 13). I am so excited to have this course out into the world and teach people how to use Instagram to not only grow their business, but grow their brand. This course will help you use Instagram in a way that is thoughtful and strategic and honestly, a whole lot of fun.
I hear from way too many people that Instagram is no longer fun for them – it’s a time-suck, an energy-suck, it’s a comparison trap, and that doesn’t make anybody feel good. I so strongly believe that social media can be used in such a positive way if we let it and if we use it correctly. And that’s what this course is all about!
I am basically considering this episode my first sponsored episode, and it’s sponsored by InstaBranding. InstaBranding is an online course for entrepreneurs, side-hustlers, influencers who want to put the social back in social media and build something bigger than a bunch of likes and follows. This course is for you if you are overwhelmed by Instagram and you find it to be draining instead of fun. It’s also for you if you want to start bringing yourself into your business but are scared or don’t know where to start, if you are dying for more connection and purpose than what you are already getting from Instagram, if you have trouble posting consistency or knowing what to post, and if you want to gain followers who actually care about you and your business.
This course is all online and go at your own pace. However, because this is the first time I’m offering it, I’m also hosting a 6-week Facebook group alongside of the course. I want to give as much support as possible to the people who are investing in this course. This Facebook group will be yours to ask questions, brainstorm ideas, connect with other Instabranding students, ask or offer advice.
The bulk of the course is video education. The videos are bite-sized, so you can really fit them into any schedule. Plus, I am so excited about all of the bonuses inside of the course! Since this is the first round, I’ve included a lot on many different topics. Additionally, we will be having live weekly Q&As inside of the Facebook group. All of your questions will be addressed!
The craziest part is that this course is $99! When first planning out the course, I had $399 for the cost, which is where it will still end up. However, I just think there is so much content in this course that could help so many people, and I think everyone should have access to it. So grab this course for $99 while it’s on sale (there is also a payment plan if wanted)!
This episode is giving you a sneak peek into the course in case you are wanting to know what you are paying for before you invest in it. I am taking the info from my third module, which is all about your Instagram posting schedule, and dumping it into a podcast episode. Let’s dive in! Ps. If you are interested in more after listening to this episode, consider purchasing the Instabranding course or reaching out to me with any questions you might have. There is so much helpful info in this course, along with support from me and collaboration from others. I would love to have you!
Let’s talk about understanding your posting schedule. A lot of people have forgotten that social media is a dialogue, not a monologue. Yes, our content absolutely matters, but it’s a lot more about what we’re doing to interact and engage with other people. We need to stop thinking about Instagram as me-me-me, because honestly, people are exhausted by that!! When you can use social media to help others feel seen and heard, connection starts to happen.
Knowing this, your posting schedule is a lot less about when your people are online to engage with you, and more when you are online to engage with your people. Essentially, you want to avoid the post-and-ghost. This means that you want to post at a time that is convenient for you to be online, so you can post and then spend 15-30 minutes engaging with others. It’s a simple change to your daily pattern that can result in serious growth in your engagement and following.
But what do I mean when I say ‘engage?’ Like anything in the digital space, it’s actually not that different from real life. Think of it like a bunch of people at a party. Do you tend to be more drawn to the person at the center of the room, cracking jokes, telling stories, and doling out compliments…or the person standing by the wall, looking at their shoes? You’re probably more attracted to the person who seems like they’re the life of the party. It’s the same scenario on Instagram. By spending time not only on your personal profile, but more importantly other people’s, you’re showing that you care.
So how can we do this? First, slow your scroll. Start making the time you spend on the ‘Gram intentional. Just say no to double tapping for those hearts, and actually leave a thoughtful comment! Now is not the time for “Love this!” or “Great work!” Yes, something is better than nothing, but DIG DEEPER. Think about the kind of comments that make you smile when they show up on your own posts, and try to mirror that back to the people you’re following.
As far as how to find this content that you should be interacting with, you can keep it as simple as scrolling your feed, or you can search common hashtags. I like to click on the hashtags that I’ve been using and check out the recent or top posts from those. It’s a great way to find content that you’ll probably connect with, and possibly accounts you should be following. Doing this also brings up related hashtags, which is another great way to explore content related to what you already like.
A little tip: if you engage with content you actually find interesting, Instagram will show you more of that kind of content. It’s the same reason why if you find yourself engaging with a ton of content similar to what you’re creating, Instagram will show you more of that; which usually leads to you feeling like your market is way too saturated with people doing the exact same thing you are. Diversify who you’re following and who you’re interacting with, and you’ll likely feel a lot better about what you’re creating too.
If your rebuttal to the last video is something along the lines of, but how the heck do I leave thoughtful comments!? Then friend, you’ve got to take a long hard look at who you’re following. You should be following people who light you up. Who inspire you and make you want to join in conversation. Leaving thoughtful, authentic comments shouldn’t be crazy difficult. If it is, head to your Following list and start purge’ing. My favorite tip? Don’t just follow people in your industry that you think you need to be following to stay on top of trends. More often than not, all that does is lead to comparison and negativity, and you can’t create the amazing things you’re meant to create from that kind of space! Instead, think about what you really love. If you’re a photographer, but you love interior design, maybe eliminate some photography accounts that make you feel inferior, and start following more interior designers who inspire you.
If you’re truly inspired by your own field and want to continue following others doing similar things to what you’re doing, but can’t shake that inferior feeling, here’s my challenge to you: interact with those people. Send them a message, and let them know you admire them, and they’re doing a great job. Her success is not your failure, and the best way to remind yourself of that is to extend a hand and start building community and connection. I don’t care if that person has 5 followers or 5 million followers; nice comments can still be major bright spots in our days, and it’s always worth it to let someone know they’re killing it…even if the idea of doing so makes you feel a little uncomfortable.
Ultimately, Instagram is a platform made for connection. By showing the algorithm that you’re an active member of the Instagram community, as opposed to some troll who’s just lurking around, only good can come from it.
Here’s your homework for the ‘Gram, starting now. Give yourself a number of ‘touches’ you need to make every day on Instagram. A great place to work up to is 12, but if that seems super overwhelming, start with 5 and add more when you’re ready.
You can start on your own profiles by creating a post or story, but then take it a step further. Leave a comment. Send a DM. Remember – it’s called SOCIAL media for a reason! You are going to GET what you GIVE.
And if you’re nervous to engage with people, remember this: we are all just people, sitting on our phones. I don’t care how big the account is, a sweet comment or message can make someone’s day, and you have the power to make that happen. When you start shifting your mindset around how you can use a platform like Instagram, it becomes a lot less overwhelming a lot more fun…and that’s the whole idea.
If you want to join in on the fun, check out more information about Instabranding and enroll while it is still only $99.