3 Tips To Make Instagram Work For You

Instagram

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I was connecting with some new people on Instagram today, and I was suddenly overwhelmed with an idea that’s been rolling around in my head for a few weeks. See, I am a stay at home, single mom…so when I say I use social media for business…I ain’t kiddin’!

And I’ve always had a bad taste in my mouth when I see all of these business owners who just SLAM social media with their “buy this” “do that” “join me” stuff. I’ve always done more personal stuff, with some random business-y things thrown in. I’m a firm believer in social media platforms being about being SOCIAL!

…not being a billboard.

Our company recently hired a new social media guru, and when he spoke recently, he said everything that I feel about social media and business to a T! It was refreshing to have someone speak what I thought!

And here’s the deal…I’m a believer in network marketing period. I don’t care if you join ME in my deal or someone else in theirs, as long as YOU see the opportunity, are well-informed, and you connect with what you’re doing. I think everyone can be successful with direct sales as long as they ‘fit’ with whatever it is that they join. So I wanted to create this little post to help ANYONE in business who is using social media.

I consider myself to know more than the average person on blogging, SEO, and social media. I’m no expert, but I have grown a successful business with this for over 3 years, so I thought it was high time I start sharing some tips.

When Instagram was poppin’ this morning, it really inspired me to share some valuable tips with anyone who may be trying to grow a business using IG. 🙂

#1: Drop your follow/unfollow app.

Why? Number 1, because Instagram doesn’t like it. They know if you’re using it. It’s not something that they have approved. They can shut you down for using it.

But why, really? Because it’s impersonal. When I see someone who just goes down the list following people b/c of a certain hashtag use…it’s impersonal. I feel like we should be ONLY following people who we connect with. The people we want to see in our feed, we follow.

And we shouldn’t UNfollow them in 10 days just because they don’t follow us back. It’s self-centered really. Once you follow someone because you think their content is something you’d like to see, don’t take the follow back just because they don’t return it. Interact with them…you liked them enough to follow, now interact with what they post. You never know, they may end up liking YOU too 🙂

#2: Quality over quantity.

What does that mean?

Well, a lot of emphasis is put on the number of followers you have. And while more followers=more eyes on your content…I can’t help but think that focusing on that number, rather than the followers you have already, is setting you up for disaster.

When we spend our time vying for followers all day long and neglecting the ones we already have, we’re left with…well…followers. But followers who don’t DO anything or even know you’re there, aren’t very helpful.

(side note: don’t follow people who are CLEARLY not going to be interested in what you sell. Don’t follow people who are already in your business. Don’t comment on people’s posts who are already in the same business. AND hands down, do NOT post your link anywhere near someone else who is already in the business. Be mindful. Don’t be sharky.)

I believe that once you get a good base of followers (who come to you based on the value you bring to THEM), you need to spend your time and focus on bringing content to them that they would enjoy and value. Interact, comment, doubletap. Show some love.

When you show heart, people like that.

When people like you, you form relationships.

When relationships form, networks grow.

When networks grow, business booms.

#3: What you post.

Honestly, I feel like this should be a no-brainer…yet, I’m constantly seeing advertisements. I’m all for sharing what you’ve got…especially if the people who follow you are targeted people who would like to see what you’ve got! But there has got to be some balance.

One thing that our new social media guy said in his talk was that “No one goes to bed at night wishing they’d seen one more billboard”. And he’s so right.

In our uber techie world, people need PEOPLE. We need real connection more than ever. When you can connect (really connect, not just “get a new lead”), relationships form.

…and remember what happens when relationships form (Hint: I said it in tip #2.) 🙂

 

CHALLENGE TO YOU:

If you’re rockin’ an Instagram account for whatever business you’re in:

Determine the ideal friend you’d like to have on Instagram

Only follow people who fit that mold

Only post content that that person would find valuable and helpful

Set your goal to give people HELP, NOT advertise to them

Delete your unfollow app

Vow to give more doubletaps and more thoughtful comments everyday

Give up the #… Followers numbers aren’t nearly as important as ENGAGED followers.

 

Do this everyday for a solid 30 days. I bet you’ll see growth in your connections and your business. Just be YOU. People want PEOPLE. You’ll find the people who you connect with, and that kind of connection is unbreakable.

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I'm Heather. I love coffee, blogging, my kids, and other moms! Click my pic to read my full bio and about why I started Hot Mama!

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