Tonight I’ll be talking to the members of The National Association of Wedding Professionals on how I’ve used Instagram to help build my business (if any of you are going to be there, here is a sneaky preview of my talk!) I’m super excited because I believe this resource has huge potential and I personally use it to build my business every day.
As usual I want to share the content with you first as a thank you for following my newsletters every week. I’m confident you’ll find the points below useful and I’d love to hear how you get along implementing them into your Instagram strategy!
1) Post Consistently
Who worries about ‘posting too often’? And of those of you who worry about posting too often, how many of you don’t post consistently? Yes, I hear you…. I hear your worries and your doubts ‘what if people don’t like what I post?’…… ‘what if someone unfollows me because I post too often?’ OK so let’s be clear here, it’s super annoying when you follow someone and they post waaaaaaaayyyy too much. I’m not encouraging you to post 10 times a day, that would be crazy. The number of times that you post is entirely your decision. Just make sure you post consistently. I would recommend once per day at a minimum.
2) Plan Ahead
Hands up if you’ve sat staring at your phone thinking ‘I just don’t know what to post?’ Yep, I’ve done that. And of course the reality of this scenario is that your content is most likely to be poor quality and you’ll have wasted a whole heap of time. You need to plan ahead. Use an Instagram scheduling service (many of which are free) and at the end of each week map out the following week of content. If suddenly you find extra content in that week to post that is fine too!
3) Use Good Quality Images
I feel very passionate about this one (it’s the photographer in me!) People don’t want to see rubbish quality blurry images. This will in many cases be an instant unfollow from your audience. If you’re a photographer then this should never be a problem. For everyone else, this is where your networking skills play a critical role. You absolutely must engage with the photographer working on the wedding day and ask for photos. If they supply you with 30 images from a wedding that’s a whole month of posts sorted!
4) Get Personal
People want to see YOU! I know, I can hear you all shudder…… I used to feel like that too. Almost every time one of my clients posts a picture of themselves on Instagram they get THE most interaction. People buy from people, not just pretty pictures.
5) Engage With Your Ideal Client This is absolutely essential…. if you take just one thing from this information, take this. Don’t be the person on Instagram who is trying to please everyone. To build a loyal following you have to be YOU. A lot of Instagram users try to be crowd pleasers. The really successful people who have a real tribe of supporters make sure they stay on brand all the time. If you have tons of images that aren’t showing your best work, DO NOT POST THEM. You’d be better to post nothing at all than post off-brand content. You will not be serving yourself or your ideal client by doing this. Be creative and think of new ways to engage with your perfect customer.
6) Create a Hashtag Strategy
You can use 30 hashtags with every single Instagram post. YOU MUST USE THEM! Every time you post without using them you are missing an opportunity. I would recommend using around 10 to describe you and your business, 10 to describe your potential clients and 10 to describe the actual picture. So, an example. Let’s imagine I’m a London based florist posting a picture of a bouquet. I might use some of the following:
7) Have a Clear Biography
Don’t confuse potential followers by having a wordy biography. People will skim read and if they don’t see anything of interest they will move on. Make it super clear who you are, what you do and why you’re interesting! If your user name is your business name you don’t need to repeat it in the bio. Use the title (the part in bold) to describe your business. Otherwise when people scroll through followers they won’t necessarily see a reason to click on your profile.
8) Create an Instagram Pod
The members of your pod become your Instagram family and work to support you as you grow your account. Think of the pod as a group of cheerleaders who help each other by liking each other’s posts and leaving engaging comments. By doing this, the members of the pod communicate to Instagram that a particular piece of content in generating engagement.
9) Ask Questions
OK, sometimes nobody will answer and that’s FINE! But sometimes, it will blow into a huge conversation/debate/sounding board and before you know it you have a highly interactive post which is gaining tons of engagement. You will have followers who are just waiting for an opportunity to engage with you but have never seen the right moment. Serve those clients by offering the right moment.
10) Don’t Obsess!!
This will probably resonate with a few of you. If you’re spending vast amounts of time on Instagram and not reaping the rewards, stop. It’s time to re-address your strategy and find a way that will work for you. Spending hours looking at competitors work will almost certainly not help. Limit your time spent on it and turn off unnecessary notifications!
I hope you’ve found that to be helpful and wish you success in growing your Instagram following. I’d love to hear your good news stories so please do hit reply and let me know!
P.S. Would you like to know more about my coaching programme and how it can help you? Are you a wedding photographer looking for training? Are you running a wedding business are you’re stuck? Do you want to book more brides? Book a call using the link below!