Last month Google My Business officially changed over (yes… AGAIN) to Google Business Profile. Long gone are the days of Google+ and yet here to stay is the need to pay attention to this powerhouse profile. Word on Google Street is that the Google My Business app is going away in 2022. Some of you didn’t even know there was a Google My Business product! So let’s catch you up and get you… on the map!
Google is making more changes to integrate the management of your business profile right from Google Search, Google Maps, and other Google’s other products. In its announcements, Google mentioned more functionality being added to the “in-search” merchant experience, saying that “the easiest way to manage your profile is now via Google Maps and Search. Moving forward, additional tools to help you understand how your business is performing and how you can enhance your online presence will be available exclusively on Search and Maps.”
Whether or not you are a local business, using Google Business Profile is a no-brainer! Someone searches for “Coworking Space near me” or “Cake shop near me” and Google is going to pull results for the person searching. If the business has filled out their profile, the person searching will see details about this business, images, hours of operation, reviews, map for directions and more. If the business has NOT claimed their Google Business Profile or has not filled this information out, their results will be pushed down the line.
The more you beef up that profile with regular (at least weekly) posts, new photos, and new reviews the better your page will rank. Most businesses are spending time posting on their other social channels but neglect this powerhouse! Take one of your Facebook or Instagram posts and update your Google profile weekly!
For the business owner, you will now simply search for your business (don’t put in your URL) and in the results you will find EDIT options. I personally like using the old (how quickly we deem something old these days) Google My Business App, but I guess I was one of a few who actually used the app. Here is what your search result will look like:
So what if you don’t have a local business? What if you work from home?
Here are 3 things to keep in mind regardless:
You need to claim your Google Business Profile. Get that website verified and fill out your profile completely.
Pack the info in there. Fill out every single area. I suggest you keep the info in a document that will allow you to manipulate the information such as keywords, services offered, and locations you want to focus on.
Get a business address.
You don’t want to use your home address since Google maps will zoom right in to show anyone searching your home, cars, and even family members in some images. CREEPY! Secure that business address. Whether that is at a local Coworking space (of course I would mention that one since I also own The Village Workspace…a Colorado coworking space) or a mailbox at your local pack and ship store… you need a legit business address. Most have a service where they can notify you and even forward your mail to your home. Be sure your address is specific– the box number is your specific suite. Google will penalize or suspend a business account if they have the exact address as others in that location.
A friend of mine just ran into this situation where her Google profile had no reviews and a customer chose not to use her, pointing out her lack of reviews. (He sounds like a jerk anyway–it was a good thing she didn’t take him on as a client). This friend had used other social channels for reviews, like LinkedIn, and she hadn’t specifically asked her clients for a Google review. This can be a critical feature for any business. People read reviews. Whether we like it or not, our customers will decide our fate many times by posting good or bad reviews. The key is to ask for reviews when you have a happy customer. Send a quick message or email to someone who compliments you and include the link to your Google review page. Make it easy for them. Don’t ask everyone at once either. Get a couple a week or few a month. When you see a business with 5 great reviews all in one day and nothing after that, you might assume it’s their grandmother, mom, and best friends. Keep them dripping in each month. Make that a part of your team’s performance reviews–asking for reviews.
Just like Prince when he changed his name to “The Artist”, it doesn’t matter what Google decides to call itself… it’s still Google! You’ve got to pay homage no matter what people are calling it!
If you need help staying up on all the latest marketing trends and important tasks that need to be done each day, simple reach out–we’d love to set up a call to share our process and see if we are a good fit to work together.
We get this question quite often, “How do I create a personal brand or be seen as a thought leader in my industry?” Usually I know the answer they are hoping for. They want to hear, “Just post a few things a week on any social media channel and you will get asked to speak for thousands and make millions selling the wonderful services you offer.” If you want to build authority and create a personal brand, it will not happen quickly… and it definitely won’t involve pushing an easy button!
Everyone wants to be a thought-leader (even if that phrase makes many want to throw up a little in their mouth) but few will actually do the work that it takes for people to think of them first when it comes to solutions in their industry. Who is the person that comes to mind when you think of wellness? Business growth? Sales? Leadership? Now the question is, what made you think of this person? Did they write a book on the topic? Several books? Have you heard them talk about this topic over and over again? Have they been sharing content on this topic over a period of time? You don’t have to be THE expert or authority on a topic to get in the conversation and keep showing up.
Becoming the go-to-person or authority on a subject doesn’t happen over night. It doesn’t happen in a couple of months. It takes repetition and time. It also takes sharing your original ideas and your opinions and unique take on what is happening in your industry. This can include what others are talking about but it is coming from your unique perspective. Here are 5 steps to create a personal brand and be seen as a thought leader in your industry:
Define your topic.
Did you notice I didn’t say TOPICS? There are so many who claim to be experts in 87 different topics. They are an expert in communication… and leadership… and customer service… and ethics. I get it, you have lots of interests. You may even be like me, owning two very different businesses– a digital marketing agency and a coworking space. But if I start telling you I am an expert in ethics and sales and wellness, you won’t believe me. There is no way I have the time to become the authority in all of those areas… no matter how great I think I am at multi-tasking!
If you are an expert in leadership, what type of groups have you led? Perhaps you create helpful content around leaders in the non-profit arena, or leaders in the hospitality industry. The more specific you can be, the easier it is for you to create lots of great content that people in that industry will seek out. This doesn’t mean that people outside of this niche won’t find it helpful as well. It just means you are the go-to-person for leadership in this specific area.
Choose your format.
Do you love to write? Are you comfortable in front of a camera? Maybe audio format is more your style. You should make a goal of creating one piece of unique content at least once a week. It could be a blog post, a video tip, or a podcast. This single piece of content is then shared across your social network and even converted into different formats. We often take a video that a client makes and get it transcribed to turn into a blog post and then pull the audio to load into a podcast.
This might be where you start saying, “I don’t have time to create weekly content,” and that’s ok. Just don’t also say you want to be seen as a leader in this area. Don’t be that person who longs to be seen as an expert or thought leader but doesn’t want to put in the work. You can carve out 1-2 hours a week to create thought-provoking content in the format that fits you best. You can hire an assistant or a marketing agency to then magnify that message in several ways, but that first piece has to come from your intellectual property… or inside your head.
Answer YOUR public.
There is a website called Answer the Public that we use to see what questions people are searching for online. This helps us determine what content to write about. This concept is where you start to create content. Answer YOUR public. What questions do clients and potential clients search for on Google? What do they ask you when you are speaking to them? If you can’t think of at least 10 frequently asked questions that your potential customers are searching for, you may need to spend more time learning about your true customer.
Make a list of these FAQs and then one by one, create content answering them. Don’t tell us what everyone else is telling us. Tell us what you think. Tell us why you agree with the masses or why you absolutely don’t. Give it to us straight and don’t use corporately jargon and pithy statements that sound like a brochure. I hate it when I read a blog post and the person is telling me such obvious information that I leave feeling as if I wasted my time. When a leadership blog tells us to focus on being more authentic but doesn’t give specific and unique ways to do it, we want to shout, “Where’s the Beef?”
Being an authority doesn’t mean you know it all. It means you are out in front, learning, consuming all you can about your topic, and sharing your knowledge along the way. Do you listen to podcasts in your industry niche? What do you read to ensure you are staying involved in the latest trends and happenings for your business? I am always surprised when I ask people what they listen to or read to stay up on the latest news or trends in their industry and they can’t think of anything. Whether or not you are working to be seen as a leader in your industry, you’d better be learning, or you will become extinct!
There are podcasts and blogs on every topic under the sun, and if you find an area you cannot find one in your specific niche… you’d better be starting one ASAP! I start my day listening to shortcasts from my Alexa device while I make my coffee and feed the dogs, and then I listen to a few podcast episodes while I get ready and drive into work each morning. Do you pop in and join the conversations on Clubhouse or Twitter’s Spaces? These are all great ways to learn and to join in and start voicing your opinions. You don’t have to host the discussion to join in.
Keep showing up!
As I said in the beginning this will not happen over night, but when you are using today’s social media tools, it happens much faster than it used to. If you simply show up every day sharing tips, tools, resources, and your voice, people will start to listen…and follow you! The more you show up and focus your discussions around your topic, the more people will begin to associate you with that topic.
Can you think of other tips that you have used or that someone else has used to stay out front in your industry? We’d love for you to share here…and to give us your opinion! 🙂
If you’re one of the more than 113 million people that own an iPhone in the United States, chances are that you’ve already updated your phone to iOS 14.5. With this update, Apple is requiring users to provide explicit permission for an app to track, collect, and share data. So, after you’ve updated your phone, the next time you go into the Facebook app for example, a prompt will appear where you are asked to allow, or not allow, the app to track your use, and share your data. This is called a Tracking Transparency Prompt, and any apps that do not display the prompt will actually end up being completely blocked in the Apple app store at some point. Initial estimates thought that after the update, the number of users sharing their data will drop to between 10% to 15%, from roughly 70% today.
As a marketer, you most likely rely on social media apps to use this data so you can accurately target your audience for any ad campaigns that you may be running. Obviously, you want to make sure your content is getting in front of the right eyes! User privacy is something that is *very* important to Apple, so despite the pushback from Facebook, it’s highly unlikely that Apple will reverse course and change, or even get rid of, this new feature.
So, what do you do now?!
Initial data is actually more promising than we all thought, with opt-in rates much higher than previously anticipated: 39% overall and 26% average per app. Keep in mind those, these are just preliminary numbers, so this could change over time.
Our friends at Hubspot have given us a few quick tips to help navigate these privacy changes:
Believe it or not, there are other phone makers out there besides Apple! (Android, we are looking at you!) So, you can still target your ad campaigns to those users effectively and rest easy. Remember, when setting up a Facebook ad, you can specifically choose to target Android users.
Rely on your website a little more now. Make use of Google Analytics, or whichever analytics tool you prefer, to pay more attention to where your users are coming from, and what they are searching to get there. Then, you can create target personas or target audiences based on that data. (Data is king, remember! ?)
Revisit, and refine, your organic content. Take the time to go through your content and make sure everything aligns from your website to your social media. Remember, you want your messaging and brand to be consistent in everything that you post organically! Use any relevant data (back to bullet #2!) to help strength, or refine, your content strategy.
While this iOS update has many marketers and business owners concerned about their ability to target future users and generate quality leads, the true impact of this update won’t really be known until the full rollout is complete. Like in the past, us marketers have adapted to updates and changes, such as moving from traditional marketing to digital, and from one platform to the next. We will get through this together!
If you hear those phrases one more time you’re going to scream, right?
It’s been one year since a world pandemic shut down most of the United States and the way we conducted business and marketing activities drastically changed. As marketers, now that a year has passed, we are forced to take a good look at the ways marketing has (rapidly!) changed in ways that might be permanent.
Preserving a focus on community and empathy was brought to the forefront of marketing efforts during the darkest days of the pandemic – and is definitely a marketing “trend” that is here to stay. The shutdown certainly caused anxiety and stress to be consistent emotions in our daily lives. As marketers, ensuring that messages are empathetic and compassionate is something that is necessary to continue, even a year later. You want to make an effort to be human and speak to consumers without the sales pitch. (Remember- marketing is all about creating that connection!)
And when was the last time you checked out those buyer personas you created? You may have had a crystal clear picture of your buyer persona in the past, but, as we know, things have changed! Businesses are finding all sorts of new buyers for their products or services. Think of all the family members that have learned how to use Zoom just for family get-togethers; Zoom isn’t just for businesses any more.
Have you started doing more online ads since the pandemic started? Well, that is also a “trend” that is going to stay consistent as consumers continue to go online to find the answers and solutions to their problems or needs. Additionally, your digital marketing efforts should still collect data in order to help craft your buyer personas and create impactful digital marketing campaigns using social media, email, paid ads, and more. Your data can help you decide where you’ll need to double-down on marketing efforts that are working and where you need to make tweaks to efforts that aren’t.
You know those 5 statements we opened this blog with? Hard truth: Those statements aren’t unique anymore! Consumers have become “blind” to seeing those statements and they are likely to just keep scrolling past your message. Continue to use phrases and words that are engaging and eye-catching and create that connection. Think outside the box! Remember, you need them to realize that your product or service is solving a problem of theirs!
The pandemic might have shifted the marketing landscape, but it has also created opportunities for brands to effectively reach and engage with consumers at different stages of the buying journey. As the economy continues to recover, there could be an increase in consumer spending, so you want to make sure you’re staying in front of your current and potential customers’ needs.
And of course, there’s social media! Many people have turned to social media for socializing and are now active on a variety of social media platforms- even those who swore they wouldn’t be on TikTok when the pandemic started! This surge in social media use has led to businesses putting a higher focus on building and maintaining strong customer relationships on social media, allowing marketers more efficient and effective communication with their audience.
So while we’ve passed the one-year anniversary of the COVID shutdown, it’s not necessarily a time for celebration. We’ve all adapted in personal and professional ways, and as marketers, we’ve adapted our marketing strategies. That being said, the primary goal of marketing efforts still stays the same: generate brand awareness, increase customer leads, create consumer loyalty, and ultimately grow your business.
You’re browsing the internet, trying to find the perfect image for your blog or your upcoming social media post, and you find it! So you schedule your post or publish your blog and go about your day. Then you check your email later and see a message from an attorney with a copyright infringement notice stating that you have illegally used an image. So what do you do now? (After you’ve taken a deep breath and calmed down!)
Finding the right images to use online can really mean the difference between “blah” and buzzworthy pages, ads, sites, and social media. Sourcing images for your website or social media posts isn’t always easy! The small print found in copyright image policies can be intimidating (and let’s be honest- how many people really sit down and read the fine print when they are searching for images in a hurry?). Words like fair use, attribution, non-commercial, no derivative are not something you see every day so they can definitely be confusing and hard to understand how they apply to you and your small business’ social media strategy. Unfortunately, “I didn’t know!” won’t fly as a valid defense, either.
Once you know the rules, though, it’s easy to follow them! There are also a ton of free stock photo sites that make finding photos a breeze.
So, what is image copyright?
The simple definition is that image copyright is image ownership- whoever took the photo is who owns the image. Image copyright is a form of legal protection that is automatically given to a creator as soon as an image is snapped. Anything from digital art, photographs, paintings, drawings are all subject to image copyright. If your friend takes a selfie with you using her phone, texts it to you, and you post it on Instagram. Technically you needed to ask for her permission to repost that photo since she was the original creator of that image.
How can I tell if I can use an image on social media?
Image copyright covers any image you want to use on social media. If you want to use an image that isn’t yours, you must obtain permission to use it- that may be through a license or obtaining permission directly from the creator. If you are given permission to use the image, be sure to keep a record on hand for future reference, just in case.
Just because a company or an individual has shared an image on a public account, it doesn’t make the image public domain. He/she/the company still very much owns the copyright! That being said, there are some unique ways copyright images can still be shared on your social media page.
It’s typically ok to share images within the various social media platforms, as things like retweets, reshares, repins, or reposts automatically credit the creator of the post/image. Instagram is one of the platforms that this can be tricky – since there is no built-in feature that allows reposting, you must ask for permission. You can do this by sending a direct message or even commenting on the post to make sure the creator is ok with you sharing. Alternatively, there is also an app called Repost that allows you to repost your favorite images or videos on your own feed while giving credit to the original creator.
What about websites?
The same rules apply to images you want to use on your websites. You must be sure to get permission from the creator if there is a specific image you want to use that wasn’t found on free stock photo sites.
OK, so where can I find images to use?
Traditional stock photo sites like Shutterstock, Getty Images, iStock Photo, and Adobe Stock Images are great if you have the ability to pay for your photos. However, there are some great free sites like Unsplash, RawPixel, Pexels, StockSnap, and ReShot are just a few. The images on these sites are creative, eye-catching, and you won’t have to worry about image copyright issues! Although, it is always great to credit some of the creators of the images if you can – a simple tag on IG or “photo cred” in the caption. Additionally, if you use Canva to create your social media images for your posts, Canva has some free photos that you can use in the amazing visuals you’re creating.
Feeling a little overwhelmed by all of this information? SocialKNX can help with that! Our team of marketing rockstars can help you out by creating visual content for your social media that will complement your business and your brand. Reach out to us today to see how we can help!
Instagram recently turned 10. It’s hard to believe this platform has only been around for 10 years. Instagram is such a big part of so many lives, and yet still so many find it confusing and still ignore this powerful marketing platform. There are so many new features that we thought it was time to put out the Ultimate Instagram Guide for 2021. This is a BEEFY post so you may want to bookmark this so you can come back and use it as a reference.
If LinkedIn is the serious business platform for sharing articles, finding jobs, and congratulating people on their recent promotions, Instagram is the peek behind that stodgy curtain where we get to see a more relaxed side of you, and your business. We know it’s true that people buy from those they know, like, and trust, so it makes sense that Instagram is the platform that allows you to invite your audience a little closer to get to know you better, and hopefully they will like what they see.
If you have been dragging your feet on embracing this tool, or find all of its parts just too confusing, this guide will give you all the information you need to finally get moving. There is a lot of information in here so get comfy.
I’m going to break this into segments for you since there is so much to cover. Consider this a guide that you will refer back to over and over.
We will do a deep dive into the 4 types of posts that live on Instagram:
GRID STORIES and LIVE STREAMS REELS IGTV
Next, we will explore the 3 parts to your posts:
CAPTION PHOTOS FREQUENCY (how often you should be posting, which is a question we get almost daily at SocialKNX.)
We’ll wrap up with the different types of content you can rotate in. You don’t want everything to be promotional and as a business owner, you certainly aren’t on Instagram to just share photos of your dogs (although if you are, be sure to drop the name of your account…I love following those accounts). By rotating in different categories or types of content you will have a well-balanced feed or collection of posts.
Let’s take a look at the 4 types of posts on Instagram:
1. Your GRID (AKA: your feed)
This is the hub, the main posts on your Instagram account. The photos here are typically a bit more staged and planned. Consider this the place for your BEST SELF to show up. Your feed is a mix of real images of you, your team, and the occasional (beautiful) stock images or graphics. A carousel post (one that has 2-10 images) can be loaded into one post and will give you more opportunities to have that post seen. If someone sees only the first photo and scrolls by, Instagram will show that post again but start on image 2 or 3 where the person stopped, so your chances are better to grab someone’s attention. Keep this in mind when loading multiple images too. Put those eye-catching images first!
2. STORIES and LIVE Streaming
Stories are those short blips that look as if it is a visual diary of someone’s day at times.If you post only one image or short video, you will see one long continuous line across the top. Each segment of your story is a dash. When I look at someone’s story and see tiny dots, it seems like a big commitment and I usually pass but if it’s great content I will click through each one. Watch your analytics to see if you are overwhelming people with too many segments here.
Stories are where a brand can be more casual, funny, authentic, and it is where you can definitely point people to your other content. Use stories to promote your latest podcast, blog post, or even your latest Instagram post (Grid post). You can also go LIVE in your stories area. When you go to add a post from your home page, you will notice several options- POST-STORY-REELS-LIVE.
Instagram recently extended the amount of time you can go LIVE from 1 hour to 4 hours. My thought is, who is watching a LIVE for 4 hours? This happened during COVID quarantine time, so I believe it was to accommodate all of the classes and events that suddenly went online. 4-hours is also the limit on Facebook LIVES so it makes sense. When you finish your Instagram LIVE, you will be asked if you want to save or download the video. This allows you to edit it or chop it into small sharable pieces for IGTV, Stories or even on your other social platforms.
Another feature that is tied to your Stories, is the highlight button. You may notice that some people have little circles under their bio. These can be categorized and created by you to save segments of your Stories that otherwise will disappear after 24-hours. You may create a button for EVENTS, LAUNCHES, TESTIMONIALS, TEAM MEMBERS, etc. After you create some Story segments you will start to see which pieces you want to tuck away in your highlight buttons. You can always go later and clean out old segments.
Use a tool like Canva to create cute buttons and brand them with your colors.
Reels is the latest roll out and it’s Instagram’s response to TikTok. With fun video effects, you can create educational or just entertaining 30-second videos. The best part of Reels, at least at the time I’m writing this post, is that Instagram is giving special treatment to these video clips as they are trying to get more people to catch on.
When you record a Reel video, it goes onto your feed with a special Reels icon. People can click on the Reels icon on your profile (under the highlight buttons) to watch more of your Reels, and better yet, if someone is watching a Reels video from someone else, Instagram will prompt them to watch more Reels (from other people) and your content is more likely to be found. [Read more on the differences between TikTok and Reels HERE]
This is your space for Long-form video. Let’s just say that this is Instagram’s response to YouTube. Anytime a video post goes over 60 seconds it will show the first 60 seconds in your feed and then have the KEEP WATCHING option that takes people to the IGTV section of your profile.
If you are creating long-form educational and informative video content, this is a great way to share it. After loading it on your feed and in your IGTV, you can make a short story to promote it. It creates a web of links crisscrossing from one area of Instagram to the others.
Now we can dive into the different parts to each post.
On your grid posts, you have lots of room to write, versus your stories, you can put some text (more like a headline) across the image or video, but let’s look at these 3 parts:
What helps you build the “know, like, and trust” factor on Instagram is your ability to connect with your followers. In your grid posts you have the opportunity to start a conversation—to share something and ask questions. This is your caption or copy.
You have a sentence and half before the READ MORE is shown, so make sure you have a strong headline or enticing first sentence. Your content can be broken into two types–CONVERSION-focused (education or informative with CTA) or CONVERSATION-focused (telling a story). You have 1,000 characters in this section.
Start your caption with one of these:
Question – “What can you do to make up income in 2021?” “Have you wondered how to build an online community from the ground up?”
Cliff Hanger – “Last year I made $350K doing this one simple thing” “My business chugged along until I made this one change”
After writing your post ask yourself these 3 questions:
Would my perfect customer find this INTERESTING or HELPFUL?
Are you giving them a reason to take action or respond? Have you asked for a response or call to action? Never leave the conversation hanging with “Fun time with our team.” Ask a question or tell people what you want them to do next. Don’t just say “LINK IN BIO” or worse… don’t put an unclickable link in the post! No one is going to do that kind of work! Give specific instructions: “If you’d like to join our group, click the link in the bio to get started today!” Or “To see how this actually works, click the video link in my bio and be amazed!”
Does it explain who I am or what I do?
Instagram started out as a photo editing platform with beautiful filters making even your boring backyard pics look as if it was a magical wonderland. It wasn’t until marketers got ahold of the platform that we saw the immediate decline in quality of photos.
People started posting horrific colored squares crammed with text promoting their products and services, and cringe-worthy stock images that turned Instagram into a virtual junkyard!
Images are the key on Instagram. Photos of people work best, and if they show your eyes and smiling face, you will see those get the most attention.
Look at any account that gets real engagement on Instagram, and you will notice they are filled with the person’s face or the brand’s products and users of the products up close.
I’m not saying you can’t use stock images, but make sure they are beautiful and fresh. Not the corny images of a sales team in business suits running on a track—JUST STOP THAT! [For help on finding better images, read STOP USING CRAPPY IMAGES]
We all have amazing cameras on our smartphones today so there is no excuse for not having good photos available. Get in the habit of snapping 5-10 images per week that you can use somewhere down the line on your social posts. You can load a single image or up to 10 in a carousel post. These are the posts that have dots underneath the images showing you how many you can swipe through to view.
As painful as it is, you need to take loads of photos of yourself and your team in action (drinking coffee, texting, typing at a desk, looking up at the sky or out a window in deep thought, chatting with someone). If you are stumped and don’t know what kind of images to take, download our 55+ photo shot ideas—Ultimate Photo Shot List to get you going.
Get closer than you think you should. Show the details of things- macro images on Instagram do very well. Instead of showing an item of clothing you are selling, zoom in and show us the buttons or quality stitching. Instead of your whole office, zoom in, and show us something on your desk.
We typically think of Instagram in squares. The photos that get posted on your “grid” or main profile are seen in batches of 9 squares, HOWEVER… when someone is scrolling through their newsfeed on Instagram, you can have your image show up in PORTRAIT mode (1920 x 1080 instead of 1080 x 1080). Just like posting an image to your stories, that portrait mode will take up more real estate, and hopefully grab more attention – Instagram will crop it on your grid so be sure to put your main image in the center. Since marketing is all about testing and tweaking, do some testing on this with your images and see for yourself.
Ok, you may need to sit down for this one… When it comes to frequency of posting on Instagram, daily is not necessarily the BEST for your feed (grid). I know… mind blown right there!
If you are a professional photographer, and you have thousands of beautiful images to share, you might be an exception here, but Instagram is a very visual platform, and just throwing up junk stock images or text-covered visuals is a complete waste of your time.
If you can create better images a few times a week you will have a more beautiful and well-balanced grid to represent your brand. If you have loads of great content, then go for it, but keep in mind that the Instagram algorithm favors NEW CONTENT, so it will continue to show your post for 48-hrs+/- unless you post again shortly after, then the new post will take over. We always suggest testing things in marketing, so do another test here. For a month, post each day and then the following month, post every 2-3 days. Gather some data and then make that decision for yourself.
As you plan your content, keep in mind you don’t want it to all be promotional. Most people get stuck here wondering what type of content to actually post. We have a monthly service for folks who need caption prompts that can be customized and come with fabulous images for Instagram. Check out DIYsocial for more information.
I have 8 categories listed here that we use when writing content in our DIYsocial program as well as for our clients. These should get the ideas flowing for you. At the end of this post, I have a sample content calendar that you can copy and use if you find it helpful.
Categories of Posts
ME/TEAM – These are the nice images you either have a photographer take or you collect [download our 50+ images you need…]. They are photos of your team or yourself in different settings. People love seeing faces and these posts will generally do better than most others.
HOME– Family, pets, cooking, sitting by the fire, etc. These posts are for you to share a little about yourself and things you enjoy doing on the weekend or evenings. You certainly don’t have to share photos of your kids or personal life, but if you can let your hair down a bit, it will draw people in.
LIFESTYLE– Coffee, Tea, Cocktails, Food (real or stock image). You are not necessarily talking about coffee or cocktails but perhaps you are sharing something about your day, or your business. Think of these posts as if you were meeting your prospects or clients for coffee or cocktails and having a conversation.
WORKSPACE– Flat-lay images of your desk, journals, computer or tablet, etc. Clean up that workspace and show people where the action takes place!
PROMOTION– a clear promo post telling people how they can work with you and what you can do to help them. Promote your podcast, new product, classes or service offerings.
BOOK or PODCAST What are you reading or listening to? Show photos of books and podcasts along with a nugget or two that you think others will find helpful or interesting.
QUOTES– Do you have a quote that speaks to you or inspires you? Don’t fill your feed with just text, but when you have a quote or funny quip that moves you… share it with your community.
EVENTS or TRAVEL– Whether you host events, attend events or just love to travel. These can be posts and images to share that love of learning.
Lastly, let’s talk about hashtags!
Hashtags allow people to find content they are interested in and therefore the more you use, the greater the opportunity for more people to find your content. Here are 4 tips for using hashtags on Instagram:
Use 30 on all posts…that’s right THIRTY! The more you use, the greater the opportunity for people to find your content. If you can’t think of 30 hashtags right away, start a list and continue to add to it.
Create a few lists and then you can copy and paste them into your posts- don’t use the same group of hashtags on each post—mix it up.
You can place your hashtags at the end of your caption, or in the first comment. There is a reason for this inconvenient action. Hashtags are hyperlinks so if they are in your post, you may be sending people off of your post and onto other people’s content. They can still see your hashtags in the first comment but by the time they are in your comments they are either commenting or at least reading your comments.
Pay attention to how many people are using that hashtag—If there are too few (12 people using that tag), the hashtag isn’t going to attract anyone, and if there are too many people using a hashtag (20 million), your post will be lost in the masses. Do some research and aim for hashtags between 100,000 and 2 million.
If you have survived reading this resource post, you certainly have what it takes to persevere and the stamina to stay consistent with your Instagram marketing strategy. If your head exploded halfway through this post and you need help managing it all, reach out to our team…it’s what we LOVE TO DO!
Be sure to connect with us on Instagram @SocialKNX and let us know what your biggest take away was. We’ll share your post in our stories and love you forever!