Updated: Feb 24
Alright, so you obviously want to learn how to grow organically on Instagram, otherwise why would you have come all this way to read this blog?
We're going to be completely transparent with you and tell you right now -- this is not going to be easy, you probably aren’t going to like the answer that you are about to read and you may feel a bit overwhelmed after reading this. But, if you’re still interested and we still have your attention then let’s continue.
Growing organically takes A LOT of time and effort. No, like really, if you don’t have patience, well your options are to either learn how to have some or hire someone to consult with or manage your social media for you - that's your hint to contact us :)
To simplify the process we created an Ideal Instagram Workflow Chart, so write it down, screenshot it, print it or memorize it... whatever you need to do to remember these steps because they are vital to your success on the gram.
Step 1: Determine who you are and what you look like.
This will entail using your brand colors, logo, templates for social media posts, assets for testimonials, images – these can be stock images or vector art—and of course, your own photos and videos. It is vital that these have a consistent look and feel to your brand because your brand is derived from who you are, who you want to be and who people perceive you to be – most importantly, it differentiates you from your competitors!
Step 2: Identify your ideal audience.
It’s important to figure out what kind of people represent your audience. Make a list of specific characteristics that might make up the people in your target audience. For instance, gender, values, interests, or socio-economic status. Knowing these types of things will help to give you a better idea of who your target audience will be.
Having an in-depth knowledge of your ideal audience is an essential part of the success to your Instagram strategy.
Unless you know what your audience wants from you, what motivates, inspires or intrigues them then you’ll have a difficult time creating the type of content to engage them.
After you've identified who your ideal audience is, go find them and start engaging!!
Step 3: Create valuable content.
This might be one of the most important steps of the entire chart. You have to create content that is engaging! (Yeah, we know… way easier said than done!) But you have to create content that makes your audience want to engage -- WANT to comment on it, WANT to share it with others or save it to refer back to at a later point. Therefore, when you’re creating content make sure that it is informational, educational, relatable or purely entertaining!
Step 4: Establish and publish various types of content (AKA content categories/pillars).
Content categories or pillars are the main topics or themes that create the foundation of your overall content strategy. Basically, this is what you will cycle through and talk about consistently on your Instagram. These categories/pillars should address the problems and goals of your ideal client/customer. To provide a variety of content, choose categories and cycle through them to highlight different aspects of your business. Consider various types of content pillars, for instance we recommend, educational/informational, entertaining, trust-building, and promotional.
+ think about things that you’re constantly asked from your audience + what is your expertise, what are things you can teach your audience? + provide useful tips & tricks + provide useful information
+ customer reviews/testimonials
+ client before & after's + create a tutorial or a ‘how-to’
+ behind the scenes or “a day with me” (example, pack a package w/ me)
+ for more ideas go check out Our Mindful Guide to Instagram Reels!
Step 5: Execute your social media strategy efficiently + effectively.
Produce content that helps to achieve whatever your goal may be. Consider the goal of each piece of content that you create. For example, if you want to grow your account then include a CTA that says, "share this!!" or if you're looking to increase sales then include a CTA that states, "link in bio to purchase!" etc.,
Determine your post frequency. The key is to be consistent!! We recommend posting at least five times a week, and if that sounds like a lot, it’s because it is (however, consider: we post at least 1 post to our feed a day (sometimes 2), 1 reel a day, and at least 5-10 stories each day). Thankfully, you can utilize platforms such as HootSuite, Planoly, Later (so many more!) which will help you to organize your content and posts, however, you must dedicate at least a few hours a day once a month to doing this! Schedule this in your calendar in advance, that way you hold yourself accountable.
Step 6: Use resources to constantly improve your strategy.
Your insights are there for a reason, use them!
Instagram analytics are a great way to understand who your audience is, what times they are most active, and the type of content that they engage with most. This information is extremely valuable because knowing your insights make it easy to compare your content to determine which posts have actually driven traffic to your page or your site.
Let this information guide you to determine the direction for your social media strategy by allowing your audience to tell you what and when to post! You want to utilize your insights to determine which posts have done the best, and then use this information to determine how you can plan future content and continue to create content that is engaging and will therefore increase traffic and overall growth for your business or brand.
+ Show up CONSISTENTLY. Yes, this can be very difficult. We get it, sometimes you just need time away from your phone or a complete social media break altogether, and we will never tell you not to do what is best for you, your self-care and mental health. However, we will say this: in order to be successful on social media you have to show up and be consistent, that's just the way it is. Otherwise you run the risk of getting lost in the sauce and people WILL forget about you and your brand. BUT we also want to mention that you NEED to go unfollow accounts that make you feel bad about yourself! Social media does not have to be mentally draining, in fact it can be an amazing platform to create connections and build a community (we love our small biz community!). Follow accounts that inspire you to be better and bring positivity into your life.
+ Get comfortable being uncomfortable. We’ve said it countless times before but we’ll say it again because honestly we cannot stress this enough: get comfortable being uncomfortable. There will be many times that you will feel uncomfortable and question yourself and the content you’re creating and even suffer what is known as imposter syndrome, where you become your own worst enemy. And even though this is totally normal, it is possible to overcome it with the right mindset.
Also, keep in mind that real growth happens when you step outside of your comfort zone! Get out of your comfort zone until you feel comfortable enough doing something that you never thought you could. Because this is all just a mindset, and once you get out of this mindset you'll begin to see what you're really capable of!
+ Show love to your current following! You have followers, and they CHOSE to follow YOU! Continue to engage with them, create connections and build relationships. Instagram is all about engagement, therefore, it’s important to take the time to genuinely engage with your current following. You will see growth in time with both your followers and your business.
+ Start showing up on camera - reels, stories, videos! Video content is the newest fad, and why wouldn’t it be? It makes perfect sense as it is so easy to get lost in the world of video content because they really are so entertaining (+ people are extremely talented!). Take a look at two screenshots of the analytics from our Instagram @ourmindfulmarketing (see below). You will notice that these screenshots are from 1 week before we posted our first reel to 2 weeks after we posted our first reel (notice the dramatic increase in engagement!).
+ Haters are gonna hate. Keep in mind that you WON’T be everyone’s cup of tea and THAT’S OKAY! You literally cannot please everyone, so stop trying to! Trust us, you will face negative comments and negative feedback, but DO NOT let that get you down. The great thing about negative engagement is that IT’S STILL ENGAGEMENT! (this means that you’re doing something right! Your content is being boosted to feeds throughout Instagram and that IS the goal!)
+ Losing followers is a good thing. This means that you’re filtering your ideal audience. If someone doesn’t follow you - they are simply not your ideal client or audience.
+ Utilize tools like Hootsuite & Canva. Canva will make your life easier when it comes to creating your content for your social media. It creates consistency by providing tools that allow you to easily create templates to cycle throughout your feed to create a consistent, cohesive, and on-brand aesthetic to your followers.
Social media is not easy, and whoever told you that it is lied to you. You might not see the results immediately, but that’s because this takes A LOT OF TIME AND EFFORT before you reap the reward.
There will 10000% be times when you’re feeling defeated, like no one is listening and like no one even cares. We promise, someone is listening and people DO care.
So remain consistent, stay mindful and your efforts will pay off.
If you're interested in more tips and information about how to implement an effective social media strategy or you just simply don't have the time -- contact us for more information. We are here to help :)
- Hannah & Adriana 🍃
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