The Power of Instagram
We are still on such a high from our meeting on Tuesday. If you missed it, Dames members gathered at Hatched Collective to discuss the power of Instagram.
We want to sincerely thank each and every one of you who made it out and joined in on the conversation. Before we dive into the power of Instagram, I wanted to briefly touch on something that was brought up at the meeting that I found incredibly brave and inspiring.
Katie Saffert, the creator of Hatched Collective welcomed our members (and some new faces) into her space and shared her story with us. Hatched Collective, once a communal workspace for women entrepreneurs is now exclusively an event space available for hire. Katie shared with us her reasons for shifting her business, which was an unexpected and inspiring tale that uplifted us all. I wanted to touch on it here, because what Katie said was so important. She started her business so that she could be creative and so she could spend more time with her children. A few months into it, she realized it had become something that was taking her away from the reasons she originally started the company. With that being said, she unapologetically shifted the concept and brand of her business to fit her needs and get back to her real "Why". This is a lesson we all need to remember. Businesses change, they evolve and that is okay. Sometimes we get so bogged down by the operations of our day to day that it takes all of the joy out and pulls you away from your why. I urge you all to reflect once a month and make sure you're on track with your mission, and above all else enjoying the journey. If you're not, then make a shift. Thank you for sharing your story with us, Katie. We are so excited to see where you take Hatched Collective next.
Dames Collective welcomed in Andrea Van De Vort and Ava Pendl.
Ava Pendl is the curator of Kicking.Asana, an ever expanding universe of all things yoga, wellness and conscious living. Ava is a powerhouse. We really don't think there's anything she can't do - freelance writer, digital marketing guru, successful social media influencer and a wealth of knowledge when it comes to all things Instagram. We were so honored to have her on our panel.
The combination of a brand and social media influencer was dynamite. We were able to first handedly see the perspective of a brand seeking collaboration with an influencer, and also an influencer seeking a brand to represent. The insight was through the roof.
Here are some tips we learned from our speakers, and also some resources they've provided for you that you must check out.
1. Social Media Scheduling
We were almost certain this question would unveil some top secret social media scheduling tips that the successful brands and influencers knew about that we didn't -- something that would magically make you extra productive, schedule all of your posts for you, be a million places at once and get you more followers. HA! Apparently, no such thing exists and what both of our speakers revealed to us is that their secrets are HARD WORK, CONSISTENCY and FEELINGS.
Andrea of Van De Vort doesn't use an app to schedule her social media. She does it all herself and decides what to post depending on what she's feeling that day. In five years she has only missed one day of posting to social media.
Ava says she schedules a little bit, but she also doesn't do it too far in advance because she likes her posts to be authentic and personal to what she is feeling that day/week as well.
They did mention some awesome apps for helping you schedule, though, and they are right here:
A website/App that actually posts to Instagram FOR YOU - No more annoying reminders.
Visual planning and marketing solutions for Instagram
An application that allows you to rearrange your Instagram feed to plan for a perfectly designed and cohesive grid
2. Instagram Stories
Instagram stories are great for quick, on-the-go content. They don't have to be perfectly branded to your grid, and they can show a little behind the scenes of your company. Andrea says they are great for converting Instagram followers into sales. The swipe up feature has been a really successful tool for Van De Vort's online and in-store sales.
Can't use the "swipe up" feature because you don't have 10,000 followers yet? No sweat, Ava shared with us a way to get around that, but it will cost you. Now, you can create a promotion on Facebook and schedule out your stories for Instagram as well. If you create a Facebook promotion for an Instagram story, you can utilize the "swipe up" feature. Thanks Ava!
3. How much is too much to share on Social Media?
The girls say this all depends on your company and brand. For Van De Vort, Andrea limits posts about her personal life because the focus should be on the product and the business even though she is a big part of the business. On the other hand, as an influencer, Ava's posts are very personal. She said the more real she gets with her followers, the more the engagement and the better the retention.
4. What do brands look for in a social media influencer?
Hiring social media influencers are always a risk, because it is still a relatively new concept. Although the influencer may have a lot of followers, there is no guarantee they are going to buy your product or follow you on Instagram. Andrea and Ava recommended that when hiring an influencer keep in mind that you may not get an ROI, it is mostly for exposure to your brand/product.
Andrea says, as a brand, that she looks for influencers with a lot of engagement rather than followers, and she always makes sure that the influencer's followers are her target market. Great advice Andrea!
5. What do influencers look for in a brand to collaborate with?
Ava says when a brand reaches out to her and they go right into the sale, it turns her off. She is more apt to work with a brand that reaches out to her and genuinely likes what she does. Something like this : "Ava, we have been following you on Instagram for quite some time and we love what you do. Your photos are amazing and your grid is on point. We think your followers would really love what we sell as well, are you interested in collaborating or doing a promotion for us?" Ava says, be a human and start a relationship with the influencer first. They are more likely to promote you if they have connected with you on a personal level. Great advice Ava!
This is just a taste of some of the valuable information we learned at our last meeting from the incredible Andrea Van De Vort and Ava Pendl. Our members will have access to the entire meeting on a podcast platform within the next week. Also, our members should look out for the email we are sending out today filled with some awesome discounts our speakers and hosted space are extending to them.