Do you remember when you where I kid and you wanted to try something new? You saw people doing something, thought "I would like to try that" and you just dived in?
You might have watched other people do it, you might have had your parents tell you a few tricks, maybe your siblings and then you dived in.
That photo above is not me learning to surf by the way, but it serves to highlight a point, as kids we often where fearless in what we were willing to try out, we grabbed the key tools, we got some beginner tips and then we were off.
It's a shame we lose some of that fearlessness as adults when learning or trying new things. In my space, I see this a lot, fear of trying new things holds many small business owners back. So in my training I aim to provide some key basics first so that people can gain some confidence to dive right in and experiment themselves.
Instagram is one area that really works very well when we are willing to try just that, experimentation.
To help you along, I have put together this very brief - but important list of 4 key features that every beginner instagram needs to know and be aware of.
1. Instagram Name vs Instagram Username
Your username should be your business name, but you shouldn't repeat this in name area of your account. This section should be used to describe more fully what you do. Both name and username are searchable inside Instagram, so repeating your name and username reduces your search options. Think about describing what you do in 30 characters or less - that is what you need to do in the name area.
Are your Instagram username and your name exactly the same?
2. Your Instagram Profile Image
You need a square image (180x180 pixels) to use as your profile image. Often your logo can be used but it may not be if your logo is very busy. Remember on a mobile this image is small, so you need to choose an image that is clear & crisp & connects to your audience. Your logo may work - but often your face will be better as people will more readily connect to a person inside your business and not just the business.
Would your account work better with a picture of you or your logo in this area?
3. Your Instagram Bio
Your bio gives you a chance to get to the heart of what you do ( beyond the 30 character limit of your name ) & why people might want to connect with you. You need to describe your business here & remember often emojis ( the language of Instagram ) will say it better. Make sure you have a business account, so that you don't need to waste precious space dropping in email, phone or address details.
Have you swapped your account over to an Instagram Account yet?
Hashtags are the secret sauce to growing your Instagram account and reaching your ideal audience. You need to choose hashtags that your ideal client is using to find people inside Instagram. You also need to be aware of reach realities and choose hashtags that have more than 5000 images - but less than 500000 when you first get started as you are not likely to be found in the stream of images for really popular hashtags.
Do some research inside Instagram today on the numbers of images that people have tagged with hashtags you think your ideal customer might use to tag their business.
Are the hashtags you are using too big or too small to benefit your business?
Bonus tip - Your Instagram Grid
Your grid is what people see when they click on your bio link. It is the 9 images (or 6 images depending on phone) that people seem when they first check you out on Instagram. So whilst your image/hashtag choice brings them to your Instagram a/c - the impression or feeling that they get when they look at your GRID is really important to encourage them to connect with you.
Do your images fit together, is there a consistent theme or look of your account.
Instagram loves order - so if you can't be creative - be consistent as this will look better
I have created this handy Infographic below to help you remember these 4 items as well as my bonus tip. If you have any Instagram related questions - pop them in the comments below, I love to talk all things Instagram.
Want to learn more? My Instagram Landscape and Hashtag Hike programs are open for enrolment NOW and early bird is on until the 11/4. Don't miss out - secure your spot today.
There is a place inside Instagram for you - remember your inner child, what would they do?