When we're connecting with someone on Instagram, we want to see them as a person, rather than a post. We don't just want to see what they're writing.
I mean, of course we do, but to really connect with them, form that relationship and hire them - we want to hear and see them.
So this means sending voice notes to people.
This means talking on stories, talking on IG lives, talking on IGTV and/or on Reels.
I mean, there's just so many different ways that you can talk to people on Instagram, but really let people see you and hear what you have to say so that they can connect with you through it.
In today’s new podcast episode, I share 5 Top Tips for how you can can create more connection on Instagram - and note: DM’s aren’t even mentioned because I find them energetically draining so reaching out into DM’s isn’t a strategy for me 🙅🏼♀️
Listen to ep.17 of the podcast now! 🎙️▻▻▻
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Hello, and welcome to episode 17 of the Spiritual Success podcast.
Today, I thought I'd do an episode all about Instagram because it's no secret, Instagram is my favorite social media. And what I've noticed recently, just from the last few reels that I posted and things that I've posted on stories that over the years I have really, really managed to build an engaged community.
So many friendships I have managed to make. And a lot of them were once clients who have now turned into friends and often in the kind of marketing online business space. We talk a lot about how it's not necessarily just about your follower count and the numbers, but it's really about the connection that you have with your audience.
So today I thought I would share five valuable lessons that I have learned and experienced myself for how you can create more connection on Instagram, regardless of your audience size, regardless of what business you have. These are some ways we can really build connection with your audience.
1. Q&A's on your Stories
So the first tip is to do a Q&A on your stories. So I'll admit, I only did my first Q&A really recently it was in 2021, I think. And that's because I was always quite afraid of them. I was never sure what people were going to ask and that made me feel a bit uneasy or I thought, well, what if no one asks a question then maybe that's even worse.
But people do ask and most of them will be your friends, people that you know, so they're not going to ask anything with a bad intention. And I found it to be such a valuable way of being able to share your insights and opinions on Instagram. And of course, you get the benefit of positioning yourself as an expert in your topic.
So when you're doing a Q&A on stories, it helps to ask the question on a certain topic. So if you say I'm doing a Q&A on love and relationships, or sometimes people do a Q&A that's like, what do you think is true about me?
And then people can myth bust and you get to see what people expect to be true about you or other people do them about business or their story, or what do you want help with? What do you want advice on this? So many different options, but I definitely recommend angling it in a certain direction to make it a little bit more specific. And then people will know what to ask questions on. And of course, if you have a business, then you're going to want to link it in some way to your offering or your area of expertise.
It's also really helpful to have some kind of consistent background when you're answering the questions. So some people do like all pictures of them, or I always use different pictures of the beach just to try and give it some kind of theme and a lot of people just do the plain create background. Just makes it a little bit more visually appealing.
2. Showing your face on your feed & stories
The next tip is showing your face. I actually said this on a podcast recently, someone asked me what's the most common thing that you have to work with your coaching clients on and I actually said this! I said, sharing and showing their face. Without a doubt. The people that I work with, I always have to coax them into talking on stories, showing their face, putting their face on their feed.
I have 50% of my Instagram posts are pictures of me. And when I did that, that was really hard to do at first. Not because I didn't like pictures of my face, but just because I felt like it was a bit egotistical, like who's going to want to see all these pictures of me. Like 50% just seemed like a lot because I used to do 25%... I'd do 50% quotes, 25% of me and then 25% like scene setting, travel, books, that kind of thing.
So I moved up to 50% for this reason because people connect with your face and I'm sure if you have pictures on your feed right now, then you will have noticed that the photos on your feed which get the most traction will be the ones with you in it because we automatically connect to humans because we are humans.
So that means that a picture of you is probably going to get a lot more engagement than a picture of your garden or your meal or your holiday, or even if it's a really incredible scenery, people connect with your face most of all, especially if you are a solopreneur, then people are going to want to see who the face is behind the brand and who they're going to be hiring as their coach, as their Tarot reader, as their astrologer, human design reader, you get the gist. People are working with you, so they want to see you and they want to know you. So that means showing your face. And as I said, this applies to stories as well.
Eventually, people will get really tired of watching your stories if all you're doing is resharing peoples' quotes and posts. This is another big mistake that I see... people whose stories are only them resharing other people's quotes. Of course, we all like to see a funny meme or an amazing quote in our stories.
We all do that, but you need to mix that up with bits of your everyday life. Pictures of your face, videos of you talking, just to make it seem like you're a real person that they can actually connect to. And that's what I said this episode is about - creating more connections. So they need to see your face and they need to know who you are.
I've noticed this on reels as well, that the reels with me in did better than the ones where I'm just showing cards. So bear that in mind to try and show your face and get over your fears. It will create more engagement on Instagram.
3. Talk to your audience (stories, reels, IGTV and/or IG lives)
So this leads me nicely onto my next point, which is to talk to them. So when we're connecting with someone on Instagram, again, we want to see them as much as possible as a person, rather than a post. We don't just want to see what they're writing.
I mean, of course we do, but to really connect with them and to hire them. Form that relationship. We want to hear them. This means talking on stories, talking on IG lives, talking on IGTV, on Reels. I mean, there's just so many different ways that you can talk to people on Instagram, but really let people hear your voice and hear what you have to say so that they can connect with you through it.
This is why I do the audiograms on my Instagram stories. I don't just post a picture of the episode for my guest episodes. I make an audiogram, which is quite a time consuming thing to do actually, but I make it because allows you to actually hear the conversation. And when you hear that and you hear the voice and what's been talked about, you're much more likely to listen to the episodes.
So as well as showing your face, make sure that you're also talking to your audience.
4. IG Lives & co-host with other creators
The next way to create more connection is on IG lives. So you will have noticed how many more people are going live now. I swear on my Instagram account, I just have notification after notification after notification, that so-and-so is going live. And lives are really growing because they're such an incredible way to create connection with people and doing a joint live where you're collaborating with someone is obviously an amazing way to reach a new audience.
That person is going to have people from their audience watching the live, and then you'll get to know them. So it's a great way to extend your reach on Instagram, but all in all, it's just a way for people to connect with you in real time. So they're seeing your face, you're talking to them and it's unedited.
They can connect to your energy right there in that moment. So using IG lives is of course quite scary. I always get a bit nervous going on lives because it's a very different beast to say a podcast or a blog or anything else that you can edit if you mess up.
And I always mess my words up. So when I'm on lives, it's a little bit more scary. And I know that's a common thing. I know a lot of people have said the same and it is a bit more challenging. So this isn't necessarily the first thing that you should do straight away if you haven't even done the things I've already talked about!
Like if you're not sharing your face yet, and you're not talking yet, do those first and then get on lives. And of course, you're only going to get better by practicing and by pushing yourself out of your comfort zone. But by going on live, you are going to create a really real conversation and connection with people.
And it is a conversation because people can actually ask you questions. So this is another way that the IG lives create connection with your audience, because they can ask you questions there and then, and you can answer them. So can you see the theme here?
Like the first point I said was about the Q&A where your audience asks you questions and you answer them and you're positioning yourself as an expert, someone who solves their problems and it's the same on IG lives. So this kind of encompasses all three points that I have just talked about.
So you're answering their questions that they're asking you on the live. You're showing your face. And you're talking to them. So IG lives are an incredible way to connect with the audience, show that you're a real person and get them to really feel your energy. And also you can answer their questions as well, and really show that you are there for them.
You're there to teach them and you're there to help them and you can really make their lives better.
5. Share real value for people
And the last point is just to share value. This is an obvious one. Of course, we want our Instagrams to be valuable. We need to make sure that we are solving problems in some way that we are inspiring people. That we're allowing people to really see us and know us as who we truly are. So we're creating that true connection.
But we don't always need to share value. So it's not just a highlight reel, especially on stories. And actually I think that can have the adverse effect. People who don't share their down days, their sad days when they're going through something, I think that actually creates a lack of connection because everyone knows that's not true.
Everyone knows that everyone gets depressed sometimes and everyone has a bad day and everyone fails and things go wrong. So make sure that you do share those things, okay? Just a little bit, maybe 10, 20% or whatever is authentic for you, but don't just share your happy highlights because people do connect to your story.
They'll connect your struggles because everyone struggles, they'll connect to your past, whatever that may be and actually your stories are providing value because they're providing that connection.
And what it was that actually made me think of making this episode was the other day, I just found myself being on Instagram all day and it wasn't very productive. I was just refreshing. I was just answering DM's, but all day. And I realized it's because I've been at home alone a lot, which I normally am. But I'm getting to the end of an eight week stint, which is usually when I'd see Ally. I usually see them every nine weeks, but now he's doing a double stint because of coronavirus and the travel restrictions and he's in Africa.
So we've got like an extra, extra long stint, which is going to be four months. So I'm just missing that connection piece. And I was really trying to find connection on Instagram. So then I actually deleted the app for the whole next day just to kind of have a detox. And it really got me realizing that, wow, I do find so much connection on Instagram and it's because I have so many incredible soulmates and friends on Instagram, as well as lots of other people in my audience who I've been with for years.
Like there's literally people that have followed me since 2018, 2019. So that's really incredible as well. Instagram is such a powerful connection tool. I absolutely love it. I can attribute pretty much all of my success to Instagram. It's where I started this in May, 2018, it started with my first post on a new Instagram account.
So Instagram is absolutely phenomenal. I think it's amazing if your audience is heavily based in the millennial and younger age group, I think it's the way that you can be super creative, that allows you to push yourself outside of your comfort zone. And it really challenges you to share your stories, share your life, and inspire other people along the way as well.
So I love Instagram and hopefully these tips will help you to create more connection with your audience. And I hope that they serve you really, really well.