Hey Gangsta Boss! I'm super excited about today's post because I'm whipping your Instagram marketing skills into shape. No more are the days where you're scrambling to create content to post, worrying about what you'll post next, how often you should be posting and spending hours a day on each of these tasks. Blah..
I'm showing you how to create a system that'll have you feeling stress free. Instagram in just an hour a day Lindsay???? Yasssssss!
If you're anything like I was a year ago, you probably feel burnt out, scattered, confused and just plain overwhelmed. I remember my husband used to tell me that he wished I loved him as much as Instagram... because I was on it ALL the time. You know, trying to grow my following, build my brand empire and generate sales. Well, now I've got all the time in the world because I know my Instagram is taken care of. Less effort? Check... less time? Check... Less stress? Check.
P.S. You don't want to miss out on this killer 5 Day Instagram Challenge (HERE), starting next week!!! Where I show you my top secret Instagram hacks in order to gain your next 100 followers in 5 days. Let's do this!
If you'd rather listen to an audio recording of this post, just hit the play button below.
1. Create Consistency
First thing's first, create some consistency. This will save you a TON of time down the road, trust me! Instead of just posting whatever you feel like that day... every day, you need to create a mini content calendar for every day of the week.
This one thing will drastically change the way you Instagram, in a damn good way.
Instead of creating a super detailed content calendar, I suggest starting off with a general, easy to follow guide that works for you and your brand. Designating certain days of the week for certain kinds of posts. This not only helps you stay on track, but it completely streamlines the process of creating content for your brand.
It's like the movie Mean Girls... "on Wednesdays we wear pink". Only you're telling yourself what sort of content to post on each particular day. Take a look at the example below.
This is just an example you can use to create your own mini content calendar. It's sort of like the skeleton to your content, a starting point. You start by posting these particular things on these particular days, then you just stem from there and start filling the holes with other types of content.
Once you've created your own mini content calendar, move on to step 2.
TIME: This should take you 10 minutes tops
2. Create a Schedule
Alright so this next step is a MUST. Don't pass over this step or you'll be hating yourself later on. I think when people hear the word "schedule" they cringe at the thought of this daunting task. Do me a favor here, close your eyes and take a deep breath in.... now let it out.
Are you feeling a bit more relaxed? Good, because creating a schedule is NOT as difficult as most would think. I'm going to give you three options here. You can be lazy and just use the schedule I've already created (below). These times are based off my own Instagram account (@Lot801) analytics.
Or... if you really want to take this Instagram thing serious, you'll create your own schedule that's custom created by you, for you! Here, let me show you how, It's not as hard as you think.
Log into Iconosquare. If you haven't already created an account, go ahead and do so (they have a free version). Now go to your account and scroll through your posts and see which ones have the most likes and comments. Click on those posts and in the upper right hand corner it will tell you exactly which day you posted it and at what time. Take note of which days of the week you posted them, and what time of the day you posted.
Once you start writing down these days and times, you've already created your own natural calendar. If your most liked post was posted on a Tuesday at 9:45 AM, then Tuesday's between 9:30 and 10:00 AM should be added to your schedule. You'll notice that mine is a bit more general. I have posting times that work for each day of the week for me.
You're more than welcome to get as specific as you'd like.
The third option is to take a look at a successful account that's in your industry and you already follow. Open up their account in Iconosquare and take a look at their posting days and times. This is a quick cheat in order to create a calendar from scratch with less time.
TIME: This should take you 10 minutes tops
3. Designate a Day
This next step includes a system called "batching". If you're not familiar with batching... it's when you group together similar tasks and do them all at the same time.
This is a HUGE time saver people and it's really the meat to this whole Instagram in just an hour idea. Instead of flying off the seat of your pants everyday and posting when your timer goes off, or when you scheduled yourself to post that day, you designate one particular day of the week to do your entire weeks worth of Instagraming... Hollar! Seriously, I spend 1 hour on Monday's and I'm FREE the rest of the week.
I suggest using Monday, only because that's the day I use and it seems to work for me perfectly.
Alright, here's how you do it: Pull out that mini content calendar you created and make sure you have your content schedule handy too.
Start plugging in the specific content for each day into a time slot (shown in pink below). Then you'll start filling in the other time slots with other content... such as: more customer photos, product shots, updated content, featured posts, other people content, real time posts, relatable information, etc (shown in black below). Checkout THIS blog post for more ideas on content to post.
It's up to you how often you'd like to post. Sometimes I fill all the time slots for a particular day, and sometimes I only post once or twice. Although, I highly suggest posting at least 1-3 times per day.
TIME: This should take YOU 10 Minutes TOPS
4. Use an automated scheduler
This last step is exactly what it says, use an automated scheduler to pump these bitches out.
Okay I'll admit it, I went WAY too long manually posting each and every one of my Instagram posts. I finally gave in and tried out Hootsuite (affiliate link) and instantly fell in love. Don't make the same mistake I did. It is a lifesaver!!!
I wanted to punch myself thinking why in the HELL did it take me so long to try it out??? SO I signed up for their free account and so far, that's all I've needed. I've been using Hootsuite for about 2 or 3 months now and since I have, I've had all kinds of free time to work on other tasks in my business.
So all you have to do is sign up with Hootsuite. and go to your Dashboard. It'll take you to a page shown below.
You'll then want to click on the scheduler icon (it looks like a little paper airplane).
You want to click on the Compose Message block, as shown below, make sure you're scheduling from the right account (in case you've also linked up your Facebook and Twitter accounts). You need to be sure that your Instagram is highlighted.
Go ahead and write your caption in the message box and drag & drop your image right in the box.You'll then click on the schedule icon (it looks like a calendar). Schedule the posts for whichever day and time you've already allocated and that's it.
By Monday, I normally have all my blog posts written out, scheduled and ready to go. So all I have to do is pull up the post and use whichever images I want to schedule for those days.
If I'm sharing a healthy meal or workout, again I just use images from my blog or browse through Pinterest for images to share. Just keep in mind, if you're using someone else's images, be sure to tag them in the post giving them credit.
Most other photos I either browse my brand specific hashtag, or photos I've been tagged in, to share customers photos. Or they're photos I already have saved in my phone from earlier photo shoots, photos I've taken while working (packaging up orders, visiting my printers, etc.) or sporadic shots for behind the scenes pics.
TIME: This should take you about 30 Minutes
5. Get the Hootsuite App on your phone
Lastly, make sure to download the app to your phone. It's important to know that Hootsuite doesn't actually post your content to Instagram for you, it just schedules it and sends the pic and caption to your phone for you to post yourself. So without the app on your phone, it's useless.
Make sure your Hootsuite Instagram "Publish to Instagram" notification is on and you're all good to go.
Now when a post has been scheduled, it'll be sent to your phone at that particular time, you'll hit "Open in Instagram", it'll open up Instagram with your photo already there and you just hit "Paste" in the caption box to insert your caption and hit "Share". Voila, that's it!
The most intensive part is creating your content schedule and calendar. Once you've got that part down, it's easy peasy... just pulling pics from Pinterest, your phone, blog posts, etc. and dropping them into Hootsuite.
Alright, now you've got NO excuses. This post was meant to help you get your Instagram shit together, now use it.
TIME: This should take about 1 minute
6. Join the 5 day instagram challenge
Alright, this last step is crucial if you're wanting to up your Instagram game. Everybody needs a little guidance here and there and I'm here to help. The last thing I want is you wasting your time on things that isn't going to help your brand grow.
I'm sharing with you my secret Instagram hacks I've used to grow my following quickly, with people who are ready to buy my product. You can't just start posting pictures from your blog or your product and expect them to start buying immediately. People need to be guided to your products. Let me show you how to attract your ideal customers!
Join the 5 Day Instagram Challenge, that's starting next week!!! I'll show you my top secret Instagram hacks to get your next 100 followers in just 5 days! Whoop whoop!
That's it, Instagram marketing in just an a hour a week. No make it happen Gangsta Boss!
Professional Gangsta Boss