Instagram Marketing Tips For Beginners

blog, interior design, real estate

You know your business needs to be on Instagram. With an estimated 1 billion users logging in every month, there’s no question the platform is popular. But, it can be hard to keep up with social trends and all the latest features, not to mention intimidating to get on camera and talk about yourself. So, where do you start?

Start Simple

You don’t need to get on Instagram stories every day or try out IGTV every time you have something to share. The best way to get into marketing your business on Instagram is simply post photos of what you’re doing in your business. Real estate and interior design are visual-focused industries, so you have an abundance of content to share. This can be something like a project or a recent sale you completed or a new client you’re excited to work with.

When you do decide you’re ready for Instagram stories or IGTV, some great topics to start with are an introduction to how you got started in your career, showing what your typical day consists of, or a tour of a space you recently styled or are looking to sell!

Don’t worry about getting the algorithm right. Worry about being true to yourself and what your business is about.

The more authentic and relatable you appear (which you achieve by not focusing on complex Instagram features to “check off”), the more potential and existing clients will follow you. When someone is always trying to sell you something, do you like seeing that on your feed constantly? No. Share your work, success and definitely share your opportunities or services available, but share the other parts of yourself that people are interested in, too.

Use Hashtags and Locations

Some of the best features of Instagram are its hashtag and location tag features. Users can search for content by hashtag or location, so your content can show up for people who aren’t following you yet, but might once they stumble across your photos. Let’s say I’m a user who loves a certain neighborhood for their restaurants and shops, so I search by location to see what else is being posted about the neighborhood online. If you have apartments for rent in the neighborhood, I may contact you to see if I could move to live closer to a place I love exploring.

You can also create a specific feed of content by using a unique hashtag, like #NameDesign or #NameRealtor.

Stay Consistent

Consistent posts tend to perform better than posting constantly for a week and dropping off the face of the Earth for a month. If every day seems like a lot, aim for once a week. You can also look into Instagram schedulers like Later or saving drafts in the app if you prefer to dedicate time to your Instagram all at once.

Connect with Other Users

While you can argue social media has negative consequences, it’s true design – to connect to others – is why we love it so much. Not only can you stay in touch with friends and family easier than ever, strangers (AKA new best friends?) can discover your account and follow you along your journey. Maybe that sounds creepy, but those new followers can turn into clients, which is exactly what you want!

Don’t be afraid to follow strangers or your competition, actually, you should especially follow someone who works in the same field as you.

Not only can you follow to gain inspiration and a sense of what is your competitors are doing, you can develop a rapport with these peers. Plus, you never know if their plate is full and they need to refer their client to someone else!

You can find new users to follow similar to how you want potential clients to follow you. Look up hashtags of topics you’re interested in or locations of places you frequent. As you scroll through the feed, explore the accounts that pop up and see if they might fit your target client or keep you updated on your industry.

And how do you build the connection? This part is easy. Like or comment on photos, tune into someone else’s Instagram stories and send personal messages to complement their pup or ask about a rug in their space. As long as you come from a place of sincerity and don’t spam people with messages constantly, you’ll start to build a strong foundation for your Instagram network.

Feel more confident you can rock the Instagram world? Have your own Instagram secrets? Tell me your tips on how you market yourself and your business on Instagram.

Why Real Estate Professionals Need a Blog

blog, real estate

You might read that headline and think, “But aren’t blogs so 2008? It’s 2020, Instagram and TikTok are where it’s at.” Yes, other social media platforms are popular, but not all social platforms can bring in the benefits of a blog. I should also say, a blog is only good if it’s updated and has content your customers care about.

One of the biggest mistakes I see businesses do is go all in on a blog at first, and six months later, completely leave it to the wayside. Think of a blog like your favorite house plant. It needs nurturing and love, maybe not every day, but enough so you don’t come back to it months later and all of the leaves are brown and withered.

A consistent schedule is better than no schedule. If every week seems like a huuuuge undertaking (psst, that’s where I can help!), once a month is a good timeline to follow.

Still not sold on a blog? Here’s how a consistent and valuable blog can set you up for success.

1. Improve your online presence.

Blogging can position your site to show up on search engine results by answering your customers’ questions or providing relevant information. Now if SEO confuses you, you’re not alone. And while yes, it’s important to use key words in your web copy and blog, that’s not the only factor search engines take into account. A website with a blog typically means content is fresh, users spend a good amount of time on your site and there are opportunities for your content to be shared on other sites (more on that in #4).

Consistent, new information is an incentive for people to continue coming back to your site, increasing your web traffic and in turn, those search engine results.

2. Establish yourself as an industry leader.

Let’s face it, investing in real estate or managing properties can stress people out. It’s not for everyone. But it is for you, and you have the knowledge and skills to help these people. Web content that covers topics your clients often have questions about is a great way to establish trust. You can provide general, helpful information for readers to help them navigate the real estate industry.

Let’s say I’m trying to purchase a property and turn it into an Airbnb. I stumble across your business with a blog post detailing exactly what I should consider to invest in a rental property and what you can do to help me. Then, I find another business who only shares their basic information and contacts. Which one would you choose?

3. Let prospective and current clients get to know the real you.

Hi! I’m Emily. I write business blogs and web copy, and my goal is for my customers to succeed. *Record scratch*

Hold on. While that intro was fine and nice, what did you really learn about me? That I can write? Pretty easy to forget.

A blog is a chance for you to really let your customers get to know you in an authentic, non-cheesy way. No, maybe you don’t need to update everyone on what you had for lunch, but sharing values that are important to you or personal experiences can help you connect to your clients and make you stand out.

Customers want to trust and, honestly, like who they’re doing business with — especially for bigger financial decisions such as buying a home or developing a commercial property. Your blog written with words you’d actually say can establish that relationship with your customers before they’ve even met you. They’re half in before you’ve even shaken their hand.

4. Engage with your target market.

On most blogs, there’s an option for readers to comment or share every post. When your site hosts content that is valuable, knowledgeable and relatable, people will want to share and engage with your business. As customers engage with your content by posting comments or sharing links, you can see what topics interest them and what they’re looking for, so you can then tailor your services to exactly address their needs!

Oh, and all of those comments and social media sharing? Those increase your SEO, too. Nice.

Are you ready to embrace that blogs have withstood the test of another decade and are here to help you? Ready to bring some water and sunlight to that blog of yours with browning leaves?

Shoot me a note and let’s talk content strategy. You won’t regret it.