How to start a new Instagram page the right way: 

DON'T you dare START A new PAGE UNTIL YOU LEARN THESE TIPS!

When you started your personal Instagram, you probably didn't put much thought into it.

 

You put your name, uploaded a cute profile picture, googled a basic quote for your bio and started out with a post or 2.

 

You followed your friends, they followed you back (shoutout to the real ones), and there you have it: you just started an Instagram.

 

Next thing you know, your friends were popping up in your suggestions, and your explore page was full of interesting content tailored directly to YOU! 

 

Pretty cool how Instagram does that, right? 

 

Well, when you're starting a new Instagram page - whether it's for your company, dog, hobby, or whatever else people make Instagrams for nowadays - there are little-known tricks that will set your IG page up for success. 

 

Implementing these tricks will not only give potential new followers a clear snapshot of what your page is about, but it will also signal to Instagram's algorithm to show your content to YOUR target audience!

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1. DEVELOP YOUR INSTAGRAM AESTHETIC

I know you're excited. You have this new idea, and you're ready to put the petal to the medal. But pump the breaks for a sec - hastily setting up an Instagram page will set you up for failure. 

 

Before you even start the account, there's some planning you'll need to do.

 

You've probably heard the term "Instagram aesthetic" - which is a fancy way for saying the look and feel of your feed.

 

You don't want your feed to be a disorganized collage of random photos. You want them to fit together like a puzzle with a cohesive color scheme and clear content theme. 

 

Since I could write a whole other blog post just on content creation alone, I'm gonna skip that part for the purpose of this blog. 

 

But once you have your basic content strategy in place, it's important to make sure that all the photos look cohesive so potential followers get that WOW factor when they first click on your page. 

 

A cohesive look isn't always easy to achieve at first, and it will change as your page evolves. But developing your own unique style is key to your brand's recognition and overall image. 

 

The easiest photo editing app for beginners is VSCO. Their free version has a ton of filters to choose from, and their paid version has even more. Once you choose a filter, you can make fine-tune adjustments to fix things like the lighting or color saturation. Editing all your photos with the same filter will create that cohesive Instagram aesthetic you were going for. 

 

If you've been around the block with photo editing, I recommend using Lightroom. Since it's a professional tool, it's a little more advanced than VSCO but it can do things VSCO can't such as editing the color of a particular spot of a photo. Lightroom uses presets, which are predetermined settings for the colors of a photo (basically like a filter). You can choose from thousands of presets for under $5 on sites like Etsy - usually they come in multi-packs so you can achieve a similar look with all different types of photos. 

 

It will blow your mind to see how much these little edits affect the overall look of your feed!

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photo credit: thepreviewapp.com

2. SETTING UP A NEW INSTAGRAM PAGE

When you first start the page, DON'T FOLLOW ANYONE until you do these things:

  • Set up a business account

Make the page a business account.

 

Yes, you have to create a Facebook page first, but you don't ever have to use it. It takes 30 seconds to set up.

 

Having a business account on Instagram allows you to choose your niche and gives you access to helpful analytics you'll use to help your page grow. 

  • Choose your profile picture carefully

Make sure you have a high quality profile picture that represents your page.

 

Companies should almost always use a recognizable logo.

 

If you don't have a logo, use a photo that represents the content you'll be posting.

 

Remember - this photo always accompanies your username all over Instagram so make it recognizable & memorable.

  • Craft an informative bio

The rest of your bio should clearly state to potential followers the type of content you'll be posting and the value you'll be providing them.

 

Think about how quickly you make a decision whether or not to follow a new page - ain't nobody got time to scroll through all your pictures and figure it out themselves.

 

Your bio needs to be informative, clear, and concise.

 

A formula lots of people use is 4 lines, each starting with an emoji, and a word or phrase to describe their page after each emoji.

 

If your goal is to drive traffic to your website, include a CTA (call to action) as the last line like "Download your free ebook here 👇🏽"

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This bio for my neighborhood blog tells potential new followers exactly what they can expect from our content. Plus, because of the hashtag and the headline, it comes up in search results when people type in Brickell or Miami.

  • Add a link to your bio:

This link is very valuable real estate, since it's the only place on your Instagram page where you can link to an external site (unless you have 10k+ followers).

 

Obviously, put a link to your website here.

 

If you have multiple links you want to direct your audience to, use a site such as LinkTree that will act as a mini-site for you to add multiple links.

 

When you're using LinkTree, make sure you're very clear to your followers when you explain how to access the content (ex. Read my newest blog post 👉🏼 tap the link in my bio then tap "September blog")

  • Post at least 6 pictures.

I know you just want to start getting followers, but now that you have developed a beautiful Instagram aesthetic, it will be a piece of cake to start posting photos!

 

Think about it: if an account with no photos followed you, would you follow back? Nobody wants to follow a page with 0 posts.

 

Post at least 6 photos so that there is no empty space at the bottom of the screen.

 

Will these photos get any likes? Probably not yet. But right now it doesn't matter.

 

These 6 photos are evidence of the type of content your page promises to provide; when people are making that important decision of whether or not to follow you, the quality of these first posts will be their deciding factor. 

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3. GETTING FOLLOWERS IN YOUR NICHE

DON'T - I repeat - DON'T follow all your friends.

 

That is the first thing everyone is tempted to do when they start a new page, but let me tell you why you shouldn't.

 

The first people you follow signals to Instagram what type of content your account is interested in.

 

Your friends probably have all different interests & hobbies, follow a variety of types of accounts, and post everything under the sun.

 

Most of them are probably NOT your target audience!

 

When you follow such a large variance of people, it will confuse the Instagram algorithm as to what your account is really about and what type of audience you are looking for. 

 

Now that doesn't mean to not follow a single one of your friends with the new page.

 

If you have those friends who are always supportive of your endeavors, first to comment on every post, and *bonus* genuinely interested in your content, go right ahead and follow them!

 

Let them know you are starting a new page and to throw you a few likes & comments to get your feet off the ground. It's always good to have the support of friends when you're starting something new.

 

Now, here's how to get total strangers to follow you...

Start by following the biggest accounts in your niche...

Follow at least 100 accounts in your niche. Start with the big ones.

 

Who are the biggest brands in your industry? Who are the biggest influencers?

 

Once you follow one, Instagram will generate limitless suggestions for other related accounts.

 

Following the big names not only signals to Instagram the type of content you're interested in, but it gives you a feed full of content that's relevant to your niche and a tipping point to start building a community.

...then move onto the little guys

Once you've followed some big accounts, it's time to follow & engage with those pages who might actually follow you back.

 

Choose your favorite company or influencer in your niche, go to their most recent photo, and open the list of people who liked it. 

 

Why do we do this?

 

If these people liked this influencer's posts and you post similar content, chances are when they see your content, they'll like it too and throw you that follow.

 

Also, these people have proven to be active & engaged users since they just liked this brand's post, meaning they'll likely engage with your content once they follow you.

 

Tap a few of the accounts to make sure they don't look suspicious (like fake followers).

 

If they pass the test, start engaging with their accounts!

 

The purpose of this is to give them a string of notifications so they notice your profile, hopefully tap on it, and follow you.

 

I generally recommend giving each page 3 likes and a follow then moving onto the next.

 

Don't like too many or you'll look creepy.

 

Repeat that for a bunch of pages (just be careful that you go at a normal cadence or else Instagram will flag your account as spam and block you. and they don't fuck around).

FINAL THOUGHTS

Setting your Instagram up for success from day 1 makes your life so much easier down the road.

 

The extra time and effort you put in now will pay off exponentially later.

 

Having 500 followers who genuinely care about your content and become customers is better than having 10,000 followers who don't give a flying fuck.

- How to draw conclusions from your insights 

Hi i'm alicia

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- Tips for creating content that resonates with your audience

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I hope you found this post helpful!

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