I can remember when I started this very blog, I was living in Los Angeles in a tiny bungalow apartment. I would redecorate it almost every week. I would read magazines and come up with fun ideas, snap photos and hit publish. It was a incredibly fun side project of mine that I gave my heart and soul to. I loved every minute of it. I learned so much about blogging, the internet, photography, etc. After consistently devoting myself to this project, it turned into a full blown business and career. Sometimes it blows my mind just to think of how it all got started and where it is today.
These days, the new blog is Instagram ( follow along here ). If you don't have one then I highly suggest downloading the app on your smartphone, start an account and use it to your full advantage. These days, any personal brand or business can create a career just from strategically using their Instagram account.
Now, don't be fooled. Pretty much everyone has an instagram account and there are people all over the place who tell you how to grow your account by purchasing followers, using a ton of hashtags, doing giveaways, etc. There are many "get followers quick" schemes that I see people use so they can rack up a massive following but that's not always the BEST way to build your brand or business. It's not really about quantity its about quality and showcasing your beautiful brand is what you want people to see. You want people to get an idea of your wisdom and what you have to offer. A lot of people use instagram AS a business and that's totally okay. They want to showcase and sell fashion or beauty products, or enhance their celebrity status. All good. However, if you are in a creative business or service based business, you want to use your account FOR your business.
In my E-book The PAID decorator, I teach my girls techniques and strategies to use platforms like this grow a personal brand and spread their knowledge to help them be seen and heard in the industry. I am a huge fan and follower of fellow designer @erica.cook and her instagram account. Take a few tips from her fabulous design sense on instagram and see how she uses it to enhance her personal brand and build her business.
1. Use it to showcase your strategies, tips, tricks, techniques, etc. Let's say you are a killer organizer, take pretty shots of a closet you have styled and give your readers 3 tips to use in their home closet. Sharing information creates a bond between you and your reader. It creates trust and connection and perhaps will have people keep you in mind when they need to hire a professional organizer or they want to recommend one. A strategy like this is so effective for your life and business. Make sure your Insta profile has all the information to contact you readily available.
2. Create a strategic personal brand. Every photo in this post is from Erica's feed. What you can tell from Erica is that she is all about white with pops of black, she loves detail, she has a great fashion sense, there is a romantic flair to her modern decor, she's got a killer sense of style. This is all easy to get. THE REAL DEAL: When creating a effective personal brand, you have to get over your fears of being "seen" and include EVERYTHING you love about yourself. Erica also includes awesome images of her kids, her love, and her edgy fashion sense. Who says being a mom means you have to dress that way. She is every bit the fashionista she wants to be. I absolutely love this about her and every cool mom gets this and connects with her. Developing a point of connection and trust so of course you would want to hire her! If you are having a hard time understanding what sets you apart, read this now, apply what you learn and watch your brand come into focus.
3. Words create connection + define your personality. Quotes are HUGE on instagram and almost every single person can relate to them in some way or another. After Erica published this quote below she got an overwhelmingly successful response and it went viral! A way to stay unique is create words and phrases that you stand by or are really affecting you at the moment. It lets you be vulnerable and sometimes that EXACTLY what people want when they hire or choose someone to work with.
4. Don't repeat the obvious. I see so many instagram that look the same. An ariel shot of a few pretty products, the image totally washed out in white, a few peonies, the exact same accents on every ones feed. Don't be afraid to stand out, do something a little different. Display your favorite things with interesting flowers, unique objects, etc. The magician at this is Kelly Wearstler who creates Vibe trays with collected things laid out that formulate her color palate she is currently crushing on. What this does is set you apart and keeps your content interesting and next thing you know people will be seeking YOU out because you have done something unique and different. Even if it doesn't always get a ton of likes or feedback, that's okay. You are building and growing a personal + individual brand. NO ONE IS YOU + THAT IS YOUR POWER. Don't forget that.
5. DO YOU! Here is the thing, it seems like everyone else has this unabashed bravery for constant selfies. This can be intimidating especially if we feel bloated, tired, not at our best. I get it. In order to really connect, grow your brand and business, people want to see YOU! Your eyes, face, smile, they want to connect to who you are. It's intimidating to put ourselves out there but we have to learn to drop the co-dependent mindset of caring what others think about us. I see a lot of girls hide behind their style or brand but in hiding yourself, you are hiding the BEST part of you. Slowly crawl out of that shell and let yourself be seen. As we all know, I am all about teaching you to Unleash Your Ista! Get a little crazy and fun and showcase that glowing goddess inside of you. We all have a radiance inside of us. People will totally connect to your charisma when you finally let it out. I promise.
Isn't she so inspiring. . .and glamorous?! SHOP HER STYLE: