Avoiding The Instagram Vortex

We all know how important Instagram is for our businesses, right?

It’s a place to build genuine connections, find potential clients and show them who we really are.

If you follow me, you know I Instagram story every single day, post 5-6 days per week and have a Thursday morning weekly Live video. It’s safe to say I’m a pretttty big fan of Instagram, especially when it comes to business.

I mean, every time I have released my VA for a day Mentorship Program, I have ONLY spoken about it on Instagram stories and since I thought of the idea 3 months ago, the program has generated over $4,000 for my business.

If my few thousand followers could make that much of a difference in my finances, can you imagine how powerful this app must be, especially for huge influencers and businesses with hundreds of thousands of people in their audience?

I love it. I think Instagram is the #1 place to build your business today--it has been and it will be for awhile.

>>But it has a dark side, my friends.<<

According to an article by SproutSocial on April 22nd, 2019, there are 1 billion monthly active Instagram users, 50% of them scrolling daily. And according to Recode at the end of 2018, the daily average Instagram use is 53 minutes per day.

Can you believe that? What’s sad is that you probably can.

We all know our own habits--we pick up our phones to scroll through Instagram when we’re in line at the grocery store, in the doctor’s office, even on the toilet for goodness sake (don’t lie, you’ve done it!).

We IG story our lives away, spend time editing the perfect photo and pairing it with a decent caption, not to mention watching other people’s highlight reels and obsessively keeping track of our likes and followers while we pretend not to care what others think.

It’s tragic, really, how addicted we are to this app. If you’re anything like me, when I read these stats I wanted to throw my phone against the wall and delete my accounts forever. I was like, “I have an email list, I don’t need social media for my businesses!” But that’s not totally true.

Although I believe that starting an email list is the most effective way to turn your followers into customers, you’re going to have to get them there first. And without social media as your handshake, they are not going to let you into their coveted inbox.

So friends, how do we use Instagram for our businesses but not get sucked into the IG vortex? Luckily, I have a few tips for you today that will help you do just that.

  1. Set a time limit in your phone for social media.

    Mine is one hour per day, and once I hit that I can’t go on any longer! This prevents me from mindlessly scrolling and causes me to be more intentional with those 60 minutes.

  2. When you’re on the app, make it strictly about business.

    And yes, Instagram stories count! Millions of people watch IG stories and 1 in 3 of them are by a business--so they are definitely worth creating. Other business-related IG activities include actively reaching out to your followers in DM, following new accounts using relevant hashtags to your niche, and of course creating quality feed posts for your audience, too.

  3. Create downtime for yourself.

    This is another hack for iPhone users, where you can create downtime on your phone so that it only allows you to go on certain (if not all) apps at different points in the day. Mine cuts me off from everything except texts, phone calls, Google, and Maps between 9PM and 9AM.

  4. Control your feed by being intentional about who you’re following.

    I’ve heard a few people say this and I absolutely love it: Just because someone follows you, does not mean you have to follow them back. I know this sounds kind of harsh, but I look at just about everyone who follows me on social and determine if their profile is something I want to see all the time. If their content isn’t relevant to me, if they don’t speak my language (literally and figuratively), or if they are negative, I do not have that stuff on my feed. This way, when I’m on Instagram I’m actually enjoying my time and my brain isn’t bogged down by a bunch of accounts I don’t like to follow.

So friends, I hope you enjoyed my tips today!

Instagram is a wonderful app and has introduced me to the most beautiful souls.

I absolutely love hanging out on the ‘gram to connect with you guys and have conversations about your real life experiences as a 20something gal in business.

>>But we have to protect our time and energy, especially as entrepreneurs, and unfortunately Instagram can become a time vortex if we aren’t careful.<<

Guys, enjoy your time off the app and hang out with people in real life, build your business through relationships, and make your time on social media intentional.

We get so much more out of life this way!