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Episode 2: How Small Business Owners Can Effectively Use Social Media To Grow Their Businesses

Tune in to the latest episode of the Kerry Barrett Show! 🎧

Join Kerry and special guest Laura, the owner and founder of FikaMediaHouse, as they unlock the secrets of social media success for small business owners. In this episode, they shine a spotlight on Instagram, revealing how you can harness its power to grow your business. Dive into the world of video marketing and uncover the strategies that can supercharge your sales cycle. Laura shares the “know, like, and trust” factor and provides actionable tips for creating compelling video content tailored to each stage of the customer journey.

Don’t miss out on this valuable episode packed with practical tips and expert advice. 🚀


Kerry Barrett  15:03:14  

Welcome to the Kerry Barrett show. I’m Kerry Barrett.

Laura Panica  15:03:25  

Along with expert interviews about social media about video marketing and about video strategy, this podcast is the place that you’ll come to learn to show up comfortably, confidently and compellingly on camera so that you can leverage the lens for every single opportunity it can give you. That means social media means content creation, it means media opportunities, course creation and audience visibility and growth. I overcame a debilitating fear of speaking to go on to a 25 year Emmy award winning on camera career. But it’s only when I realized the connection wasn’t about perfection, but about realness and relatability that my success on camera and in my business soared. It’s how I grew my brand, online and in life. And this is where you will learn to do the same. So let’s jump inLaura Panica, the owner, founder of Fika Media House, social media manager, extraordinaire, strategist, all things online showing up social media marketing, thank you for being here.

Laura Panica  15:04:38  

Thanks for having me.

Kerry Barrett  15:04:40  

I have a little bit of a side note, Laura and I work together on some clients. And we’ve known each other for a while now. And she’s still putting up with me, and my, and my lack of knowledge about how to run a business, which can be somewhat chaotic, quite often. And maybe that’s for another episode. But what we’d like to talk about today is where you should be showing up video strategy, what platform people need to be starting on. And if you are a small business owner, there’s so much out there and I feel like every day there’s something new you know, it’s tick tock, and it’s clapper and now is threads, which is part of meta, which is you know, Instagram and Facebook and WhatsApp and probably a few other things that are missing at this point as well. But let’s start with the basics. When you have a small business owner that comes to you, whether it’s a solopreneur, whether it’s somebody online, whether it’s real estate agent, whatever it is, and they say, Laura, I need to be on social media, but I really don’t know how to get started. I’ve done some posting on a lot of the platforms, not with much intent. Hello, that used to be me. What do you say to them?

Laura Panica  15:06:01  

Yeah, first, I have to say, I don’t think you’d give yourself enough credit because we are phenomenal at what you do for your crown and being of things, I’ve learned a fair share from you as well. So I appreciate that. Yeah. I think they’re obviously like the big four, right? Here’s Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube. Although now tick tock, like, where does that fit in? Is this the big four? are we expanding to five, there’s Pinterest, which in and of its own is a big platform for certain types of functionality. But I think as it relates to video, and in this day, and age and 2023, if a small business owner wants to get started, the easiest platform or rather, the platform with the lowest barrier of entry, I would have to argue is Instagram. Okay, the user interface is super easy. There is something for everybody on there. An interesting fact is their demographic is starting to kind of tick up, right, we saw this with Facebook, right? Early Adopters coming to Facebook were largely millennials, as that was you know, I think myself and maybe in between mine and your generation when that came out what teller saying I’m older.

Kerry Barrett  15:07:18  

I’m joking.

Laura Panica  15:07:22  

But like 10 years ago when that came out right now if you look at the demographics, it’s used upwards to more Gen X Gen. With boomers, right, is there no or is that the millennials? I don’t know.

Kerry Barrett  15:07:37  

There’s Yeah, that’s that I think, you know what I don’t know.

Laura Panica  15:07:45  

Um, and now you’re seeing that trend actually with tick tock and with Instagram as well. However, I will argue that Instagram is a mainstay, despite all these platforms that have come and gone like, as you mentioned before, even like think about clubhouse right, that was, oh, gosh, yeah, it’s funny. I think endemicity probably helped propel that. But Instagram is a mainstay since they’ve been out more than 10 years ago. They just keep growing in their functionality. And as you As you know, just last week with the threads launch, so many events, it’s super easy to use platform, they are definitely a mainstay, I can almost guarantee that your target audience is on there in some way, shape or form. It’s a place for everybody. And just given the visual nature, nature of the platform, I think that’s where people flocked to. We want to be entertained. And one of the easiest ways to entertain is through video. And, and they’ve just opened so much capability with video over the last even just five years with reels. So it’s super easy, and definitely one that I recommend getting on.

Kerry Barrett  15:08:51  

Let me ask you, do you. So you mentioned that Instagram had, you know, sort of a low barrier to entry. And part of that is because it’s been around for a while there are new features, it’s very easy to use. Do you find that it’s the same for it? Let’s say you are a small business owner, whether you’re targeting, you know, whether you’re b2b or b2c Doesn’t matter.

Laura Panica  15:09:12  

I think it’s not necessarily your b2b or b2c. I think within that space, who would see are you targeting right? So if you’re targeting high C suite level execs that Instagram might not be that kind of platform, but then we also have to keep the level deeper, right as with all niching down and finding your, your target audience, there is a few different classifications right, there are the demographics, then there is the psychographics. So even if you are targeting the C suite, are they more like millennials, where they use Instagram for their own passive consumption? So yeah, maybe you could still target them and get in front of them, even though they are in the C suite, right? Think about all these cool brands like the skinny, confidential or even glossier, like, I would guarantee you that their CEOs are on Instagram. But let’s say you’re in the b2b space, and you’re targeting hedge fund owners, or like high end financial planners and CEOs. To that extent, they may or may not be using it for consumption, probably not necessarily for business. There are other platforms that are better for that.

Kerry Barrett  15:10:30  

So even if a C suite executive is not necessarily on Instagram looking for business content, does it still, could they still potentially get that? Could the algorithm work in your favor? If you’re posting on Instagram, and can let’s say Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube, even if not all, exactly where your audience is? You’re almost creating a social media funnel and one platform can support the other. I mean, should we sort of keep that in the back of our heads as we’re planning our platform and content strategy?

Laura Panica  15:11:01  

Yeah, so those are, those are kind of packed questions. So let me break down the first park. And so can you still target C suite execs? Absolutely. Even if they’re, they’re, you know, subconsciously consuming on let’s say, Instagram, okay, it really comes down to what we call parallel content, right? How else can I relate to you? And so if you’re, if you’re taking that into account, like your target market as an entire person, whether that’s a TC exec or not, if you target them as a whole person, what other things do they care about maybe traveling, maybe trying to top five star Michelin restaurants, right? So if you’re also incorporating some of that personal side of your life into your content, you have a greater chance of most likely showing up in front of them. Right. Okay. Now, on the other side of things, you’re talking about different platforms, right? Absolutely. I really do believe in an omni channel approach. We saw that a few years ago, Instagram shut down for a day, right? They had some glitches, and they shut down for the day. What happened after that was permanent, or for the week? Yeah, business survives more than a week without this kind of reach? Most people Yeah, but some people know, those in like the digital marketing space. So it’s definitely good to have an omni channel approach, no matter who you’re targeting. You cannot take your followers with you. So it’s great to have something that is widely owned, like an email list. And, you know, some people have to target markets in their business. Right? They are a publication of some sort, right? They get their ad dollars from sponsors, and for different business owners, and then they also have the consumer side of things. So that’s b2b and b2c. And in order to attract more of what you need to run the business, whether that’s ad dollars or viewers to keep the advertisers happy, you might have to be in multiple places at once.

Kerry Barrett  15:12:51  

Okay, all right. So let’s keep that sort of in the back of our mind as we think about this strategy. We’re going to talk for the most part about Instagram as sort of that top of this social media funnel, right we’re going to focus on awareness and bring people in that way. If you are wholly unsure of fair distance RT when it comes to content, video strategy, etc, like, what is the best way to put one foot in front of the other when you’re just getting going?

Laura Panica  15:13:23  

First, I would say that we kind of alluded to that right? Knowing who you’re going to talk to. Yeah, we could go on there. And my gosh, you could scroll for days, there was something for everybody on Instagram. And then when you start to show up, maybe your mom, maybe you have kids, maybe you post about that, maybe your business owner you post about that sometimes. It really, you have to get clear on who you want to talk to and what do they care about? Why should they follow you? Right? Yeah. So I think that is first, then it’s also kind of pairing that down to what problem you solve? How can I leverage Instagram as a business tool to show people that I can show my people, right to your target market, how I can help solve their problem. So you’ve got who you’re who you want to work with, really, what problem you solve. And then it’s showcasing that through content. So I think where most people kind of get stuck, because they’re, they get nervous, or they want to get started so bad, and they just start throwing up some videos and stuff, and they fall flat. And they say, this isn’t working for me. Right. And that’s not that’s not the case, it’s just really lack of strategy. And sometimes people are working backwards,

Kerry Barrett  15:14:27  

I will just piggyback on that to say, Well, I always have known how to hop on a camera and talk, what I lacked. And that got me. That got me a little bit. It’s one of the ways we met when we first started. But beyond that, it is super easy to get frustrated, if you don’t know what you’re doing and say that it doesn’t work all the statistics, and I won’t I won’t enumerate them, I’ll list them in the show notes. But like the statistics do point to video working on all of the platforms. It’s why video platforms are rolling out in such great numbers. But without having that plan without having that strategy without knowing what to talk about. And perhaps even shedding a little bit of that like corporate stoicism that I think a lot of people get tied into, like, I’m not supposed to show my kids or I’m not supposed to really have a personality like that. That’s to say that mindset is a little too sterile for Instagram. Yes.

Laura Panica  15:15:26  

Yeah, I don’t agree. And I always say, if a picture says 1000 words, the video leaves you speechless. Just don’t get the charisma, you know, comes to her in the video. The body language comes in the tone of voice everything, you know, yeah, it was just so, so powerful. And you know, I have some clients that don’t want to share their personal life. They are you know, it’s just not them. It doesn’t. They’re your brand. And that’s fine, too. There’s other ways to show up without getting personal. And when we say personal, we don’t mean like, you know, sharing the fight you just had with your spouse the night before, although that way, people’s thing. Yeah.

Kerry Barrett  15:16:05  

marriage counselor, marriage counselor, by all means. All right, yeah,

Laura Panica  15:16:09  

hit that record button. But you don’t really it really comes down to your comfort level. And like I said, it really comes down to your market. So I had one client, I was so steadfast and not showing anything personal. And she loves to garden. I mean, that’s something that you’d be interested in sharing. And she’s a member of a garden club in your area. And so we started to do some gardening tips and garden updates in her garden, what’s in blue, and people love it. Now she gets flooded. You know, she’s a real estate agent, she sold the home for you like, what can I put in my garden and I want to have blue throughout the year. And that is just a really personal and beautiful way to connect with people. That’s not showing your grandkids faces or your kids faces or anything salesy, it’s right. Yeah. It’s just a part of who she is as a person. And it’s just it’s, it’s a nice way to connect with people. And it’s a conversation starter. It’s something to be memorable by. And just a really great way to show up online that is not only business because people do business with people, not businesses, related to

Kerry Barrett  15:17:09  

what people may be interested in following her for but not strictly about you know, this home has this many square feet and yada yada, yada, et cetera, find it you know, book a book a, you know, viewing with me. So you make a good point about showing up on video. And I will, I will say like, I do have some clients who are service based and some who are product based, especially if it’s visual, I don’t know if you sell a skincare line or you have makeup or your stylist or whatever that all makes sense. Service is also appropriate for Instagram and I will tell me if I’m wrong like that, where that challenge when people come in is I don’t necessarily have something inherently visual to show right. My business is let’s say I don’t know finance of some sort. But you are the person who is guiding your clients through their investment journey or you know, estate planning or whatever it is. is and so your face is really the product or the service because they’re going to be working with you. And so knowing what you’re like as a person, am I this person going to be somebody who I’m going to feel comfortable sharing, like the financial mistakes that I’ve made with that sort of stuff? Would you? Would you agree?

Laura Panica  15:18:34  

Yeah, I would. And it’s just because your service based business doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re asked to be the brand, although that’s what I would absolutely recommend. Depending on company size and budget, you know, there’s people that have secured a talent to be here, their visual face on their social platforms. Yeah, that’s not needed to do there’s people that have mascots. There’s also ways to leverage video that you’re not necessarily front and center. And it also depends how it’s done, right? Yeah. Often, like we’re still talking about it was dancing. And people like July if I’m a professional financial planner, and I can’t dance, first of all, and nor is that something, it’s like this bizarre, and that’s not the case, it’s really not the case anymore. That was just really, it’s a small subset and still is a subset of Tik Tok, right is these, these trending fans, without getting too into it, I absolutely recommend that you are the face and there are creative ways to show up tastes. I think it’s important because if let’s go with a financial planner example, if I am in the market to hire a financial plan, even if I started my search on Google or referrals or not, I’m gonna go to Google or I’m going to go to your LinkedIn or I’m gonna go to your Instagram account. And if I have two identical people with the same talents, they could do the same thing for me. One of them has a video and one of them does not. And I binge watched their content, because it’s good. And they show up and hear their voice. And I see what it’s like to work with them. I’ve seen client testimonials and other things that they’ve put out there through their video content. Who am I more inclined to hire somebody who already knows, likes, and trusts, or somebody that has a really good resume? Yeah, 100% is a no brainer.

Kerry Barrett  15:20:20  

And I think to you, you mentioned the know, like and trust, you’re also as the service provider, shortening the sales cycle, that client may in fact, call both of those, you know, the person with the video versus the person without and set up like a console. But they already are. My experience has been that they already have sort of a preconceived notion, there’s already been some seeds that have been so subconsciously about who I like and who I’m more inclined to go with. And that doesn’t always have to do with price or anything of that; it has to do very often with how I feel you can help me and like the connection that I feel with you. So the video strategy, part of that is huge. And I like that you mentioned that there’s ways to do it without, you know, putting on a bikini and dancing or showing your kids or whatever. So let’s, let’s jump into some of that Instagram, video strategy. And I know there are different kinds of posts that you do for awareness versus nurture versus selling. Can you like, sort of take us through the basics?

Laura Panica  15:21:35  

Yeah, so I like to think of your marketing basically as a funnel system. And actually, along that funnel, there’s different types of videos that could do really well. So obviously, the top of the funnel is more of like awareness, right, we have to get people aware of your brand and who you are and what you do. So something like that, showing up showing your face. With good hooks and good intentions, and giving somebody something to make them stop, we want thumb stopping content, that’s the best at the top of the funnel. Then as we go down the funnel, some people fall off, some people stay and say, Oh, I really liked what this person has to say, I want to learn more. That’s more so where the nurture content comes in. And that’s where you could show more like testimonials, social proof of what you’ve done, and really hitting upon their pain points, any sort of content that can help answer their questions and give them quick wins, quick solves, and kind of show them the way that’s great nurture content. Like that could even be like what we’re doing right now. Right? Want to show up more professionally. Doing a mock kind of podcast or getting yourself on a podcast and extracting that video is a great way to do that. B roll footage is a big thing right now, setting up a camera while you’re working and putting text over it. Yes, video. And then there’s more of the conversion content, which is when you’re actually kind of doing some social selling or you’re pitching to them to actually hire yeast for a service.

Kerry Barrett  15:23:06  

When you’re talking I want to dive a little bit further into the nurture elements. So you’ve brought people in, actually I’m gonna scratch that. Let’s go back to the awareness. You sometimes see people posting videos on Instagram, for example, that are the same as what they’re posting on their website, it’s their brand story. And I was thinking that as if somebody is on your website, they’ve already searched you out. It’s like you’re sort of beyond that first date. And so you can, like, get right into it sort of depends on your morals. But you know, you can, you can, you can cut right to the chase, whereas when you are on the feed on your Instagram feed, somebody’s not necessarily searching you out, especially when it comes to the awareness stage directly. So the video content that works for websites versus like Instagram is not the same, correct? And what if so, what is the difference?

Laura Panica  15:24:13  

Right, so video content that should be on a website is kind of like, you know, traditionally there’s the hero image on the front of the website. Now often we see more videos that should be like a, like a showcase, highlight reel, of, you know, a mix of who you are, what you do, and who you work with. Kinda Yeah. Right. Like, you know, get the palette. Yeah.

Kerry Barrett  15:24:37  

I mean, you could have client testimonials and all sorts of stuff there. But if you put a Client Testimonial on Instagram, that’s like, you know, look at the great results we got for Sally, you know, if you want results, like Sally call us that stuff

Laura Panica  15:24:52  

doesn’t work there. Yes. On the website, on Instagram, on Instagram. Yes, I know it does. But it doesn’t, right? You were to just kind of like post up a testimonial video, people were most likely kind of scroll through it. Okay, if you can video that kind of video works well in different places, let’s say the gram stories, for example. Yeah. Okay. Now, when you think of Instagram stories, I want you to think of it as just that as a place to tell stories, stories.

Kerry Barrett  15:25:21  

That’s when they work right on the feed. Yeah. Okay.

Laura Panica  15:25:25  

You can hop on and say, you know, I’m so excited. I just got this awesome testimonial from so and so. When she came to me five months ago, she was here. And I told her, let’s do this. And now she’s here. And look what she had to say. That story is this testimonial video, where it’s you’re kind of giving some background. And while it’s not to say that you can’t do that in a traditional video sense, which is now reels on Instagram and put juice into the caption, I would definitely advise on putting some sort of like, call to action or texts over the video or something just kind of give some background to why I have this randomly in his head on this account that I just followed for social media advice. And now it’s somebody else I don’t recognize. Yeah, right. So there’s other ways to kind of provide some background to make it make sense,

Kerry Barrett  15:26:13  

you and I think we hit on something when you said Instagram stories are a part of what it sounds like that sort of content works well. Right. So stories are generally people who’ve already followed you followed you it’s great nurture content, if I understand correctly, and then you’re also telling the story of this person who you’ve helped, but you’re not wrapping it in, you know, so and so got this call us for this, it’s more the story of you, how you helped overcome the challenge, etc. And my

Laura Panica  15:26:45  

The following are 100% I love nothing more. But to see a nice little testimonial bubble on their Instagram highlights. So yeah, the stories expire within 24 hours, if you want to keep them around, you could see them in a highlight. And that’ll stay at the top of your profile. So that’s really one of the best places to put the testimonials because first of all, you could provide some background while you’re posting that in the stories. And then also you could save and have a nice little stockpile of testimonials ready to go for you. Or let’s say somebody stumbles upon your content, one of your awareness pieces of content, while they’re watching reels. And they really liked what you had to say. And they’re like, Who is this chick and he and then your testimonial bubble of like, all these different things. It’s great, that’s a great spot to put them.

Kerry Barrett  15:27:34  

Okay, so dive a little bit further now if you can. Is there a specific strategy or cadence when somebody is I’m gonna I’m gonna start on Instagram I need to start posting videos like what would you recommend? do this do this do this to bring your customer you know through their buying journey or to bring awareness and here’s the strategy for specific video posts

Laura Panica  15:27:58  

right so I think I mean within that tells you they have the magic bullet as a lifeline.

Kerry Barrett  15:28:04  

guy wasn’t a lot of money, people who’ve liked me.

Laura Panica  15:28:09  

Adam, who is the product developer of meta and Instagram, I think MSU says, we’ve cracked the code, we have algorithmic data on how many posts is the sweet spot. They do kind of have that every once in a while, really, it’s kind of common sense. And honestly, it’s different for everybody. They I follow I have million dollar accounts, million dollar follower accounts that they come on, once in a blue once a week, maybe in one story, and they post me once or twice a week. And they are canceling your gift, which is great, because they have trained their audience on what and when to expect stuff. Yeah. So it is really a case by case basis, right? And then think about there’s also these media publication companies that post eight times a day, at least, you know, it’s insane. So you really have a great opportunity when you’re getting started out to train your audience. How you want to work, right? It’s all work life integration, right? If you know Monday through Friday, you could go hard with your marketing, and you could show up every day and tell stories, and you can post at least three times a week. That’s your strategy. That’s what’s going to work for you. Because consistency is really the key here. I like that you do that every day. That’s what people will come to expect. I know it counts I Monday morning, I can’t wait because I know they have fresh content coming out. And that’s when they publish it. And I made sure to either find their camp and honestly, now, their camp shows up upfront for me on Monday morning. Yeah.

Kerry Barrett  15:29:32  

Right. Because they’ve trained you.

Laura Panica  15:29:36  

That’s like Pavlov’s dog. Give me the truth thrown with a bone Monday morning.

Laura Panica  15:29:43  

But for those that it’s not that clear just yet, if you’re really getting started, I would say first of all, consistency is key. So make sure your calendar is blocked, which is a whole nother conversation. But in all honesty, I think as long as you have a story every 24 hours.

Kerry Barrett  15:29:59  

Okay, so whatever that was my question, like one story should have one thing up there every 24 hours, and it doesn’t have to be a huge production, it could be as simple as like I am, you know, on my way to the gym or whatever, it could be very okay.

Laura Panica  15:30:16  

So something like that. And then I do often let them refresh typically, like on the weekends, right? Okay. So depending on your lifestyle, what works for you, I usually try to give them like one day to full hard set, like, okay, and then as far as it goes posting into the feed content. So that’s stories, and there’s feed stuff, whether that’s a guide, or a real or a repost. I would definitely say, at least once, I mean, ideally, there is probably more of a sweet spot if you can work your way up to every day. And half of those should be videos. Okay. So Instagram did this whole push, they really prioritize video in their algorithm. A few months ago, they kind of back pedaled and said, yeah, the over prioritized reels, but honestly, maybe they did, maybe they put too much weight on that in their back end for the algorithm. But to be honest with you, I still find that reels are doing well, you know,

Kerry Barrett  15:31:17  

they’re still great for awareness, right? I mean, that’s really Yeah, I didn’t notice

Laura Panica  15:31:20  

that static post did get some more likes and stuff. But I want to

Kerry Barrett  15:31:27  

say, let me just ask very quickly, when you say static posts, you mean like an image, like a text, a regular image, or even just this picture?

Laura Panica  15:31:35  

Right? Exactly. I didn’t notice that those started to get a little bit more traction. But honestly, the public and your audience will dictate what they want to see. Yeah. And almost across every account that I’ve managed, which is more than two dozen, the videos still get better at the end. And they’re still continuing to get better because it’s just, you got to think of where people are at. We’re in it. We’re in a consumable culture, people consume things so quickly, we’re inundated every day, we know what we like, know what we don’t. And we’re a simple switch of your thumb to get on to the next piece of content and get the next dopamine hit of fresh content. And so one of the best ways to make sure you’re staying up front and even have a fighting chance is through video. That’s what people want to see if they’re, especially if they’re just kind of scrolling and they happen to fall upon your page. If it’s too much text, or if it’s a big heavy graphic, like that’s a lot to read when they’re Yeah, consciously consuming. It was good, it was a little bit easier, right? Yeah, more cross in 20 seconds of a video than you can in a giant caption. Right? And if it’s good video, and the goal of the captions,

Kerry Barrett  15:32:45  

there you go, that’s great. And watch the captions for more read the captions for more or if you’re interested. Lately, I did a carousel post about this yesterday. Go check out that post for a little more information or something and then you really have people staying on your feed and the algorithm boosting you. So you hear a lot of like, Instagram gurus talk about, you know, oh, you should be posting like two or three times a day then the fact of the matter is, unless we have a full team working for Whereas that is very, very hard. So consistency isn’t necessarily about showing up several times every day. It’s a guess about doing the work in the comments in the DMS. But am I understanding you correctly, that it’s more about setting a schedule, if you will, I’m going to post you know, whether it’s Monday, Wednesday, Friday, or Tuesday, Thursday, and I’m going to do that I’m going to set that as my parameters for consistency. And that’s, that’s how you’re training your audience. Am I understanding correctly?

Laura Panica  15:33:47  

Right. Okay. Okay. Consistency confused with frequency. Okay.

Kerry Barrett  15:33:52  

That is huge. I’m so glad you mentioned that. That is, I think consistency is so misunderstood. It’s not frequency, it’s the regularity and the schedule with which you used to execute? Yes, right.

Laura Panica  15:34:05  

Okay. Even if, you know, it really depends on how, how big you want to go. If you’re ready, and you have the resources and you want to blow things out of the water. Yes, show up multiple times a day, make sure you could do that for at least a few months, okay? And then recalibrate at that point. But let’s say if you’re just posting for a week, you’re going hard, and you’ve got like five posts going out, maybe a few of them do good overall, they do pretty well. Some of them kind of fall flat with that tells the average it’s really it’s also about quality, too. So if you have a poor quality piece of content, it’s not going to perform well. And then the algorithm is going to say, Hmm, you know, what? Is your content? Good? Let me not show like, you know, it’s not doing so great. Let’s prioritize, and let’s stop. Because it’s, it’s not what people want to see. Yeah. By keeping you on the app and continuously feeding you what you want to see. Right? So if it’s not doing it for them, they’re gonna not show up.

Kerry Barrett  15:35:02  

There’s no incentive for them to say okay, that you make such great sense when you talk about how they look at what you’re doing, specifically, but somebody who’s beginning to use Instagram. So let me ask you this, are there sort of like three main things, somebody’s listening to this and saying, This has been on my to do list for a while I’ve posted haphazardly but not with intention, and not with strategy, what are like the first sort of three steps that they need to be taking?

Laura Panica  15:35:34  

Yeah, so just to kind of go back to what we were saying a little bit earlier, is knowing who you want to talk to, right? And knowing what problem that you solve, and then figuring out the medium in which you’re going to deliver them a solution, right? And we’re here talking about video. So let’s just say it’s going to be a video. Okay. Then, I mean, we didn’t even go further than the first three steps, right? So you have an idea, let’s pretend you already did that, right? Because we talked about that earlier, and you already took notes. And you’ve already got that written down. Right. So now it’s setting up your account, right, making sure that it’s optimized. And what we mean by optimized is that Instagram is becoming very similar to a Google or search engine. Captions are searchable. There’s select areas on the profile that are searchable. So make sure that you’re putting in keywords that relate to what your potential target market is looking for. So if I’m a video expert, and I know that my target market is searching, VIDEO HELP, or video coach, I want to make sure that I have some sort of combination of those words in my account, in my profile. And I also want to make sure that as I’m writing captions, I’m including some of those key words in there as well. Like, I am Kerry, your video coach, instead of just saying, Do you want to do better on Instagram bubble, I could totally miss that video Coates key, right?

Kerry Barrett  15:36:51  

Because that’s what people are searching for. Right? Got it. Okay, that makes sense.

Laura Panica  15:36:55  

Make sure you get yourself set up and then make a calendar for yourself on this is when I’m going to record my content. And this is how I’m going to post it. This is when I’m going to post it, and then really get to work. And then thirdly, let the numbers tell you what’s working what’s not. Right. When you’re getting started, I would say you know, take a look at some of your competitors, do a little bit of r&d, do some research, see what they’re posting, see what their top performing posts are. If you’re getting started, you have no idea what to do and that is the best way to do it. Okay, see whatever you are doing. And then don’t reinvent the wheel. Just make it your own and add your own thoughts, your own little sprinkles and glitter. And then as you have some sort of different topics and content and things like that, then that’s when you go into yourself, then you look at your own numbers and see what’s working and make more of that. And then at that point, hopefully you’re doing well, you’re getting traction, you’re getting awareness, you’re getting followers, and then they start asking you questions. Yeah. And then you your own system, right you go to your comments, you go to your DM see what people want and then that dictates your content strategy there

Kerry Barrett  15:37:59  

you use the audience to inform what it is that you’re talking about versus what you know, versus just starting to talk and seeing what people like. I lied. I have one other question. Well when you are looking at your analytics, and there’s so many options out there for publishing and posting. And it’s, I mean, I can’t tell you how many subscriptions I have to things that I don’t even know that I have. And I know I’m not alone in that, where should we be going to look at analytics? And what what key numbers or data points should we be focused on and is there like, you know, a bar like if it does, you know, below this scrap, it may be asking you for the mat, and you know, the magic bullet, and there may not be one, but we’re

Laura Panica  15:38:47  

not really honestly, the secret sauce is just really kind of doing this all together really well as a well oiled machine. That’s really the secret sauce, right. But as far as data analysis goes to see what works, there are third party platforms that you can use, buffer, sprout, social, Hootsuite, all of them offer some sort of analytics, if you use them like a scheduling app or a social media manager. But honestly, right within Instagram, their professional dashboard has really all the numbers that you would ever want to look at, or really need to look at, okay, unless you’re a little bit more advanced, and you’re tracking things like ROI from your social, then, you know, you’ll need something else. But as far as just really kind of seeing an overall wellness picture of how your account is performing, the professional dashboard is the place to go. It’s super easy to get caught up in the vanity metrics of your followers, right, like those top line numbers. Yeah, well, that’s great. You know, for a long time, it was like 10k was the magic number that people want to hit. First of all, it was for a few reasons, like getting verified, and also getting a swipe up, Link. Those are things of the past now. Right? So it’s still a pretty good number for social clout. But honestly, I know people that have a few 1000 followers, and they do amazing like, oh, well for themselves. Yeah.

Kerry Barrett  15:40:05  

So and then conversely, there are people who have a million followers and couldn’t sell them like a 99 cent t-shirt.

Laura Panica  15:40:13  

Yeah, can’t match two pennies together. Yeah, yeah. So things that I like to look for are things that actually tell the story of where my business is going. So let’s say as a general rule of thumb, my business goals are to grow my influence, to feed my pipeline, and ultimately sell more, or launch a community membership or whatever, whatever the goal is, yeah. So then we gotta reverse engineer that into our social plan. Okay, so I know that if in person, traditionally speaking, if I make 10 phone calls, I get two points out of it, just for example, right? So same thing with your social status, if I know that I, because impressions are always big, right? If I know if I have 1000 impressions, I may get like five followers from that, right? So you kind of have to do some math and see what that sweet spot number is of what you should really try to be hitting, especially if you’re leveraging it for business. Okay, willy nilly, does need to be backed by data and a strategy guide. So I like to see impressions. And then also another really good number is to know that maybe you’re reaching new eyeballs, new potential prospects, that filling your pipeline, is the number of people that have seen your content, whether they’re followers or non followers. That’s a great stat that’s within the professional dashboard. And then, you know, is my content landing? Are people saving it? sharing it? Yeah. And also what stories could you see if people are tapping forward or tapping back? Yeah, you’ve got way more tap forwards, like people are trying to get me out of this. Versus tap backs, and they’re really reading it. Um, you know, that’s a good indication to Don’t you have to switch things up.

Kerry Barrett  15:41:55  

Okay. There’s a lot there. It’s very complex, I mean, the process of getting on and starting, I think, is very daunting to a lot of people. It’s like I’m putting myself out there, I don’t understand how to do a good video, whatever it is, it really is like a face to phone and voice. That’s sort of all you need to get started if you’re doing video. And then and then diving into the part, which is where you come in, that can get quite complex, especially depending on your growth goals, which is looking at the analytics and figuring out a strategy that’s custom tailored to your business, your audience, your goals, etc.

Laura Panica  15:42:35  

Right. I think first and foremost, getting started is the hardest thing, but also the most important thing. Yeah, you know, it’s like you said, a phone, a face and a voice. You could just get on there and start showing up and delivering value, no buzz, no whistles, no really nice transition and all those crazy things people are doing, just start to show up and that skill set of showing up. Okay, then you could start to say, Oh, well, you know what, I looked at my feet and I noticed some themes here. I noticed when I’m in the video or whatever it does, well, let me do more of that. And then you know, I start to perfect those skill sets along the way. And they don’t have to take very long. You know, it’s just a matter of getting comfortable, and you can start to do more advanced things or worry, you know, just get started, get out there. There’s a big beautiful world on social media, so much potential to tap into and I promise you, like I said earlier, guaranteeing that your target market is waiting for you. They’re waiting.

Kerry Barrett  15:43:32  

They are waiting for you. It doesn’t matter what it is that you’re talking about. There’s somebody out there who wants to hear it. Where should people find you if they’re interested in learning a little bit more about you potentially working with you? What’s the best route for them to take?

Laura Panica  15:43:46  

Yeah, so online figure media house.com also all across social Africa Media House and if you personally want to say hi, at Laura dot Panagia on Instagram, if you need help getting started with Instagram, I’d be happy to take a look at it. We do offer a free consultation. Great, good.

Kerry Barrett  15:44:04  

Laura, thank you for joining us. You’re amazing!

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