In Conversation: Social Media – Instagram

Today we are discussing the topic of Social Media as a small business; what we have learned so far and what we are still a bit insecure about.

Daughter/ Haley: I think the hardest part about social media has really been figuring out that each type (Insta, Twitter, Facebook, etc.) all have different audiences and fundamentally different reasons for those audiences to use them.

Mom/Laurie:  Exactly! Especially for me in a lot of respects because I have not been a big user of any SM until this point.  While we were figuring out which one was best used for what, we also were learning how to actually “talk” or what voice would be best representative of our company or ourselves as a Mother-Daughter business.

Daughter: And we have been given a lot of advice from other people about which to use and which to not use. But at the end of the day, I think we are figuring out that we have to just go out on a limb, and practice to develop our voice on social media. There is a fine line between being a personal page, and then being a business that wants to be on a personal level. We want to be genuine with everything that we post and talk about so that we can build that relationship with people, not just as customers but as people all trying to figure this out together.

Mom:  I agree as we want to be accessible.  When we first started with just FB, I thought that we would really have “conversations” with people, but that was definitely not happening.  It’s taken awhile but it helped when we started Instagram and then Twitter, to really figure out the specific roles for each. Then it actually made it far easier to create the posts and be spontaneous – and actually more fun.

Daughter: I agree- it is a lot easier and more fun to write and post in our own real voices, other than just what we think we need to post. For instance, I was toying with posting a #motivationmonday post every Monday, but the more I did that I realized that the audience for this post was not who I was trying to get to- and it just looked too forced. While the occasional motivational quote is just what we need, it looked too labored for our style.

Mom:  I think the way that they tend to be somewhat random now is great; everyone posts some motivational things and I think we’ve found a good balance.  And with this being on Instagram, which we’re finding that our audience consists of every age and mixed between individuals and businesses, I think we have more leeway as long as the posts are falling in our scope or company parameters.  I think we’re far more organic on our site instead of the perfectly orchestrated feeds that we see. That’s us – that’s our simple voice!

Daughter: Yes, exactly. Even though I do agree that there is a ‘science’ to the perfect post, or getting the most attention, it doesn’t show who we are as individuals or as our company. I guess that speaks to a broader topic about our business model, but it applies to our idea of what we want our social media to look like. We like to have a well-rounded appeal to as many people as possible, but in our opinion that comes from showing the true sides of our business (even our mistakes) not just using the correct number of hashtags or posting the most scenic or well-placed photographs.

Mom:  I think we’ve had some of the most “likes” from our most random posts too!  But yes, that speaks more to who we are and what we want to project. I believe too, we have taken a chance on not posting at the most ideal time of day according to the analytics, but instead just making sure that we post.  We can analyze a little later on but we have been just working on getting quality posts. I have realized that I want to be careful as I am really tired of the Insta feeds that seem to post constantly. I don’t want to be annoying!  I think we’re finding out how to make a post with quality content that reflects our business and that in itself is the most important thing right now… actually across SM but really figuring out Instagram for A Simple Cookie.

Daughter: I guess to wrap this up, we are still learning! I totally agree- I don’t want to be that annoying instagram account that posts the same thing, at the same time every day. On one hand I’m glad that we haven’t figured it all out about Instagram- it means there is always some new way to do something, but on the other hand it can be overwhelming, especially when you are trying to juggle all different types of social media outlets.