If you follow MACsWomen on Instagram you saw in this social media tip I shared that Instagram made a long overdue and welcome change that marketers and social media managers have wanted for some time – it will allow businesses on Instagram to schedule their posts.
Before, there were unofficial means to aid with this – like tools that would send out a push notification to remind you to publish a post at a given time, for example. Tools like Planoly, SproutSocial and Buffer. But no functionality was available in Instagram itself. The closest Instagram got was the added support for Drafts, which allowed social media managers and other users to prep a post and save it for later publication.
If you are as excited about this new update as we are, leave a comment below. Also, follow along with us on Instagram for more social media tips and motivation.
The reason I created this marketing support group for women business owners is mainly because of the huge changes that are being made on giant social media sites like Facebook that could impact all of us as marketers getting our content seen.
HUGE FACEBOOK NEWS! This could be the end of the newsfeed as we know it…🤯🤯🤯⠀
A few hours ago Zuckerberg announced MAJOR changes to the Facebook News Feed in a bid to see its users spending less time passively scrolling through updates on the newsfeed, reading articles and watching videos, but not interacting with others.
Mark says, “The first changes you'll see will be in News Feed, where you can expect to see more from your friends, family and groups. As we roll this out, you'll see LESS public content like posts from businesses, brands, and media. And the public content you see more will be held to the same standard -- it should encourage meaningful interactions between people.” ⠀
Changes to the ordering algorithm behind Facebook's News Feed is one of the most significant updates Facebook has made in years.⠀
💥Here’s a few key takeaways 💥⠀
✔Focusing on Facebook ads will now be more important than ever for brands and businesses wanting to reach and impact their audience. ⠀
✔Organic content strategies for pages WILL need to change. Focus on storytelling, people and encourage meaningful interactions.⠀
✔Facebook will begin demoting 'engagement bait' posts in the News Feed (e.g posts that ask users to like, share, follow, comment on a post).⠀
These changes will rollout out as early as next week. If you don’t have your paid advertising strategy in place for 2018, now might be a good time to start.
To support our fellow female entrepreneurs without huge ad budgets stay in the game, join our support group here: Join Our Group!
Social media requires strategy and planning, just as much as you plan out your traditional marketing efforts. Having a plan for your blog should definitely be included in your overall social media strategy.
Listen, I get it, there is so much to do when it comes to marketing your business online, so the best course of action is to have a plan in place. This has lead me to put together these planning sheets to help you do just that.
Here's another bit of help for you, don't overthink the process of incorporating your blog into your social media strategy.
Keep it simple! Here are three basic steps:
Now, that is pretty simple, right?
So, do you have a blog that you use to educate and inform your audience? Feel free to share your link in the comments section of this post.
If you are simply overwhelmed with marketing your business successfully using social media and need a winning strategy for your social media efforts, schedule a session with me here:
Planning Session with Michelle Christie.
Instagram Stories are the biggest growing thing in social media right now. What are they?
These are photos and videos that you can post on your Instagram account and share with Instagram users. Instagram stories will ‘disappear’ after 24 hours unless you save them as highlights, rather than being saved to your account grid.
This might seem like small or unexciting new feature for the platform but actually, it represents a bold step into the future for Instagram and a massive opportunity for marketers.
Why Instagram Stories Matter
Instagram Stories essentially give you a new way to communicate with your audience that is a lot more direct and immediate, which will right away help you to increase engagement with your audience.
This is because it makes your audience feel more as though you are speaking to them directly. By sharing a photo, video or going live, your audience feel almost as though they are being ‘brought along for the ride’ and almost as though they are there with you. It's that instant gratification.
What’s more, is that the temporary nature of the content will make it immediately more exciting because it will be time-limited. That means that if your viewers don’t check it out quickly, then they will risk missing it entirely!
Another thing to consider about Instagram Stories, is that they will appear right at the top of your viewer’s feed – thereby ensuring that they will be much more likely to see it.
Another big thing, as I mentioned in my blog title, Instagram tests letting users post Stories directly to WhatsApp. Now, that is big news because WhatsApp, owned also by Facebook is a major player in it's own right. Several entrepreneurs use the app to connect both for business and personally.
To read the full details on how Instagram is testing out sharing stories to WhatsApp go to: Techcrunch.com.
For more Instagram resources check out our Done-for-you Instagram Stories Templates and come back to our blog often for more posts, tip and resources for growing your business using Instagram.
Do you use WhatApp? Will you be sharing your Instagram stories? Please leave your comments below. Follow us @macswomen.
Who doesn't love looking at pictures or catching a sneak-peak behind the scenes of your favorite brands?
Instagram stories has made it super easy to share live, real-time updates or planned out photos to market your latest blog post, product sale or favorite quote!
I have made it easy for you with this done-for-you 10 pack Instagram template.
Instagram allows you to share as many stories as you'd like through-out the day without flooding your Instagram grid. Stories last 24 hours which make them perfect for promoting what is currently happening in your business.
You can also extend a few of your Instagram stories by adding them to your highlights.
Start saving time with your Instagram marketing with our done-for-you Stories Templates.
This time of year is one of the biggest for businesses. The Fall season kicks off the holiday festivities and that means customers are buying. To ensure that you are cashing in on this prime time for marketing, here are 10 top tips to spruce up your marketing for the season.
1. Use a Content Calendar for easy writing prompts
A Content Calendar is important when it comes to planning out ideas for your marketing which helps to give you and your team clarity around what you will be showcasing for that time-frame.
2. Celebrate Autumn - nature, outdoor activities, harvest
Stay current with the season. One of the ways to do that is to share some of your favorite memories or activities at this time of the year.
Images of hot chocolate, the leaves changing into beautiful fall colors are simple ways to spruce up your marketing.
3. Capitalize on Trends: Back to School, Fall Fashion
During this time of year, moms of school-age children are all the way into back to school. I remember those days and if you are a mom, you do as well. Tap into that. Again, you can share your experiences. If you offer products/services that are related in anyway, this is a great opportunity. Fall fashion for business women is a great topic as well. Every year when we host the MACsWomen Success Summit, we share information on what to wear. It is usually around this time of year.
4. Show support and share a story for Veteran's Day
With several family members in the military, Veteran's Day is a day to remember the men and women who have served and paid the ultimate price for our great country. Incorporate that into your marketing with a custom graphic that shows support or even offer a deep discount to military families.
5. Share Holiday Budgeting & Saving techniques
Fall is more expensive than we often admit. But fall means great shopping, trying to cram activities in before winter hits, Halloween, holiday shopping and holiday hosting, all of which really add up. Offering budgeting and saving techniques at this time of year can be great advice for your audience.
6. Photo Contest - Encourage Fans to Upload their Holiday Pics
Oh, this is a fun one! Who doesn't love pictures? Especially pictures of other people and at holiday time? Run a contest on your Facebook page where your fans share their holiday photos and the picture with the most engagement wins. So fun and a great way to spruce up your holiday marketing!
7. #Hashtag Your Way into their Hearts - #Gratitude #FallLove
I never get tired of training on the importance of hashtags! It is how you get attention and join conversations online. Shoppers are getting savvy when looking for content online. Using hashtags that are related to your business or your offers will help your content get found.
8. Election Time - Create a Voting Challenge
Here again, you can incorporate what is happening in real-time into your Fall marketing. Run a challenge. They are fun and excellent for building a loyal tribe.
9. Thanksgiving is a Big One - Show the Love
The biggest shopping weekend for businesses and non-profit organizations. Show the love with discounts and content that is centered around being grateful and compassionate towards your audience. If you need help with putting a holiday marketing plan together, contact me.
10. Run holiday sales!
The holiday season is all about giving…major discounts! With over 35% of shoppers making holiday purchases before Thanksgiving, this is the time to start pushing some sales. On our handy content calendar, you’ll notice we took the liberty of including a few promotion ideas. You can run a “buy one get one free” sale, offer 50% off on your entire store, give free shipping for 24 hours and so much more! When planning your sales, keep in mind that you want to create a sense of urgency. Sales that run for a limited amount of time tend to give buyers the kick in the butt they need to make a purchase.
MACs-iMized Tip: Create hype around a specific product by adding a “special holiday price” label.
It is time for another post to help you get clear about taking some simple steps to getting traffic to your website, offers and sales pages.
This is still one of the top questions I get asked by my students and @macswomen group members. "How to get more traffic online."
Here are 10 easy free ways to start getting more traffic to your website and more traffic to your free offers and sales page. Let me know which ones you are already using (and tracking) or will be using in the comments below, okay? Thanks!
1. Post on Quora in Relevant Subjects
2. Share Articles to Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn
3. Create a Facebook Page (How To)
4. Add a Link from Your Twitter Profile
5. Add a Link from Your Instagram
6. Add a Link from Your Skype Status
7. Add a Link from Your Pinterest
8. Appear on a Podcast
9. Post Videos to YouTube
10. Share Pictures to Flickr
How easy are these free traffic tips? Pretty easy ways to get free traffic to your website right? If you have easy ways of driving traffic to your website, offers and sales pages and they are working for your business, please share your tips with us in the comments.
Get more online marketing tips, live streams and connect with other business women inside of my Facebook group.
Your hashtags don’t work? Are You experiencing lower engagement than usual? This could mean that your account has been shadowbanned.
In this article I will explain exactly what you need to do to check and fix an Instagram Shadowban.
Let me start by saying that I have worked to grown my account organically and did not do anything knowingly that would have caused an Instagram shadowban on my account. If your account has been shadowbanned, keep reading!
So, What is Shadowban?
Simply put, shadowban is when Instagram suppresses your posts.
This means that your images won’t show up in hashtag feeds of anyone who DOESN’T follow you, obviously reducing the reach of your account and making it much harder to reach a new audience. Basically, your hashtags do not work!
So, here is what I noticed had been happening on my account over the past week:
Those things, combined, told me that something was definitely not working properly on my Instagram page -- so what did I do? Well, like any smart-thinking business woman and social media expert, I went into action, analyzed my page and did some deeper research.
In the rest of this article I will be sharing how to know if your account has been shadowbanned. I will also be sharing what I have done and will be doing to fix my page. This way you can avoid any mistakes on your account and fix your account if you are shadowbanned!
HOW TO KNOW IF OUR ACCOUNT HAS BEEN SHADOWBANNED:
them to unfollow for the testing phase.
Step by Step:
1) Make a new post, using a hashtag that is not very popular. #Instamacs when posting to test your account.
2) Log into Instagram using another account -- Instagram allows you up to 5 accounts. Or, ask someone to help you.
NOTE: The helping account must not be following you -- if someone is helping you, just ask them to unfollow you for the testing phase.
3) Search for the hashtag you used when uploading your image. The hashtag should have a count of public posts on the top of the page.
If your post is there when you search for the hashtag from a different account that doesn’t follow your main one, then you’re fine. If it’s not, that means you’re shadowbanned.
So, now that you have checked to see if your Instagram account is working okay, keep reading for what to do if your account has been shadowbanned.
HOW TO REMOVE SHADOWBANNING FROM YOUR INSTAGRAM PAGE:
If you are a member of my free women in business Facebook group, I shared some of the steps that I have taken already during my Live Broadcast "Aaaahh.... Instagram!!!" to remove / reverse an Instagram shadowban.
Check out these 8 things you can do:
1) Ease off from posting for a couple of days
I know, if you use Instagram to grow your business this is a bit frustrating, but, go cold turkey for 48 hours. Lay low and hope the ban gets lifted. From what I have researched, some people have stopped using Instagram for over 3 days (or more). Their ban was lifted after that. It almost seems like a “reset button” for your account.
2) Delete all hashtags from your recent posts
Instagram stated that there seems to be a “hashtag glitch”. It could be true, but I'm making sure to remove all hashtags from my recent posts and start fresh.
During my research I discovered that some hashtags being blocked or banned by Instagram are done rightly so because they are simply inappropriate, and others are innocent but have been spammed with inappropriate photos. They have subsequently been blocked by Instagram (temporarily or indefinitely). Here is a list of banned hashtags.
So, my tip here is to remove hashtags from your recent posts. This fix worked well for a lot of people and it seems to be the fastest way to remove the Instagram shadowban.
People have also reported that not using the same hashtags over and over again helps. It signals to Instagram you are an active user and not a bot.
3) Put your hashtags in the caption (not in the comments)
This is a new update, because the comments section is where I have been putting my hashtags and so have other social media experts! This way you are not "hashtag stuffing" your post. Now, the reverse seems to apply (for now) on Instagram.
Again, based on my research, this trick of removing the hashtags from your comments seems to have worked for a lot of people. If you test it, let everyone know in the comments if it made a difference for you.
People reported that when they put their hashtags in the comments, their post was shadowbanned after 1 – 2 hours.
Now, putting hashtags in the caption can make it bulky so to keep your caption clean, use 5 (or more) full stops, bullet points or any other means to separate your caption from your hashtags. For example:
Tips to remove an Instagram Shadowban 👍🏼
#socialmediaexpert #Macswomen #Blogpost #Instagramexpert #Instamacs #Businesswoman
4) Don’t use too many hashtags
I’ve always said it: each hashtag is an opportunity to get in front of the eyeballs of the right people. I consider hashtags as free advertising and as ways to join in on social media conversations. So I am a firm believer in using all 30 hashtags Instagram allows us to use in one post.
However some people have reported that the ban was lifted after following this pattern:
Let me know in the comments below, if this worked for you.
5) Contact Instagram
This is one of the steps I took last night. I have invested a lot of time and energy into building up my Instagram account and I want them to know that I am a real businesswoman with real value to share with my audience!
So, I reached out to them.
Here is how to contact Instagram (4 ways):
1. Open the Instagram app and shake your phone: This will activate
the “Instagram Rage Shake” (a big thank you to Kat Gaskin for
the tip). Warning: not all phones have this feature.
2. “Report a Problem” to Instagram through the app: This is the simplest and most recommended way to contact Instagram. A few people have been very lucky and unbanned after they reported the issue (… after contacting Instagram every day until it was fixed):
- Go in the Instagram Settings
- Select “Report a Problem”
- Select “Something isn’t working”.
3. Go on Facebook and search for Instagram (App page) and select “Send a Message”.
4. Send an email at email@example.com.
And tell them:
“I am not being shown in the hashtags I’ve used for my post”.
Do not say you have been “shadowbanned”.
Some people (not a whole lot) got a response fairly quickly from Instagram. I am still waiting for a response and will post an update inside of my Facebook group when I hear back from them.
The main point here is to do anything in your power to remove the shadowban.
6. Do not switch to a business profile
Now, this is another recommendation for business women who are using Instagram for business that has taken a whole new turn! So, now this has become a big topic in itself. There are many diverging views on this topic among the Instagram community. Okay, so here is what's up...
When you switch to a business profile you signal to Instagram that you are a business. Businesses are the bread and butter of Instagram (and its parent company, Facebook). Remember when Facebook made pages’ organic search nonexistent in 2007?
It is only natural that Instagram will want you to pay to get more engagement (likes, views, clicks). I talked about this on my live-stream this morning. Why would you get all the perks of a business account (Instagram analytics & all) for free? Think about it.
In fact, I've discovered that many people have experienced a loss of engagement after switching to a business profile. Of course it doesn’t apply to everyone. It is still possible to rock your business page but it might take more time to gain traction.
7. Switch back to a personal profile, and…
Make sure you also unlink your Instagram profile from your Facebook page. The two go hand-in-hand. Trying this fix might not help, but it is a logical step to take since Facebook pages = source of advertising revenue of Facebook (and Instagram).
I will be switching back to a personal profile for a couple of weeks. So stay tuned for my followup post on what I notice after a couple of weeks.
8. Delete your 3rd party apps
To be sure that there is nothing standing in the way of my account reaching it's full visibility and that all my apps are following Instagram's Terms and conditions, I removed all 3rd party apps, yes, even Planoly for now, until my account is completely fixed!
Tap on Settings Icon
In closing, Instagram Shadowbanning can happen to anyone and there is only one true test you can do. And you need to do it yourself, manually.
The steps I shared above are the ones that I have found to be working at the moment.
If you have been unbanned, leave a comment below and let everybody know what worked for you. How long did it take to remove the shadowban?
I will keep you updated when I find out more information inside of my Facebook group.
We love Instagram! If you are like most business women you want to know how do you get more engaged followers on your account. Well, stick around, today is your day to gain 5 quick ways! Oh, and if you have other ways you boost engagement, leave a comment to share with other businesswomen! Thanks in advance.
Now for my 5 quick tips!
1. Posting daily on your Instagram account will help to build a residual base of engagement. Think about the Instagramers that you follow. They are more than likely people who add value to your day and you to theirs. The more you see their posts show up in your feed, the more you tend to like their posts. So, post daily and your followers will soon come to expect and like more of your posts as well. It's that old consistency thing again!
2. Know what times the majority of your followers are active online and take advantage of those times. Identify 3-5 peaks during the day to create your posting schedule around.
3. Interact with your followers and users to inspire and gain more engagement. Want to know what I do when I'm interacting with my followers and other Instagram users?
I get into the mindset that I am speaking to them face-to-face and post what I would actually say to someone's face.
Getting tripped up on the fact that we are typing into a smart phone or a computer is what holds a lot of businesswomen back from engaging more on social media.
4. Identify and use the most popular hashtags within your industry or niche. To gain access the most amazing hashtag tool click here!
On Instagram, you can use as many as 30 Hashtags. If you are not sure which hashtags to use, our Hashtag Vault is the tool for you.
5. Use Emojis wisely to catch people's attention and to encourage more engagement. For instance, Instagram allows you one link in your Bio area. Try placing 1-3 downward pointing fingers above your link to double your click-through rate to your best offer!
For more tips on growing your Instagram account become a MACsWomen Elite Member today: http://www.macswomen.com/join
Why advertise your business on social media?
Imagine this, you are starting a small business. You have limited cash and don't mention limited time to market your business.
And then you "panic".
In desperation, you started checking online forums, business discussions and even tried crowd sourcing. All great minds and over the top business women point you towards "Social Media".
And then you start doing a list of pros and cons of why social media can be the best place to start marketing and generating long terms leads.
Social media is the latest trend on marketing and advertisements, it is growing, it is instant and "free". It connects and reaches people even from the far ends of the world.
So now you start to think, how do I dominate social media? Where do I start and what to do?
Don't worry, I've been there. I know how hectic it can get not to mention the amount of time spent behind it all.
Two weeks ago, I launched a Done for you Graphics Pack wherein you have access to highly engaging images to start your marketing on your social media, your very own social media calendar (to get you organized ahead of schedule), image hacks to show you what works best for your photos/images and the do's and don'ts on Social Media. (To know more: Click Here!)
You can score high points on social media as long as you know where to start and how to start. And I am telling you, this pack is perfect to answer your queries.