September 17, 2020
Today’s conversation is gonna light a FIRE under your butt. If you’ve ever wondered if you should dive into the world of IGTV or fully harness the power of Instagram stories, today’s show is gonna give you ALL the answers and tools you need. We’re talking to the incredible Natasha Samuel all about social media video marketing.
Natasha is the host of The Shine Online Podcast and the founder of Sol Studio, an Instagram creative studio that specializes in storytelling and strategy. She offers small businesses and creative entrepreneurs Instagram content creation, strategy sessions, and educational resources. She helps clients confidently shine on social media using engaging videos and intentional execution.
We talk about the power of videos in marketing and specifically how to harness IGTVs, stories, and live streams to market, serve, and grow your following. We cover the nitty gritty of how to go about creating an IGTV, tools and gear you need, content ideas you can begin to use right away, tips, tricks, and secrets for getting more engagement and views and building confidence in front of the camera. We’re freaking ready to create ALL the video content after today’s conversation, and we know you’ll feel the same way. Natasha is a master marketer and she drops SO MUCH GOODNESS in today’s show!
Natasha loves video! She is the founder of Sol Studio, an Instagram creative studio. She helps manage content for some of her clients and offers educational resources to help people shine on Instagram. She started Sol Studio while she was still in college and was having the crisis that every student seems to have of “what am I going to do for the rest of my life?” She kept thinking back to wanting to help small businesses, continue to be creative, and doing new things and decided she wanted to start her own business and offer social media to her clients.
Now, Natasha has niched down to just Instagram and loves it!
When we think of Instagram we often think of how we need to be on stories and have a beautiful feed. Video can add a completely different element to your strategy. The first thing is personal connection. When you can hear someone talking, see their emotions, and hear their inflections you build a bigger connection with their brand. It warms up your leads so they are more likely to buy from you and to book you.
One of the biggest things is to position yourself as an expert. Our goal is to be an expert at whatever our specific brand does and does well. Natasha accidentally dived into the world of speaking and she didn’t have a speaker reel until a few months ago. Her speaker reel was her IGTV videos and her Instagram story highlights.
Instagram has so many parts to the platform. It’s not just feed posts anymore. There are stories, lives, and IGTV. When you use all of them holistically and strategically together, that is when you are going to see the best results. You won’t see those plateaus in growth or wonder why people aren’t engaging in your content because you are using every part of Instagram which is exactly what they want.
Video builds trust. When people feel like they know you and get to learn your personality and quirks, they are more likely to trust you with the investments they are going to make in their business.
The biggest thing is behind the scenes, which we all love to create and consume. Behind the scenes are very strategic because it shows people inside the backend of your business. This is where stories are huge. You can show people the tools you use, the process, and all the work that goes into the quality that you are going to produce if they are a client or customer of yours. Behind the scenes videos are a great way to show relatable and authentic content.
What works really well on IGTV are value packed videos such as tutorials, trainings, quick tips, and things that people can watch, save, and implement directly into their business.
When it comes to live streams, they are a secret growth hack that no one really knows about. If doing a live stream scares you, you can do it with someone else! You can have them request to join you and it allows you to have a natural conversation. The key is that it notifies both audiences. The great thing about lives is that it sends people a direct notification that you are going on live! Natasha finds that after she does a live with someone else, she will get a few hundred followers. It’s a great way to introduce yourself to similar audiences.
Live streams are the most intimate way to have a conversation with your audience. It allows them to comment while you are talking, submit questions, and even join you on the live. You can get creative with how to use lives to connect deeper with your audience. They don’t have to be edited and perfect!
The beauty of all the types of video on Instagram is that you can repurpose. If you are going to make a lot of great video content, you might as well use it in different places.
For IGTV, always make it in long form. Natasha likes to stay under 5 minutes. It is a sweet spot since people on Instagram usually don’t have a long attention span. One thing you can do if you have a long series of stories is to save and repurpose them as an IGTV.
You want to put your more interactive content on live streams. These are a great place for Q&As, guests, and trainings. It’s a great form to teach something and get immediate engagement and questions.
You want to be doing stories daily and as often as possible. With the stories algorithm, the more often you are posting throughout the day, your stories bubble will go closer and closer to the front of people’s feeds. Natasha loves to post multiple times a day and be intentional about what she is posting on stories. Bring people into the more behind the scenes and personal aspects of your day. Since stories are less curated, you don’t have to have fancy tools and spend a lot of time editing them to get the most out of them strategically.
When it comes to video confidence and what holds people back, it is actually you. You are holding yourself back because you are in your head and worried about what others think, what you sound like, if no one watches, and what you look like. Those are all internal things that we are putting on ourselves. When you push past that and think about how you can serve and connect with your audience better, that is when your video strategy and showing up on video becomes so much easier. Showing up as you are is going to build that deeper connection with your audience.
You want to be very strategic with it. With IGTV you always need to share it to your feed.
You have to be strategic with all the different elements to draw people into video. Just like you need your first line in your captions to be engaging, it’s the same for IGTV and stories. Get right to the point of why people should watch your video and what they are going to get out of it within the first ten seconds. Talk to their pain points, problems, and what you are solving and get right into it. Having those first few seconds be really strategic helps get your video out there and get more views and retention.
The same tip applies to the title of your video. In those first three words of your title, you don’t want it to be filler words. These need to be directly to the point and use the keywords of what the video is about.
When your title and first ten seconds are optimized, it really draws your viewers in so they are more likely to save, share, engage, and comment.
Video can be such a fun way to grow your business and make you more confident.
Think of what you can already repurpose! With your website, repurpose some of the pages that are already in your navigation bar. You can do a video on your services, about page, or your blog posts. Think about the content that you already have that can be given new life in video form. We are often rethinking new content ideas all the time, when actually we probably already have a ton of content that would be great in video form.
You have to practice! For stories, you need to work on timing your stories just right. There are always things to learn about video editing and tools! One great tool to use is Inshot. It is a great beginner tool because it has great robust features but it is also incredibly easy to use.
Keep your layout pretty simple when filming. Natasha uses a film stand that she brings with her everywhere. When you have a tripod, it really helps you be completely hands free.
For good video quality, use the back of your phone camera as much as you can. Don’t forget to wipe it off for smudges!
Be sure to have great lighting and audio quality. Don’t film somewhere where it is too noisy, and always look for windows for natural lighting!
Vulnerability has become a “trend” on Instagram. Many educators talk about content pillars and categories. Get clear on the categories and main parts you want to talk about on Instagram. This applies to your videos as well. Think about who your followers are and your ideal clients and think about what they are like. Tie these categories into your video strategies.
This can all tie into vulnerability. It’s important to remember when you are sharing things that are a bit more negative, or just deeper, that there is a takeaway or lesson for your followers to take with them after viewing and consuming your content.
Before posting, think about if it is in your content pillars or if it is random to post. Make sure this is in balance with being vulnerable and offering value to people.
Be purposeful with your video while also having fun with them!
The top tip and most annoying tip is just to practice. It can feel weird to talk to your phone and think that there are people on the other side. Give yourself grace and start small. Start with stories and just do 15 seconds every day. Then, do your first IGTV video and keep it under 2 min long. Then progress to do a live with someone and do a Q&A. Break everything down and practice and master each art before diving into the deep end.
Having a plan is helpful. Jot down your content ideas and how you want to show up. Then, put these into your content calendar.
Another way to practice is to make an IGTV video and don’t post it. Create it without the intention to post it, but to instead share it with your colleagues and friends to get feedback.
Have a hype up routine. This can look different for everyone! It can involve dancing, listening to music, meditating, breathing, or calling a friend! Think of little ways to get you excited about making a video. The more you do it, the more it will hype you up.
Instead of saying “hey you guys”, work on talking to one person!
You’re an expert if you know something more than someone else. Everyone has their own skills and has something to offer.
With IGTV, you get unlimited clickable urls in the description or captions. Even if you have under 10k followers you can put as many CTAs and links to get people off of Instagram as you’d like. When people access it through your IGTV channel it is a clickable link so they can go directly to whatever you are linking.
Even if you have under 10k followers, you can directly link for a swipe up to your IGTV channel. If you go into your stories, you can directly link to any of your videos on your channel.
These two tools allow you to be very strategic about your IGTV content. When in doubt, always put your freebie to build your online newsletter. Check out Natasha’s IGTV CTAs to get some ideas!
Hashtags are really important when it comes to captions. Natasha hasn’t noticed if they work the same on IGTV. From her personal experience, they help you rank on the explore page.
Having your IGTV video on your feed is what is going to help you show up on the explore page. No matter what video you are using, it shows up 4x larger than static photos do on the explore page. It’s a great way to grab the attention of people and get them over to your content. Hashtags aren’t as important on IGTV but your goal is to still get on the explore page over ranking for a hashtag.
When it comes to stories, always think of it as a two way street and as if you are having a conversation with someone. Add ways for the audience to interact.
With the question poll, get really creative with it! Instead of just using “yes” or “no”, maybe use emojis or give people two distinctive options. The DM sticker is a great way to get the conversation going.
Every other story should have some type of sticker so people have a reason to be a part of the conversation. Or, make sure you are talking about things that people want to have a conversation about. This is when you are going to get tons of DMs which is really the power of Instagram stories. This is how you boost the algorithm and really connect with those people so they can eventually invest in your business.
Natasha has three main video ideas that are great for IGTV but can be adapted for any type of video on Instagram!
The first is a business card video. This is a video that introduces you, your story, what you do, and who you serve. Even if you have been on Instagram for a while, you’ve probably attracted new followers that don’t completely know what you do. You can do this on stories and make a highlight or you can do an IGTV so it is easy to share.
The second is a Q&A or FAQ type of video. Think back to all the questions you get often from clients, followers, in Facebook groups, and in your DMs. You can do one video on all the questions, or do a series of IGTVs. These are really engaging videos since you are answering the questions people want to hear.
Finally, behind the scenes and specifically day in the life style videos are great! People love to see these and it is a structured way to give people an idea of what your day really looks like.
These are three really general video ideas that you can use in a ton of different ways!
Something Natasha is experiencing recently is rest. This has been her word for 2020, ironically enough. Especially as entrepreneurs, it’s so easy to get into the bad habit of burnout and adrenal fatigue. To create a sustainable business where you can continue to serve people and find happiness and fulfillment, you have to rest and recharge. Natasha’s biggest lesson is to prioritize rest even in her day to day.
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