Whether you plan on blogging or running a business, the beginning stages can be filled with so many mixed emotions. It’s exciting but overwhelming, for sure! Many people are eager to dig right in and line up their social media accounts to start connecting and sharing with their audience, but are unsure if they should use their current profiles for their brands, or start a fresh new account.
Last week on Instagram I asked my audience to send in questions they had related to running an online brand. One of the questions I got — and one I see a lot within Facebook groups — was about creating a new Instagram account.
If you’re weighing the pros and cons of creating a new profile, here are some things to think about:
Who is your target?
I talked a little bit about defining your target audience (or target market), in this post — when you’re starting an online brand it is so important to get clear on who you are speaking or selling to because it dictates nearly every aspect of your brand. If you don’t know who your target is yet, make sure you ask yourself:
Who would benefit from reading my content, purchasing my products, or utilizing my services?
What age range am I targeting? What do they do for a living? Where do they live? What are their likes and dislikes?
How does my product, service or content solve a problem(s) they are experiencing?
Get really clear on your audience before you move forward with your social media profiles. It may sound silly, but I highly recommend creating an ideal client or ideal customer profile (also known as an ideal customer avatar), that addresses these questions. I’ll even do this when I need to refresh my brands, or rethink my marketing strategy to ensure I’m reaching my target more effectively.
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How will you provide value to your audience?
Sure, posting beautiful photos is one way to attract attention, but it isn’t necessarily going to convert to traffic, sales or new clients. You might gain a ton of followers and get a lot of likes this way, but are you really contributing thoughtful, meaningful information just by posting images? Are you building a loyal community using this method? You have to serve your audience by providing them with consistent, valuable, and engaging content. Utilize your captions and stories to connect with your audience — share authentic stories, provide educational information, offer advice, engage in their DMs and comments on their own profile — give people something to connect to so you can build up a loyal community.
On top of providing valuable and engaging content, you want to remain as consistent as possible on social media. We all need breaks from time to time, but one thing that helps me is planning and scheduling content. I love using Tailwind to schedule my Instagram posts — they have an incredible hashtag finder and provide automated scheduling so you can run your content on autopilot. If you want to read more about how Tailwind can help you manage your Instagram, I wrote a detailed post about it here. You can also sign up with Tailwind to schedule your first 30 Instagram posts for free. I’ve tried so many different scheduling apps over the years, but Tailwind blows them all out of the water.
Really dig deep and think about what you are bringing to the table with your brand. Consistency and value builds trust and trust builds a loyal community that converts.
Do you mind having strangers see more intimate aspects of your personal life?
My first experience in building an online brand came with my product-based business, so I knew right away I wanted to create a separate Instagram account for that brand. However, when I became a Beachbody coach, I entertained the idea of integrating my journey on my personal profile, but decided it was best to create a new account. I simply did not want all the Internet strangers out there to see the more personal photos I only wanted to share with my close friends and family. I also didn’t want everyone I knew in my personal life to see everything I was posting on my fitness account. It was just a personal preference of mine. I’m all for sharing authentic moments and getting personal with my audience, but there are some things I just don’t want them to see, and some things I post on my personal page that don’t fall within my niche.
How much do numbers matter to you?
When I started a new account I knew that meant starting at zero as far as followers were concerned, but I knew I could provide my target audience with valuable content that would grow into a loyal community.
A lot of people are worried about starting from zero — they feel that follower count they have on their current profile will help grow their new brand, and sometimes maybe they’re right — but this is where knowing your target is so important. You want to follow and attract followers who are within your niche, and your personal account might not have many people that fall within your target. In fact, you might notice a significant drop in your followers if you re-brand your personal account and take it in a new direction. Those people who hit the unfollow button aren’t within your niche. If you’re starting anew, trust that you will find your people, and they will find you. Of course you can promote your new account on your current profile if you choose to keep them separate. Just don’t focus so much on the numbers or let that keep you from starting a new profile.
The bottom line
It’s all about personal preference. If you don’t mind sharing your brand or your journey with your current followers on your personal account, by all means give it a go. However, if you’d like to keep your personal account more private and reserved only for people you know in real life, then keep it that way. I currently run three different brands on Instagram and have a personal account. Each brand falls within a different niche, and I know for a fact there are plenty of people I know in real life that are unaware my brands exist, and I’m totally okay with that.
What are your thoughts on creating a new profile for your brand? Does your current profile align with your niche?