In this episode, I’m doing a deep dive interview with Hannah Hoffman of Sunny Social Collective. We are talking all about Instagram and how to effectively market your small business with this platform.
Find Hannah and Sunny Social Collective on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/sunnysocialcollective/
Kate Hejde is the host and creator of How You Pictured It Podcast and Dear Kate Brand Strategy. She helps creative entrepreneurs and service providers create a profitable business that fits into their lives. With over 10 years of experience running her own photography business, while raising three kids, Kate believes that business is not one size fits all and that you define your own success. Kate teaches through her podcast as well as through her signature course, The Website Launch Accelerator, done-for-you website designs, and 1:1 coaching.
[00:00:00] Kate: All right. I am here today with Hannah of Sunny Social Collective. She is an Instagram pro and I’m so excited to talk to her today. Hannah, do you want to go ahead and introduce yourself real quick?
[00:00:09] Hannah: Yeah, so like you said, I’m Hannah Hoffman from Sunny Social Collective. I have been a social media manager, or a version of social media management, um, since 2019.
I have a degree in public relations, had no social media classes though within my degree, which I still find just like shocking to be honest. And I graduated in 2020, like it’s not been that long. And so, completely self taught, um, as far as social media goes. just trial and error, figuring it out. Um, I primarily serve photographers as like full service, social media management, and then small businesses and coaching and online and all of those different kinds of things.
So I’ll think Instagram is where I live on daily.
[00:00:51] Kate: I love that. Um, so when you started your business, What got you into starting a business in the first place?[00:01:00]
And then. Does your life match kind of what you thought it would be?
[00:01:06] Hannah: Yeah, so, I started my business on a complete whim. And if you know me, That’s shocking. And that does not align with my personality in any way. I am very methodical. I love to plan. I love to know what to expect. And for Sunny Social specifically, I had none of that.
Um, I had been working from, we had moved to Colorado and I was working remotely still from the job in National Tennessee where we had moved from. And I had kind of been doing, now what I realize, social media management. Kind of on the side at one client who’s still my client today. Um, that I was like, I’m just gonna like experiment with this working remote, all those different kinds of things.
And I absolutely loved it. And I was like, I think I can do this. Like, I think I can do this, like. For more people and like work for myself and all those things. And from a very young age, I always knew I was going [00:02:00] to like be the boss of something like I had, I am firstborn daughter, Capricorn, like type one, girly, like all of those things.
Like I, I kind of had my own little businesses growing up and all that stuff. So I always had that like. entrepreneurial spirit that determined that determination that you kind of need to start, but I had literally zero expectation, zero plan. I was like, I am, I like to call myself a recovering perfectionist, but like I have that like perfectionistic personality.
And so I knew if I didn’t just start, I was never going to. And so one day I sat down and I was like, brainstorming names, which we all know that takes forever. And I just. I just created the account and I was like, I set a date. I’m like, this is when my first post is going to go up. I did it. And then like from there, it’s just been, okay, what are we doing?
Like let’s figure this out now. Um, so as far as like what I expected, what I hope for, what I imagined, I really did not have a lot of expectation there. I [00:03:00] just knew that there needed to be a change. I was. I was not happy in the job that I was working. I knew that it was temporary. It was great being able to work remote and transition to Colorado having that.
Um, but I knew that that was not like where I wanted to end up. So as far as like where I wanted to be and what I expect and what my life looks like now, I think that’s still evolving. I, Sunny Social has only been around since October of 2021. It’s only been a couple of years. And so every day I feel like I am.
really narrowing down what I want it to look like. Okay, for my first year of Sunny Social, I was working 12 hour days. I had way too many clients in my client load. Like, you know, we all learned that the hard way. We’re taking them on. Uh, we don’t know how to say no to all those things. So, I still feel like I am very much in this process of like, Molding my life and my business and how that relates to my life into what I want it to be.
We were talking before this call, even just like how I structure my days and my weeks and my schedules and [00:04:00] all those kinds of things. Um, but yeah, to be totally honest, I, yeah, it’s on a whim and it’s been figuring out ever since. And like. I had my, my goal for 2021 or 2022, actually, cause I started at the end of 2021.
I was like, I’m going to hit a thousand followers on Instagram. Well, I was like, that is all I need. I’m happy with that. I hadn’t, I had zero expectation, even with my own Instagram account. I was like, I’m going to show up, I’m going to book clients and that’s it. And then just in a matter of months, it just, all these clients and followers kind of just.
It felt like that, right? Obviously it wasn’t that way. There was work and hustle and grind, but it just felt like, what the heck? Like, this is not at all what I was expecting. Um, so I think a lot of it, even just that, that 2022 year was like catch up, like taking a breath and being like. What have I gotten myself into?
Like, this is amazing and wonderful, but like, how do I balance it all? Um, so hopefully that answers the question. There’s like three questions in there. So I don’t know.
[00:04:58] Kate: No, that was [00:05:00] great. That was great. So let’s talk a little bit about Instagram, um, specifically. Going back to like the how you pictured it part.
I think most of us, when we started business, we started not to be on Instagram all the time and promoting our business through social media. How do you feel like what’s the best way for entrepreneurs to kind of fit Instagram into their business?
[00:05:24] Hannah: Yeah. So I, a big emphasis I have, um, as far as social media goes, Instagram goes is it needs to be simple and it needs to be sustainable.
Like you said, You guys aren’t Instagram is not your job. Like Instagram is not your full time job. It’s not even my full time job, right? Like it is something that requires so much time and so much energy and so much effort, right? Like for many of us, small business owners or photographers or however you fall into that category, like.
Instagram or social media is needed in some capacity and it can feel really big. It can feel [00:06:00] really daunting. So I always like to say is it needs to be simple and it needs to be sustainable in the busy seasons and the slow seasons. It needs to integrate into your life. Like you are not working for social media like it is a tool for your business is one aspect of your business.
So that is a big emphasis. I always have just with. Just the mindset itself, right? Like not treating Instagram like it is the one I’ll be all like, there’s also other avenues and platforms and things like that. So learning it and understanding it in a way that. You can then, okay, this is a new update, or this is a new change.
How can I compare that to my strategy and my plan? Does that integrate well? Is that something I have the capacity for? Like, we’re starting small. We’re starting simple. We’re building. We’re learning. We’re evolving. We’re building on that rather than trying to attack it all at once. ,
[00:06:50] Kate: yeah, I love that idea of keeping it, um, small and sustainable.
What tips do you have for doing that?
[00:06:59] Hannah: I always [00:07:00] like to say is look at your schedule, look at your capacity, start with how many times a week you can post. So consistency and that reliability is super important for Instagram. It’s really important for community, the algorithm of Instagram.
So you, what you don’t want to be doing is scattered posts.
Like once a month, I’m going to post something or once a week, I’m going to get something up there or like, Oh crap. Like I haven’t prepped anything today. I’m going to have a stress and obligated post. That’s going to go up in the next 30 minutes. That doesn’t have any intention behind or anything like that.
Right. That is where a lot of us business owners kind of rest right now. And it’s. stressful and you’re like, I can’t even come up with a caption here. Like how am I supposed to come up with multiple at a time? Like anyways, there’s, there’s a lot of stress there. And I think a big, something important to remember is again, starting small, looking at your schedule.
Okay. Do I have the capacity to post three times a week? Great. In the busy season and slow seasons. Like I said, do I have the capacity to post five times a week? Great. Seven times a week. Whatever that is. [00:08:00] Look at that. Look at your capacity. Look at your workload, whatever it is. And figure out how many times a week you have to post.
Then, go from there. Okay, what times do I need to post? Look at your, of course you can go into your insights, and you can see when your followers are most active. That is a great tool, it’s specific to your community and your audience. You can compare that, and then, okay. I’m going to post Monday, Wednesday, Friday at 11 a.
m. And I’m going to do that consistently for the next three months. And that’s all I’m going to focus on. I’m going to be consistent. I’m going to get into the habit of posting consistently and figuring out what works and experimenting and having fun with it and not putting a lot of pressure. Like if I had to give anyone advice for where to start, that would be it.
Like choose your posting schedule and then just experiment and have fun and just figure out what works and what doesn’t. And then you can… Take that information. You can take that data and you can narrow it down. Okay, this performed really well. I think this is really in line with my target audience. I’m going to continue to work towards that.
This didn’t perform really [00:09:00] well. However, it led to sales. It led to someone booking with me. Okay, that’s a really good avenue. That, that is information. I think for a lot of times. We’re just posting and like crossing our fingers and hoping for the best. And that lacks obviously intention and it lacks strategy.
And so I think just starting from a small place of just getting into the habit of posting consistently and then learning from the learning from that data is super helpful. So that’s where I would start first. Um, Having an optimized bio that is, uh, I can, we can talk about bio optimization, this whole call, bio optimization.
It is so important. It is so important. It is the business card for your profile. If someone saw your bio only, they need to be able to know. Who you are, what you do, what you offer, all of those different kinds of things. Your bio needs to be searchable. Every single piece of, um, copy in your bio, in your captions, everywhere on Instagram, [00:10:00] they’re using that to categorize your content and push it to the right people.
If someone wants to search social media manager. They’re going to type in social media manager. They’re not going to type in sunny social collective. They don’t know they’re looking for sunny social collective. So you need to make sure that searchable, you need to make sure you’re accessible. Um, and that’s a really good place to start to like obviously posting schedule.
But before that, if you can have your. We’re bio optimized in a way that when people do come to your profile and they do start following along or they see your reel or whatever it is, like they’re getting that information. It’s easy. We’re lazy. We do not want to search and dig for information. So making that easy is super important.
Um, so that’s what I would say for like a good starting point is just general tips itself is choose that posting schedule and optimize the bio. That’s a good, great. Okay.
[00:10:48] Kate: Okay. What are your like top three tips for optimizing your bio then?
[00:10:52] Hannah: So your name field, that is right now where you probably would put your, your personal name or your business name.
It’s not your username. Obviously we [00:11:00] have our news username, that’s where we’re putting our business name. And then you have your name field and that is where you want to put a searchable term. So something that’s the only pretty much the only place in Instagram where you want to be broad where you don’t want to niche down or be specific, right?
So if you are a wedding photographer or something like that in Florida, Florida wedding photographer, if you are a children’s boutique, right, putting those kind of keywords into that name field that are sensible. Bless you. Sorry.
[00:11:34] Kate: I was like, it’s been brewing and I’m like,
[00:11:36] Hannah: oh, don’t sneeze. You can feel it on top of your nose. Yes. Um, but yes, having that name field optimized, having that searchable is going to be important. Instagram is used as a search engine, just as TikTok and different things like that are. And so if you can make it to where your account is searchable, that’s going to help in loads.
Again. In the copy section, that is where I kind of like to describe it as like a cute little mission statement, [00:12:00] like much cuter than a mission statement. Like when you hear a mission statement, we’re like boring, snore, but kind of like that needs to encompass kind of what you offer, who you serve. So mine says something along the lines of helping photographers and small business owners.
Uh, grow online through simple tips and sustainable strategy, but we’re coaching call today. It kind of encompasses. It’s like who I’m serving, how I serve them. And then it has that call to action. The book called coaching call today. Um, having that having those aspects. Is again, you need to be able to get that information before you continue to scroll.
I don’t want to scroll through your whole entire feed to find out where you’re located or to find out who you serve. I want to find that in the bio. I want to find that in the highlights. I want to find that in that initial profile. So I don’t have me as a viewer doesn’t have to look at it. We are literally deciding in seconds if we want to continue to scroll through someone’s profile or if we want to follow.
So keeping that in mind is super important. Another thing is. your profile [00:13:00] photo, it’s great to have one of yourself. If you can’t, if you’re like a single, um, entrepreneur doing your business on your own, especially like if you have a team who are, who’s actively feel like an agency, or if you’re like a boutique and it’s, there’s not really one person, a logo might be appropriate for you.
But for me, for photographers, for small business owners. And if you’re an influencer, all those different kinds of things, a profile of you is important. A profile picture of you is important and something that is tied in with your branding, right? We’re not taking a selfie from 2012 and putting it in our profile.
We’re putting something that fits with our feed and fits with our profile. Something that we can keep there for a while for mine has like sunshines behind it. Um, that’s really important. Another thing about the bio is this is not the place to be putting dog mom. Or like any like coffee lover or like anything like that.
Like those are important things for your bio to have. You have a very limited amount of space there and you want to use it and you want to optimize it. Well, you can put [00:14:00] dog mom, coffee lover, whatever that is in your fun facts post that you have in your feed, but that’s not the place for your bio. And then again, making sure you have a link.
That works that has that is easy again, easy and accessible when they do click on that link. And then you have, if you are in a specific location, you can put a hyperlinked location in there as well, whether it’s the city and state, or if you have a specific, um, brick and mortar store or something like that, you want to making sure you have it again, ease and accessibility is super important for your bio.
[00:14:31] Kate: So now with Instagram’s newest, like updates, you can put more than one link. How are you feeling about that versus like, I don’t like Linktree. I’m going to say that like, not that if you have like a links page on your website, that’s much better for your SEO there website person here. But how do you feel about having like multiple links versus that like one links page?
[00:14:57] Hannah: I really don’t have a lot of feelings about it, to be [00:15:00] honest. I use, um, something called StamStore, and it’s an amazing platform, and it’s, that’s what I use for my LinkedIn bio. It’s, you’re able to put links in there. I’m able to, people are able to put coaching calls through that. They’re able to download my digital downloads.
It’s all in one place. Um, so that is what I’ve chosen to use. But if you have multiple links, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that. I mean, experiment with that, test that out again, though. If you were saying, like you were saying, if you have a link page attached to your website, that’s obviously ideal.
Like, we want that. That’s going to get them one step closer to clicking on your website. It’s branded. It’s visually better. It’s great for SEO. All those different kinds of things. I don’t have a great, I don’t have a huge opinion on that. I really honestly don’t see a lot of people utilizing that feature.
I think most people are still just sticking with their Lincoln bio platforms or their stand store or different things like that. Um, but if it works for you and if you want to try it out, I mean, again, that does, um, encourage the ease and accessibility. I think the main reason why Instagram [00:16:00] created it as a feature though, is it just keeps them within the app for longer.
Yeah. And it’s just, again, that ease and accessibility. So yeah. Try it if it works. And I don’t think there’s a huge, personally, I don’t, I don’t have a lot of feelings about it.
[00:16:14] Kate: Okay. Okay. Yeah. I just didn’t know if like, you were seeing that those were performing better because it’s a new feature. I know typically when Instagram comes out with a new feature, they push it more.
[00:16:26] Hannah: specifically it’s hard because again, it’s like, that’s. It’s a profile feature. It’s not a content feature or anything like that. So that’s the only one where yes, normally I’d be like, Oh, it’s great. Reels are coming out. Like let’s jump on reels or whatever it is. Um, when that was happening a few years ago, you always want to be kind of staying up to date with what’s new on Instagram, especially when it relates to your content and how you show up on the platform.
As far as the LinkedIn bio situation, I think just like do what works best for you. Okay, cool, cool. We don’t have to sweat too much.
[00:16:59] Kate: [00:17:00] Wonderful. It’s nice when there’s something we don’t have to sweat, right?
[00:17:02] Hannah: So
[00:17:04] Kate: Instagram has again so many different content types How do you kind of decide like what the mix of those is that you use and does it change over time?
[00:17:17] Hannah: That’s a great question. Obviously you want to be like we were just saying you want to be using the tools that Instagram has so we don’t want to be exclusively only posting carousels. We don’t want to be exclusively only posting reels. We want to make sure we have a mix of both. So, for example, going back to our posting schedule that we discussed, let’s say we’re posting Monday, Wednesday, Friday, maybe you do two reels in a carousel a week.
Maybe you do two carousels and. A real a week, whatever that works for you. Personally, for me, I just, for my clients, I have an exact number of reels. I post a week, an exact number of carousels and that works for you. Totally do it. But again, we’re talking sustainability. We’re talking, what do we have the time for?
We’re talking what’s [00:18:00] realistic in our life. If, if it’s more realistic for you to post two carousels that week and one reel, let’s do that. And one week you have a ton of video content and you have the time to film reels, do two reels in a carousel. I think there’s something that is empowering with knowing like, I can adjust.
I have my structure, I have the rules. Once I know them, I can break them. And it’s just, as long as you’re creating that mix of content, I think that’s more important than like, getting so rigid. And being like, I have to do two reels and one carousel a week. And of course, like both of those, um, pieces of content served for purposes.
Right. So your reels are going to, that is more focused on reach. It’s going, it’s putting your content. In front of people who haven’t seen it before and so if that’s something that’s a priority for you If growth is a priority for you right now, then that might be something you prioritize. I’m gonna do two reels a week However, carousels are now being reprioritized I’ve actually noticed in the last few months that my carousels my clients [00:19:00] carousels are performing better than reels right now Okay mean We stopped doing reels, right?
No, just, I just think the more important thing is just having that mix. And of course, like we, that was in feed content. So then you have stories, you have IgE lives, you have all these different kinds of things. I personally, people always laugh at this, but I personally have never done an Instagram live in my life and I have no plan to at this moment.
Um, I’m sure I will eventually, and it is beneficial. Yeah. If it’s like, I want to do this once a week so that I can do a Q and a with my audience or I can bring them along for an event or whatever it is like, that’s great.
Again. Make sure it fits in. Like, make sure it’s working for you. Make sure you’re not forcing something that doesn’t feel aligned. Or it could be like, I’m gonna do it once a month. Like, that probably wouldn’t hurt. I probably could care to do that once a month. But, you know, I don’t want to.
And then again, we have stories. And stories are one of the most [00:20:00] underutilized pieces of content. Form of content on Instagram. It is a great place to nurture your audience. It’s a great place to learn about them, for them to learn about you, for them, for them to get a view into the behind the scenes of your business.
This is, it’s a great place to sell. Talking about selling and things like that. We have kind of treated stories, specifically highlights. Like they are like Facebook, um, albums from how we used to use Facebook albums back in the day. We just like dump a bunch of stuff in them and just like leave them there.
Yeah. That’s kind of how we’ve like treated our highlights. And your highlights are so important. Again, they’re part of the profile. They need to have relevant and updated information. Accurate information. There’s so many photographers that I work with that I’ll go in and look through their highlights and I’m like, you don’t.
Like, you are so much better than this now, like this is 10 years ago, like when you were learning photography or like, you don’t edit like this anymore. You don’t offer this anymore. Having that relevant [00:21:00] information is so important. And knowing how to, thinking about the viewer, almost treating it like a mini sales page.
So I have an FAQ page, if that’s applicable to you, I have an offers page, maybe you break down your offers. Let’s, for me, I think specifically I break down my offers because I want, if someone’s coming to my profile and they want to learn more about my subscription. They can click through and learn, they can see behind the scenes of my subscription, what people are saying information about that.
They’re not having to click through a big long highlight of all of my offers in one space. It’s easy and accessible. Again, that profile ease and accessibility is so important. Um, but yeah, stories is underutilized. Take advantage of those. They keep, they’re allowed to be casual. Like there’s not a lot of roles with them.
It’s the wild, wild west, like letting them expire. That’s a great tip. Um, using poll and engagement stickers and all those things, that’s great too. But mainly it’s just a place for you to connect with your audience and you want to be doing that. You want to be nurturing the [00:22:00] community you have. You want to invite them into your life.
They have chosen to follow you. They have chosen to be in your space. They’re not numbers, they’re people. And Stories is a great place to garner that. So, yeah, those are kind of how I break my… My content down beside the ID lives obviously
[00:22:17] Kate: one thing that you didn’t mention was like a single image post Is that something you still utilize or no?
[00:22:23] Hannah: Okay, so I personally do not utilizing a static post because I find that They are easily, you swipe by them very easily. Carousels are more engaging. You swipe through them rather than past them. Um, so that’s something that I always recommend is I just think if you have the content for a carousel, do the carousel every time.
And if it’s something that’s like, I only have one piece. I only have one piece of content. I only have one graphic here. I only have one picture here, whatever it is. Um, add a call to action slide. Like, that’s something you can do, [00:23:00] or it’s like, you know, at the end of the day, again, if it’s like, this is the only photo I want to post, do it.
Like, that’s okay. . I think the reason why static posts versus carousel posts is why you want to be doing that on a consistent basis. It’s just, it’s going to be serving you better.
But if you have something, you have a piece of content where you’re like, static is best for this. Do it again. You know the rules. You can break them. Yeah.
[00:23:22] Kate: That’s great. Okay, I’m really big on getting help where you need help, right? So don’t do the things that you’re not good at. Um, if someone else has a strength in a place that you’re really weak, hire them, outsource.
So let’s talk about outsourcing social media and how that works. What does that look like for people?
[00:23:40] Hannah: So it really depends on your industry. So for example, I work primarily with photographers. So for that it’s, I have access to their galleries. I have access to their behind the scenes content, different things like that.
If you are a photographer, you’re more graphic based or product business space, then the social media manager will be communicating, collaborating [00:24:00] with you with the content they need, or they’ll be creating. They will be creating content for you in Canva and different, different things like that. So as far as content goes, that is very collaborative with the client.
As far as strategy and planning, caption writing, creating reels, all those things, that is something a social media manager can do for you. All you’re responsible for pretty like, it really obviously depends on the social media manager. For me specifically, all I require on my clients is you give me the information that you need posted.
If you don’t have anything you need posted that week, don’t worry about it. I’ll take care of it. And then I send them an email when their grid is ready to be reviewed. They go in, they give me feedback, they approve, and then it gets posted and that’s all they have to worry about. And the whole process, we spend hours a week creating content.
Um, and that is something. That not everyone loves to do, and it’s very hard and it takes a lot of time and it’s takes it like with Instagram changes and all those things. It’s really hard to keep up, especially if you’re juggling so many [00:25:00] things in your work and life and personal life. And all those things outsourcing is a great tool and it really is just like I think my biggest piece of advice for outsourcing with a social media manager is finding someone who is working within your industry, finding someone that you can collaborate really well with.
I think that’s something that is a, . misconception about social media management is it’s still very collaborative. It’s not like I am taking your content and you have zero say and you don’t see it before it goes up or you don’t have to do anything right. It still requires a little bit of that collaborative communication and making sure you’re on the same page.
I always tell my clients like I am speaking on the behalf of you, so I need to know you. So like something that’s built into my structure is I, when I bring on a new client for the first few months, I meet with them biweekly. We’re checking in, getting to know how did you like this? How did you not like that?
All those different kinds of things. I need to know and be in your space. I need to know your tone of voice. I need to know how you [00:26:00] speak, like, so I can speak on your behalf. And so that is something that social media managers can do. And I get like, The concern with outsourcing that, right? Like I’ve been doing this for years on my own and it’s either been working really well or it hasn’t and just that fear behind that.
I think social media is, it feels very personal for a lot of people, whether you’re doing it for business or not. And so it can feel a little bit scary to outsource that, but there’s so much structure and strategy that we have that you guys don’t have the capacity for. You don’t have the knowledge in and that’s where a social media manager can really help.
[00:26:34] Kate: so instead of having to learn all of this stuff, it’s nice to be able to hand it over to somebody who Spends their days learning it and understanding it, right?
[00:26:44] Hannah: Yeah, for sure. Yeah,
[00:26:46] Kate: so if that’s not an option for someone and they’re trying to be consistent What do you suggest for like scheduling or planning things?
Is, are those scheduling tools like Planoly, Tailwind, those kinds of things, things [00:27:00] that you use? Or do you suggest only publishing, like posting live, or?
[00:27:05] Hannah: A thousand percent. Again, it’s not sustainable if I’m having to drop everything in my day to like prep a post, right? So for some, for some people batching does not work.
And that’s okay, like if, if that really does not work for you, if you’ve given it a try and you’re like, it is way easier for me to just kind of have a general guide and structure that I know what I need to post on those days, um, that’s fine. Um, there’s also options. There’s so many good scheduling tools.
I personally use Plannable. I love it. Um, I would say if you’re not a social media manager though, like you can use Plan only, you can use Facebook Business Suite. You can do in-app scheduling even and just have like use a grid planner or something, um, on Canva or get a grid planner app. Like, there’s plenty of ways to not also to save money with those too.
A lot of those have like, Free options and different things like that. But yeah, utilize a scheduler. Um, schedulers are [00:28:00] great. What I always like to recommend, I do a lot of coaching calls with people who have the same issue. Like, I am not in a financial place to be able to outsource social media management yet.
But I’m also not in a place where I can just, like, Like, knock out content in every, every day. Like, I don’t have the capacity. I don’t have the time for that. It’s interrupted. Again, it gets to that obligatory and rushed piece of content. Yeah. Whereas we obviously want to be producing. Intentional and strategic content.
So what I always recommend is first, obviously choosing your posting schedule and then dedicating if it’s bi weekly or weekly, whatever it is, choose a day where you block out a couple of hours to prep your content. Even if you’re not making the content, if you, if it’s like, I don’t, I don’t want to make it, I want to do it day of whatever.
Sit down, write out your ideas, think about what you’ve done that week, think about the content you’ve done, prop your phone up throughout the week if you have something that sparks into your head, and then sit down when you’re in that zone of genius and just [00:29:00] focus on that. I think the biggest problem why people, um, are apprehensive to start batching because they’re like, I can’t even write one captcha and like how am I supposed to sit down and prep three or six or whatever it is and I’m like valid I get it but the difference is is one is like a blocked out amount of time for you to have a focus in on that and not be your priority in that moment being in that zone of genius where the other one is that stress and obligatory post of course you’re not going to be able to think of like a great caption in the moment you’re like 30 minutes after you’re posting time, you’re stressed.
You’re trying to get the kids out the door, whatever it is in the moment. Like you have to be able to kind of dedicate that space if you’re wanting to batch and prep ahead of time. That is what we do as social media managers. That’s all we’re doing. We’re dedicating time for your content on a weekly, bi weekly or monthly basis.
And we’re sitting down and we’re thinking it through and we’re writing out the captions. There’s also chat dbt now, a lot of these, um, A lot of these schedulers also have like built in AI as [00:30:00] well. Like captions are not as hard as they used to be. At least there’s something, it’s a point of inspiration. So if that is something where you’re like, I really want to make sure I’m being consistent with social media, try to just dedicate some batching days, whatever that is.
And then think through your content and it will become more of a habit. That’s something to like right now, it’s not habit. It’s not habit to be thinking about content ideas throughout your week. Right. But when you kind of know, okay, on Fridays, I’m going to prep my content for the next week, when you’re going Monday through Friday, you’re like, okay, I’m going to like.
Set up a time lapse while I edit my photos or I’m going to take a BTS or Oh my gosh, I’m taking like, I, the ideas will come to you. Like it’ll be three o’clock in the morning. You’re like, that’s a great, that’s a great idea for content or whatever. And you can write it down and it’s really just training your brain and getting your brain used to the idea of creating content on a consistent basis.
Then that is what’s going to serve your plot. That’s, what’s going to serve your account the most, right? Like. Posting, uh, one time on Wednesday and then two weeks later [00:31:00] posting on Sunday. Like that’s not going to do much for you. Like that’s not going to serve you. So figuring out what works for you, again, if batching and sitting down and doing it all at once doesn’t work, maybe the alternative is, okay, I’m going to create some content pillars.
On Mondays, I’m going to talk about this. On Wednesdays, I’m going to talk about this. On Fridays, I’m going to talk about this. So at least you have some structure, so when you do need to prep your post day of, you have some type of idea of the content that you need to be producing. Um, so yeah, that would be my recommendation.
[00:31:27] Kate: Yeah, Are you doing like a lot of repurposing content from like longer form pieces as well?
[00:31:33] Hannah: A thousand percent, like I will literally, there’s been weeks I have had a really busy spring. I’ve been moving, launching NoCokeGirlsCo, like doing all these different things.
And so I have been relying on repurposed content. I’ve been scrolling down, okay I had a reel on this. way. I can turn this into a carousel now, or I had a carousel. Ooh, I can make this into a real. Repurposing content is the way to go paying attention to what’s worked in the [00:32:00] past. Okay.
This worked really well. I can even take a sentence out of this reel or this carousel and turn it into one piece of content. So not putting those restrictions on yourself is so important. Having this idea that you have to be coming up with a hundred percent new fresh content every single time you post, like.
That’s exhausting. Like that’s absolutely horrible. And also doing that with my clients as well. I’m going through, okay, this worked really well. How can we take this and tweak it a little to make it look different and like repurpose it? Like, let’s do that more. Like let’s work smarter. And again, making Instagram work for you is the ideal place.
And again, remembering like. Not everybody saw the content in the first place, right? So and if it was a year ago, six months ago, chances are they might not have seen it. They’re not going to recognize it again. Um, so repurposing that in a way is definitely beneficial and I highly recommend for sure. Yeah.
[00:32:55] Kate: Yeah. Well, and I think everybody has such a different learning style that like sometimes if you [00:33:00] post something as a carousel They’re gonna be able to consume it better than if it was posted as a real and it could be the exact same information, but just understanding and learning styles. Um, and then also pulling content from like longer form pieces of content, like a blog post or a podcast or whatever, um, you know, bigger pieces of content that you own, um, and repurposing those to social media.
[00:33:25] Hannah: That’s my favorite way for clients when they have. Recent blogs or something from like, let’s say a wedding or something. I’m able to go in and I’m able to pull what they’ve already said and spoken about the wedding and turn it into a caption or turn it into a real or just even to gain inspiration from that.
Like, Oh, I did a blog about 10 tips to how to X, Y, Z. Like I can easily turn that into a real a carousel, like paying attention to the things you’re already doing or the things you’re thinking about. Paying attention to what people are asking you, like, can that be a piece of content? Um, we also, I think, especially [00:34:00] for us, like educators, it’s, we think.
I think certain things are just obvious, right? Because we do them today. So, making sure you get into the mind of the consumer, of the viewer, of your target audience. What do they struggle with? How can I provide, how can I fix that problem? What value can I provide? How can I connect with them? How can I help them, how can I educate them in this way?
Just because it’s super obvious to me that you should have social media manager or keywords in your name field, like not everybody knows that that’s a piece of content I can share. Um, and it’s something that’s super helpful. So be thinking about that too, like not thinking from the point of what do I need to see in my feed?
What is like my consumer? What does my ideal audience need to see and read? Um, that will help too, obviously.
[00:34:44] Kate: Yeah. Well, and back to your point about what people are asking. , that’s a huge piece of inspiration for your content.
And especially for photographers, like you’re saying, you know, for educators, going back to those basics, but also for your photography clients, like they don’t know. [00:35:00] This one was a big one that I posted was something about like, When you book a newborn session, because that is a question I always get in my emails, like When should I be booking this?
[00:35:11] Hannah: Yeah.
[00:35:12] Kate: So just like going back to like the basics of what um, what people are asking you in inquiries, what emails you’re getting, what questions you’re getting in your DMs and stuff like that is a great place to
[00:35:23] Hannah: go. A thousand percent. And for those, I can already hear them being like, well, nobody’s asking me.
Like, nobody’s asking. I’m not, I’m not a photographer. I’m not this. No, nobody’s asking me this yet. Make up some questions. Yeah. Like, make up some questions. You’re like, what do I want people to know about my, let’s say for a product, right? Someone has, no, nobody’s asked a question about a product, but you want them to know something specifically, right?
Take that and make that into a piece of content. Did you know that our product is XYZ and super comfy and cozy and whatever, like, you know what I’m saying? Like you can, you can make that for yourself as well. Or an alternative thing, going back to stories [00:36:00] is I want to know what my clients or what my viewers want to see, I’m going to ask them, I’m going to do a few polls at my stories.
Like, do you want to see more of X, Y, Z? Like, or doing a poll box or doing a question, like asking your community, paying attention, like the things they’re commenting, all of those things, all of that data is information for you to take and turn into content. Things that people are DMing you. All of those things are super important, super helpful.
I think we have, I think it’s really easy. To fall into the trap of being like, I have nothing to say and I have nothing to post and I have no content and all those things. And I totally understand that feeling, but I think it’s there. It’s just like knowing where to look for it and like, just your brain and getting again into that habit of.
Everything is content.
[00:36:47] Kate: Well, and another suggestion, too, something that I’ve been using lately is ChatGPT, and I’ll go in and I’ll just say, like, what questions are people asking about my topic, and that helps me write posts [00:37:00] that way, too. Um, the other question I have for you is that Kind of. How do you mix your personality, your personal life in with your professional, um, content?
Do you find that there’s a way to balance that?
[00:37:17] Hannah: Definitely. So, I think that is something that I’m still trying to figure out. I’m, I’m really trying to figure out what is the balance of keeping, like, professionalism, keeping personality, and keeping all of these things kind of wrapped up in one within my feed.
I think a good rule of thumb for me is I keep my… Feed as it’s sunny social like I’m sharing tips there. I’m sharing things that are related to social media I’m sharing things that are related to sunny social all of those things and you’ll see Filtered throughout there will be some that are more personal like that have like it’s related to social media But maybe I’ve used a clip that like has my dog in it or like something like that Yeah, but it’s all centered around still social media.
Like for example like that post it was a Something [00:38:00] like, dear small business owners, you don’t have to work 24 seven and have a successful business. Like it was like that. And the clips were things for my personal life. Right. So that was kind of a way for me to show a more personal side, but it’s still very intertwined with my content and the things I’m already producing something again.
Going back to stories, that is the great, great place to show your personality, show, um, share your stories, like, show your behind the scenes, like, whenever I was moving and things like that, like, I talked about that on there, but, like, that was not, would not be appropriate or relevant in my feed, like, I’m not gonna, like, post about that in my feed, so knowing, kind of, that, where on your grid to kind of post those things, I think, like, if you’re a photographer, or if you’re a social media manager, or a business owner, or whatever it is, And all of your content is your product or your photos and then you just like post like a selfie with your puppy dog on like the lake or something like that’s not in line with your strategy and your content, but your stories can be something I do, um, is I take every weekend off [00:39:00] social media.
And so what I do every Monday morning is a weekend recap of like what I did and like a little narrative of what I did. And then I have like a poll at the end. How was your weekend? Blah, blah, blah. And that’s a way for them to get a peek into what life looks like outside of sunny social. But like I said, I still feel like I’m really trying to find that balance of like, what do I share?
What is too much sharing? I think something that people utilize a lot is close friends, not, and it’s not even York. friends. It’s who wants to be added to my close friends list and you add them. And that’s just like your own little place too, for people that maybe like every three months or something, you do a thing on stories where it’s like, who wants to be added to my close friends?
And that’s a way for it to be more casual or more candid or to share more behind the scenes. Like it might not always, you might not be comfortable sharing with your whole entire audience. Um, but close friends might be over. And that’s also a really good time that you can also even be like, When you join Close Friends, like you’re getting [00:40:00] a more behind the scenes look at what it looks like to run this business.
You’re getting first access to new offers or codes or like, you can make it to where it’s like something that like, Feels exclusive. And then they’re like being invited in and that they’re feeling special. And like that connection is so important with social media. Right. We’ve seen that so much, especially with Tik TOK.
Like we, people want access, like they want access. We are nosy. So like, if you’re ever like, I don’t think people are going to care about this or whatever, like chances are I will like, sometimes I’m like a little weirded out, but I’m also like, that’s great for us. Still like bringing like, let’s. Say you’re a product based business photographer or whatever, bring them along a day in a life and your stories or bring them do a day in a life.
Um, real or something like that. Like there are ways to involve them and get them involved in your life and share that personal side and share that personality. Um, without completely like. Having to overshare all the time as far as like personality itself. I think that’s just [00:41:00] comes with like comfortability and that I’ve talked a lot about that on my, um, in my feed and in my content, just like getting comfortable showing your face online and talking on stories and.
Like, crossing that, that’s hard, and it takes time, and I think it, like, is again, it goes back to just building on it. Maybe start with your profile photo as your face, and then maybe you start sharing some stuff on your stories, like photos, and maybe you set a goal to talk on your stories once a week, and then maybe we start beat bopping around in reels.
Like, when I started Sunny Social, I was like, I am not showing my face. That will not be happening. Like that, that is absolutely outrageous. Like I was like, it’s not going to be like, you know, but it was something that I quickly realized that. In order for me to connect with the people who have chosen to follow me, in order for people to have the trust factor and that connection, I need to show my face.
Like, people connect with people. So remembering that, if you’re ever nervous about showing certain sides of your [00:42:00] personality or your personal life, like, remembering people connect with people, these aren’t numbers, and bringing, cluing them in with whatever, of course, you’re comfortable with can be really beneficial.
[00:42:09] Kate: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. I definitely, I always notice that if I post a headshot or photo of my family or something personal, even in my feed, um, that those posts are going to do so much better than the, like anything else. Honestly, quite honestly,
[00:42:27] Hannah: everything you need to know, right? Like, right. If those are the, those are the pieces of content, the ones of yourself or the ones of you sharing a personal story or the family photo or whatever it is like, If that’s what’s your most liked content, that tells you everything you need to know.
It means that you need to be showing up in your reels more, you need to be showing up in your stories more, you need to be, you need to be leaning into that in a way to where they trust and know you. But it needs to then, again, it’s hard to be like, All my, [00:43:00] all the likes are coming in on my personal posts and not on my actual, like, client posts or anything like that, which I know how frustrating that can be, but I think learning from that and knowing that, okay, if this is what people are liking and seeing, like, how can I lean into that and, like, also combine that with the content I want them to be seeing, um, that can be kind of difficult at times, but it’s something to, and it’s personal, it’s something to experiment with, figuring out what that looks like for your own personal profile, but yeah.
Yeah. I get that.
[00:43:26] Kate: Yeah. Um, one last thing that I want to talk to you about is how are you converting your like Instagram followers into leads? Like how are you getting them from Instagram into their inboxes or into your inbox and booking with you? What are your strategies for that?
[00:43:44] Hannah: Yeah. I think a big thing for me is.
At the beginning, it was, I’m showing up in a place of authority. I know what I’m talking about, I’m providing value, I’m providing tips, I’m relating with you. I, I’m sharing that I don’t want to talk on my [00:44:00] stories. I know you don’t want to talk on them either. And it builds this trust and it builds this, um, reliability.
I have. Something I do every week is I do a trending audio reel. And when you comment a son’s, every person who comments a son gets a list of audio. And it’s completely free. It’s something that I do. And it’s just been like, that’s been a good piece of like, reliable content. That’s something that people can come to my profile for.
They know that. They can rely on that. And I think a big part of it is just For specifically, like, coaching calls. Like, that’s the main thing that I like to book. I love coaching calls, different things like that. And the way I do that is just… Providing value, having CTAs and different things like that at the end of my, uh, content.
That’s like, do you need help with that? Like, let’s book a coaching call. Posting after my coaching calls, like, that’s something big, I think, for photographers, product based businesses, anything like that. Is, I have a coaching call, I post on it, I say what we talked about, and on the next page, there’s a place to book.
And they’re like, [00:45:00] oh, I need help with that. Leggo. Real life people, other people participating, different things like that. Let’s say you go and you have a, um, photoshoot or something. You take behind the scenes, blah, blah, blah, little text. The next screen is check, like inquire for your engagement shoot or something like that.
I think stories, stories is a really great place to sell. Like anytime you can do selling on stories is ideal. I think something, um, Maya Nicole said, who’s a huge, um, social media expert. She once said that if you are selling on your stories and of course, when we hear selling, we’re like, Oh, like that’s what we’re we’re like you, but what we need to be focusing is on.
Less selling and more storytelling for, for a good point of view. So be thinking about that. What is the story behind this? What’s the reason behind this? How does this solve their problem? And bringing that into your stories on a daily basis. Going back to what Maya was [00:46:00] saying. She said, not selling on your stories is like going into a store and then being like, sorry.
Nothing’s for sale today. Like it’s, you have to make it easy. People have to know that you’re selling. You can’t just put it in your LinkedIn bio and like hope people are going to like click it and buy it. Like that’s not what, that’s not how it works, unfortunately. We have to see something multiple times, multiple, multiple, multiple times before we never even click to find out more information.
And then we probably have to see it again before we buy it. Like that’s just how we are, especially, especially in our business, especially if you’re a small business owner, it’s not like you have the, you’re not in a position to just be like willy nilly, like buying offers and things like that. So making sure they know what they’re investing in and making it worth their while.
It’s not about the price. It’s about how you’re storytelling. It’s how you’re selling. That’s something I’m still actively learning. Um, but no, stories have been a great way for me to sell and to convert into leads. Just sharing that behind the [00:47:00] scenes and having testimonials and different things like that.
And just again, trying to, I don’t always do this, but trying to have an offer or sell and sell quote unquote in my stories on a daily basis. Just again, with that being able to see things and Being able to have that easily click and all those things, I think, kind of treating your feed as a place to provide value and to connect and your stories as a place to sell, I think is a good role of that.
[00:47:27] Kate: Awesome.
Hannah, how can people find you? How can people work with you? What’s your favorite offer right now?
[00:47:33] Hannah: Um, I love coaching calls. Coaching calls are for anyone and everyone who is doing social media on their own. Like we talked about, like not everybody has the, is in a financial position to have a social media manager or even want the social media manager, but being able to sit down for an hour and talk.
In like a personal way, in a custom way to your profile, we’ll audit it, we’ll go through your bio, we’ll address all your questions, that’s something I love to do, so I offer coaching calls, I [00:48:00] have a trending audio subscription in addition to my trending audio reels, and basically that is something that you subscribe to, every week you’re getting a list of 10 audios that are broken down So I have service providers, product based businesses, creatives, anyone and everyone, coaches, and each one comes with an audio and it comes with an idea and then you’re able to take it, takes that scrolling time out of it.
Um, I know for like literally today, even I was scrolling for like 45 minutes trying to find an audio and I know how frustrating that can be. So trying to eliminate that as much as possible. Um, so those are my two main offers right now. And then I also offer full service social media management to photographers, booked and busy photographers who no longer have the time and capacity to do it on their own.
Um, I’m not actively accepting new clients right now, but possibly will be at the end of the summer. So if that’s something that is needed, definitely reach out. But yeah, you can find me everywhere at Sunny Social Collective, um, and SunnySocialCollective. com. That’s me.
[00:48:59] Kate: Thank you so much, [00:49:00] Hannah.
[00:49:00] Hannah: Thank you.
[00:49:01] Kate: Thanks so much.