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How to Make Money on Instagram and Build Your Brand — Chalene Johnson Interview


– In this video I talk
with Chalene Johnson and she shares her tips
on how to grow your brand on Instagram in 2017, what some of the new trends and features that you need to know about are, and how to avoid the biggest mistakes that she sees most
people make on Instagram. Comin’ up. (upbeat electronic music) Hey, what’s up guys? Sean here with THiNK Media TV helping you go further faster in media and on this channel we do tech gear and video gear reviews but also tips and strategy videos
just like this one so if you’re new here,
consider subscribing. But hey, I’m so pumped to be with Chalene Johnson today. How’s it goin’? – It’s goin’ awesome.
– Fantastic. If you’re just meeting Chalene she actually is a fitness celebrity, New York Times bestselling author, but also really helps people
build their brand with social media but specifically Instagram. She has an academy on Instagram, multiple different accounts. What exactly are some of the things that you’ve been doing on Instagram and your bio there? (giggles) – Well, I think that in general people can be very
distracted by social media and Instagram is one of the ways that people can figure out how to kind of entertain each
of their love interests and divide those and
build them simultaneously which I think we’ll talk about. But I just love Instagram
because it’s so visual and it’s quick and people’s
attention spans are very short and it speaks to a short attention span. – And I think one of the things when it comes to Instagram is actually not just your account but on Instagram you’ve built influence
over multiple accounts. – Yes. – And so we’ll get to that in just a bit but she has lots of great tips. I’m excited to jump into them as well as what’s new. And you mentioned kind of why Instagram but what are the opportunities? The skeptic might ask, “Can Instagram “actually build my business
and build my brand?” – 100% and why I like
Instagram especially for people who are trying to build a brand is often times we’re
uncomfortable with being the face of the brand, you know. Maybe we think we’re not smart enough, we’re not good-looking
enough, not fit enough, whatever it is that we’re not enough of, what’s great about Instagram
is it’s very visual and I think people miss the fact that it’s so much like Pinterest. When you go to start
your own Pinterest page or you search on Pinterest, you’re not necessarily
looking for an individual, you’re looking for
inspiration, motivation, something that teaches you something, something you can copy, something that visually inspires you and if we start thinking of Instagram in those terms you don’t feel as much pressure to be the face of it which is why it’s one of the things that I teach is how to create a feature account. – Well, and that’s a step right there because that’s kind of a huge deal when it comes to Instagram. What is a feature account? – Well, let’s use Sean as an example. So, Sean loves gadgets
and gear and technology and that’s of interest to him. He’s also very passionate about his faith and he’s also a really gnarly snowboarder. So sometimes we think to ourselves, “So, what content do I put out there?” You know, “Do I stick with one theme? “Does it make sense for me to talk about “this interest when my brand means this?” And with Instagram what
I teach people to do is to setup individual accounts for each one of those interests because it’s very much like Pinterest. If I am going to search for something that’s motivational with regard to my faith I just kinda wanna see
all of that on one page, and you don’t have to mix that with your interest in snowboarding or your interest in technology. So I encourage people to set up accounts that are specific to one or a couple of related themes. So for example, I have an account that’s just fashion. I have an account that’s
called “pushmedaily” that’s just motivational quotes but you don’t have to see me everyday. I don’t personally have to be the content, I can find content that pushes me and post it to that account. I have another account
called “homeworkouts_4u” and all it is is other people’s great workout ideas that they’re doing at home and then I feature them on my account and the account grows like huge, exponentially because people like to have their stuff shared on a bigger account so it’s a great way to kind of honor other people and to build eyeballs, influence around a topic that I can then later, let’s say for example on homeworkouts_4u, if I wanna promote my own e-book or my own workout programs,
I own the account, it’s got hundreds of
thousands of followers, and now that’s a promotion that would relate to that content. So in other words, you can divide all of your interest and each one of those interests can be its own individual account with less pressure on you to be in charge of all of the content creation. – Wow, and this is fascinating. So for me, I have a Sean Cannell account but it is kind of personal. I show life, I show this, but you mentioned gadgets. I can create an Instagram
account called “gadgetlove”– – Totally. – And it could be
announcements of gadgets, cool pictures of gadgets. They may never see Sean and Sean might not be mentioned, but then as I build that influence there anyone who loves gadgets
might follow that account, I could also say, “Hey
go check out this video. “Link in the bio,” and potentially link to my own stuff. – Exactly. 100%. – That’s super super
powerful. That’s cool. So that’s feature accounts but what are some of the new things that have actually been
happening with Instagram specifically this year? – Yeah, so Instagram is definitely in 2017 going through some growth and growing pains if you will. I think they’re gonna come into their own. As you probably know, Instagram launched a couple
of new features this year. One specifically aimed at
Snapchat where they tried, and they really have done
a pretty good job of, introducing Stories. So very much almost identical to Snapchat. We find that many people just look at Instagram Stories. They’re not even looking
at the feeds anymore. They’re just going on Instagram and looking at who’s updated their Instagram story. And that’s a great way for Instagram to become more interactive than those people who are using Instagram and just looking at their feed. Instagram Stories are great but they’re a little
different from Snapchat in that you don’t find
somebody on Snapchat unless you already know them and then you wanna know more about them. Different on Instagram. Instagram I might just have started following your gadget account and I’m interested in the gadgets but then I’m like, “Who’s the guy?” Like I don’t even wanna know the person behind the brand, I wanna see if I’m following that account I want more of the type of content which I’ve come to know this account for. So I think a mistake people make on Instagram Stories is they assume it’s Snapchat and it’s not, it’s a different platform. So if you’re going to
use Instagram Stories remember why people are
following your main account and if you’re posting that kind of content then just make it come to life in Stories. – I love that. So then let’s talk basic best practices. I wanna grow my brand this year, I wanna meet more people,
have greater influence, what are some of the best
practices for Instagram? – In 2017 the practices
really are tried and true as they have been which is interaction. You know, you’ve got to not just post and expect people to show up. When someone leaves a comment
it’s replying back to them, it’s thanking them. Now, again another new feature is the ability to heart comments. So even if you don’t necessarily reply to every comment it’s a great idea to at least go in and tap the heart for each person who’s left you a comment and then make it not all about you. If somebody’s left you a comment and you’re working to build your account, click on their name,
go back to their page, and leave a comment under one of their last photos and videos. You know, it’s reciprocity, you know where we feel like if someone’s taken the time to spend a little time on our page then we should do the same for them and I guarantee, it’s
one of the easiest ways to get yourself a true follower. – I love that. What about consistency on Instagram? How often should people post ideally? – Yeah, okay so that’s where I think Instagram is trying to find its feet because we know from our own research inside of an academy for
Instagram, Instagram Impact, we have studied and polled
our members and found that people tend to either use the Instagram feed or Stories. Not too many people are going back and forth between both so you kinda have to decide where you want to spend your focus and use each one the right way. For Stories less is better. Unlike Snapchat where people might you know, do 70, 80 Snaps in a day, on Instagram we find that people, roughly between five and seven individual stories is
about the sweet spot. After that you see the numbers dramatically drop off so keep in mind that your
content should really deliver. You know, moreso even than on Snapchat in your IG Stories. When it comes to your actual IG page, I recommend that people
post at least once a day, at least once a day, and try to post at about the same time and there’s some great statistics that you can see now
with Instagram Business where you can actually see when your followers are online, what countries they come from, what types of posts they’re
interacting with the most, and don’t be confused by the fact that you’re gonna get fewer
likes on your videos than you will your photos. It’s just easy for people to like a photo whereas a video we have to look at it, tap it to make it play, maybe tap it again or fool with our phones to turn up the volume,
and by then we’ve moved on so even though it didn’t get a like that doesn’t necessarily mean it didn’t connect with your viewers. I still think that video,
where it’s appropriate is the best way to connect with people. And then of course there’s
Instagram video Live. – Yeah, you just mentioned that. Two things I wanted to grab is, one you mentioned the Business page and so maybe some people are saying who has the option to turn it in … It’s either a personal page now or you can turn it in to a Business kinda like a fan page. What should people do? – If you’re in business you should turn it into a Business page. I’m not really sure why I
would tell anyone not to even if you don’t have a business because it gives you
all of those insights, insights that we were so accustomed to getting on Facebook, now we have those insights on Instagram as well. So why not use, you know … More information helps you to decide the best content to produce. – I love that. And then you were talking about videos. So now we have Instagram
photo, still photo, we can upload videos to our page, then we also can do video
content through Stories and even quirky things like
Boomerang and what not. What’s kind of the tip
across all of those? What’s a best practice for a
great photo or a great post? Best practice for a
great video, et cetera? – If Instagram is going to stumble a little bit this year it’s because they’re trying to be everything and they started off as a photo app and now they’re photo,
live streaming, stories– – Its everything, yeah. – So, I think you have
the option of picking and not feeling as though
you have to do all of them. I will say this, across all platforms whether it’s Facebook or Twitter or YouTube or Instagram, whatever latest feature they’ve rolled out is the one that they’re going to push into the eyeballs of people using that app so at the moment that
we’re recording this video it is Instagram Live. So if you go live on Instagram, people will receive a notification and this may be the first time they’re actually catching you live and figure out who you are. It’s a great way to connect and you’re going to get more eyeballs, more engagement and perhaps
deepen your relationship. So I would encourage people not to be afraid to go live, and I think at the moment I think that’s the most powerful way to build brand connection,
message connection on Instagram. Aside from that, I would say photos. They’ve gotta be clear,
they’ve gotta be beautiful, and they need to represent your brand. Here’s what happens: your photo shows up on the Explore page.
– Right. – So, you’ve gotta capture
someone’s attention, how you stand out, right? So you wanna think about
what’s grabbing your attention. So when you look, just do this today, look at your phone, open
up the Explore page, and see what grabs your attention. What is it about that photo? Why? How can you recreate that to draw the same kind
of people to your page? And then once you do that you know how this works. You go, “Hold it, I don’t
know who that person is. “This is an interesting photo.” You tap on it then you look
at their page as a whole. Now if there’s nothing else on their page that looks like the thing
you just fell in love with you’re not gonna follow them. But if the page represents
some things in the same theme and I realize like oh this is generally the type of content this person posts and it looks consistent
and it’s pretty visually like it’s appealing to the eyes, then you’re gonna follow that person. So consider what your page looks like, not just in terms of your last post but your last, you know, I think it’s probably 12 posts and what does that look like when someone’s looking at it ’cause that’s how we decide “Do I follow this person or is this just “a lucky interesting photo?” – Well and that’s the power then of feature accounts, right? Because if you have a personal account maybe someone saw a picture
of my chihuahua Rosie on the feature page, clicks
through, but then is like, “Man this guy is talking
about tech all the time”, so if you’re all over the place maybe you can gain a
follower but you lose one. But if you created a feature account either all about Rosie and Sophie … Maybe I should do that.
They’re pretty cute. – [Chalene] They’re adorable. – They could build some influence. Or maybe that’s your niche and you have access to
a lot of different dogs and it was like just a chihuahua channel, well then like chihuahua-lovers
from around the world– – Those are huge feature
accounts. All pet. – All pet channels.
– Oh my gosh, they’re huge. – So there’s something, that’s really such a huge tip, maybe you need to start
another account in 2017– – For sure you should. – Okay yes, start a feature account. – For sure you should. – So naturally your focus is gonna be that people could follow and maybe they’re not interested in what you ate for lunch and then the movie you went to see, and then you add that beautiful photo of the landscape thing–
– Right. – But then constantly like gaining your audience but then losing them because of all that content. I love that. – I would love to give
people a power tip if I may and that is feature accounts
are the easiest accounts to build from so many perspectives. Number one, it doesn’t have to be you. You don’t have to go, “How can I be creative and cute today?” Number two, you can outsource all of it. So, most of my feature accounts are operated by a virtual assistant, typically someone who we can pay below minimum wage because
they’re in a country where that’s living large and I can just give
them instructions like, “Okay, I want you to find amazing videos “of people working out at home,
reach out to those people, “ask them if they want to
be featured on our account.” I trust them to find great content, train them at first, and then
they’re populating that page, they’re doing all of the work, yet those subscribers
still belong to my business and my brand. And so I think we’ve got like five now different feature
accounts that allow us to tap into a niche without taking up my time to create the content. And people love to be
featured. That’s what’s crazy. Like, wouldn’t you love it if you’re like, “Oh my god, my dog is on
this feature account page”? You’d be so proud. That’s how people react when their content gets shared by another page. – Wow, that’s super super powerful. Now, let’s kind of bring
this into the practical. What are some case studies,
success stories, people who … I mean, not only have you trained hundreds and thousands of people on how to use Instagram and people have been through your courses, but like make it real. Like what did they do
and what niche do they do to get some results to build
a brand with Instagram? – Oh so many. But one of my favorites is a girl by the name of Michelle Myers. It’s a great story and you know, started off by
just applying the principles, a lot of what we’re speaking about here, but also struggling with the fact that she was starting another business that reaching out to people who are female entrepreneurs,
who have a strong faith, and you know want to live
according to the Bible and how to put those two
things in practice together. But by the same token not scare away by talking about her religion and her
faith on her personal page so she started a separate account called “sheworkshisway” and now her personal account is where she can post things and so you know who she is but without everything being in there; pictures of her kids, her dogs, family, and then from time to
time she might promote her other account which
is @sheworkshisway. But @sheworkshisway is
really devoted to faith and in addition to that, that turned into another business where people loved the phrases and the inspirational
quotes that she was using so she developed a clothing line and started a clothing line selling t-shirts with
inspirational faith-based phrases on the t-shirts and that account has over 30,000 followers. And now it’s basically
like a catalog, you know it’s girls posing in the apparel, again it doesn’t have to be her, with a link that goes directly to the bio, it takes people directly to the store and they can buy directly from her store. So those are three accounts each of which is over 30,000. So to have, you know, all … You think “Am I dividing
people’s attention?” I think what you’re doing is allowing one Instagram account to very specifically target someone
who’s looking for that. – Wow, that’s so good. Now, and I love that ’cause in that case my next question is how do you monetize you know, if you’re building your brand? And that was a great example. Well the clothing line is one way but what are some of the other ways if someone’s thinking about how they can monetize specifically off of Instagram? – Absolutely. Well for example, a male personal trainer who realized that when
he was posting pictures of himself working out it just like wasn’t getting very many likes or comments so he started featuring women who were into building strength and into fitness and featuring very powerful, inspirational women. That account grew so fast,
so quick, that it has nearly a million followers today. – Wow.
– How does he monetize it? By now what he does is he
offers people promotions so if you wanna be
featured on that account you pay to be featured. So if you want your home workout that you’re
doing in your living room to be featured on his account being viewed by thousands of followers you’ll pay a fee and then it’s a win-win. So he’s really using it now as advertising and then of course there are so many Instagramers who have huge accounts who, you don’t realize it,
but they’re being paid by major brands to feature anything from avocados to the hotels and resorts
that they’re staying at, the clothes that they’re wearing, and they feel very native. They’re not gonna say like,
“Oh go buy this watch”, they’re just wearing the watch saying, “I just love this watch”, and there’s so many Instagram folks who have done that by
building feature accounts or just by being there first. But it’s never to late
to build on Instagram. – Yeah that’s so good and so that’s cool. You could Instagram directly on Instagram, you build some influence
and then monetize it there or drive traffic to a business
and that could be anything. I mean if you wanna sell a book, if you’ve got a course, if you’ve got a brick and mortar business there’s things you could do locally. There’s so many different
ways so I love that. Well, you know, obviously there’s so many more tips about Instagram and whatnot but how could people connect with you? I mean, and what are some of the resources you have available for
that and just in general? – Awesome. Well I think you can
find some great tips by following me on YouTube. We’ve done a bunch of
Instagram videos there to just give you some great tips. If you’re interested in
my course that I offer it’s called getigimpact.com and of course follow me on Instagram. There my main account in @chalenejohnson but if you wanna see a feature account which might be kind of fun you could follow
@pushmedaily on Instagram. Yeah, definitely great
things to check out. As usual we’ll link everything
up in the description so we’ll summarize some
of even the examples so I think those will be insightful. You could look at some of the things Chalene mentioned, check out her stuff, and I think that could
really spark some creativity for what you’re doing and how you could use Instagram to build
your influence this year. Chalene could do you do like a final kinda just like encouragement
to get out there and you know, for people
to build their influence, to punch fear in the face, and– – Yes, punch fear in the face. This would be my tip to you: start a feature account today. I mean, what harm is it? All that it’s gonna take of you is a new email address. So get a new Gmail address so you can open up a new Instagram account and I want you to start a feature account this is the type of content that you keep looking at on Instagram. What is that? Is it dogs? Is it puppies? Is it sunsets? Is it workout tips? Is it vegan recipes? Whatever it is you’re looking at I want you to start a feature
account in the next 24 hours that just represents that thing that you keep going to
look at on Instagram. – Love it. Love it. Chalene, thanks so much for being on. (imitates bomb exploding) And hey, THiNK Media TV community, Question of the Day, what are you doing on Instagram right now? What is your niche? Go ahead and post that in
the comment section below and thanks again so much for watching. Definitely subscribe for
more videos just like this to help you go further faster in media and until next time, keep questioning it and we will talk soon. – How as that?
– Alright. – Dang. – Chalene Johnson–
– You talk fast. – It was so–
(both chuckle) I lost my flow. – He’s like an auctioneer. Err, we got 200 over here, 200, 200, 200, we got 300, 300 over here.

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