Are you freaking out about the new changes that are coming on Instagram? I know that change isn't always the easiest. I mean, you're digi-talking to a girl who sometimes hates change, but happens to be good at adapting. Helping you to always be proactive is and will remain one of my main goals. Many of you on Instagram reached out and expressed your concern about the change and what to do about it so today I'll share my ideas on how you and your brand can continue to thrive on Instagram. Now if you're reading this and you had no idea about the change here's what's happening: 

Instagram photos will no longer appear chonologically. Instead, your feed will show photos that you are most likely to like and engage with. If you are a business/brand, this means that your photo may or may not show up on the feed of your followers. 

Although this change sounds majorly scary, if you don't have an account with thousands and millions of followers, it doesn't have to be! Here's what you can do to stay on top of your game!

1. Know your ideal client!

With the new changes that will be taking place, it could not be a more important time to really know who your ideal client is and what he/she likes. The new changes will show photos they think you'll like and interact with. So in order for your photos to show up on your ideal client's feed you'll need him/her to actually be liking and interacting with your photos and that means know who he/she is, what he/she likes to see, what he/she will likely engage with, when he/she will be using Instagram, and where you can find him/her. This is not just a good Instagram move, this is a good business move! A little shaky on who your ideal client is? Check out this Ideal Client post and worksheet.

2. Interact with your followers & community! 

Now once you've gotten to know all about your ideal client, now it's time to woo him/her. Like, follow (only if it's genuine), and comment on his/her photos. Respond to comments they leave on your photos. Shout them out!

3. Encourage your audience to subscribe to your feed.

If you want to be sure that your audience never misses a post, encourage them to subscribe to your feed. This way whenever you post, they will get a notification. Be sure to encourage them to subscribe to your Instagram feed across all of your social media channels and on your list. Here are simple instructions:

1. Go to my profile
2. Tap the three dots in the top right corner,
3. Select "turn on notifications and never miss a post again

4. Build Your List.

Speaking of you have a list? If your answer is no, you should definitely get one. Just like these changes for Instagram came out of nowhere, you never know when your favorite social media channels could totally disappear. It's a crazy thought, but one worth preparing for. Creating a list is simple and can be done using mail chimp, aweber, and many other free and paid emails services. When you have a list you have a better chance at truly getting to know your ideal client and creating a community outside of social media. This will be especially important for those in direct sales. 

5. Create a Hashtag Community & Encourage Its Use. 

Although your main goal may be to have others subscribe to you so that your photos show up in your feed, you have to remember, no one wants to feel used. You want your audience to feel connected to you and have a sense of community. A fun way to convey this is to create a special hashtag just for them and all of their photos to be displayed. This way you can also keep up with everything they are posting. Get creative and make it fun. 

6. Create an Engagement System & Schedule.

From the sound of things, engagement will be the name of the game if you want your photos to show up in the right feeds. It's easy to fall off of engaging regularly because sometimes it can become overwhelming. The best way to avoid this is to create an engagement system (how you will engage) and an engagement schedule (when you will engage). 

7. Research Your Hashtags.

Hashtags will be important to use with the new changes. Hashtags will be a way for others to find you. The best thing you can do is research what hashtags work for the different types of photos you will post. Hashtags with less than 300,000 photos are more likely to get results. Hashtags should be descriptive of the photo and of your brand. Hashtags will remain in chronological order, so make sure you know which hashtags you plan to use before you post. This will allow you to copy and paste the hashtags so that your photo is seen as soon as you post it.

8. Collaborate With Peers.

Growth, visibility, and engagement all improve through collaboration. It's good to get to know your peers so that you can have a good idea of who you can help and who can help you. This will help you foster mutually beneficial relationships that may lead to shout outs from each other's accounts, joint giveaways, joint webinars, or joint feed take overs. The possibilities are endless. Collaborate, collaborate, collaborate!

9. Survey your audience.

If you are still drawing a blank as to what your audience likes to see and engage with keep it simple and survey them. You can do an open ended survey by asking what they'd like to see on Instagram or you can create a specific survey and send it to your list.

10. Share Valuable and Beautiful Content.

Instagram is a visual platform. That means that the photos you share need to be visually pleasing. They need to attract your audience. The catch is they can't just be beautiful, it needs to also be valuable. Once you've gotten to know your audience you will know what is valuable to your audience, and then it will be your job to present it in a way that is visually creative and pleasing. 

Make sure you check me out on @kelleywithlove for beautiful aesthetic and lots of inspiration.