An alabama-raised video strategist, content creator, educator, podcaster, and introvert who plays an extrovert on camera. And I’m doing it all from my laundry room!
Ah, the age-old (well, 10ish years old) question… How do you get views on Instagram?
Maybe you’re just starting out on your ‘gram journey. Or maybe you’ve noticed your views have taken a dip post-holidays (this is very common, don’t panic). Especially around Christmas time, our sweet lil’ free content gets buried by all the paid content-hungry for holiday shoppers.
In case this is your first time tuning in, let me introduce myself. Reporting from my laundry office in small-town Illinois, this is Virginia Kerr. And I’m here to help you stand out and make money by leveraging and up-leveling your social media videos. I’ve been in the TV and video industry for more than 20 years. Four TV newsrooms, hundreds of videos, blogs, and podcasts later, I’m here to share what I’ve learned with women ready to get the most out of their hard work.
Does video intimidate you? Make you want to hide? I’m excited to help you push through your limiting beliefs and show you that you can shine on video! I’m closing the gap by teaching you easy systems and sharing templates that help your videos get in front of your ideal clients.
Welcome to This is Virginia Kerr, The Podcast! Let’s get started!
As we all know, holidays are hectic, and you’re probably busier than normal; hence you’re not posting as much. This is where planning becomes your best friend, despite the fact it can seem daunting. I personally am not a big batcher, so I understand the hesitation (dread) but listen, when things get busy it can be a real gamechanger.
And it’s not like you have to batch or keep that pace forever. This is not a linear process; you don’t have to maintain a constant upward momentum because that’s unsustainable and you will end up crying in a corner.
Let’s avoid this…
Firstly, let’s determine how Instagram actually works. It mainly focuses on shares and saves, while monitoring how often people make the trip from the above to your profile. It also measures the amount of time people spend consuming your content, with the goal of people spending the most amount of time possible in the app.
If it sees sustained engagement, the computer overlord robots decide, “This must be a good account, let’s promote it.” It’s also important/interesting to note that it examines your account as a whole and uses that data to determine its relevance.
Ok, so you should just post everything? Post constantly? Make the algorithm see nothing but you? Yikes, that sounds like a lot.
Also, it’s not the answer. Sure it could potentially grow your reach…but it might just annoy your audience. Especially if, in your desperation to crank out content, you’re posting crappy, boring stuff. Don’t succumb to death by content, and don’t make yourself crazy by posting just to post. No one wins.
Besides, you probably have a family, partner, hell, even a life to live, or a business to run that Instagram is just a component of. Sure you want to expand your virtual reach, but don’t do it at the expense of all of the above.
The real goal here is to set yourself up for success and not overwhelming feelings of panic and inadequacy. Start with something manageable; I’d say no less than 3 posts a week. Giving yourself a minimum without absolutes gives you flexibility if you encounter a busier week than normal.
Periodically, as time allows, ramp up content production with a definitive timeline so you can see the light at the end of the tunnel.
Batch small amounts if you find the idea of batching sends you into an emotional tailspin. OR, if this still feels impossible, try to schedule times throughout the week to pause and post. You could even combine these techniques; they can be fluid and custom to you and your process. Don’t deal in absolutes, just try and find a method/methods that help you put out consistent quality content without going crazy.
Again, if you’re posting consistently but it’s pointless crap, it’s a waste of everyone’s time.
Remember the 4 E’s:
Try to hit at least one of these points in everything that you post. Reels are great for entertaining educational content. Storytelling makes you memorable and is entertaining. Lives are good for emotional vulnerability and engagement. Calls to action at the end of all of these are your best friends for engaging your audience.
You should also be posting a healthy mix of traffic and/or nurturing content. What’s this you ask? Traffic gets people to your content and is best served by: reels, lives, carousels, and collaborations with partners. Nurture is best served by lives that educate while also being vulnerable in showing your audience “behind the scenes.” If you slip up, don’t even worry — that makes you even more relatable.
I’d recommend trying to go live at least once or twice a month, with intentional nurturing content. Lives are typically longer, so they are great for gathering people in the moment. But because of that, they will probably have the least amount of revisits. This is normal, and they’re still useful to widen your audience overall.
It’s also good form to mix up content when you’re doing a launch versus posting during “normal time.”
Before I let you loose to go apply these strategies today, I’d like to leave you with some bits and bobs that I’ve found extremely helpful.
Poll questions are great ways to increase engagement and refer people back to your stories or highlight reels that answer the questions.
When I feel like it, occasionally I post multiple times a day with repurposed YouTube Videos. This takes the pressure off of me creating completely new content while drawing my audience to my other platforms.
Lastly, utilizing storytelling in a compelling way is so so important. Some people use characters, some people don’t. Again, do what you’re going to be best at, not what you think you need to be. Stories should speak to your ideal candidate and establish that connection to make them feel seen and possible.
No matter what, being genuine is the number one thing that will make or break you in terms of audience engagement. Utilize any or all of the above techniques, while allowing yourself to shine through, and I can almost guarantee you’ll be navigating ways to do non-annoying paid sponsorship ads in no time.
Tune in to Episode 65 of This Is Virginia Kerr, The Podcast for more tips on creating content to expand your reach on Instagram.
Thanks so much for reading! And, as always, don’t forget that your story and personality are what set you apart from everyone else in your industry. Don’t hold yourself back from sharing these gifts with the world!
If you liked what you learned here, head on over to Instagram and share it on your IG stories and tag me, @thisisvirginiakerr
For more information about the podcast, or to learn more about This is Video School, visit my website. I would love to connect with you more on social media! You can find me on Instagram or join my free Facebook community, This is Video and Content Strategy, to help you level up your branding, messaging and video so you can grow your audience and convert followers into customers.
I look forward to seeing you there!
Virginia Kerr is an Alabama-raised video strategist, content creator, educator, and podcaster who teaches entrepreneurs how to grow their business with video marketing
I started creating videos for fun on Instagram and TikTok and ended up building a half-million-dollar business from my laundry room.
Today I’m dedicated to helping business owners share their messages and make money with video just like I do.