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How to Turn Instagram Fans Into Customers

Published on: December 5 2022 by Social Media Examiner

How to Turn Instagram Fans Into Customers

How to Turn Instagram Fans Into Customers

- There's live streams, there's stories,
there's carousel posts, there's actual DMs, FaceTime.
You can actually do all those features in one.
And if you're only putting all your eggs
in one basket for Reels,
you're really just creating a one dimensional
social media strategy,
and you're not necessarily thinking about the full picture.
(upbeat music)
- Today I'm very excited to be joined by Vanessa Lau.
If you don't know who Vanessa is,
she's an Instagram marketing expert who specializes in
helping creators get more clients.
Her course is called "BOSSGRAM Academy",
and her YouTube channel has got
more than 500,000 subscribers.
Vanessa, welcome back to the show for,
I believe the third time.
How you doing with this?
- Yes, the third time's the charm.
I'm so excited to be here, Mike,
and to just serve your audience and just share all the tips
that I have around Instagram today.
- Well, everyone, you're gonna be in for a treat
because Vanessa is super smart.
She knows what she's toking about.
Today, her and I are gonna explore how to turn
your Instagram fans and followers into customers.
So let's start with,
there's a lot of marketers out there right now
that have been using Instagram.
They've been using TikTok. They've been using Facebook.
They're not sure whether or not they should stay
focused on Instagram because we've got TikTok coming up,
and as you know, there's YouTube out there pulling people in
and all these other platforms.
So to marketers who aren't sure whether they should continue
to invest in Instagram, what do you wanna say to them?
- Yeah, I mean, I just wanna say
I have half a million subscribers on YouTube.
I'm also on TikTok and there is a reason why
I still am on Instagram.
I personally believe that Instagram is the perfect
all-in-one platform, meaning that I'm able to attract,
nurture and convert my customers all in one place,
which is great.
For example, name another platform where you're able
to not only leave a comment on a post,
but you're able to actually engage in the DM, hop on a call,
do voice notes, stories, videos, send photos.
There's so many things that you can do on Instagram.
And what I'd also like to say is let's say on YouTube,
I have half a million subscribers,
and the most that my audience can do on YouTube
is leave a comment on my video.
I'm not really able to actually build connection with them.
Yes, I'm building an audience,
but I'm not really building a community.
Podcast is also another platform
where you can't really do that.
Unless you leave a review for the overall podcast,
there is no way for your listeners to actually engage
on the specific episodes that you've done
or message you and give you feedback and all of that.
And so that's why I feel Instagram
is still a really great platform.
And then you mentioned TikTok.
I've thought about this long and hard
because I do think that TikTok is an up and coming platform
and it's really exciting.
And the reason why a lot of people like TikTok
is because you get to see creators that you don't even
follow on the "For You page".
You mostly get served content of people
you don't even follow.
But with Instagram, if you're trying to build a business
and people are following you,
there's a higher chance of them
actually seeing your content.
And if more people that follow you
are actually seeing your content,
it's easier for you to actually convert those people
into a customer later on,
versus on TikTok, you might have a viral video,
and that's great,
but that person might not see you ever again
on the For You page.
And so that's kind of why I still,
at least this year,
still believe Instagram is a really great
way for marketers to turn their followers into clients.
- I have some interesting statistiks
because we're recording this in May of 2022,
and we're just days away from releasing
our 14th annual social media marketing industry report
where we survey thousands of marketers and we ask them all
sorts of questions about what works for them,
and this is interesting.
When it comes to increased exposure,
the number one platform that marketers say
get them the most exposure
according to 75% of the surveyed audience, is Instagram.
And I think this is kind of really important
because you just toked about how on
a lot of these other platforms like YouTube,
it's audiences that they're showing you
to new people, right?
And on TikTok it's also new people.
But Instagram, if you wanna get in front of that
loyal audience over and over again,
that's really, I think what Instagram was built for,
to develop those relationships.
And from a marketing perspective
and from a sales perspective,
what does that make possible
when these people are seen
and hearing from you all the time?
Tell me why is that so important?
I mean, I would imagine it's really important
for sales and conversions, is it not?
- Absolutely.
Some people need to be exposed to your offer,
or not even your offer,
but to you multiple times before they decide to actually
take action and buy or whatever you sell,
like take that next step.
Whereas with the other platforms,
they might find you once or twice,
but you're not really able to build deeper connections
with them like you could on Instagram.
And I feel like the features on Instagram
really help you build that community.
Think about stories, think about live, think about DMs.
These are all really special features that can actually help
you get closer with someone on a one to one level,
versus the other platforms that are great for exposure
and that are great to get new audiences,
but not necessarily to form a deeper connection
with the audience you currently have,
who have actually opted in and said,
"Hey, I like your stuff.
I subscribed or I followed,
and so I wanna see more of your stuff."
The other algorithms on the other platforms
aren't really a 100% built for that
the same way Instagram is.
And I think that it's important to see that strength
and know that it's still a really great vehicle
to get sales.
- Okay.
So everyone, presumably who's listening has a desire
to make more sales or generate more leads with the work
that they're doing on Instagram.
And you see a lot of things,
you have a lot of people that belong to your academy.
You have lots of students and you probably are notiking
mistakes that marketers seem to make
over and over and over again.
What are some of the big mistakes that you see happening
today as we're recording this in 2022?
- Yeah. There's three mistakes that I can think of.
The first one is focusing only on one feature.
And so we already established Instagram is great.
There's so many features out there.
But one thing that I'm notiking a lot of my own customers,
a lot of marketers in general is they're really going
all in on Instagram Reels, which is fantastik.
Not saying that Instagram Reels is bad at all.
I think that it's excellent
and it's a great way to get exposure.
And it's a really cool feature that Instagram
has introduced to us.
However, we need to remember that there are other features
that you can leverage as well,
that help you not just attract someone,
but nurture and convert them.
So kind of like what I was saying earlier,
there's live streams, there's stories,
there's carousel posts, there's actual DMs, FaceTime.
You can actually do all those features in one.
And if you're only putting all your eggs
in one basket for Reels,
you're really just creating a one-dimensional
social media strategy.
And you're not necessarily thinking about the full picture.
For example, yes, right now with Instagram Reels,
some may argue that they get more reach
on using that feature, which is excellent.
But if you are someone like me
who's more of an educator, let's say,
there's really only so much I can say in a 15 second clip,
I might want to actually leverage a carousel instead
where I can actually showcase my expertise
a little bit further,
or I might want to hop on stories
and actually show the behind the scenes of my life
a little bit better and encourage someone to DM me later on.
There are other features that you could be leveraging
other than just that one feature on Instagram.
And I'm not saying that it's just Instagram Reels.
It could be anything.
If you're only doing stories,
you're missing out on a whole set of features
that Instagram has to offer.
- I love that.
You said there were three things.
- Yes. - What were the other two?
- Yes, the second mistake that I see a lot of marketers
making is only focusing on one modality.
So it's kind of similar to what I was saying before.
But when I tok about modalities,
I'm toking about the way that someone
experiences your content,
and this is really specific to Instagram stories.
And so what I mean by this is I'll see some students
leveraging Instagram stories,
and maybe for the whole entire series
of their Instagram stories, maybe it's like 20 slides,
all they're doing is just toking on camera, which is great.
That's one modality.
Or someone might only do text
and they might just share their thoughts
through text on Instagram stories,
and that's another modality.
But the way that you can actually retain someone
through the lifetime of your content
is to actually switch things up.
So one thing that's working really well for me
is specifically on Instagram stories,
on a few set of stories
I might be toking to camera with text and captions.
That's one type of way I'm engaging.
Then the next type of story is maybe some text.
So you don't even have to listen to me.
You can just read up my thoughts. So that's a few stories.
Then the next story I might be doing a hyperlapse.
And what that means is I might record myself working behind
the scenes and it's kind of like a little hyperlapse
with music overlaid on it.
So that creates a little bit of excitement.
It's kind of like watching a movie or watching a show.
You wanna introduce new elements to your stories that might
entike someone to actually watch the full sequence.
Because a big problem that
a lot of people have with Instagram stories
is they see a drop off.
And in order to reduce that drop off,
it's really about playing up those modalities
and switching things up, add music, add stikers,
add some poles, make things interesting.
Get people to actually be excited to open your stories.
Introduce other-
- Hold on, Vanessa. I want a roadmap.
I just want a formula that I can follow
over and over and over again so it's easy for me.
And you're telling me break the formula.
When you break the formula, then people don't...
it's kind of like a pattern interrupt,
what I just did right here, right?
Just interrupted you, right?
And everybody's like, whoa, what was that, right?
He just said, whoa, Vanessa, right?
So this is a big problem that marketers have
is they just copy what they've always done.
And they wonder why nothing changes, right?
- Exactly.
And this is also really common even in people who have built
their following to a really high level.
Even for me, oftentimes I'm also using the same formula
that I thought would always work.
And then I wonder why.
Hey, how come my follower growth has slowed down
or how come I used to get 10,000 views on my stories,
now I only get 2,000?
Because I'm doing the same dang thing
over and over and over again for years.
And it's time to actually interrupt that pattern.
The same thing applies to YouTube.
I know that our interview is mostly about Instagram,
but I actually saw a this exact problem
with my YouTube channel.
I was doing sit down videos like this for four years
basically on my YouTube channel,
and I saw my engagement decline.
I used to get hundreds of comments,
then it went down to like 10 comments per video.
I had no idea what was going on.
People weren't watching the full videos.
My views were going down and I was wondering like,
what is going on?
Because I'm doing the same thing that I've always done
that have gotten me to a certain point.
And so what I did was okay, I got to switch things up.
So then I changed the way that I did my videos.
I started doing more vlog style videos,
showing more elements of my home,
actually walking around while toking
and teaching tips like I used to,
and boom, engagement shot up.
I went back to getting hundreds of comments.
My views have shot up to hundreds of thousands of views that
I used to get when I first started my channel.
And so I'm just sharing that as an example,
because the same thing applies to your Instagram strategy,
and heck, the same thing applies to any type of platform.
You always wanna switch things up,
break those patterns because people get bored
and they're also following other people too, right?
So you wanna find ways to stand out,
and it doesn't always mean changing your content strategy.
It can be as simple as changing your environment,
changing what you show.
It doesn't have to be just your content itself.
It's just how you present it can change.
- Preach it.
I love it. Okay.
So did you get the third one in there or is that-
- I haven't yet.
I'll share the third one and I'll share it really quickly,
but it's just basically focusing on the wrong metrics
at the wrong time.
I think that a lot of marketers,
they'll get discouraged really quickly,
and they're like, "I didn't get enough likes on this post,
or I didn't get enough comments,"
and that's fair if that was your initial goal for that post,
there's gonna be some posts that you create where
in your mind you're like, you know what?
I really wanna get more followers with this post.
I wanna get more reach,
in which case you're gonna want to determine the success
of that post based on how much reach you get.
Versus I might have a few posts where the call to action
is really clear and it's about growing my email list.
Like I just want people to download my newsletter
or download a certain lead magnet.
And that post, it might not get that many likes,
but is that really my objective?
Instead of focusing that metric on the likes
and making that dictate whether or not
my post was successful,
I'll actually go further into the analytiks
and look at how many link tabs did I get.
Because if I got a lot of link tabs,
that tells me that post did its job
in what I intended it to do,
which was get people to get exposed
to my lead magnet or my newsletter.
And so that's a really big mistake
I see a lot of my own customers doing because the customers
that I serve are more like starting out with social media.
And when you're starting out with social media,
you're prioritizing getting more reach
and likes and all that.
But oftentimes it's not the only metric
that determines your success,
and it shouldn't be the only metric
that determines your success on social.
- This is fricking amazing.
So what I'm hearing you say is, number one,
don't go all in on just one thing like Reels
or just stories.
Number two, think about the kind of content you're making,
and if it feels routine and it's just the same thing
over and over and over, switch up the modality.
For example, do a walking video
instead of the set inside your house, right?
Or try text if you've been doing all video,
that kind of stuff, right?
And then the metrics, right?
If your objective is to sell
or to drive traffic or to generate leads,
then make sure you're not getting caught up
in comments necessarily, right?
You're looking at the right metrics.
Love this.
Okay, now let's assume that everyone who's listening
is gonna be like, "Okay, Vanessa, I'm on this.
I'm gonna start trying this."
Now let's tok about how we can
turn a fan or a follower...
I guess, do they call them followers or fans on Instagram?
Like it's kind of confusing to me.
Do you call them your followers
or do you call them your fans?
How do you refer to them?
- I don't love calling people my followers.
I like calling them my community rather than just being,
"Oh, they're my followers."
It just feels a bit strange,
but obviously that's marking down what they are,
your followers or your subscribers and all that.
- Okay, so let's just call them fans
for the sake of dialogue.
How do we...
What's the first thing we need to be thinking about
when it comes to having these people who've chosen
to essentially follow you on Instagram, right?
What is it we need to do to nurture them
in the very beginning?
How do we think about this?
- Yeah.
So I wanna change something that has absolutely changed
the game for my business.
And it sounds really elementary and basic,
but I wanna say just because something is basic,
doesn't mean that it's easy,
and that is surveying your audience.
And so for my company once a year every summer
we actually output a survey to our fans,
also to our customers as well.
And this can be done through polls,
but we actually do it through a form and everything.
And once someone fills it out,
the incentive for them to fill it out
is the "Thank You page" will actually have
a free gift for them.
And so there's a win-win in that situation.
And in this form we're asking questions
like, how would you describe your situation right now?
And then how would you describe yourself?
So for me, I have a few ideas of who my ideal clients are.
I might say, "Hey, are you a coach?
Are you someone in real estate?
Are you someone who is a content creator?
Are you a new entrepreneur, an experienced entrepreneur?"
Who do you actually identify as?
We also ask them, why did you follow my account?
What other accounts do you follow?
What topics are you hoping to hear from me about?
Why did they follow me?
Do you know about our offers?
And if you do know about our offers,
what is the reason why you haven't taken advantage
of those offers?
And so we kind of do this in depth questionnaire
to really know more about our audience,
because that actually helps us create content afterwards.
It helps me actually see who are the people
who are following me, why did they follow,
who are my competitors?
I can think about who my competitors are,
but who are actually my competitors.
And that helps me create a really strong foundation
for the content that I'll be creating,
which would then nurture my audience
or convert my audience or whatever else.
And one thing that I'll also say about surveying
and actually asking people what they want from you
is you are never too small of a company to do this,
and you are never too big of a company to do this.
When you are small,
it's even more important to actually understand
where you stand with these people who followed you.
And if you are really big and you've been doing it
for a few years like me,
you also wanna see whether or not your audience has evolved
in terms of their life stages, in terms of their interests.
I actually saw that in my audience.
So four years ago when I was starting out,
I was attracting a lot of baby entrepreneurs.
People who were just starting out.
Four years later doing the same survey,
I've seen a lot of them have wanted
more advanced content from me.
They want to see more aspects of business
than what I've been sharing before.
And that not only helped me with my content,
but it also helped me with my offers.
It helped me with my sales pages.
It helps me with so many different aspects of my business.
And so the number one thing is make sure that you,
at some point of the year,
survey your audience so that you have the data
that will inform how you create your content later on.
- Okay. I've got a couple practikal questions about this.
How are you surveying your Instagram
following in partikular?
Tell us a little bit of how do you get them
from being a follower on Instagram to taking the survey?
Do you understand what I'm asking?
- Yeah.
So it's usually a campaign that we do
and we do it on the summertime,
because summertime's like really fun time
to kind of do these types of initiatives.
And I'll just release it on stories, just being like,
"Hey, we really want to level up our content to serve you
and to help you achieve whatever goal
that you're thinking of."
Obviously you'd be more specific to your niche.
"Would you have the time to actually fill out the survey?"
And now the best thing and the easiest thing now is that
everyone can actually share links on their stories.
You don't need 10K followers to do swipe up.
Everyone's got that link tap feature now.
So you embed your survey in and you tell people,
"Hey, this is only gonna take you 10 to 15 minutes.
By the end of filling out this survey,
you'll receive a free training or a free guide
or a free gift or something like that."
And then we also make the survey anonymous as well.
And so tactfully, what we do is we keep
the survey anonymous so people could be honest with us
of what they want.
- So you do not ask for your email address
or anything like that, right?
- No, we don't, just because we would rather
keep it anonymous because people feel more comfortable
to actually share.
If there's something that I'm doing
on social media they don't like,
they will share in that survey,
which is great information for me to know about.
And then how we make sure that people actually get that
incentive is it's in the "Thank You page".
So once they actually finish filling it out
and there's that "Thank You page" that pops up,
in there is the link to actually download
the actual training.
And so in that case,
that's where we would collect that email
because then we do not...
We're creating a safe space for our audience.
We don't know who wrote what,
but we're still getting your email
so we can at least send you the training.
So we're kind of still building our list in that sense.
So that's kind of strategically how we do it.
And one thing, because I'm assuming most people listen
to this interview are all business owners,
whatever comes out of that survey,
it is fricking amazing because I send it to my contractors.
I send it to whoever writes my copy.
I send it to my team, my social media person.
I send it to everyone that comes to my team
and trains with us because now they understand
who we're actually serving,
what our audiences are going through.
And that has helped tremendously with our email marketing,
our Instagram posts, YouTube channel, everything.
- Well, and I just wanna double down an echo
on what Vanessa said about data and surveys.
I mentioned earlier that we just published
our 14th annual industry survey.
Well, guess what?
We collect data in that survey that does not make
its way into the report.
And that data is used for us
in the exact same way Vanessa uses it.
We decide we ask them questions about our content
and what kinds of things they would like to see from us.
And it's part of the reason why we have been successful.
So high five, fellow data nerd.
- Exactly, and for those people who are listening
who are feeling overwhelmed
and maybe they're like, "I don't know how to do a survey,"
it doesn't have to be as complex
as how Mike and I are doing it.
It could literally be a story sequence, like a 10 story,
like a 10-page story sequence,
where you have these little quizzes or these polls
or all these things where people can actually just do
the multiple choice.
And then there, boom, some data for you to work off of.
So it doesn't have to be as complex
as what we're explaining.
It could be as simple as keeping it to Instagram stories,
and making it engaging and fun for your audience.
And just knowing that there's something in it for them,
meaning that by collecting the data,
you're gonna be able to improve how you show up for them
and give them the targeted content that they want.
- Okay, so let's assume there's people listening right now,
who whether they've done the data or not,
the analysis, they know who their audience is.
What's the next thing we need to be thinking about
as far as turning our fans, if you will, into customers?
- Yep.
The next step is to actually create your content strategy.
And so specifically you want content that not just nurtures,
and what I mean by nurturing is it actually just continues
to build that relationship with someone,
but also content that converts.
And so what I mean by content that nurtures is,
number one, is you wanna make sure
that you're consistent, right?
Because the one thing is
it's one thing to have a viral Reel go off,
and that person's like, "Oh my God, I love that Reel.
I'm gonna become a follower,"
but if you don't have consistent content
that's actually feeding through,
they're likely going to unfollow
because why are they following a dead account?
And so number one is consistency.
But number two, in terms of actual content
that builds the relationship,
you wanna create consistent content
that showcases your expertise.
And so what I mean by this is you could create Reels,
carousel posts, stories, it doesn't matter,
where you share tips around your industry
or your knowledge on a certain thing, stories,
relevant stories of things that you've been through,
stories and lessons that you've learned in the last few
years where you've accumulated your experience,
sharing the behind the scenes of you working
with your clients or whatever else,
types of content that actually showcases
your expertise regularly.
And so for me, I'm always sharing my experiences
on Instagram stories.
I'm always sharing my experiences
through my carousel posts or my Reels.
And so that is the type of content that I like to do.
The second type of content that you wanna do
that also builds a relationship with someone
and also gets someone to trust you,
but also starts really warming them up for your offer is
content that allows them to shift their beliefs.
So I call it belief shifting content.
A lot of times,
especially if you are someone who is in the industry,
you're trying to educate someone
or maybe you're just trying to share your knowledge,
a lot of people who follow you might have a goal, right?
They might have a type of outcome that they're hoping for.
And they're hoping that by following your account,
they can get closer to that outcome.
Now, a lot of times your followers may have self-doubt.
They may just feel demotivated
of actually achieving that goal.
What type of content can you create that really inspires
them and encourages them to keep moving forward?
So for me, what I like to do is I like to share stories
of times where I failed and how I overcame that.
I like to share quotes.
Quote posts are one of the easiest things to create,
and they don't even have to be your quotes, you know?
It could be a quote from someone else
that really inspired you
and you can just credit that person.
So types of content like that,
that actually gets someone to feel motivated
and to feel like, "Whoa, this is possible for me,
that outcome that I want is possible for me.
And I thank Vanessa,
and I thank Mike for showing me that it is possible."
And so that's the second type of content that I like to do.
And then the third type of content that I like to do that
also builds trust with people is personal content.
And so it really depends
whether you are a personal brand or not.
So this is more relevant to those of you
who have personal brands.
But even if let's say, you're an agency owner,
or you're a real estate person or whoever else,
it's always nice to at least show
the behind the scenes of your life.
Or even regularly on a quarterly basis,
what I like to do is I say,
"Hey, hey, everyone, we have some new faces
here on my account.
I just wanna take some time to reintroduce myself.
Hi, I'm Vanessa. I'm the owner of this business.
I'm a Taurus and NFP, here are my values.
Here are my top three values.
This is why I started my business.
And here are three ways that you can work with me."
And so I'll regularly resurface like myself and reintroduce
myself to my following just to remind them like,
"Hey, I'm here for you,
and here are some fun facts about myself,"
because at the end of the day,
if you have a service provider or a business owner who is
selling the exact same thing as you,
oftentimes, what might make someone choose you
over the other person could be those personal facts.
"Hey, I really like Mike because he lives in San Diego
and I've always wanted to live in San Diego,
or, hey, I really like Vanessa,
because I know that she's got two cats and a dog
and I love animals too."
And so these little details that you share
with your audience builds connection,
but it can also be the difference that makes the difference
on whether or not someone decides to actually buy from you.
- I could just keep listening and listening and listening.
You're so amazing.
Okay.
So let's tok about offer focused content,
because this is something that you and I toked about
when we were preparing for this interview.
And by the way, I echo everything that you said.
I've recently...
And by the way, folks,
everything Vanessa's toking about
doesn't just apply to Instagram.
It applies to podcasting. It applies to YouTube.
It kind of works everywhere, right?
I mean there is something about...
There's something fundamental about
what you're toking about.
And I recently had Evan Carmichael also on the podcast.
And he's a YouTube guy.
You might know who he is,
but so much of what he's toking about,
what you're toking about at a strategic conceptual level,
like the venn diagram overlap is pretty substantial.
And I love it when my audience hears from different people
some of these same recurring messages.
Because in the same way we said earlier, you and I,
that you need to try to say things in different ways
in order to get through to your audience.
It's also good for me to have different voices,
echo some of these very important concepts that are
fundamental and critikal to marketing.
So now I wanna transition over to this concept
of offer-focused content.
What does that mean? What do we need to be thinking about?
tok to me about that.
- Yeah, so offer-focused content is self explanatory,
but it basically means content that
actually speaks to your offer.
And this kind of links back to the mistake that I mentioned
earlier on about how most marketers sometimes only focus on
one metric of success versus looking at the big picture.
So for instance, a lot of times for me,
when I create offer-focused content,
I will actually create content that says,
"Hey, this is my offer. This is what we do for our clients.
This is what we stand for.
If this is something you're interested in,
then DM me or click the link in my bio or comment below,
and I'll serve you or whatever else."
And a lot of those posts don't get likes.
Sometimes maybe they might not even get comments,
but those are the posts that actually brings us sales,
because one mistake that a lot of people make
is they don't tok about their offers enough,
explicitly enough, and they expect that their audience
or their followers are just gonna click the link in the bio
by themselves and then find your offer by going
through your website and researching about you,
but you wanna make their lives easier
and occasionally tell them, "This is what I have."
One thing that's worked really well for me is to make sure,
there's two strategies that I do.
The first strategy is when I create carousel.
Okay, so sometimes what I do in my carousel post
is I'll share maybe five slides of me sharing a strategy
that I teach or sharing a story that I have.
But then on the last slide,
I'll have an actual call to action,
like a visual call to action.
It'll have a graphic of maybe my offer
or maybe my lead magnet,
depending on what your funnel's gonna look like.
And then I'll have text that say,
"Hey, if you like this post, you would love my newsletter.
Or if you like this post,
you'd be a great fit for the BOSSGRAM Academy."
Then I've got a visual representation
of what the course looks like, like the graphic.
And then below that I will have a call to action,
like, click the link in my bio,
or here's the link or DM me the word "X" keyword,
and we can tok about direct message later.
But DM me this word
and I'll give you the link through messaging.
That's kind of what we do.
So for a lot of our posts that feel like it could link to
our offer and that'd be a great segue
to get someone to take that next step,
we'll put that at the last slide of the carousel.
So it's not just hidden in the caption.
It's actually like a visual.
And so another thing too with carousel post is it could be
a video or it could be just a picture.
And so what's awesome is on the last post,
especially because for me, I sell a course,
it might even be a video walking through the course
just showing someone,
"Hey, here's what looks like in-"
- The last carousel can be a video. Is that right?
- Yeah. - Oh, I didn't know that.
- Yeah, it can be a video and it's not a Reel,
but it's like a video.
And so you could do like a GIF let's say,
and then we'll do GIFs of just showing
here's what the product looks like.
Or even if it's a lead magnet,
we'll kind of scroll through the lead magnet
so people can see, oh my god,
this looks like a really juicy piece of content.
And I wanna click the link in your bio now
to actually download it,
versus of course you could have it in your caption,
but the caption's only text.
It's not really visual.
And that's what I meant by having different modalities.
You're not changing your offer.
You're not changing the messaging,
but you're kind of changing the way
that you're presenting information.
Because another mistake that people make is they assume
that people like to learn the same way you like to learn.
I'm a video person. I love visuals.
I'm a very visual person.
Other people, they might not be visual.
They maybe only like audio or maybe they like reading.
And so you really kind of wanna switch up the different ways
that you're presenting your offer
because not everyone consumes content the same way.
It's also great for accessibility as well.
And so that's the first strategy that's worked really well
for me is to visually show my offers.
And I specifically leverage the carousel feature to do that.
Then the second strategy that I like to do
is I'll pick a day, let's say of the week,
and I'll say, okay, every Wednesday on my stories
I'm going to share my client wins,
followed by a call to action to my offer.
So every single Wednesday we will share
maybe like three slides or even two slides of screenshots
of our clients wins that week, right?
And then you click through those two slides.
Then the next slide is a transition slide on my story
that will say, "Hey, if you want results like these clients,
then click this link to learn more about our free training
that's gonna help you go from A to Z
when it comes to building your business."
And so we have that on auto, kind of like scheduled.
Every single Wednesday, we'll swap the client testimonial.
So at least we're switching things up,
but the slides where we actually share a offer are the same.
And so it's kind of like an evergreen way
and a scheduled way to just continuously
share your offer without you forgetting.
Because a lot of times we forget to tok about our offer,
and this is a really great way
that I've kind of automated that,
while also modifying it so it's not going stale,
if that makes sense.
- Totally.
On this strategy to pick a day of the week
and share a client win,
are you toking about like a screenshot of an email
they sent you with their name fuzzed out?
Are you toking about text messages?
I mean, what are you toking about?
- I'm toking about anything.
So let's say like I'll have maybe some screenshots
in our Facebook group over latest client wins.
It'll just literally throw that up in Canva.
You don't even need to do that.
You could even just do it through your phone,
just do it on your stories.
Then I share and then I'll write like,
"Hey, Mike got an incredible win this week
when he started in the program.
He was this and now he's this."
And then I'll have a few stories sharing those client wins.
And then next few stories transitions into,
"Hey, if this has inspired you and this has shown you
what's possible and you wanna take that next step with us,
then click the link here to download this or to join this,"
or to whatever.
And on every Wednesday we do this.
A great thing too,
is kind of like training your followers to expect that.
So what we like to do is like, it's client win Wednesday,
like, "Happy Wednesday, everyone.
Time to share the client wins."
And then we'll kind of have that template that we reshare
every Wednesday and it gives us consistent traffic.
And it's in the data.
Every time we do this, we see a tik in email subscriptions,
a tik in people signing up for the webinar,
a tik in sales, and so it works.
And the reason why it works is because you need...
People need constant exposure to something.
And so that's kind of what we do.
And then another thing that we like to do too
is instead of just telling people click the link,
we also leave an option like, "Hey, have questions? DM us."
And so that way we're inviting them to tok to us
if they're interested and that way we can actually have
a one-on-one sales conversation
that will probably convert better.
- Okay. I want to...
I'm gonna get to the DM stuff,
but first, I know I can read the minds of someone
who's listening right now.
And they're saying, yeah, but Vanessa,
I hate selling myself.
Vanessa, I just wanna provide value to people,
and I feel icky if I have to like sell myself.
I can imagine you might have felt that way once,
and probably some of your students have felt that way.
What do you wanna say to people who just wanna provide value
and just don't feel comfortable doing the pitch?
Do you understand what I'm asking?
- Yeah, it's interesting because I feel that.
I feel that to my core,
but there are two thoughts that I have.
The first thought is number one,
a lot of times people aren't buying the offer
because they don't like it.
It's because they don't know that it exists.
And so-
- You're doing them disservice then, right?
- Yeah. You're doing them a huge disservice,
but also it's they just don't know that it exists.
And that survey might also even tell you about that.
Like even for us, that's why we ask are you aware
that we have these offers?
And you'll be really surprised some people being like, no,
I was not aware that you had these offers.
And I'm like, well, heck, I guess I didn't do a good job
sharing it because you see your business every single day.
You see your offer every single day,
but you have to keep in mind that you are one out
of like a 1,000 people that your audience is following.
And so they're not revolving their lives around you.
And so if you don't share,
then they're not gonna know about it.
And for me, what I like to do is I like to share
a bunch of value and then help people my offer.
And so for YouTube specifically,
because I'm a huge YouTuber
or like I'm a huge on YouTube, passionately on YouTube,
don't wanna put my own ego.
- Okay, let's not discount that, go ahead.
- But every single video that I do,
I will always have a call to action like,
"Hey, if you like this video and you like the value
that I provided with these tips,
and you wanna take it to the next step,
then click the link in my description box
because I have a full blown extra training
that actually can help you with this even more."
And so that training allows me to click the email
and it allows me to have a longer piece of content
that leads into my offer again.
And so-
- Well, and most importantly,
it allows you to generate the revenue to justify
the continuation of you creating content, right?
- Yeah, 100%.
And that is why I started doing that actually.
I'm so glad you brought that up, is YouTube specifically,
but Instagram, there's also a cost to running social media.
Your time is also really valuable too.
But YouTube specifically for me,
I'm paying my editor, that costs money.
I'm paying for my hosting software like storage.
I'm paying for all these things, right?
I paid for my equipment.
And so for me, I always wanna make sure that each video
is giving me a return on my investment.
And so that's why it's important that I always share
my offer because that's the way
that I'm able to create content.
And so one thing that Tony Robin said
that really spoke to me, because trust me,
I also used to be really scared to charge more,
used to be really scared to tell people my offer,
ask them if they wanna be a client, all those things.
But one quote that really spoke to me was
there is no mission if there is no margin.
So if you have a huge mission,
you wanna elevate your client experiences,
you want people to lives to change,
or even if you wanna give client gifts,
something as simple as that,
you need to be able to make money to do that.
So if you're not making any margin
on the content that you're creating,
your mission can only go so far
because eventually you're gonna burn out
because you're not making any money,
and that doesn't serve anybody.
- Well, and therefore,
if you are doing the wrong call to action,
like comment share, right?
Versus check out my course,
I mean like tok to me a little bit about that
because everybody seems to do the wrong call to action
if they're trying to generate revenue, don't they?
- Yep, exactly.
I mean like the comment, like, share,
there's a place for that.
If your goal is to like for this post specifically,
I just wanna gain more followers and I just wanna grow my
audience a little bit,
but if it's about sales, then yes, absolutely,
you need to start telling people,
"Hey, my course is available."
One way that I like to do this,
and I like to kill two birds with one stone for my captions
is I will still say...
I'll have two call to actions usually in my captions.
The first call to action is when I'll say,
"Hey, like this if you resonated,
comment below of your thoughts."
And then my second call to action is,
"PS. If you like this post
and you are someone who wants to achieve this goal,
then click the link in my bio
because I have this offer for you."
And so I'll have two call to actions so that I'm speaking to
two different types of people.
If one person is like, you know what?
I just wanna like and engage, then great.
I've invited them to do that.
But there's a lot of people that want to know
about your offer and you are literally cutting them off
from doing that.
And the next thing that I'll also say too,
is the best free content
aims to give short term results like quick wins, right?
Free content can do that.
Free really well done content that's for free does that.
It gives you short term wins.
But the best paid content,
the best paid stuff is what's actually gonna get people
the big transformations, the big long term results.
And so if you're only focusing on doing these
free content pieces, bite size,
whatever else on YouTube, podcast, Instagram, whatever,
you're really only taking someone this far
of the transformation that they could possibly get.
They're just getting those quick short term wins,
which is good.
But when you actually have a paid offer, a paid service,
something that takes three months to achieve,
but you're gonna support them in achieving that,
that's when people get the huge wins.
That's where I get my clients saying, oh my gosh,
I was able to quit my job.
I was able to make 10K per month thanks to you.
I was able to start my own business.
My YouTube channel and my Instagram content
gets people results.
They'll say, "Oh, I got more likes or thank you,
thanks to you I got my first 100 followers,"
but it's not the big transformations
that my paid stuff will actually give.
And so again, if you think about it in that lens,
it's like if you really care about people
and you really want them to win, you should offer both.
And if they don't take your paid offer, great,
you have your free content that's extra valuable too,
but just know that you can only take them
so far with that free content.
- A little few minutes ago,
you mentioned about direct messaging,
and tok to us a little bit about the role of direct
messaging when it comes to marketing and sales,
from your perspective.
- Yeah.
So there's a few direct messaging strategies
that we've used that have helped a lot.
The first one I'll tok about is just how to
automate some of that some lead generation.
And then the second thing that I wanna tok about
is how to actually have really good conversations
with people that feel aligned
because we just toked about,
oh, I feel so icky about selling myself,
and yeah, yeah, yeah.
Well, if you feel icky about even toking
about your offer on stories,
then I can't imagine what it feels like to tok
about your offer privately in the DM.
So I have some tips to help people with that.
But I do wanna share the automation side of things
because it's something that my business has tried,
and it has worked really well is...
And it's more advanced by the way,
but you could use apps like MobileMonkey or Minichat.
And one thing that worked really well for us
is we actually automate sending people our lead magnets.
So for example, in our post,
we might say comment the keyword "client",
and we'll send you our PDF on 10 steps to get clients.
What's awesome about that
when you automate something like that
and you have like a third party service
that does that for you is now a bunch of people
are commenting "client, client, client"
in the comment section, helping our engagement.
And then when they comment that,
you're able to actually automate delivering that lead magnet
to their DM and to get them to sign up for it.
So we were able to build our list that way,
which was awesome.
So that's one side of things that have helped us
in terms of optimizing DMs,
just to be able to automate the act of sending lead magnets
or sending resources over.
The second way that has helped us a lot
in terms of actually increasing conversions
is having conversations, actual, real life conversations.
because here's what we tried, Mike.
We tried to automate conversations through DMs.
That was a disaster. That didn't work for us.
- You probably got a lot more upset people
than anything else, right?
- Yes.
But yeah, so like that's why with messenger bots,
you wanna be careful.
What I found from trial and error
is what worked with messenger bots
was just simply automating sending resources.
Not having conversations but more so like,
"Hey, if you want this resource, DM this,"
and then Betty The Bot or like my virtual assistant,
my bot will send you the lead magnet so you can download it.
Because what I used to do is I used to have my team
manually send people stuff and it just took so long, right?
So bots have a place.
But for me personally,
I think it's just automating those tasks.
But when it comes to actually having
one-on-one nurturing conversations, I've tried it,
didn't work well for me.
If you know someone who it worked well for, let me know,
but you cannot replace a human actually toking
in the DMs to understand someone's pain points
and seeing if they're a good fit for your program.
And so what we do now is we'll say in my post
or in my stories, my call to action,
I might still say, "Hey, DM me the keyword 'social media'
if you want me to help you with growing
your social media account or something,"
and then the person will DM me and they'll say social media,
I'm like, okay, great.
So now I know that they found me
through that post that I did.
They're relatively interested.
And so what I might say is like,
"Hey, Mike, thank you so much for checking out my stories
and sending me the keyword.
Can you tell me more about your business?"
And then you might say,
"Hey, my business is A, B C, D, E, F, G, whatever else."
And I'm like, great, that sounds like an awesome business.
So I'm kind of validating their business.
I'm making them feel comfortable.
But then I'm also going to ask a qualifying question,
a question that kind of tells me like, okay,
is this person gonna be a good fit for my offer
or what I have to offer or the resources that I have?
So I might say something like,
"Hey, Mike, are you successful
at getting clients currently?"
And so that way I'm able to not just qualify
that person through that question,
but I'm also able to create a gap because now it's getting
you thinking like, am I successful at getting clients?
Let me think about that.
So you might say, "Hey, Vanessa, no.
I'm not really successful at getting clients right now.
I'm really struggling with lead gen specifically."
And you might tell me your whole story
about why you're not getting clients right now.
And so what I'll say next is I will say,
"That sounds really frustrating.
I can completely understand how that feels."
So I'm again, I'm validating that person.
And then I would say,
"Doing client generation is actually something that we do
in our business pretty well.
Is this something that you would like support on?"
And so I'm not just sending them a link to something.
I'm number one, asking their permission.
Would you like my help with this?
This is something I can offer.
Would you like my help on this?
So it's asking for permission
so you feel good and you're not like pitch slapping someone.
And then the second thing is if they say yes,
what I'm creating right now is micro-commitments.
So the more times I can get someone to say yes,
the easier it is for them to say yes
to the actual final offer.
And so you might say, no, which is fine.
Or you might say yes, and I'll be like, okay, great.
You want more help with this.
"Well, I'm not sure if you know, Mike,
but in my business we have a program
called BOSSGRAM Academy, yada, yada.
This is what it's about.
And this is who it's perfect for.
The first step is to actually watch this free training that
allows you to learn more about the program.
Is this something that...
Would you like me to send you the link to that?"
Again, I'm asking permission.
Again, I'm not just sending them the link right away.
I'm asking for permission.
And again, I'm trying to get another micro-commitment.
They might say, no, this is not something
that I'm really interested in right now.
I'm like, okay, great. That's no problem.
Here's some other free...
Would you like me to send my free resources?
Or I'm able to kind of dig deeper
as to what they really want,
in which case I'm able to give them a targeted solution.
If they say yes, amazing.
Then I might say, okay, great.
Here's the link and I'll send it through.
And then I might say something like,
"Hey, I really care about making your life easier.
I wanna make sure that you're able to get this successfully.
Would you want to just send me your email
and I can register you?
I can register you automatikally myself."
And then most times people will be like,
oh my God, thank you so much.
Like, yeah, because what I'm trying to do
is I don't want people to have all these different steps
to just find my offer.
I don't want them to go through all these different hoops
to just sign up for something.
So I will think of it in the lens of
I wanna provide the best white glove customer service
as I possibly can through DM.
So whatever I can do to make your life easier, let me know.
Would you like me to just send...
Would you like me to just register you myself?
Most times they'll be like, oh my God, thank you so much.
And I'll be like, okay, great.
I just registered you, you would've gotten the email.
I cannot wait to see you at this training
and I'll follow up in a few days just to see
how you liked it.
And so do you kind of see how comfortable
that conversation is?
It doesn't to be sleazy and anything like that.
And so that's how I've trained my teams and myself to have
these conversations organically in the DMS.
And what's awesome about this is we notike a much higher
conversion doing it this way because people feel like
they're getting a targeted solution.
Versus if you're only focusing on like click the link
in my bio and it's one to many,
and it's like two of the masses that you're having this call
to action in your captions or stories.
Yes, some people will click on it,
but other people they might be like, is this offer for me?
I'm not sure.
Am I ready for this?
I don't know. I have a question.
And so when you actually have a conversation like that,
you're able to learn more about their business.
You're able to learn more about what their goals are,
ask them for permission, create those micro commitments,
all those different things.
That person then feels like,
whoa, she really listened to me.
And now I'm even more excited to click on this link
because now I know for sure it is actually what I need
and what I want.
And it also benefits you as the business owner too,
because you don't want leads that are unqualified
clicking your links and driving your conversion down.
And so it's a great way for you to also filter people out,
get information, get data, do market research,
send people to your free content
if they're not qualified for your paid content.
It's awesome.
And it goes back to the first thing of why choose Instagram.
You can't do this on YouTube
and I don't think you can do this on...
I mean, I guess you could do it on TikTok,
but I don't think TikTok is as developed yet
in terms of doing these types of conversations.
So that's why, guys,
Instagram, you're still able to do these things.
- Wow.
Wow, wow.
Okay. Folks, you just heard the magical mind of Vanessa Lau.
Now, Vanessa, there are gonna be some people right now
that want to discover more about you.
Where do you wanna send them?
- Yeah, so if you are someone,
if you're a creator and you wanna launch
a one-on-one program and sign clients,
you can visit my free training at
www.followerstoklients.com.
Or if you want to browse my free content,
I do so many free videos online on my YouTube channel.
Just search Vanessa Lau, and you'll find me there.
- Vanessa, thank you so much for answering all my questions
and providing amazing wisdom.
I really appreciate you coming on today.
- Thank you for having me. This was a pleasure.
And hopefully we'll see you guys
for the fourth time next time.