Does your teacher Instagram need a boost? I reached out to my email subscribers a few weeks ago, and I couldn’t believe that they wanted to see Teacher Instagram strategies from me! I’m not sure why, but it never occurred to me that my students and CEO Teacher Podcast listeners wanted me to help them with Instagram. I have never considered myself a pro, but after that survey, Team Kayse & I decided we wanted to show up and show out for our people. To teach you how to grow your teacher Instagram, we needed to live and breathe it. We’ve been doing a lot of the 3 t’s of a successful teacher Instagram: Testing previous ideas, Tracking the data, and Trying new things.
Keep reading to find out what is currently working when growing a successful CEO Teachergram (you know, a modern version of Instagram just for teachers), and how you can get your teacher Instagram account to that first 10,000 followers before the end of the year. But before we dive in, I don’t want you to miss out on all of the teacher Instagram fun we have planned! Click here to download your CEO Teachergram Growth Guide with a teacher Instagram challenge, research-backed action steps for your growth, and everything you need to give your Teachergram the facelift it needs this year.
I mentioned above that we would work on gaining traction for those coveted 10,000 followers. In case you aren’t familiar, once you receive 10,000 followers on Instagram, you get that extra swipe-up feature that everyone desires. But let me be honest here. That swipe-up feature isn’t the most important thing in your business, and, honestly, I only said 10,000 because I knew it would capture your attention. I don’t believe you need more than 100 true fans to have a successful teacher Instagram.
So let’s focus on what we can control when it comes to growing your Instagram. I think too many people focus on the wrong things like teacher Instagram names when that comes over time. It won’t be right the first time, or maybe it will. I highly encourage you to use their own name or your brand name without utilizing grade levels or, yes, I’m going to say it, alliterations. But that’s a personal preference.
I have 5 P’s for you that have become the foundation for my teacher Instagram growth over the last few years. It wasn’t that long ago that I had no plan and no actual data. But as I experimented and researched, I found these five things were consistent in helping me grow my following to 45,000.
Overcomplicating your plan is the downfall of so many teacher Instagram accounts. That’s why I wanted to make a simple solution to a convoluted method, planning your posts every week. We’ve found the sweet spot, and that’s posting, on average, three days per week. Not every day, not twice a day, and if you can even believe it, some people post three times per day. That’s too much pressure and stress for everyone involved, and that’s not how to start a teacher Instagram authentically.
So inside of the CEO Teachergram Challenge PDF, you’ll find seven blocks with each day of the week. Inside of them. Create a quick, three times a week posting schedule that you can maintain because, as we will see in a later moment, consistency is king. So here are two simple questions I want you to answer inside of that 7-day block.
1.) What days will you post?
2.) What content will you share on those days?
I want you to focus on three main categories every week. What three categories would you like to post about every week? If you pick a more general category, like lifestyle, be sure to be a little more specific. For example, maybe one week it will be about your kids, next about your significant other, the next about your classroom. Starting with those two questions and allowing that to lead your plan for your teacher Instagram account will be well worth it.
Since simplicity always wins in my book, I wanted to continue the trend in your posting schedule. First, we plan, and then we post. We often get caught up in the teacher Instagram rat race and think we need to post in the moment. I’ve learned over the years that this is a slippery slope of carelessness and affects my reach because editing your captions after you post them affects how people see your post. Truth bomb!
So that means taking careful time to plan your teacher Instagram posts before posting them is crucial. Plus, posting at the moment is so last year. It takes away moments with your family, moments you’ll never get back, moments I was sick and dang tired of missing. So now? I schedule out the time I plan to post so that it doesn’t affect my life and my relationships. On the same hand as planning, check out the mini-calendar inside of the Teachergram Growth Guide to help you plan when you’ll post. I have two important questions I want you to answer for each day you committed to posting:
1.) When is your audience online?
2.) When will you post on each day you planned above?
Focusing on those two things, audience time and posting time, will help you get the biggest bang for your engagement buck. Engagement on your teacher Instagram account is the leading factor in reach and exposure. The Instagram engagement rate is a quantitative measure of how users interact with the content on your profile. It takes into account your number of followers, likes, comments, and shares. Engagement rates are typically calculated by dividing an account's likes and comments by follower count.
Remember when I said before that I just wanted you to focus on your first 1,000 followers? That’s the secret as to why. The larger your following gets as a teacher influencer on Instagram, the more likely your engagement rates will drop because it’s hard to capture 100,000 followers’ attention. Focus on getting people to like your photos and engage in the comments section by utilizing calls to action on your posts like, “If you feel me, say amen in the comments down below” or “Share your favorite teacher tech hack down below!”
Our Team Kayse core values are, “ Be a good human, and be good to people.” That’s it. I remember sitting on the floor at a teacher conference in the back of the huge auditorium, answering each direct message in my Instagram inbox when another teachergrammer asked me, “Are you responding to every single person?” My answer: “Yeah! These are my people.” This was before launching my course or membership, so I had NO clue how real that statement would become.
Being inside of my Instagram direct messages every day allows me to stay connected to the people who matter most. The people who created this future for me. It’s the same with your students in the classroom, teacher next door, or even the teachers or parents in your DMs. Be a good human, listen to their thoughts and ideas, even when they don’t align with yours. Listen, learn, and be respectful. Chat about difficult topics, ask questions, check on their health, check on their families. Connection is part of what makes us all human. If you don’t spend time with people that follow you, they will eventually see right through you.
You may not like it, but persistence is the name of the game. It’s what separates the winners from the losers. In the book Influence, “stubborn consistency allows us a very appealing luxury: We don’t have to think hard about the issues anymore.” Being persistent and consistent has a physiological effect on the future endeavors of our customers. Because having persistence and consistency are difficult over time, the people that do it are the ones that begin to rise from the crowd. They become the ones on the top of the ladder because human nature tells us to rely on them, even if we do it subconsciously.
It’s the same way with your teacher Instagram. If you don’t show up for a few weeks, eventually, people will forget about you and move on to someone else who shows up consistently. Same for producing content with TpT, your blog, podcast, Facebook page, and more. If you can stack consistency and persistence together day after day, you’ll already be in the 1% of online business owners. And if I had to guess, you’ll be well on your way to becoming the next teacher Instagram sensation.
Promotions are the easiest way to grow your Instagram following, and we love doing promotions almost monthly. But, hold the phone, I’m about to hit you with an unpopular opinion. Teacher Instagram giveaways (you know, the ones that host a massive giveaway with 20+ teachers on a fake Instagram page) are not the way to grow your teacher Instagram. Whenever we plan anything in our business, including an Instagram promotion, we ask, “What is the goal of this?” And answer it with a SMART goal. There isn’t a SMART goal for those giveaways with tons of teachers because you’re really just gaining vanity metrics with people who really aren’t your people.
So, what types of promotions DO work? Anything that you can create a SMART goal around. We recently wrapped up two promotions that we enjoyed. One, we partnered with three other teachers, and the pot to enter was $250 each. Yeah, I know that’s a high giveaway price, but it allowed us to know, like, and trust the teachers with whom we partnered. We made REAL human connections with the smart goal that we wanted to give one teacher $1000 right before Christmas. Each person we selected aligned with our core values, and when we shared about the giveaway, we shared why we loved each of the other teachers in the group. It was AUTHENTIC. It was our highest growth in a few days, and we retained nearly all of those followers. Plus, having a conversation with the winner brought the most overwhelming feeling of emotions and gratitude.
The other type of promotion we recently did was a personal giveaway for my birthday. The giveaway prize was a bunch of my favorite things, and to enter, teachers would have to follow me, engage with a couple of recent posts, and swipe the slider in my Stories. Whenever you do a giveaway, make sure that those who choose to enter the giveaway can do it within a minute or so. This giveaway also provided significant growth and brought up the engagement on my teacher Instagram profile. And I loved being able to bless a true fan with a bunch of my favorite things!
Find more Instagram growth advice here:
When it comes to growing your teacher Instagram, authenticity is vital. If you try too hard or go in it from the vantage point of getting to a certain status, you’re going to be hitting a dead end time and time again. We are drawn to the people who feel like warm sunshine, so I want you to think about how you can be warm sunshine for your followers. Connect with them, use your data to be consistent, and play the long game. Don’t forget to download your Teachergram Growth Guide and join in the CEO Teacher Instagram fun!
© kayse morris 2020 / legal / design by saffron ave
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