As I reflect on my journey of growing my Instagram following, I can’t help but think about the countless things I wish I had done differently. 

Missed opportunities and lessons learned have shaped my understanding of what it takes to thrive on this platform. Today I am sharing everything I wish I would have done sooner! 

Define My Brand/Mission

For so long, my self-worth was tied to my volume of transactions. Throughout the majority of my career, I relentlessly strived to be the best, chasing after money to validate myself. I wanted to prove that I was indeed good enough, worthy enough, and not the same girl from high school on the “assisted lunch” program for low-income households. 

But, I have realized that the cars, the house, and the “top producer” status will all come and go. And we can’t take any of that with us when we leave this earth. My heart is to help Realtors who are struggling, and I wish I had defined that mission sooner to establish a deeper sense of passion and understanding in my brand

Leverage ManyChat for Instant Engagement

ManyChat offers a “quick emoji reaction” feature on Instagram. When a follower reacts to your story, for example, with a laughing emoji, ManyChat will send a response text to that follower. You can set this up to send automatically or after a 30-second delay. 

This allows you to quickly thank them for engaging with your content. You can also set up different responses and utilize the randomizer feature, ensuring you’re not sending the same response text repeatedly.


Additionally, ManyChat can be used to collect emails through Stories. You can set up the “Lead Magnet Template” in ManyChat. Then, ask your followers to DM you a specific word, like “guide,” to receive your freebie. Once they do, ManyChat will trigger that “Lead Magnet Template” series and ask for an email in exchange for the delivery of your freebie. 


Utilize Flodesk 

Flodesk offers a range of beautiful email templates. These templates make it easy to create visually appealing and engaging emails, helping you maintain consistent communication with your e-mail subscribers. 

email newsletter

Set Up Zapier

Zapier, a powerful tool, allows you to automate actions based on triggers. For instance, you can set up a trigger to instantly deliver your home buyer guide via email to users who opt-in via your bio.


Integrate Zapier with ManyChat and Flodesk

By integrating Zapier with ManyChat and Flodesk, you can streamline your email marketing efforts. When a user opts in for your freebie through ManyChat, Zapier will add them to your email list in Flodesk. 

Why is This Important?

This integration is beneficial for nurturing potential buyers until they’re ready to make a purchase. As users receive your home buyer guide and other valuable content through your email marketing, you can maintain consistent communication, keeping your brand top of mind until they’re prepared to take the next step.


Utilizing Zapier to Integrate Eventbrite and Flodesk

Let’s say you want to hold a first-time homebuyer class and use the Eventbrite platform for attendee sign-ups. When potential buyers register for the class through Eventbrite and provide their email addresses, Zapier automatically adds them to a designated segment in Flodesk.

Why is This Important?

As not everyone who signs up may attend the class, it’s crucial to continue marketing to them. Having these integrations in place allows you to avoid forgetting about potential buyers you’ve personally connected with (I’ve been there!). With the automated system, you can seamlessly capture their contact information and nurture them until they’re ready to purchase.


Showcase vulnerability sooner 

So many times, we think that we have to show up as real estate robots and never show emotions or our struggles. Once I started showing up as my true self online and sharing the struggles I encountered, both professionally and personally, my account began to grow. Embracing vulnerability allowed me to form genuine connections with my audience.

Prioritize Building an Email List

Your email list is the lifeblood of your business! What if your Instagram account was deleted tomorrow? What would you have to show for it? Collecting contact information ensures you have a direct connection with your audience, regardless of platform changes. 

Engage More to Receive More

Instagram is a two-way street. Engage with other accounts to foster genuine connections and encourage reciprocal engagement. Don’t just expect likes and comments; actively participate. I like to use the 10/10 rule. Every day I spend 10 minutes engaging in my feed and 10 minutes engaging in my Stories. 

10 10 rule

Lifestyle-Based Photography

For years, I only showcased my wins online, thinking that’s what potential clients wanted to see. You can absolutely showcase your wins, but also be relatable by sharing aspects of your lifestyle. This personal touch will resonate better with potential clients.

Lindsey jo

Freebie in Bio

I missed opportunities to capture valuable contact information from Instagram followers. Having a compelling freebie in my bio, such as a local restaurant guide or a home maintenance checklist, would have encouraged followers to provide their email addresses.

Check out Marie Lee’s bio! She has a “Nashville hot takes” newsletter and a free buyer guide! Both of these are great “freebie” examples.

Design Your Freebie Strategically

Creating enticing freebies is crucial. You can use templates from Coffee & Contracts or design your own in Canva. You can also explore templates on Etsy

It’s important to keep in mind that your freebie needs to contain information that people actually want! Think about your target audience and meeting them “right where they’re at.” What are they searching for at this stage in their life? Create your freebie with that in mind.

Utilize Instagram Stories

Take advantage of the Instagram Stories features, especially polls. Engage your audience by using polls to let them share their opinions and preferences. People love to give their opinion! Then, DM each person who answered your poll. The message button is right next to each follower who responded to your poll! 

Instagram polls