Tag Archives: instagram

mDimitry: Branding Like a Boss

Have you ever given someone some advice- but really meant it to be pointed at yourself. I recently talked to one of my friends, Michael Lindberg, at the rock climbing gym about branding- and told him to “Just do it” in reference to putting himself out there more often. He did that next day. Check out his Instagram.

If you follow me Dimitry Sells Cars you’ll see that I have been growing. I’ve been posting a ton, but this month I pulled back a bit of my budget. I have been trying to do things a little bit more organically. More posts- adding money only if they appear to be getting traction. I did also have a long-term ad campaign with the walk around videos that Dick Hannah Volkswagen did for 4 VW models. If you haven’t- watch these videos below: 2017 VW Golf Alltrack with Dimitry Makhanov

2017 Volkswagen Tiguan with Dimitry Makhanov

2017 Volkswagen Passat with Dimitry Makhanov 

2017 Volkswagen Jetta with Dimitry Makhanov

I’ve had some mixed results. Overall my page is growing. I think it’s easy to really get super excited about how much. I mean- take a look at all the green numbers!

Stats for Dimitry Sells Cars from Mar 31, 2017 – Apr 27, 2017.

But I’m not satisfied. The numbers look great- but I’ve only had had 2 concrete appointments from this effort this month. 5 Prospects- but only two people showed up. Who knows how many other people see this effort and are thinking to themselves – maybe soon I’ll need a car and I’ll reach out to this guy. I know I need to build better sales funnels- In fact, I’ve worked a little bit with Steven Howsley of Begin a Brand.  He’s been helping me develop audience groups for my videos.

So- what’s the point of all this struggle. Why the Title- Branding like a Boss. How does this help me as a reader? I see you are working on… something? The idea behind branding is to associate yourself with some task or product. I happen to sell cars. I want people to know that I sell cars- so that I can sell more of them. The goal is to build Brand Awareness, which then leads to… Leads. I turn those Leads into sales- which then turn into loyal repeat customers.

Building Brand Awareness to build Leads, Sales, and Loyalty

In this effort- what seems to be working for me.

  1. Consistency. I am posting on my facebook page 1-3 times a day.2

  2. Persistence. I don’t stop. It sounds like consistency- but it’s not. If something doesn’t work- it doesn’t mean you should stop doing it all together. Just try and learn what you need to from it.

  3. Humility. Don’t worry about what it will look like if you don’t get it right the first time- or someone gives you a negative response. You are learning- and have a long way to go. In fact- if you get a negative response- ask for advice for next time. Ask for help.

  4. Having fun. I am trying to gamify this whole process for myself. Yes- it is how I’m trying to grow my business, but it’s fun to try and out do yourself. I got 50 new followers in my last 28 days. The time before that I only got 16. That’s huge. Now I have to get 100 this time around? Setting

  5. Set goals. I got 50 new followers in my last 28 days. The time before that I only got 16. That’s huge. Now I have to get 100 this time around? Why not 150?

  6. Don’t forget the point- branding is to help you build leads- not make sales. Actually forgetting to do the sales part is something you can fall into. I have actual leads and existing business I can lose track of if I spend too much time playing around with this ‘branding campaign.’ Never lose track of your existing business.

  7. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. People love helping people. I’ve been working a bit with Steven– If you need help branding- try him. Or ask me. I have lots of cool connections.

  8. Build out new stuff- especially if you found it worked out in the past in other endeavors. I’m about to start a new Instagram and follow my old guide on How to Build an Instagram Following. On that note- Please Follow my new Instagram.

 

Tools I use for Blogging

I had an English teacher turn me onto writing at a relatively early age. I believe I was 13 years old; I had an English teacher, Mr. Carter. I remember him standing on his desk quoting Walt Whitman. His slightly crazy eyes were looking over our class as he, with his best orators voice, yelled, “I sound my barbaric yawp over the roofs of the world.” It was the start of the year, and I remember him getting me so pumped on these old writers.

He had a creative writing assignment where we were to write a short story. We talked about writing novels. We were asked to keep a journal. A journal is this weird thing that happens with a notebook; you know like blank paper bound together, within which one writes. If you date it, you have a pretty good record of your life. Writing helps keep track of your thoughts and progressions in life.

At some point I realized my penmanship was atrocious, and if I typed out my entries I could read them again later.  I began keeping it on online platforms. Then it began to be popular to have blogs. I think my first real blog was on Xanga. I tried MySpace and Facebook’s solutions as well. I went blogger, and now I’m on WordPress.

There are some tools that I use to do my blogging.

  1. Site Location/Design:

I have purchased a bunch of different domains on various websites. I mostly use GoDaddy. I have added HostGator to this for my web hosting. They make it easy to setup a WordPress site from the control panel.

I currently favor using WordPress for an actual framework for the site. It seems to make it pretty easy to integrate it with a few other programs.

  1. Monitoring:

Once you get the site up and going, I recommend you set up Google Analytics. Also, make sure you head over to Google Webmaster Tools and Adsense.

Google Analytics lets you monitor how your site is doing, where you are getting your traffic, and how much time people spend looking at your site.

Google Webmaster Tools give you a pretty good understanding how you are doing on Google rankings, as well as if there are major problems with your website.

Adsense allows you to make money on your blog. Having Adsense ads on your site is a double-edged sword. They clutter your site,  but they might have the potential to make your money. If you have lots of traffic, they could help pay for your efforts, but they could also frustrate your viewers.

  1. Content:

I don’t use anything but my brain to develop content. I use my personal experiences to find things about which to write. I do have problems editing my work. Making sure your content is relevant is important. But also making sure it’s legible is pretty significant as well. I’ve been using Grammarly since an embarrassing mistake I made while working for PICR. I thought I had proofread my writing, and I also showed someone else as well. I know that Grammarly would have fixed a bunch of what was wrong with the writing as well.

  1. Promotion:

I like it when I get feedback on my work. The idea that someone will read my work makes me strive to make it worth reading. I could write an awesome guide to buying a car, or growth hacking your Instagram, but what’s the point if no one reads it?

I’ve been getting lots of success using Social Media. Facebook, in particular, has a way of allowing things to go viral. I hear you can have the same thing happen with Twitter, still trying to figure that out. Instagram and LinkedIn have been pretty good to me as well.

SEO is an important part of traffic. It relies on good content. But there is also a little know thought about the internet; it rewards interest. Finding out what words looked for online, you can build your blog around those topics.

The final thing is making sure you get people to link to your website. If you get people to share your articles on their websites, it helps with how search engines few your site! So- please link back to this! 😀

(I plan on working on this as I change things up, or learn more.)

mDimitry’s Guide HowTo Grow your Instagram

Ever wonder how people get huge Instagram accounts, every photo liked 100’s, 1000’s, of times?

I don’t. It’s easy.

Be awesome!

Save that, it might take a bit of work and consistency. There are a few… hacks to get it to grow quicker. Now- warning- they might seem a bit of gimmicky and spammy so be aware of this, and take into account that they work. So let’s cover the non-spammy stuff first.

  1. Don’t spam. No one wants to see 15 photos of the kangaroo you are looking at the zoo. Or your meal, every single bite. If you want to have a good Instagram presence, post consistently- 1-3 posts a day. And those typically hours apart. This Huffington post has a pretty good article about when to post.

  2. Keep content interesting. I like to post man crush Monday’s of myself. I add a Kanye quote, and then some sort of inspiration or encouragement for life. My followers expect it, and I imagine giggle a little as they like it.

This is really hard to do, keeping the content interesting. It takes a lot of thought. Before you post anything, think about it- and why your followers might like to see it.

  1. Always evaluate what you are posting. If one post gets 100 likes, and another very similar post only gets 5… try and figure out why. This constant self-evaluation has taught me a lot about my audience.

  2. Keep in mind- your audience is going to have characteristics. I’ve been helping a hairstylist friend of mine to build her page, a lot of her followers are women- fashion designers/makeup artists/ hair people. These are the people she is targeting. Thus, she tries to put stuff up that they might find interesting.

  3. Hashtags are your friends. #hashtag everything. I like to write long posts. After the post- I post the image with the long post- I immediately post a comment with all of my hashtags.

Finding the right hashtags is very important. I usually go to the search page (detective glass) and look for applicable hashtags. There’s an option for “Trending” and to the right of it says “See all.” I’m pretty bad, I grab anything that even remotely relates to what I’m posting.

I also add stuff that I know is relevant. For example, I post selfies on Monday’s- so #Monday #mcm #mancrushmonday #mancrush. If I was in Miami -#Miami. If it was a sunny day #sunny. You get the picture.

  1. Have fun. Unless it’s your job, then stress out or hire an expert. If you have any more question you can ask me.

Now for the Hacks.

The big one I use I call Churning. Not sure if this is a name for it… but whatever. I add and drop followers. This might seem super simple, but there is a trick to it. And some things to remember.

  1. Limits. Adding a ton of people might seem easy, but for some reason, it works much better if you have more followers than you are following.

There is a maximum number of actions you can do per hour. As of the writing of this post, you could only follow 160 people per hour. Conversely, you can only unfollow 19 people per hour. If you use a program, you have to be careful to follow the rules. Instagram will suspend you if you break them.

  1. Apps. I really like the app called InsTrack by Innovatty. It allows you to manage a few accounts. Yes- you have to pay for some of the features.
This is the simple interface of the program I use to manage my churning.
This is the simple interface of the program I use to manage my churning.
  1. Rhythm. I follow a bit of a rhythm. I will follow people at the peak posting times. Around 4-5 pm. I then choose a time to do my unfollows. On the hour works for me. That way I can just keep track. It takes a lot more time to unfollow people, so getting the most out of the day is important.
  2. Target. When adding people, don’t be random. When I want to start adding people I think about the type of audience I want to build. I post a lot of Kanye quotes- maybe I’ll find a Kanye Instagram account and follow of those people. (That was actually a pretty terrible idea.) If you are a hairstylist- find other hair stylists and follow their followers.

  3. Metrics. Keep track of how well did with everything. For example. I tried following Kanye followers. They didn’t like me. I didn’t get as many followers following them.

I recently found a self-help guru with a ton of followers. Her followers love my Instagram. Because I’m keeping track, I know now that the best use of my time is self-help people.

  1. Like and comment on anything you find interesting. When I am Churning I go through my news feed and immediately like and comment on practically everything. The more engagement you have with people, the more likely they will follow back.

  2. Drop everyone. When I am done clearing out people who aren’t following, I go back and unfollow people I don’t want to follow. If you are selling something, I’ll probably drop you. If you post 12 selfies in a row. Or things that are very negative. I’ll prune the people I follow down to people I actually want to follow.

  3. Repeat. Then I’ll start the process all over again.

  4. Feel free to follow my Instagram. @mDimitry

 

Social Influencers: Working the Instagrams

If you’ve watched me over the last couple of weeks on Instagram (@mDimitry) you’ll have noticed a sudden increase in my activity. I’ve gone nuts on the liking, following, commenting. In some ways, Instagram has become my whole life during my free time. And it’s because it’s a big feature of my work experience right now.

And I can’t believe how much fun I’m having. It’s absolutely insane, it reminds me of Myspace, but in all of the good ways. There’s this solid feel of the wild wild west, gold rush, with a solid feel of 1920’s fashion and music mania. Instagram is tons of fun.

The reason behind all of the activity is work-related, of course. I’ve been working on Hipture. Hipture is a mobile app that allows you to take photos directly off of your Instagram, or camera roll and have them printed and framed. It’s easy, simple, clean, and beautifully engineered from the ground up.

We’ve launched a Kickstarter and it’s chugging along. That whole process is very interesting. So much preparation, so much effort. It is incredible how much work is involved.

Where do I come in? We’ve been trying to create a buzz among social influencers. I’ve emailed 100’s of people in the last month. Cold emails- trying to generate interest and support. We’ve been trying got get our actual product into people’s hands and they would share them on their feeds.

I’ve managed to have some posts from some pretty awesome Instagrammers. Here are some of my ‘successes.’

It’s amazing that there are so many websites and apps popping up for printing @instagram photos. Many of them produce excellent work but I’m shocked that none of them do anything with framing. Frames have the ability to greatly enhance or distract from a photo, and many people often choose the cheapest option that does poorly displays their beautiful work. I’m stoked there’s now an app like @hipturelife where you can seamlessly create a framed photo collage of your own photos in just minutes. They sent me this collage of a few my photos from my first trip to Yosemite National Park last year with my good friend @stefanjunir. The frame and print are both gorgeous! Check them out when you have a chance. Their Kickstarter just got funded! #letsyosomewhere

A photo posted by Joey Brantley (@oddsome) on


So why have I been working with these specific Instagrammers? Because they are social influencers. What is a social influencer? Anyone, everyone. You are the social influencer, your brother Charlie Brown is a social influencer. That’s the beautiful thing about the social web. It literally means everyone. It is incredibly empowering. You no longer have to be a movie star to influence society.

These specific Instagrammers happen to be into photography, travel, hiking. These are people who love to explore the real world, take pictures, and then post them on Instagram. A lot of the team I’m working with at Hipture relate, and felt that that would be the best way to get our name out to that demographic.

What’s cool is that these guys have enormous loyal followings. It’s so neat how following your passions, fostering excellence, puts them in a place of prominence.

The prominence that gives them all sorts of great opportunities, including getting free swag. And that’s what brings me back to why I’ve gone crazy on Instagram. It’s the swag, my friends. Swag.