Gone are the days where you’re making most of your purchases in person. You’re buying most of what you consume online – and probably a good percentage of that from Instagram. Selling on Instagram happens every day – but there’s a way to do it well (and a way to do it badly). The unfortunate truth is, if you’re not doing it right, you’re likely to turn off potential clients before you even have a chance to show them what you have to offer.
As a seasoned Instagram user (I’ve been around since the app first launched, y’all – and using it to market my business since summer of 2021), I know right away when someone is trying to pitch me. And I bet you do too – because they’re doing it wrong. In fact, I’ve received seven cringe-worthy pitches in the last week alone. It’s clear that way too many people skip the nurturing, social, community-based approach to selling that SHOULD happen on Instagram and go straight to cold pitches that feel invasive, icky, and alienating.
Don’t lose hope – there is a way to sell on Instagram that doesn’t make your potential clients uncomfortable (and lead you to getting ghosted and/or blocked). In today’s post, I’m going to share my methods that have worked and how to implement them in your own social media strategy.
First and foremost, selling on Instagram is not about blasting copy-and-paste messages to as many leads as you can find, or following DM “scripts” that lead you after five canned messages into pitching your offer. This kind of approach is not only impersonal, but it also shows that you’re not willing to put in the effort to connect with your audience.
When you’re selling on Instagram, you should not be pitching in the first conversation, and probably not even in the second, in my opinion. Treating the people you interact with on Instagram like a potential sale rather than a connection is a surefire way to turn them off. Instead, focus on conversation, not fast conversion. Take the time to get to know your audience and what they’re looking for before you even think about pitching your services.
Looking for ways to attract potential clients to your business? Check out my post on how to use Instagram to find more leads for your interior design firm.
Another mistake that many people make is using the same copy-paste message for everyone. The lack of a personal connection and understanding of what the other person needs from you is the death knell for a sales pitch. Your potential clients want to feel seen and heard. They want to know that you understand their unique needs and that you’re offering a solution that’s tailored to them.
So, what’s the right way to pitch on Instagram? Cause here’s the thing – I’m not telling you not to sell. You are on Instagram to market your business, and part of that involves selling. Being salesy is NOT bad!
For starters, don’t follow someone and pitch immediately. This turns people off SO fast – you don’t even know them! Instead, take the time to engage with their content, leave thoughtful comments, and build a relationship. Focus on building a connection first, and let the selling come naturally.
When it does come time to pitch, make sure you’re doing it from a place of wanting to meet a need you can see and know you can help with. This means taking the time to understand your potential client’s pain points and offering a solution that addresses their specific needs.
And finally, allow space for it to be a “no” or a “not right now.” I despise the narrative around objection handling and the pressure to have a high close rate. Not every person who follows you or interacts with your content is ready to purchase, and you need to allow them that autonomy. Marketing your business is not about selling at all costs – it’s about attracting the right clients, the ready clients, to what you do.
Instagram can be a powerful tool for selling your products and services. However, it’s important to remember that there is a right – and ethical – way to do it. Don’t fall into the trap of impersonal copy-paste messages and canned DM scripts. Instead, focus on building a connection with your audience, understanding their unique needs, and offering tailored solutions that meet those needs. By doing so, you’ll be well on your way to building a successful and profitable Instagram presence.
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