If you’re wondering whether or not you should start a blog, podcast, or Instagram, this blog post is for you.
With 2019 coming to an end and 2020 just around the corner, influencer marketing continues to grow and mature. Some might wonder whether or not you can still start a blog or Instagram and be successful. I wasn’t surprised when this question appeared in my DMs:
“Should you start a blog or Instagram?”
– submitted by: @khadraaaaaa via Instagram stories. Thank you for submitting this question!
The short answer of her question is to start both – if blogging and Instagram is aligned with your strengths. But the truth is there are several channels you can pick from.
Here is my advice:
Start a platform that aligns with your strengths.
My biggest piece of advice that I learned from listening to Gary Vaynerchuk is to figure out your strengths and then choose your communication style. I didn’t realize that I did this in 2014 when I started my blog Emma’s Edition. Writing has always been a huge passion of mine so when I saw people in college, I felt drawn to starting a blog as a creative outlet.
I recommend taking a step back and figure out what your strengths are and if there’s a platform out there that you’d feel comfortable dabbling in.
If you’re comfortable in front of a camera, I would recommend creating videos or photos. Social media channels like Instagram (with IGTV and the photo feed) or YouTube might make sense for you.
If you’re not comfortable on camera but are comfortable speaking, I would recommend exploring a podcast. Podcasting has exploded over the last few years. And it’s a platform that you would own regardless of what happens to the social media channels.
If you love to write, I would recommend starting a blog. There are so many websites out there that make it easy to start a blog. It isn’t the early 2000s anymore and you don’t need to know how to read/write HTML or other coding languages to create a blog. Websites like Squarespace, Wix, or WordPress make it super easy to start a blog and website. All of these platforms also have ready made layouts from you to choose from.
What if you don’t know your strengths and don’t know what platform to start with?
If you aren’t sure what you’d be good at, I would recommend trying everything. I would try one platform a month and see what channel is most fun for you. Here’s what I would do if I was trying to figure out what platform would make sense for me:
Month 1: Twitter
Month 2: Instagram
Month 3: Facebook
Month 4: Blog
Month 5: Podcast
Month 6: YouTube or IGTV
Month 7: TikTok
Month 8: LinkedIn
Spend a week watching what people do on the platform. Figure out how people are communicating, engaging, and connecting with each other. Then for 2-4 weeks, try to create content yourself. If you have a smart phone, you have the ability to create content.
My advice is to not get hung up about the quality of the content yet – especially if you’re just trying to figure out what channel is going to work best for you. It’s better to get content out there and then learn what does/doesn’t work. I guarantee that you’ll learn something at the very end of the trying period.
You’ll learn whether or not you’re comfortable in front of the camera. You’ll learn whether or not writing makes sense for you. But you have to give yourself the time and patience to try things out.
What about starting an Instagram in 2020? Is it too late?
If you’re wondering if you should or could still start an Instagram in 2019-2020, the answer is yes. While there are reportedly 800 million active users on the app a month, you still have a chance to be successful on the platform.
Before you start an Instagram, I recommend clarifying or defining your purpose.
If you’re passionate about healthy recipes for your family, maybe your purpose is to share these recipes to other families. If you’re passionate about make-up, maybe your purpose to be as creative as you can with make-up. If you’re passionate about creating content, maybe your purpose is to share photo or editing tips.
If you define your purpose, you’ll define what type of content you’re going to create.
If you love wine, you’ll create content centered around wine. If you love food, you’ll create content around food. Your purpose should not be affected by the number of likes, comments, and followers if it’s truly aligned within you.
For example, if blogging and Instagram didn’t exist, I would probably still be writing and taking photos. You can ask my little sister or friends from high school about my love for taking photos. I had my digital camera with me at all times. I used to bring it with me to school, cross country meets, gymnastics meets, and even school assemblies. I’ve also been writing and journaling since middle school/high school. I know I would continue to write regardless if I had my blog or not.
So if you’ve found out what platform makes sense for you, should you still start an Instagram?
The answer is yes. The answer is you should be on all of the platforms that you can handle and execute well. There is a ton of attention on Instagram still – both on the consumer and the brands. But like I mentioned above, defining your purpose and creating quality content that aligns with your purpose will help you be successful on the app.
For more Instagram tips, you can also check out:
Thank you for reading!
Photos: Holly Phan