How To Promote On Instagram Story Without Being Sales-y

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Do you follow people on Instagram who promote themselves on Stories all the time? Like, every other post feels like self-promotion? Yeah, I thought so. The problem is, many of these people we know and love, personally. But their image online is, unfortunately, not as authentic as we know them to be.

Be Authentic and Personal When You Promote on Instagram Story

Two examples:

1. When people promote their podcast.

In this day and age, it certainly seems like everyone has a podcast. So, what you see podcasters doing — on their Story — is sharing a post from anyone who took a screenshot of their podcast and commented on it. This is something I, in fact, encourage people to do on my podcast, Build Your Tribe.

There’s a difference, though, in how you re-share and how frequently you do so.

It seems to me that the majority will share 5 to 20+ of these posts a day. When you do that, you’re not serving your audience.

However, if you shared 2 or 3 screenshots and followed up with why I should listen (and, in some cases not listen), in your very own words… then that is what I would call serving your audience.

2. Book promotion.

Sure, there needs to be some behind the scenes slice-of-life material (e.g., the press you’re doing around it, photo shoots and reviews, etc.) — but remember why you wrote the book in the first place.

Share Specifics About Your Book And Don't Just Promote By Sharing Press and Reviews

Share specifics, tips, and actual content from the book! Let your lifers know what to expect to find in the book you wrote for THEM. Sadly, authors have become victim of promote mentality.

How many times have you seen authors share every single photo of every single person who has ever posted a photo of themselves holding their book? 

While you’ve honored the people who talked about your book, you’ve also dishonored all the people who follow your Stories. They’re just thinking…

“That’s great and awesome you sold your book and that dude liked it, but how does that help me?”

We need to stop before we post.

80% of the time your content needs to serve your greater audience, and it can serve them in less profound ways than you think.

Give them some:

  • Comedy
  • Motivation
  • Inspiration
  • Hacks
  • Suggestions
  • Reviews

Let me be clear, you DO have to promote at times and get people onto your email list. That’s what I teach in Marketing Impact Academy — using social media to grow your brand. There are those times when there does need to be a direct call to action. But how you frame it, position it and how often you do it… is everything.

What’s the trick then in knowing how much is too much? Hint: it’s why a lot of people left Facebook. Listen to the BYT episode below to find out:



And subscribe to Build Your Tribe for weekly episodes dedicated to have you crush social media!


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