The Business Behind Instagram

What does it really take to do “what you love”

Instagram was introduced in 2010 along with need to take the perfect “selfie”. The photo sharing app quickly evolved giving a home for entrepreneurs to market worldwide. According to the Omnicore Agency currently  over 71% of businesses use Instagram for their Social Media Marketing with over 70% of its users looking to shop on Instagram becoming an entrepreneur is more alluring than ever. 

However, this does not come without competition with a whopping 1 billion monthly users worldwide reported by Hootsuite and over 130 million of those users in the United States as reported by the Omnicore Agency. For a small business these stats can either be overwhelming but there are two women who are owning the Instagram and the entrepreneurship.

Whitney L. Barkley host of the @pinklemoadepodcast

Whitney L. Barkley, M.S. is a Content Marketing Strategist at Speakerazzi, a content marketing firm for authors, coaches, and speakers. For more than a decade, she’s worked with nonprofits, startups, organizations and influencers across the country to leverage storytelling through repurposed and original content. She is a former social media instructor for the Ohio Media School and the International College of Broadcasting and is passionate about showing others “What Works?” to increase their personal brand and influence through value based content. She is the host of the self-help podcast, Pink Lemonade Podcast, which has more than 55K+ downloads in more than 50 countries. Whitney is the author of the children’s book Hey, Black Girl! and the Skinny Black Girl’s Guide to Freedom. She lives in Columbus, OH with her cat Rosie.

@addictedtocute on Instagram photo from Addictedtocute.com

Eve Glenn Founder and CEO of Addicted To Cute a nail polish brand that is 10free. “A2C was just an idea I had for years but after my Dad passed it gave me the push I needed to get up and running. I wanted something that was mine and that would make me, my son, and my Dad all proud of me. There was a lot of trial and error and researching and testing before launching but I went for it and I’m glad I did.”

Owning Instagram

2020 was the rise of the Social Media Platforms such as Bigo, Clubhouse and Tic Tok to name a few many wondered if Instagram could keep up with the competition Instagram is still going strong. What made these ladies choose Instagram over these other platforms?

” I believe that Instagram is one of the most influential platforms on the internet. While I have a presence on basically every social media platform, the data shows me that Instagram is where many of my listeners find me. Through the various features of Instagram, I am able to build a relationship with my listeners by sharing behind the scenes, exclusive content, and learning more about them and what matters most to them. Instagram is also very visual, so it challenges me to understand how to bring an aesthetic to my podcast audio.” said Barkley

Glenn loves the engagement factor as well, “I like the sharing, reposting, tagging and hashtagging on IG. Someone can post themself rocking your product and then the all of a sudden you have several new followers and people checking out your website and placing orders. And then being a part of the beauty community in particular the nail polish community on IG you get love from all over the world. If it wasn’t for IG I wouldn’t have orders going out to Guam.”

The Strategy 

It’s all about Addicted To Cute as the strategy for Glenn, “… I want it to be about the brand and not about me. I’m selling my product and try to keep my personal life on my personal IG page. My biz page is all about A2C whether it be my polish, lip gloss, candles, or upcoming accessories.”

According to the Omnicore Agency over 500 million uses Instagram Stories daily and just as many posting photos and video. With constant changes it can be difficult to keep with updates and the algorithm there can dip with engagement and followership. 

Barkley reflects on the difficulties of Instagram promotion“…the algorithms are constantly changing. What works today may not work in six months when it comes to a posting or hashtag strategy. Additionally Instagram has basically five mini platforms in one: your feed, stories, IG live, IG reels, and IGTV. You have to create a strategy for each of those things because I find that the platform favors those who maximizes its features. This can sometimes be overwhelming because you want to show up for your listeners but you also have to constantly think about how to innovate content.”

What About the Atheistic?

The thought for both women were the same. Throw it out of the window!

” I can care less about visual aesthetics. There are many studies that show this component of Instagram is dying. It’s all about your audience. If I was a fashion blogger or interior designer maybe it would mean more. But my podcast is about being authentic and transparent about my life and sometimes it’s a mess. My feed reflects that. LOL.” Proclaims Barkley.

 Glenn Said, ” I don’t feel like a visual aesthetic is necessary but I like to have a nice flow for my page and a lot of people enjoy things that are visually pleasing. 

What’s Next?

Both women have big plans for their brands in this fast pace world of Insta-preneurship.

Glenn Expressed big plans for her brand ” I never intended for A2C to be strictly  a nail polish brand (that was just the beginning) I want to have a variety of cute things for my customers to get addicted to. I’m just out here trying to get the whole world Addicted to Cute! ”

Barkley Plans to turn her brand into a lifestyle, “I see Pink Lemonade Podcast® growing into a lifestyle brand with more products to support people in their journey to discovering who they are.”

“Never let people put you in a box. You are allowed to start over, try again, and not try something at all. Experience life as much as possible to discover who you are. The worst you can do is discover who you are not.” Whitney L. Barkley

” …Go for it and don’t sit on an idea. And if you fail it’s better than never trying.” -Eve Glenn Founder of Addicted To Cute

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