What The CIA Taught Me About Business

I had a great experience early in my career learning about business strategy but I was learning in what you may think is an unusual environment.

I started my career working for the CIA. Yes, the Central Intelligence Agency.

I can’t say too much because a lot of my work was on a “need to know basis,” but what I can tell you is that it was an incredible and life-changing experience.

Now I’m an author and a small business strategist, and I’m helping entrepreneurs find success through Instagram.

I was able to grow my Instagram audience up to 32,000 followers in under a year and from there I was able to build my own platform for speaking and coaching.

I have three simple techniques that I can credit all of my success to and I want to share them with you today.


Identifying your “whys” in business is key to guiding what actions you take overall and in particular areas like social media.
 
Are you there to get a message out or do you simply want to establish a personal brand? Get clear on your answers here.

Then you have to consider, why someone else would choose to follow you.

Is your content going to draw someone in? Are you friendly?

It’s important to take a hard unbiased look at who you’re showing up as online.

The second part is deciding on some consistent messaging and what types of posts you want to fill your accounts with. You don’t want to be repetitive! You’ll lose interest.
 
Find ways to be creative and cover topics that are related to your niche and industry.

For my hair salon account, we don’t just cover styles but we also cover trends in fashion and entertainment because that’s what our market is talking about. I’m in tune with my audience and we’re curating our page to reflect the typical salon experience.

When we have a new marketing message to launch I make sure our posts are consistent across all our channels.
 
This doesn’t mean duplicating the content 100%, we adapt the content to suit the platform but we keep the messaging and themes consistent.

I try to post daily on my channels and it wouldn’t be possible without automation.

I like showing up daily because I want to send the message to my audience that I’m available to serve them anytime they’re looking to engage with my brand.

As a busy mom, having time for myself is huge! Being able to pre-plan posts and automate has saved me hours.

I sit down for a day or two a month and plan out all my posts. I stick to my plan generally, but I keep it loose enough that I can make quick changes to stay responsive to the market.

I create themes for every day of the week and that keeps me on brand and on message. I also use auto-liker and auto-poster tools. These tools help me spread the reach of the brand to more of my audience.

If you follow these three steps you’ll be on your way to building up a strong, consistent Instagram channel.
 

Action Steps

  1. Spend 1 to 2 days planning out your themes and messages for the month.
  2. Create themes for each day of the week, fill your calendar with interesting content.
  3. Keep the plan flexible enough to change on the fly.
  4. Use automation to save time, auto-likers & auto-posters help.

 

Result You Will Achieve

An authentic and consistent Instagram channel that helps grow your authority and influence.
 

Mentor: Yolanda Keels-Walker

Founder of Business Babes, using this strategy Yolanda has been able to triple sales for her online courses, and gain more opportunities for speaking and partnerships.

 
This article is based on an EHQ interview with the mentor.