How to make sales and get paying clients on Instagram

8 minutes
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How to make sales on Instagram?

Do you struggle with finding paying clients on Instagram? 🙋🏻‍♀️

Have you wondered why other people seem to have more success in making sales and attracting your ideal audience?

What are they doing differently that works?

In this post, I will show you a few proven strategies to help you attract more paying clients to your business – using my favourite social media tool, Instagram! 🎉

I’m going to be real!

Growing a successful business on social media is much harder 🥴 than most people let you think.

I personally struggled to sign up any paying clients in the first 3 months of marketing my business.

That’s why, if you’re constantly worrying that you can’t get your ideal clients to notice you – you’re not alone!

Source: SproutSocial Research (2020)

A lot of small businesses struggle with attracting new clients online.

In fact, in a recent survey, 60% of people said finding ideal clients is their biggest pain point, according to SproutSocial Research (2020).

Let’s get started!

Here’s how to make sales and get more clients on Instagram:

1. Identify a profitable niche market

2. Build a clear customer profile

3. Have an Instagram sales funnel

4. Foster relationships with past & existing clients

5. Don’t forget about your loyal followers

Let’s go through each of these sections below.

Part 1: Identifying a profitable niche market

In order to generate sales on Instagram, you need to make sure you’re operating in a profitable market.

A good niche market combines the following “ingredients”:

  1. Things you’re passionate about
  2. Things you’re good at
  3. Existing e-commerce activity

Once you’ve chosen a niche, then you’ll need to build a customer profile, because targeting everyone is targeting no one.

Part 2: Building a clear Customer Profile

A customer profile will help you understand who your ideal clients are and what are the biggest problems they face.

This in turn will help you customise your products or services to their needs.

Would you rather buy a general product or a product that actually helps you solve a problem you’re facing?

  • Identify the people that would benefit from your services
  • Learn what problems and pain points they are facing
  • Start thinking about which of their problems you can solve with your skills
  • Which platforms they use the most
  • What time they’re active online
  • Which top influencer accounts they follow
  • Which hashtags they follow

So where can you find this data about your customers?

  • Study your past & existing clients (do polls, send email surveys and even phone calls)
  • Read industry research & published reports (discover new trends and changes in customer preference)
  • Social listening (follow your ideal customers on Twitter, Reddit, Facebook groups to know what they’re talking about)

Now that you have compiled this data, I’d suggest you build a Customer Profile.

Download a copy of my Customer Profile PDF here.

Part 3: Building Your Instagram Sales Funnel

In this section, I’ll show you an example of an Instagram funnel that I’m using to help guide you in creating content that attracts & converts your ideal audience.

There are 2 parts to your Instagram funnel: your profile & your content.

1. Optimising your Instagram profile for sales

Your profile is the first thing new visitors get to see.

So, without saying it’s an important part of converting your audience.

The easiest way to optimize your profile is to do an Audit.

An audit will help you check if your Bio and profile settings help you convert visitors into followers.

Download my FREE Instagram Audit Template and use it to improve your Instagram profile

2. Optimising your Instagram content for more sales

An optimised Instagram profile needs to be supported by strategic content.

The content you post on Instagram is powerful.

A client once told me “I want to work with you because I like your content”.

And another person messaged me asking “Do you host writing workshops? I would really love to learn writing from you!” – I obviously didn’t expect that!

So, don’t forget to have a content strategy that meets your buyers at different readiness to purchase levels:

Buyer Readiness Stage 1: Get Their Attention With Viral Content

At this first level, your buyers are strangers on the internet looking for … solutions for their problems or funny content to make them laugh!

So what can you do to capture their attention?

Share funny content such as Reels or TikTok style short videos.

I also found that quotes and trending news perform well in reaching a broader audience.

Don’t worry too much about niche-ing down at this point.

Go broad to go viral!

Content format: Feed posts, Stories, Boosted posts

Buyer Readiness Stage 2: Spark Their Interest With Personal Stories That Touch Their Pain Points

Emm, remember you did some research to find your customer pain points?

This is where you’re going to use it!

Create vulnerable content that triggers their pain points.

Show that you’ve gone through the same challenges as they’re facing now.

And show them how you’ve overcome them.

Once you’re able to spark your audience’s interest they’re more likely to relate to you and remember your business.

Content formats: Feed posts, Stories, IGTV, Live

Buyer Readiness Stage 3: Build Desire For Your Products & Services

Now that you’ve got their attraction and interest it’s the perfect time for you to showcase your products as the SOLUTION to all their problems.

Talk about your unique product features, their benefits and show client transformations using before & after pictures.

Go even a step further by posting client testimonials and reviews that prove that your product works and has a good track record.

Buyer Readiness Stage 4: Direct People To Take Action And Complete The Purchase)

This is the stage where your audience is ready to make a purchase and they’re waiting for you to introduce an offer!

Now it’s the perfect time to do a flash sale or a 24 hour promo on Stories and I guarantee you that the people who’ve been following you for a while will be the first to convert.

This strategy has worked for me in marketing my Blog Writing Workshop. I

seldom talk about sales on my Instagram page, but when I launched my workshop, immediately – within 1 hour 4 of my loyal followers signed up without even asking me a question or a discount!

Tip: I recommend you to post 80% of your content to appeal to the first 3 stages in buyer readiness and only 20% of your content to be promotional.

Part 4: Foster Relationships With Your Existing Clients

A big mistake I see many entrepreneurs make is forget about nurturing their existing clients! Why you need to pay attention to your clients is because retaining them is much easier and cost effective than attracting new ones!If you can make your existing clients happy you’ll get job recommendations, you can upsell other services & positive reviews!

Most of my clients have worked with me for over 1 year and they typically start with a basic monthly Instagram content package and slowly they start giving me more jobs including writing the copy for their website, writing blog content, and formulating a new marketing strategy.

Part 5: Engage With The People Who Already Follow You

I cannot stop talking about the benefits of engaging with people on Instagram.

If you can spend 1 hour each day leaving comments and replying comments with the people who are actively following you – you don’t have to worry about finding new clients!

They are already there, waiting for an opportunity to work with you.

Perhaps they need more time to get to know you and build trust.

And that’s fine!

“Someone who followed you for 3+ months and enjoyed your content is more likely to convert than someone who’s seen your ad”

— Alle Ceambur, MBA

One of my recent clients told me she was following me for 9 months before sending me a message about my services.

And when she did she told me “I have decided I want you to create content for my page because I’ve been following you for a while and I know you can do a good job!” – All I could think was “Awww 🥰 “.

How to engage with your existing followers:

  • Start conversations in DMs or reply to their stories
  • Pin their comments on your posts
  • Give them a shout out
  • Share their posts on your stories

Ultimately, making sales on Instagram takes a while.

You can’t expect to convert strangers into paying customers overnight.

With the right strategies, you’re going to be much more successful in MAKING MORE SALES ON Instagram and growing a profitable businessin the long term.

Read more on this topic:

How To Find Your Customer’s Pain Points

How To Identify Your Target Audience And Turn Them Into Customers

7 Instagram Mistakes You Should Avoid At All Cost