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Instagram for Financial Pros: Three that Work, Why, and Tips to Get you Started

January 8, 2019

Instagram: The Final Frontier. That may sound dramatic, but for many financial services professionals on social media, it certainly feels that way.

Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter seem easy enough to understand: put in a link and some copy and you’re good to go. Sometimes you’ll post a photo, but it’s by no means the focal point of your profile and page. Most of the time, your link does the photo work for you!

Instagram, on the other hand, is another animal altogether. Its bread and butter are the images you post and how they appear together in your feed (the grid layout of an Instagram’s profile). If you’re not a photographer or graphic designer, it might feel overwhelming to commit to building an audience on a social media platform that relies heavily on engaging graphics.

However, it’s not that hard once you break it down. Here are three successful financial professional Instagram accounts, why they work, and how you can easily mimic their successes without learning Photoshop or taking a single photo.

1. Ray Dalio @raydaylio – Simple, Straightforward, Sticks to a Theme

Ray’s page is consistent, easy-to-understand, and inspirational, from his bio to his posts. He makes full use of the entire bio section. It’s formatted with paragraph breaks and emoji as expressive bullet points, which makes reading and understanding it easy. He leverages the link section to promote his latest book, Principles For Navigating Big Debt Crises.

His posts are simple and straightforward. They’re all quotes about business and leadership with the same colors, designed in the same format. The red, black, and white colors are the same as the colors as his website, which creates a cohesive personal brand.

The Takeaway: Keep It Simple, Stick To Your Theme

Instagram is often thought of as the place to post pictures of your breakfast or photos of your dog. Ray’s page breaks that expectation and shows that sometimes a simple method works best. If you have lots of experience and wisdom to share, why not share it on Instagram? For this type of account, make sure you stick to your theme and brand and don’t stray too far or else your posts might stick out like a sore thumb on your profile. Organization is the key to the success of this type of account. Make sure you’ve got your content strategy planned and scheduled out and you’ll have a strong brand and account in no time.

2. Brittney Castro @brittneycastro – Aspirational, Personal, Inspirational

Brittney Castro’s page is light, refreshing, and has a good mix of content. Her bio, like Ray’s, is well-formatted; at first glance, you know exactly who she is, what her credentials are, and what her professional interests are.

In her link section, she’s using a service that many Instagram power users take advantage of, which is Linktr.ee, a service that compiles several links into one page. Instead of relying on one static link or changing it whenever you want to highlight a different website or product, you can just make edits to your Linktree page.

Her posts are a mix of videos about financial advice, beautiful photography, and motivational quotes with a white marble background. She makes use of IGTV, Instagram Stories, and Instagram Highlights, making her page well-rounded and ready with content that covers everything someone on her page might be wondering about with her business.

The theme of Brittney’s layout is consistent with its white and neutral color palette but has enough variety of content that her posts feel fresh. A theme that’s too consistent could come across as too pre-planned and inauthentic, which is why it’s essential that she breaks up the monotony with more casual photos and videos of herself. This adds a personal touch and builds her brand, which is something that certain demographics, particularly millennials, look for. She comes across as likable, comforting, and trustworthy.

All in all, her brand is clear: finances don’t have to be scary. They can free you to live the exciting life you want – the lifestyle that she’s showing you on her Instagram profile.

The Takeaway: Help Your Leads Imagine A Better Life (With You)

What really makes Brittney’s account pop is her use of photos to convey a sense of both adventure and security. Financial freedom gives you both of these things, which translates perfectly to her brand as a financial professional who acts as a helpful guide to living your ideal life.

If photography is not your strongest skill, don’t fret! There are plenty of websites online that offer beautiful stock photos for free. Pexels and Unsplash are great places to start. Find some photos that fit the message you’re trying to send, create a content strategy around them, pepper in some inspirational quotes and educational short videos here and there, and you’ve got a formula for success!

3. The Joe Money Podcast @getjoemoneyright – Credible, Educational, Information-packed

The Joe Money Podcast’s Instagram page’s message is clear from the get-go: “We know what we’re talking about.” The bio includes a note about being in a Top 10 list of Instagram accounts, which gives them credibility and legitimacy and includes a link to their website in case you want to learn more.

Their posts are consistent in theme, using primarily black and green colors, and educational in content. You don’t even have to tap into a post to know that the creator(s) of this podcast are expert in their field, the design of the posts communicate that from just the layout itself.

Some posts don’t include financial advice but are relevant to current happenings, such as this 2019 resolution post.

Others include accessible savings advice that many can put into practice.

So while the posts are consistent visually, the content itself varies, which makes it an exciting account to follow.

The Takeaway: Educate to Generate Leads

If you’ve got an eye for graphic design and visual storytelling and love to share your financial wisdom, this might be the type of Instagram account you want to create. Canva is a free and simple online program that you can use to create images with great design.

Just keep the following things in mind when creating mini infographics like these:

  • Use a limited color palette (2-4 colors), with few variances when you can. This is the magic behind The Joe Money Podcast’s page and why it looks uniform.
  • Create a logo or banner to use across all of your posts, similar to The Joe Money Podcast’s logo and banner at the bottom of their post. This naturally unifies all of the separate posts and also doubles as a watermark in case anyone reposts your work.
  • Keep it simple. Plan out the educational content you want to cover and simplify, simplify, simplify. People scroll through Instagram and rarely spend any longer than a few seconds to a minute on a post, so the easier the content is to digest, the better and more engaging it will be.

If you’re a Hearsay customer and would like a deeper dive into Instagram and how you can use it for your business, check out our upcoming webinar “Instagram & Hearsay Social”.

In this live webinar, advisors and agents will hear directly from Hearsay’s Customer Education Executive Chris Beck about using Instagram for business. You’ll learn how to use this platform to generate leads and develop long-lasting business relationships. We’ll also take a look at Hearsay Social’s new integration with Instagram and all the exciting features in store.

Sign up for “Instagram & Hearsay Social” now by clicking on your chosen date below:

Wednesday, January 16, 2019: 11am PST / 2pm EST / 7pm GMT
Tuesday, January 22, 2019: 8am PST/ 11am EST / 4pm GMT

Linh Le

Customer Education Manager

Linh Le creates training resources and educational content to help Hearsay’s customers succeed. You can follow her on Twitter at @HSSLinh where she tweets about the financial services industry and the state of social media.

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