Instagram Mistakes to Avoid When You’re in Direct Sales

Instagram Mistakes you're making in your DIRECT SALES business and how to fix them #iHeartDiamond at iHeartDiamond.com

5 Biggest Instagram Mistakes Direct Sales Women Are Making, and How to Fix Them

I had to write this post because I’ve become more active on my Instagram acct (@DarleneToday) lately… and lordy, LORDY do I see huge mistakes women in direct sales are making!

Here’s the good news! These mistakes are super easy to fix, and won’t take much time or effort.

Before I jump in, let me make sure I’m talking to the right person. If you are in Direct Sales (MLM, Network Marketing, or whatever you want to call it) and you’re trying to get business from Instagram, I am talking to you.

Alrighty, here we go.

Instagram Mistake #1

You’re trying to grow a business but your IG account is private.

I kid you not. I have seen MANY IG accts. where in the bio, the person says they’re with such and such company, and yet their IG acct. is private.

If this is you, here are your options:

  1. Leave your current acct private and create another one for your business.
  2. Flip the switch so your Instagram account is no longer private.

Personally, I’d probably flip the switch because if you create a new account, you have to start from scratch with followers, engagement, etc.

But do something, because trying to grow a business with a private IG acct is like having your business in a basement and customers can only purchase by invitation only…. as opposed to your store in a big, beautiful mall with loads of foot traffic.

Quite frankly marketing correctly thru IG is even better than having your business in a big, beautiful, busy mall because you can attract thousands upon thousands more people.

Instagram Mistake #2

You mainly interact with other people in your MLM Company.

Okaaaay, I understand how you can make this mistake. Kinda. But we need to fix it pronto because the other women in your company are NOT your customers. Right? It’s not like they’re going to sign up with you to build a business cuz they’re already in!

If you’re selling essential oils and you’re engaging mostly with other women who also sell oils, it may be a lot of fun, but it won’t grow your business.

Who should you talk to? Your target customer or in the online world target “audience.” Whaaat the heck am I talking about?

You are looking to engage with the type of person who wants to buy your product.

Whatever MLM you’re in, here’s the question to ask: The women who want to buy oils, skin care, fashion, etc…. What other interests do they have and where are they hanging out on Instagram?

Let’s take a few examples:

Oils: healthy eating, organic living, natural remedies, budget care, stay at home moms

Skin Care: looking good, hair, fashion, shoes, organic?, animal friendly, makeup tips

Fashion: wardrobe tips, organizing wardrobe, easy fashion for moms, career fashion

So you hang out and engage on IG accounts that are talking about those subjects.

You want to be chatting and building relationships with the women who have interests that compliment what you’re selling. Because those are the women who will buy your products and possibly want to build a business with your products/company/YOU.

Instagram Mistake #3

Instagram Mistakes you're making in your DIRECT SALES business and how to fix them #iHeartDiamond at iHeartDiamond.com

Using hashtags completely wrong.

This is a big one and once you fix it you could see your followers and engagement increase overnight.

Let’s start with competitive hashtags.

Please don’t get hung up on if a hashtag I mention isn’t in your niche. Relate to the concept of what I’m talking about…and then go fix yours.

OK, so you might use #fashion #oils #healthy #beauty #travel

Guess what? You are competing with millions and millions of other posts when you use highly competitive hashtags like that. In fact #fashion has over 400 MILLION other IG posts competing to be seen. What do you think your chances are of anyone seeing your lovely post?

Here’s how I do mine, and I often show up in the “Top Posts” feed for several of my posts at a time!

I’ll use a few hashtags that have about a million in competition, IF they are very targeted to my audience. I rarely go over one million, tho.

Then to fill up the 30 hashtags IG allows, I sprinkle in a combination of other keywords that have 500k, 150k, all the way down to about 25k

Next up, stop using a bunch of hashtags that pertain to your company! Do you think your potential customers are searching for the hashtag #doterra? NO.

Instead reference IG Mistake #3 and use hashtags that the women who would be interested in your product are searching for. So like if you’re in a fashion MLM you might use #funfashion (82k) and other assorted hashtags that pertain to the interests of the women who would love your products… AND hashtags that you have a chance of being seen in the IG feed.

Lastly, add your hashtags in the first comment rather than the caption area so it looks less spammy. Plus once you get a few comments, the hashtags will be hidden at first glance.

Instagram Mistake #4

You’re either overly salesy OR your feed is full of family/personal images.

Let’s take the overly salesy situation first.

Please tell me why anyone would sign up (as in follow you) only to be inundated with basically ad after ad after ad. Cause if you’re constantly posting “buy this” posts, you’re pretty much slapping people upside the head with ads. Now who in their right mind would want that?

Stop selling!

What do you do instead?

Start giving.

What do you give? Post fun, educational, funny, inspirational, eye-opening info. Sure you can post a salesy post like maybe every 10-12 post. BTW, sometimes I delete my “sales” posts after two or three days.

You can even occasionally repost other peeps posts, as long as:

  1. It benefits your target audience.
  2. You tag the person and give them credit in the caption! As example, if you wanted to repost one of my inspirational posts, you’d put something like “This inspiring post is from @DarleneToday” in the caption area.

FYI, I have seen people advise that you first ask the person if it’s cool for you to repost. I never have but if makes you feel better, you can ask first.

Now let’s talk about posting random family, scenes, kiddos, pets, etc posts.


But wait. There is a right way to feature the personal side of your life. Say you’re in a fashion MLM. By all means post your kids in the clothes you sell. But don’t post your daughter with pizza all over her face just cuz she’s so darn cute.

Or you might post that adorable photo of your baby sleeping and then write in the caption that THIS is why it’s so important for you to work from home. You could write a real nice caption about how it makes you feel… and then ask “Do you work from home? If so, what do you do?” You get the idea.

The point is, keep your posts cohesive where they will appeal to your target audience.

Instagram Mistake #5

Instagram Mistakes you're making in your DIRECT SALES business and how to fix them #iHeartDiamond at iHeartDiamond.com

Pitiful BIO

Once people are curious about you, they’ll check out your bio, so you want to make a great first impression!

Upload an inviting photo of yourself. Not your dog, your kids or a logo, but you!

Write a sentence or two about yourself BUT look at it thru the eyes of someone who is considering following you.

Let’s look at two BIO examples and you tell me which IG acct. you would follow.

1) I am a Young Living rep who loves oils and staying at home with my three kids.

2) I am a mama to three kiddos. I’m into healthy living (on a budget) and connecting with other ‘stay at home moms!’

See what I mean?

With number one, you already know you’re gonna be sold to… but number two sounds relatable and fun.

Ideally, your BIO also includes what we call a CTA (call to action) where you tell people to click the link to get whatever you’re offering. Notice I didn’t say “buy what you’re offering.” I said “get” what you’re offering, meaning you’ll give them something.

If you have a website… perfect!! Create a nice little freebie to offer your folks, and put your enticing offer link in your bio.

I know it’s tempting to add a link to your company sales page, but please resist if at all possible because you’re advertising “I’m here to sell.” That’s such a turn off. Now, once you start building relationships with people, you can give them your link.

I must add, if you don’t have a website but have thought about it… or if you just want to see how many MLM superstars build their businesses online, then hop over for my Free 5 Day Branding Course specifically designed for Network Marketing women. BTW, this is not a free course that leads to a paid course. Everything you need to get started building your MLM thru blogging & branding is laid out in the free 5-day course.

That wraps it up. Let me know at Instagram/DarleneToday if this helps. XO, darlene 🙂