As you know I’m a big fan of Instagram. For me, it’s also a great source of inspiration and a way to build your online community. It’s also a supportive place when you can surround yourself with like-minded people. It was great meeting the successful Instagrammer Eimear Varian Barry at a recent Mothers Meeting in London. She blogs over at The EVB Edit although she’s modest about being called a blogger.
Looking at Eimear’s Instagram feed, her style and layout looks flawless. In real life, Eimear is refreshingly honest and down-to-earth. When I first said hello to Eimear, we ended up chatting about Zara; not about the world of blogging or Instagram.
Eimear told us about the early days in her career where she headed to New York to explore opportunities. She was frank about “working with nothing” and had to sleep on her friends’ sofas. Eimear reminded us that back then social media didn’t exist so she didn’t have a creative platform to earn money from what she loved doing. She then moved to Melbourne in Australia to be with her sister and worked lots in hospitality; not forgetting her infamous job on a tomato farm.
As it turned out, Eimear’s talk wasn’t just about managing the world of social media but she also shared some valuable career and wellbeing lessons. Eimear was joined by Yvonne Fuchs who helps to run the Mothers Meeting Business Academy. Here’s seven social media savvy tricks Eimear shared with us at the Mothers Meeting…
- We all have a story…Eimear reminded me that when you first see someone’s Instagram feed, you don’t know their full story. Eimear told us that we all have a story to tell and that we need to be ourselves; it’s exhausting trying to be someone else. She described Instagram accounts as magazines.
- Talk about things behind the scenes…Jenny from Mothers Meeting joked about how Eimear could put up a photo of chair on her Instafeed and it could tell a whole story. So on Instagram, don’t be afraid to put up photos you like and then share a nice caption to talk about what’s going on behind the scenes. Another tip is to use your Instastories to chat about what’s going on in your world. Eimear explained that this also helps to bring your Instagram photos to life.
- Trust your gut…Some good advice as many of us can feel nervous about trusting our gut, especially when we’re posting something on social media or making career or parenting decisions. So if it doesn’t feel right, don’t do it. If it does, go for it and trust your own instincts. Eimear reminded us that “everyone’s in a different situation”. Yvonne also added that “Only you can every know what’s right for you”.
- Do things from the heart…This came up a few times during the talk whether we were all talking about career journeys or Instagram accounts. Eimear likes using her Instagram captions to share her thoughts and she likes being honest.
- Developing a thicker skin…It’s hard not to care what people might think when you’re active on social media (or doing anything creative). Eimear talked about trying to work with brands and she has experienced a few knock-backs in her time. I asked Eimear about her own tip for boosting her own confidence. She talked about one of her first meetings with a PR agency, with the buggy and baby in tow. She still remembers how nervous she was that day. Eimear said how she has to remind herself that “It’s fine. It might be a no and that’s fine”. Her mum also advised her that if you’re dealing with any negativity, you have to just stop and let it go. You can’t waste time on anything that’s not constructive.
- Don’t be afraid to tweak things…The room was full of people who were at different stages with their blogs, diverse Instagram accounts, careers or businesses. Eimear and Jenny reminded us that we can update our Instagram profile descriptions as much as we need to. It’s good to try things out and get someone else’s opinion. I know I’ve updated mine a few times over the past year as things have become clearer for me. It’s about letting things evolve.
- Be patient…This is the second time I’ve heard this advice this week. Eimear talked about how it took her ages to realise what she wanted to do in her career. It was only when she became 30 that her career interests became more obvious. Eimear know describes her work as a “content creation”. This is about creating interesting content to describe her own experiences or those linked to brands to tell their story. It involves her love of photography. Eimear was also honest about how her following grew organically and it didn’t just increase overnight. Yes, we’re talking big numbers here when you look at her Instagram but she reassured us that a lot of hard work goes on behind the scenes. Jenny reminded us that there are bloggers, businesses and Instagrammers which much smaller numbers and they’re still doing lots of interesting things.
If you like the style of Eimear’s Instagram, you can follow it here @eimearvarianbarry