Are we getting braver on social media since the lockdown? I think I have anyway and even managed to get Ann to take part in some Instagram stories, which for a lady that did not grow up around smartphones is a big deal.
Many businesses that are fighting to stay open have used social media religiously during the lockdown. It has been a lifeline for many online businesses and those that converted to eCommerce. For Zobi we used this time to create content and samples to share on our social media and chat with our followers.
Fear of judgement
Don’t get me wrong, there have been days when I could not face an Instagram story or dressing up to take outfit pictures. I have found that if I am not interested and excited about what we post then it doesn’t get much of a reaction from our followers. Which is a good rule of thumb for creating interesting and useful content but it also leads to major writer’s block and questioning if we are creating a similar theme throughout Zobi’s content. It took me a year to gain a teeny tiny bit of social media confidence and then I think life lessons just gave me the courage to not mind what other people may or may not think of our posts.
One blog I wrote that resonated with our followers is called; Fast fashion made me hate my body. I didn’t expect to receive the reaction we did from teens to older ladies that could relate to the topic. It was a special social media brave moment and meant the time I put into researching and writing these blogs was paying off. Zobi’s social media is all about connection, connecting with potential customers, other businesses and creating a community that fits with the Zobi brand.
Throwback picture to photographer Brian Clarke taking my picture at the Galway Races.
Thanks to Brians direction and photography skills my picture ended up on the front cover of the Irish Times and in 5 other national newspapers.
It was a major turning point for Zobi, we got orders from all over Ireland because people looked up who the dressmaker from Longford was.
It was a huge boost for our confidence to know our design was front-page worthy and for me to be confident enough to take the opportunity and run with it.
At the end of the day a businesses social media content is to display the product and skillsets it can offer to customers, this I often have to keep in mind and tell myself “Aine this picture is about the dress you are the hanger for and not about you, the funny face you’ve pulled or the awkward arm situation we have going on”. Social media bravery is similar to building muscle, it needs to be worked on and developed until you find a style that suits your brand.
Where Zobi is at now
But how does a business that prides itself on confidentiality grow its followers? We cannot post a picture of every outfit we design as most customers want it to be private and take their images on the day of their event. This is something I have struggled with from the beginning, being a two-lady band and making every piece of clothing ourselves it has been difficult and costly to create extra samples that we can show. While not wanting Zobi’s social media presence to turn into a personal fashion blog/influencer style. On reading this article; 10 Steps to Building Your Personal Brand on Social Media, I learned it could be useful to repost and talk about topics Zobi stands by, so we didn’t have to continuously create fresh imagery. By sharing our opinions and knowledge on garment worker rights, feminism, fashion, women’s health – endometriosis, in particular, we have been able to post and story more often and develop an authentic following.
I have learned it takes, self-belief and time to develop that social media brave muscle and build followers that are Real followers, by this I mean the people that engage with our posts and the followers that become customers. If you have ever wanted to start an Instagram page to share your passion my advice is to just go for it, be authentic and enjoy the community opportunities social media has.
Maeve modelling a new Zobi design at our February photoshoot.
Maeve had never modelled before but kindly agreed to be a part of the shoot as we wanted to display bodies of all shapes and sizes.
(Yes that is a sword on the ground, we got creative with some fun with extra props).
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