[2018 Update: Changed all mentions of The Ranting Latina to my current username on the platform, @xoannieblog.]
Once upon a time, I swore off getting a separate Instagram (IG) account for my blog, and even figuratively told those who say that keeping your IG private is dumb to bug off.
Back then, I was starting to take this blogging thing seriously and didn’t care about the whole world seeing my every move. I didn’t want guys I had seen a few times or old classmates who never were interested in my life to feel free to roam around my life through pictures.
Then my blog readership started growing and I began participating in more and more sponsored campaigns, and suddenly, I felt the need to also expand my IG followership. So I made it public. And it grew significantly (partly thanks to hashtags, which were now findable since it was a public account).
Fast-forward a few years, and in that time, a few things happened:
1. I met my future husband, a man who has 0 social media profiles, and who frankly could care less about that stuff. Since I respect his privacy, I try to not post about him that much.
2. Relatives from Colombia kept on treating my parents like a bank (the kind you don’t have to pay back?) or didn’t mind being rude to them, the nicest individuals on the planet. Those people really don’t deserve to see how well we’ve made it since we moved here.
3. People I grew up with and who used to be nice became questionable characters. They ESPECIALLY don’t deserve to learn how well we’re doing and how happy we are. Because if it’s true I consider I’m in a better place than them, I’m the kind of person who’d rather celebrate in private.
So one day in the Fall of 2016, I decided I had had enough. On behalf of my fiancé, my family, and myself, I said, “HELL NO!” to my public personal IG profile.
A few weeks leading up to this, I had already blocked a few relatives from my personal Facebook. These relatives exemplified Characteristic #1 (above).
But then this opened up a bunch of other doors–mainly, won’t they (incl. the haters) still be able to check me out online anyways? I have a blog and other social media accounts: what’d be stopping them from checking me out there?
So that same night (and the following day) I spent a couple long hours executing a plan.
Initially I had to decide how I was going to go about this, and at first I thought the best course of action would be to build a NEW PERSONAL IG account and re-add my IG pics there while I kept my former IG account tied to my blog because it already had a gigs following. Whew!
But then I looked at my IG account (which by then I had turned into a Business account and tied to my FB blog’s page) and saw just how many hundreds of posts spanning yeeears I had (over 630). Did I really want to start re-adding ALL those to a new account? Nope.
Then I made a decision that I bet will turn out to be the best: Simply start a new account for my blog with verrry limited personal posts. Besides the reasons outlined above, here are more for why I have a feeling this is the best option for ME:
1. Your FB friends (if your profiles are connected, that is) and non-FB friends who follow you on IG won’t be bombarded w/”bloggy” type posts–you know: listicles, sponsored stuff, tutorials, etc. Even some more personal blog posts (like this one!), my FB friends** might not give three pickles about it.
**Btw, a few years ago, I left Facebook and after returning about a year (or two?) later, I cleaned up my Friends list significantly: I think I went from 220 to <100 (#worthit), even after adding a few blog friends I had made a long the way. Now, I don’t just add anyone.
2. You’ll keep your personal stuff away from weird, prying eyes. Once I started de decluttering my Follower list (Like I did my FB friends list years ago), I noticed dozens of odd followers that had NO business seeing my posts or learning about my life.
If you decide not to separate your accounts, then at least take this PSA w/you: Clean up your Followers list!! What did I do? Simply blocked them: I blocked the weirdos, the happy(?) married family men, the young guys, the dirty gals, heck, even people I knew but didn’t want seeing my stuff anymore. I went from over 200 to around 70 followers. And those are people I like (or would like in real life, if I met them).
3. My most important reason: I consider myself a savvy digital marketer, but I can’t further that idea if I’m “afraid” of organically growing a dang IG profile. (Given how good I am already at growing websites.)
In other words, I decided to make myself my own Case Study (nothing to lose, huh?) and turn my blog IG account into one that’ll grow and grow as my blog and the sites I’ve built have!
What better way to preach what I teach than to actually experience what I’m talking about, right?
If I see myself as someone whose voice and point-of-view are much-needed in today’s society, then it’s about time I come out of my shell more and make an even stronger statement than I ever could on my personal IG account!!
Will you join me? Have any suggestions? Get in touch: Now @xoannie on IG, which WON’T be a duplicate of my personal account. Both are (will be) the bomb, in their own way.
PS- My Followers cleanse more than halved my Followers list(!) (also #worthit), and once I get married, all my other accounts’ usernames will likely change so if you’re still an IG follower, I’m so happy to have you along! Now pretty please help me get started by following along the new @xoannieblog on IG. I promise it WON’T be a repeat of my personal account.