Hi, I’m Michelle Andrews, I’m the co-host of Shameless Podcast, and this is Milkshake ‘Asking for a friend’.
MS: What’s one thing you know about Instagram that you wish you knew when you started?
MA: Probably that to tag someone in your post, you need to use the ‘@’ symbol. I think for the good first year, I was using hashtag, and trying to tag my mates and I was wondering why they never got the message that I was trying to show them.
MS: What’s the story behind your first Instagram post?
MA: It’s the first time I ever used self-timer, I was going to an 18th Birthday party, decided to put a bit of self-timer on because my sisters weren’t around to take a photo, I just got a new dress from Supré. Not the best, and I think if we look in the comments, I would have hashtagged people in. Yeah, I did. I hashtagged people right there in my first photo. So, Jo Western probably never got that comment reply.
MS: How has Instagram changed the way you do business?
MA: I think Instagram has revolutionised the way we do business. We didn’t have an Instagram account for a while for our podcast Shameless, and the second we did was kind of when we experienced that meteoric growth in that, people finally had a place to come and tag us when they shared us in their Instagram Stories, and them being able to do that meant that the message kind of snowballed and lots of people were seeing Shameless screenshot on people’s Stories. Building that Instagram profile was everything to us.
MS: What’s the hardest part about your work?
MA: Probably the fact that it’s 24/7. We have a Facebook group which is very demanding, and we love it, but we have to be in there basically all hours of the day, replying to DMs, or posting things, or responding to comments. It never shuts off, and it never shuts down and so if you’re going to be in digital media, you kind of need to sign away your soul to constantly being on your phone, or being logged on.
MS: Number 1 tip for building your brand on Instagram?
MA: I think it’s good to be a little bit weird, and show that quirky side of yourself. People aren’t really connecting with that super-curated, carefully planned out Instagram content anymore, I think it’s being spontaneous with what you post, and it’s showing that you can be funny, particularly on Instagram stories, I mean I think that’s such an area where you can give a bit of yourself, and show your personality off, and give that to your followers.
MS: How do you collaborate with brands and other creators? What have you learnt?
MA: Be careful with what you do, and don’t get sucked in by the money every single time. I think you need to be collaborating with brands that your following or your listeners can afford. You need to be working with brands that your listeners can actually engage with, and partake in. Otherwise, there’s absolutely no point, and you’re advertising something to them that’s so far out of their reach anyway. So it’s a bit of a balancing act, working with brands that do good, but also brands that are realistic for your audience.
MS: Advice for people starting their career in your industry?
MA: Do not be disheartened by everyone telling you that you will not make money doing what you want to do. I think if you have enough passion, and you have enough drive, and you surround yourself with the right people, you can make money if there’s value in what you’re doing, so do it anyway, and you’re better off chasing your actual passion than going into a career where you feel like the money’s good.