Amar Patel Explains How Instagram Can Be Useful In Business Networking
Indian American Businessman Amar Patel shares his top tips for Instagram networking success.
Amar Patel, 27, oversees the strategic direction, Manufacturing of goods, fulfillment and Social media growth for companies with sales that exceed 20-million per year, many listed on the INC 500 and Forbes list.
So what's the secret to work with such large companies at such a young age? Hes a young Indian American businessman whos realized the value of building quality relationships and quality products. Patel has managed to build a powerhouse network of contacts worth over $15 billion via Instagram marketing.
Patels story is both motivational and replicable, and I had the privilege of meeting with him recently to learn some of his tricks of the trade. Here are some key takeaways from my chat with him.
1. The power of a direct message
The direct messaging function, or DM, as its often called, is one of the simplest ways to reach out on Instagram. The biggest reason most choose not to utilize this feature is fear of rejection. We often far too quickly assume that if we send a DM, it wont be read or will be denied, and it wont provide any value.
If we choose to let go of our fears and chase our goals in life, then we will come to realize that rejection simply doesnt matter. Patel actually reached out to me via direct messaging, and it wasnt automated, as you might expect from large companies or people with big followings.
It was real, it was personal, and therefore, it resonated with me.
The best thing you can do when using the direct messaging feature is to keep it authentic and simple. Even something as brief as, I love your photos and what youre doing with your page. Excited to follow along!
2. Outreach through value
Above I talked about keeping it authentic; this next point brings that rule home even more. If youre consistently reaching out to people you cant bring any value to, youll come off as inauthentic.
Furthermore, this will bring little or no value to your business. One way to bring value to those youre contacting is to offer a compliment. Letting people know you appreciate what theyre doing and the positive impact it has on the world is always a good idea.
Encouragement feels good. And when you bring value to others, it will come back to you in some form. Just ask yourself as youre reaching out to others on Instagram: What value does this bring them?
3. The money is in the research
Patels rule of thumb is this: TRY FAIL TRY FAIL and do it a few more times, take away experiences from your failures to make sure that your clients and potential clients are educated from real experiences you yourself needed to go through so that they do not need to.
What does this mean? Research, research, research. This is the key to Instagram outreach.
This only builds on our last two points. When you know the individual youre reaching out to, youll seem authentic (have I drilled the word authentic into your brain yet?), and you will know how to positively impact and bring value them.
If you reach out to someone without having first cared enough to learn about him or her, this will only result in failure. Youll have already lost them within the first few words of your attempt, as Patel says.
The more you know, the better youre able to adequately address peoples challenges and convey the solution you can provide.
4. Rejection is a part of life.
Remember that little fear of rejection we talked about earlier? Get rid of it yes, even if youre getting ready to message someone on Instagram with a huge following and a verified profile.
Everyone started somewhere, and most of these celebrity Instagrammers remember this fact and know that it took hard work to get where they are. Usually, theyre more than happy to connect with you, especially when you prove that you have something worth looking into.
If you dont contact these people simply because of fear, you could be missing out on many opportunities that would have offered you great potential. Dont be afraid of rejection, and dont be afraid to hear the word no.
If you present the correct message, coupled with interesting content on your page, they will want to know more about you.
Patel told me that some of the most successful people he knows who are worth hundreds of millions of dollars have fewer than 30,000 followers on social media. Dont be afraid to reach out, no matter the size of their following.
5. One powerful direct message
All it takes is one powerful direct message. Well, I lied it takes more like 100 direct messages. But if you get one answer back from one of them, then you win. Your goal here should be engagement and connection.
If you can engage and connect with the right people even if they dont directly contribute to your business chances are that in the long run, theyll know someone who can contribute. Never bypass a relationship simply because your business doesnt necessarily benefit from it today, but can be massively rewarding in the near future. Business is an art and all greats take time and persistence..
As Patel put it, all you need is one answer, one conversation, to work your way into a network that could lead you to many people with similar interests, and in turn, further networking connections and continuous qualified referrals.
Twenty-seven Patel is a total inspiration both to me and other millennials in our world today. I hold a great deal of respect for him and his work.
I look forward to seeing all of his future ventures. And as Patel so graciously taught me, let go of your fear, dont be afraid to hear the word no, be authentic, be yourself, and start reaching out!