10 LESSONS I LEARNED IN 2020!

Yes, I know, some of us want to forget about 2020, put it in a box and never revisit it. But I implore you to not write off an entire 365 days. What lessons did 2020 teach you? How did it make you better and more prepared for 2021? To go forward with purpose, we must look back bravely.

If you have been following me on Instagram, you would know that in 2020 I took an entire year off from creating content. I wanted to pressed pause on everything, took a step back to put things in place on the backend of my business so I could show up with purpose as your Online Biz Bestie.

In taking the year off I learned so much about myself, the business, what I want my brand to mature into, what true self-care and success looks like. In my latest video I shared 10 Lessons I Learned In 2020, some of these lessons includes:

What sustainable success looks like to me? I feel like I have grown from being that person who would have sacrificed a lot to “be successful”. Today I know that success must be sustainable, and I am getting rid of the self-imposed timelines and pressures. I do not know where we got the idea that we must achieve these lists of things by X date. I am letting go of all the pressures.

Setting Boundaries in business. I know setting boundaries is so “on trend” but trust me, it makes a massive difference when done correctly. When you set boundaries, you are drawing a line and making sure others respect your line. Looking back I can see where lack of boundaries lead to me being overworked and feeling drained physically, mentally and emotionally.

Outsourcing my personal life. Yes! That’s right! No, I did not outsource everything, I still make my morning breakfast and coffee. I am at that space in my business where if I want to get everything done, then I need to outsource the things I can. This is very big picture thinking, I do not need to go make a grocery run if someone else can do that. I am constantly asking the question, “is this the best use of my time?” “can this be outsourced?”. Try it, that did wonders for me.

These are just three of the Ten Lessons I Learned in 2020. They all started with one easy step, that led to bigger improvements. For 2021, what is that one easy thing you can do that will make a massive difference in how you show up, in how you feel and in how you support yourself in life and in business?

Watch the video below to see all Ten Lessons I Learned in 2020 and how they are changing my 2021 outlook.

I’M BACK ON YOUTUBE!

I finally did it! I am back on YouTube after four years!!! In 2017, I went to bed with a YouTube channel that had over 1.9 million views, 30,000 subscribers and 200 videos. I woke up and it all disappeared 😯. If you want to relive my trauma, go watch here.

Today I am starting back from ground zero, no videos, no impressions, I am starting with a clean slate. Of course, I would love to do a reaction of video of my first ever YouTube post, but I take solace in the fact that we won’t have to equally cringe and wonder, “What was she doing?” 😂

I took my time (three years, five months and twenty two days to be exact) to finally decide to get back on YouTube. I was very nervous doing this video and a part of me wanted to wait until it was “perfect”, but I always say, “done is better than perfect!”

In my first and latest YouTube video, I talk about my journey over the last thirteen years: how I went from being a professional portrait photographer, bombing my first launch, having my first six-figure launch without any ad spend, to hanging up my camera and becoming a full-time launch strategist.

In this video I break down the last nine years, all the experiences what made me who I am today:

  • How I started my first email list
  • Launched my YouTube channel
  • Launched my first online product
  • Broke up with photography
  • Created my first online course
  • Almost went bankrupt
  • Started a podcast
  • Became the Instagram Story Queen
  • Built a team who currently frees me up to do what I do best, CREATE!
  • AND had my first half a million-dollar year in biz

The last thirteen years have been a wild ride, filled with experiences and lessons that make me who I am today – your Online Biz Bestie! Watch below for the full journey!

How to Add Text

Today we’re going to talk all about the importance of TEXT.

POP QUIZ: What percentage of people watch videos with sound ON?

A – 89%
B – 44%
C – 21%
D – 8%

The answer is actually D – just 8% of people watch with sound on!!!

That means that 92% of people miss what you’re saying in videos or just skip right through them…. UNLESS you use text to create captions!!

How to use text effectively on IG Stories:

It’s not just about captioning everything – there are ins and outs to using text effectively, and I’m gonna share those with you RIGHT NOW:

TIP 1: Use fonts well!

Instagram has actually just started to roll out some GORGEOUS new fonts, which come with a new interface. But for now, most people have just 5 font options to choose from, switching between them with the button in the top center. Here are some font tips:

  • Use all caps to make the classic font more sophisticated
  • Don’t put long chunks of text in the script (“neon”) font – it’s sometimes hard to read
  • Use 2 different fonts together to create engaging titles for your Stories
  • Tap the “A” at the top left hand side of the screen to add a background to your font (only 3 of the 5 fonts allow this)

TIP 2: Color it up!

There are 3 ways you can color your text in Stories:

  • You can select one of the colors Instagram includes at the bottom (scroll right for more options)
  • Tap and hold one of these colors to pick a custom one from the spectrum (this will let you choose a color that’s closer to your brand color)
  • Tap the dropper at the bottom left and then drag the picker to a color from your Story that you want to use
  • Some fonts also offer a highlight option, and you can choose colors for this the same way – depending on how busy your Story background is, it may make your text more readable
  • PRO TIP: you can make different parts of the text different colors by highlighting the words you want to color differently – great for calling out key words or creating gradient effects

TIP 3: Place your fonts carefully

Where you place your text can have a massive effect on how useful it is. Here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Center or right alignment (changed in the top left) might look better with some photos, but remember that people most naturally read left-aligned text, so longer captions may work better left-aligned.
  • Don’t place your text too low or too far to the left or right. Different phone screens will cut off text placed outside of the margins Instagram has defined. Usually when you’re placing your text, Instagram will bring up a blue box to let you know where those margins are.
  • So many people don’t know you can do this: Size your text up or down either when typing it, using the sliding bar on the left, or when placing it, by pinching in or out.
  • And this is my personal favorite way to use text: Split up your text – don’t put it all in one big chunk. If you have 3 sentences to add to your Story, separate them and use different fonts – this will create more visual interest!

TIP 4: Summarize, don’t transcribe.

Knowing how few people use sound, it can be really tempting to just caption out your videos word-for-word. And sometimes this is useful, especially if you’re adding a lot of value in your videos. But leaving something to the imagination can be just as effective.

Sometimes, if you put just the basics in the captions, it can actually get people to turn the sound ON, which is major for your engagement!

To see some of the ways I use text on my Stories, click here to follow along and have a look.

If you want more juicy Instagram tips and tricks like this delivered directly to your inbox join my VIP list.

Let’s Talk Filters

Today, I wanna talk about FILTERS.

We all loooooove filters, right?! Puppy faces, quizzes, and grainy presets make our stories so much more ~aesthetic~ and playful.

But have you ever seen someone else use a filter that you didn’t have? Here’s how you can save it so that you can use it yourself:

STEP 1: Tap the name of the filter you’re loving seeing people use in the top left corner…

STEP 2: You can either try it now, or save it to your filters!

STEP 3: Now it’s in your Story camera view to use whenever you want (just scroll to the ones on the LEFT)!!

THIS is how you build a library of fun, engaging filters to use in your Stories!!

Just a few benefits of using AR filters…

They give our Stories a more put-together look and feel, and allow you to build a brand aesthetic!
They make your stories MORE ENGAGING! People are more likely to interact with them, either to react, try the filter for themselves, or even DM you.


More engagement = more visibility, both for that set of Stories and your future Stories
They help make you more confident and excited on video, which is always a major PLUS!!

So the next time you see a fun filter on Stories, try it out for yourself!! And then use those filters to create more engaging Stories for your audience to interact with.

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How to get those “fresh photos with the bomb lighting”

When was the last time you took a REALLY FIRE selfie?

I’ll tell you what probably made it so good: THE LIGHTING. For real. Good lighting can be the difference between the best photos and the worst.

And it’s not just selfies – good lighting makes a difference for ANY photos.

So here are my top tips for how to get those “fresh photos with the bomb lighting” every time:

TIP 1: Find a window!

Seriously, nothing beats a good bit of natural light. Face the window, and that gorgeous sun will illuminate your face in the most flattering way. It makes your pictures and videos look higher quality as well, because your phone is designed to work best with natural light!

If you’re shooting something else, not a selfie, then try to do so in a spot near the window, with your camera pointing away from the natural light. This will give you the best image possible.

TIP 2: If the sun is too bright, diffuse that light!

If you’ve found natural light but it’s so bright it’s making you squint and casting hard shadows, try hanging a white sheet or curtain in front of the window. The light will filter through the fabric (called diffusion) and create a softer, gentler light with fewer harsh shadows.

TIP 3: Make your own flattering light!

If you can’t find good natural light or want to shoot something at a time where it isn’t sunny and gorgeous, then there are absolutely still ways you can get soft, flattering, appealing photos and videos. Here are some of the best dupes for natural lighting:

A ring light – these can run from $20 into the hundreds, so make sure you read reviews to get one that will work well for you. These are a favorite of vloggers and beauty artists for a reason!

Bounce light off white walls – If you’ve got a bright light, try angling it toward a white wall and then facing the wall yourself; this will diffuse the light and create a similar effect to the ring light.

Choose the largest light source possible – larger light sources will create less shadow and therefore softer lighting. This doesn’t necessarily mean overhead lighting, because those bulbs are still small. Something like a large lampshade may actually be a better choice.

Move a bright light further away – lights that are too close will be too harsh, so try brightening things but then moving further away. You may find that standing in the doorway of a lit room is actually more flattering than standing closer to the light.

TIP 4: Clean your lens!

Seriously, you’d be surprised how many times I’ve taken a “meh” picture only to realize it was because my lens needed a wipe! Get yourself some microfiber lens wipes to keep your photos and videos crisp and high-quality. (Or … just use your shirt to wipe any grease away)

If you try any of these tips, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram – I wanna see your results! You can click here to find me.

If you want more juicy Instagram tips and tricks like this delivered directly to your inbox join my VIP list.

My Top Instagram Profile Tips

Here are my top IG profile tips:

1) Your Profile Picture

Choose an on-brand profile picture! This could be your logo, but remember that people love getting to know YOU, so don’t be afraid to use a photo.

2) Your Account Name

Choose the right name! Your “name” section doesn’t have to be your actual name – and most of the time it SHOULDN’T be. If you say what you do + who you serve in your name, not only is it more searchable, but it means the FIRST thing people see will be all about what you do and what to expect from your account!

3) Your Bio Description

Keep your bio SHORT and SWEET! Don’t overcomplicate it. Be clear about what you do and who you want around.

4) Your Call-to-Action

Have a clear CALL TO ACTION (CTA)!! Whatever you’re promoting at the moment – whether it’s a freebie, a mastermind, a product, or anything else – make sure it’s linked in your bio, tell people what’s there, and then actually TELL them to CLICK on the link!! Don’t have more than one CTA, and make sure the link goes STRAIGHT to whatever you’re promoting.

5) Your Highlights

Have beautiful, simple highlight covers! Your story highlights are SUPER important for new profile viewers, so covers should be ON-BRAND and SIMPLE – a plain icon on a single color background is great. Use Canva for tons of highlight cover templates.

Edit the Stories in your highlights, too! If you’ve been using highlights for a while, you may have a few that have accumulated WAY too many Stories within them, so go through and clean ‘em up. Make sure you’ve got a social proof highlight too full of fabulous testimonials or reviews, and definitely one about what you’re currently promoting!

Follow these tips for epic, on-brand, compelling bios that CONVERT profile viewers and help your audience grow!!

Ready for SO MUCH MORE IG Stories value?? Join us for Double Down on Your DMs!

Click here to join Double Down on Your DMs!

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And don’t forget to invite a friend by sending them here: http://doubledownwithalex.com/

#93 – Why I’m Pressing Pause

I’m pressing pause on the podcast. This is going to allow me, as a business owner and leader, to take a step back and recalibrate, so that when I come back, I’m showing up at my absolute best. During this pause, there won’t be any new podcast content, but in my time “off”, I will be rethinking the podcast and creating my vision for it. I’ll also be working with my team in the back end of the business to help create organizational efficiency and get everything streamlined so that the business can make even more of an impact.

I’m pressing pause on the podcast. This is going to allow me, as a business owner and leader, to take a step back and recalibrate, so that when I come back, I’m showing up at my absolute best. During this pause, there won’t be any new podcast content, but in my time “off”, I will be rethinking the podcast and creating my vision for it. I’ll also be working with my team in the back end of the business to help create organizational efficiency and get everything streamlined so that the business can make even more of an impact.

In this week’s episode of On Purpose, I talk with you about:

  • Why I’m pressing pause on the podcast
  • Why I feel like it’s time to take a step back from content creation
  • How to focus your creative energy so that it goes further
  • Why working on the backend of your business is critical to growing as a business owner

This is not “goodbye”, this is, “see you later”, so stay tuned for season 2. In the meantime, join me on the VIP list so that you can stay connected. And if you haven’t already, be sure to follow me on Instagram @alexbeadon

Loved this and want more? Check out our other episodes here.

Spark a conversation! Leave a comment below or say hello @alexbeadon on Instagram.

#92 – How to Be the Go-To Expert in Your Industry

In this episode, I chat with Michael Stelzner, host of the Social Media Marketing podcast and founder of Social Media Examiner & Social Media Marketing World. He shares his wisdom and insight on content that positions you as an indisputable industry leader.

THINGS YOU’LL LEARN:

  • Benefits of being an industry leader
  • How to be the undisputed leader of your industry
  • Top 3 forms of content and their pros and cons
  • Which content creates the most loyal fans
  • How to create a niche
  • The importance of creating check points in content creation
  • How podcasting can make you a better speaker
  • How to raise the bar on content creation
  • Why it’s important to check your content metrics and data
  • The reason why most entrepreneurs go out of business
  • The marketing potential of blogs, podcasts and video

PS. If you want to come hear me speak at Social Media Marketing World in San Diego from March 1 – 3, 2020, you can sign up using my affiliate link here. Then tag me on Instagram @alexbeadon so I know you’re coming. Can’t wait to see you there!

CHECK OUT MICHAEL:

RESOURCES:

Loved this and want more? Check out our other episodes here.

Spark a conversation! Leave a comment below or say hello @alexbeadon on Instagram.

#091 – Inspiration from Ariana Grande to Get Over Imposter Syndrome [Replay]

Due to Alex being sick, today’s solo episode is a replay of one of her favorite past episodes (Episode 037)!

Believe it or not, there was a time when I used to feel like the biggest fraud.
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Today I’m an online business coach, but I first started my career as a photographer. I remember on my first few shoots I would show up full of nerves, wondering if I was worthy of being on the shoot, wondering if I’d know how to pose my client, or how to overcome the awkward silences. 
​​​​​​​
I look back now and know that I was suffering from something called ‘imposter syndrome’. When you’re first getting started with *anything* in life, it can be very common to feel this sense of unease, as though you haven’t fully proven yourself to be worthy of whatever it is that you’re doing.
​​​​​​​
Well today I’ve got some advice on Imposter Syndrome for you, all inspired by pop princess Ariana Grande.

In this episode, I chat about:

  • putting yourself out there without shame
  • embracing the new, awkward, clunky phase of your business
  • how to get people’s attention before launching a new product
  • how to build upon momentum

​​​​​​​​I hope it inspires you as much as it did me.

Loved this and want more? Check out our other episodes here.

Spark a conversation! Leave a comment below or say hello @alexbeadon on Instagram.

#90 – How Inspired Action Makes Selling Easy

 

This week on the podcast, I talk to my good friend Nikki Elledge Brown about inspired action and how it can be a game changer for your business. Nikki is the host of the Naptime Empires™ podcast and creator of A Course About Copy®.

THINGS YOU’LL LEARN:

  • What REAL-ationships look like and why they’re important in your business.
  • How she went from $0 to $21,000 by offering free sessions
  • How she scaled up to a 6-figure business by shifting from one-on-one’s to an online course
  • How she packaged free content for an extra $20,000 in revenue
  • How focusing on essential business activities and self-care brought in one of her most profitable months ever
  • How being out of alignment caused her sales to stagnate
  • How being aligned with your highest values allows you to be more inspired, disciplined, organized and focused
  • How to figure out what your highest values are
  • How to recharge after you give so much to your audience and clients

If you want to run your business in a way that lights you up, brings more discipline and focus, all while generating a profit, you have to check out episode 90!

CHECK OUT NIKKI:

RESOURCES

Loved this and want more? Check out our other episodes here.

Spark a conversation! Leave a comment below or say hello @alexbeadon on Instagram.