On having 1.6M Instagram followers & being "lucky"

Do it for the gram

I have a friend who runs a massively popular Instagram account. She and her partner have worked incredibly hard, consistently, for two years to build it to 1.6 million followers—and now, they’re able to leverage that work to provide both their full-time incomes.  

But the other day, when I asked her about an instagram tool I was considering, she worried  “It might sound annoying, but we’ve been really lucky, and haven’t needed anything like that…” 


I’ve seen how hard they both worked for that success—what they gave up for it. How creative they’ve been. The bad days, the legal issues, the hangers-on, the pivots they’ve made to keep being the best.

I haven’t seen those days for you. Maybe you’re still in The Hard. Or maybe the connections are starting to fall into place. But I have some advice to file away until the day someone’s asking YOU: “How’d you do it?” 

Feel no guilt when it comes ‘easily.’

There will be hard days again. Don’t waste the smooth days feeling like you don’t deserve them.

You deserve them. 

Things are flowing because you’ve put yourself in the right place, at the right time, and built the right skillset to make it work.

Because you took risks. Because you were open to possibilities. Because you asked. Because you worked.

“Lucky” is what people call you when they see you on top, but they can’t see all the scaffolding you built to capture that rooftop view. 

When you were struggling, you could see people succeeding. Their success didn’t make you smaller. When you’re succeeding, you’ll still see others struggling.

Lift them where you can, but don’t make yourself smaller for their comfort. 



Photo courtesy of Glen Anthony via Unsplash.

On Supermarket psychology and manipulation

Y’all, it’s been a wild week.
In the past few days, I gave away everything in my apartment (except my books. #priorities), said goodbye to all my local friends, ended my lease, and became what is lovingly (or derisively, depending on your perspective) known as a "digital nomad."

And then I got snowed in to the next town over for over two days. 

When I finally made it the 700 miles south to get home for the holidays, I immediately made a trip to my favorite grocery store. It’s a local, Louisiana chain with all the best Cajun brands, best wines, friendliest service, and I adore it. 

I walked in and looked around for a hand basket. They had buggies (or carts, depending on your version of English) everywhere, but no baskets to be found. 

I normally carry my own reusable basket, but today it was filled with—you guessed it—books.

I searched by the doors, under the checkouts, everywhere. A cashier noticed the frustration on my face and asked what I needed. When I told him, he said, “Oh, we don’t have those any more. Would you like a buggy?”


Now, if you’re nerdy enough to read about the Psychology of Supermarkets, you already know everything about the store is designed to make shoppers stay longer, find more things they like, and purchase more goods. Including the carts.

I get it. 

All businesses do that. I do that. I’m a marketer. It’s my job to help you tell your story, get more leads, and make more sales! 

But not being able to use a basket so that I'm forced to haul around a buggy for my few items, or balance them in my arms with my wallet and phone is frustrating as hell.

But here’s the difference: marketing means making it easier for customers to buy from you.

Making your customer’s life harder if they don’t  buy? That’s manipulation.

So don’t feel guilty about marketing. Because the people who love you can tell the difference.

And if somebody crosses the line? Well, their customers will start shopping at Publix. 


PS. Want to raise your rates in 2019? Book a call with me today to create emails & web copy that prep your clients for the change while making them clamor to book you now. 

Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash