5 on the 5th Interview: Jenn Herman
Jenn Herman, to me, is an Instagram rock star. I got to know her through the Social Soltuions Collective and I’ve enjoyed reading her insights and posts on Instagram. If you are using that platform in your marketing, go follow Jenn now. Don’t hurry! I was honored she agreed to do this interview so to see what she thinks, read on below…
Name: Jenn Herman
Title: Founder of Jenn’s Trends and Instagram Expert
Company: Jenn’s Trends
Twitter handle: @jenns_trends
Question 1: Why did you choose to work in this industry?
I’ve always loved the connectivity of social media and as someone with a big background in customer service, the thought of bringing the two together has always appealed to me. As I was trying to get senior management in my day job on board with using social media, and going through many of the challenges numerous businesses face with the adoption of social media marketing, I realized that I could share my experiences and stories with others. So, I started my blog, purely to share these stories and maybe help a few people see better success with social media.
Question 2: How do you keep continuing your education and staying up on all the latest trends and changes?
I read – A LOT! I’m reading multiple articles every day on everything in social media. I also use the Save feature in Facebook to save all relevant articles to read later, if I don’t have time to stop and read them then. I sign up for webinars whenever I can. I try to participate in online conferences as much as possible to stay up to date on current trends and what the big names are doing. But I also love following the, let’s say, less commonly followed people. They’re the ones who have personal stories and insight that most of the big names don’t dive into.
Question 3: What do you love the most about working in your industry? What bothers you the most?
I love the people I’ve met. Whether it’s other social media professionals, or my blog readers, or clients – they are some of the best people. I am lucky to be surrounded by supportive and helpful people who are genuinely interested in seeing others succeed and that’s why I for sure love this industry.
What bothers me is, unfortunately, how many businesses “try” social media for a short period of time, with no strategy, and no real commitment and then complain far and wide about how social media doesn’t work. Because it does work. But, like anything else in life and business, you get what you put into it.
Question 4: What is the hardest situation you’ve encountered in your business and how did you handle it?
The hardest situation for me was getting paying customers. My blog was a big success and I had plenty of public support and recognition. But I couldn’t get paying customers. I knew I should be but I had to some strategic refocusing. I had spent so much effort growing my brand and recognition that I hadn’t put a focus on revenue generation. I had to restructure my website, my emails, my social media posts, and more aspects to generate revenue as a focus of my business. It’s important to remember that where you put your time and resources is where you will see results. If you’re not seeing results where you want them, try realigning your focus and strategy.
Question 5: What is the best business advice you’ve been given and why has it stayed with you?
There’s been two pieces of advice that stick with me. The first one, it sounds cliche, but “Be yourself”. Whether it’s been in previous jobs or in social media, you can only be you. Eventually people will see through the charade. Talk the way you talk. Work the way you work. Dress the way you dress. Yes, there may have to be some level of adoption depending on the situation, but you should still be able to let your own personality and style shine through.
The second is to let your actions speak louder than your words. Don’t go around hyping up how awesome you are – even if you are that awesome. Instead, let your work speak for itself. That may come in the form of testimonials from other clients or co-workers, but it should come from the work you have proven. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t advocate for yourself and state your capabilities, but don’t gloat, brag, exaggerate, or try to overshine others.
One for the road…
Bonus: If you could come back to life as any person from the history, who would it be?
These questions always kill me! The same thing goes for who from history would you want to have lunch with 😉 I can never think of anyone! There are so many fascinating people but I can’t imagine one (or a few) individuals I would want to be or meet. I am so grateful to be in the position I am, in the place in time we are, with all the amazing technology and opportunities we have now. I honestly can’t imagine anything else!