Meet Kim—the owner of the Kymberli Designs Zazzle store and the @KymberliDesigns Instagram account. An all-around art lover, Kim uses Zazzle to express her creativity and does a great job of promoting her work on Instagram. Let’s get to know Kim a bit more and take a look at the tips she has to offer for using Instagram to market your Zazzle products.
Tell us about yourself.
Hello, everyone! My name is Kim, a 100% Jersey girl, born and raised. I currently live in Mount Arlington, a small town on New Jersey’s largest lake, Lake Hopatcong. Since I was a kid, I’ve always loved drawing, coloring, painting, and arts and crafts. I remember my mom used to enter me into coloring contests, which I almost always won, and my dad always bought me all of the art supplies I’ve ever needed. (Thanks, Mom & Dad!)
Art class was always one of my favorite subjects. I took as many art classes as I could when I got to high school. When it came time to choose a college major, I knew, without a doubt, it would be some form of art. I changed my mind a couple times throughout high school, but ultimately decided to go with interior design.
In 2008, I graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Interior Design from the Fashion Institute of Technology in NYC. Lucky me, I graduated right when the economy crashed, and I couldn’t find an interior design job anywhere. Fortunately, my good friend and his father got me an AutoCAD drafting position at the engineering firm they worked for. Over my seven years there, I worked my way up and was promoted to a designer.
I am currently a structural designer at a structural steel storage system manufacturer and absolutely love it. I spend most of the day drawing structural steel shapes and welding symbols, which I enjoy, but it doesn’t allow for a lot of creativity. I had to find something to scratch my creative itch and Zazzle was the perfect outlet for me.
When I’m not working or designing on Zazzle, I love spending time with my fiancé Keith, fur baby Cruz (a 90 pound labradoodle), and my family and friends. I also love running (it’s more of a love/hate relationship), growing my ancestry tree on Ancestry.com, and Instagramming, of course. 🙂
Where do you get your inspiration from?
Funny quotes are my absolute favorite inspiration. There is at least one funny, relatable quote for every occassion from everyday life to the holidays, and (almost) all of the times in between. I’ll find a quote that makes me laugh, then try to match a font type to the feel of it, and go from there. Sometimes, I’ll add in a clipart element to the image along with the quote.
I also get inspired by everyday life. Since two of my best friends recently had babies, I’ve heard lots of funny new momma stories and was inspired to work more on baby apparel designs.
Another place where I find my inspiration is Pinterest. Just scrolling through Pinterest, I’ll come across a couple of different ideas including sayings, typography, an invitation layout, etc. After finding these ideas, I try to combine them all with my own fun twist.
Do you have any Instagram tips for other Designers?
I’m always trying to find new tips myself, but today I’ll share a few things that weren’t so obvious to me when I first started out with promoting on Instagram.
Tip #1: Get an Instagram business account. Having a business Instagram account is very beneficial (as opposed to a personal account) because you can see the many different types of interactions your post has received. For example, you can see how many people have seen your post, clicked on your link, saved the post, etc. You can use this information to understand what works for you and what doesn’t. Also, keep in mind that because something may have worked for you a year ago, it doesn’t necessarily mean it will work for you now.
Tip #2: Use mockups for your posts. Mockup posts get a lot more interaction than a simple product image from Zazzle (although their in situs have gotten much better). There are tons of free mockups out there that you can find online with a simple search. I use the Photoshop mix app on my iPad to put my products on the mockups. Sometimes, when I’m feeling adventurous, I will create my own mockup from scratch.
Tip #3: Post several times a week. Keep your audience engaged by posting multiple times a week. There are sites that you can use to schedule out your posts, but I personally like to post based on my newest designs, current moods, or upcoming holidays.
Tip #4: Save the hashtags you use for every post. Make sure to have the hashtags that you use for every post saved somewhere where you can easily copy and paste them into your future posts. For example, I always use the following hashtags in my posts: #kymberlidesigns #design #designs #designer#zazzle #zazzlepro #zazzleproducts #zazzledesign #zazzledesigner #zazzlemade#zazzleshop #zazzleinspiration #myzazzle and I have them saved in my Gmail so I can easily grab them when I’m ready to post.
The other hashtags I use (the hashtags that are not the same for every post) are based on the product. When you start typing keywords into Instagram search, suggestions for related hasthags come up which you can use to add to your hashtag list for that particular post.
Tip #5: Don’t use the follow/unfollow method. If you haven’t heard of it, the follow/unfollow method is following as many accounts as possible in order to get people to follow you in return. This method doesn’t get you ‘real’ followers (or even real live people) that would potentially like or buy your designs. The best use of your time is to create quality images and grow your account organically.
Tip #6: Focus on quality over quantity. Posting on Instagram can feel more like a full-time job than an enjoyable side hobby, and that’s why my advice is to focus on quality over quantity. If you can post every day, great! If you can only post once or twice every week, guess what? Life happens and the world still goes on. Just do what you can and try to have fun with it!
I love to support fellow Zazzle Designers! Please find me on Instagram and let me know if there are any other tips I could help you out with, or if you have ones for me! @KymberliDesigns