Quick Tip Tuesday: Instagram DMs



Typically, once a week or a couple times a month, I make a post on Instagram that is explaining a recent podcast episode and I’ll ask you guys to type something in the comments if you want me to send you the link. There’s a few reasons that I do this (and I’m sure you guys are privy to them):

  1. The first reason is that it helps boost the post. In the algorithm, the more people commenting, the more people are seeing the post organically.

  2. The second reason is convenience. I cannot type a clickable link in the comments or anywhre into the description, so instead of sending people to my bio to click the link in the bio, I will just DM them the link.


Here is something that I’ve noticed and this is what the tip is all about today. I don’t want any of you to get offended because there is actually quite a few who have this set up this way. I love you and I see your intent doing this. But basically what happens is I DM you the link to the podcast episode and you have an auto-responder that pops up and it says like:

“Hey! Thank you so much for contacting (let’s say) Tavia Redburn Photography! We’ll get back to you within (a certain amount of time). Have a great day!”

I see the intention behind this:

  • Quick customer service
  • Letting people know that you’ll get back to them

Your heart in in the right place. But I want to just gently and kindly point out a few ways that this could be improved.


Personalize Your Auto-Responder

First of all, if you are just a solo business, meaning it’s just you like for so long, Tavia Redburn Photography was just Tavia Redburn: I was the one answering e-mails, sending out the blog posts, doing the sessions, etc. There’s no reason to use the word “we” when I’m talking about myself and my business, because I’m just talking about me. And I think that the reason people do this (and the reason I did early on in my business) is because it sounds more professional.

BUT the truth is, people doing business with photographers, like a service-based business like this, they want to feel like they’re on a friend level with you. They want that personalized, one-to-one service. And so I actually think that by saying “we” in the wording that you’re using, you’re deterring people. You’re missing an opportunity to build a connection with them on a friend level.

So in that same breath, those auto-responders have great intentions. However, when they sound super commercial or too professional to the point where it feels like you’re a little bit unapprochable.

I kindly suggest if you decide to have an auto-responder like that, which I go back and forth on. We have that on Facebook because we’re less active in Facebook. On Instagram, I do not have one because I’m in my DMs all the time talking to people on Instagram (and so there’s no reason for me to have one). But if you feel like you do want to have that auto-responder, consider acknowledging that it’s an automatic response:

“Hey, it’s Tavia. Just letting you know that this is an automated response to let you know that I see this message or we got this message and I will personally respond within (this certain time frame).”


Do you see how that sounds like more personable and more approachable than:

“We are currently unavailable and we will return your message Monday-Friday from 9 AM-5 PM.”’


Hopefully, you see what I’m saying personalizing your auto-responder, making it sound like you and getting it on that personal level. That’s just something I saw happening that I want to share with everybody and show you a different way than you have it considered before.

If you like these shorter (it’s been several minutes now!), quick tip episodes, shoot me a DM on Instagram and let me know! I’ll keep doing them. And I will see you on the regular episodes every single Monday when the full episodes of the podcast are released.

Remember, if you have a passion, it’s not an accident because not everyone loves the thing that you love. Whatever your passion is, I hope you get out there and make it happen.

Have a great week!



I very quickly would want to let you know that I am doing a July Birthday Sale, so if you’re listening to this in the month of July, every single Monday, I am putting one item in my shop 50% off. So if you want to know more about that, make sure you’re on my e-mail list.

If you’re nor on my e-mail list and you want to know how to get on, shoot me a DM on Instagram that just says “Birthday Sale” and I will let you know how to make sure that you’re getting those e-mails for the 50% items on Mondays only in July.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Grab Your Guide

A lot of moving pieces go into planning a wedding day timeline and we know it can be overwhelming! Grab our free guide to plan the perfect timeline for your day. 

paste your mailing list code here