Do you ever look at popular Instagram accounts and wonder how they do it? What are they doing that you aren’t? How are they making this work?
The truth is that there isn’t just one magic trick – which is why I’ve put together a whole brilliant box of them. Advice and ideas you won’t find elsewhere, because these are my own, tried-and-tested, hard-earned techniques.
This course is all of my Instagram knowledge distilled.
I’ve been teaching the secrets of Instagram for four years now – in 1:1 mentoring sessions, at events internationally, and through online courses like this.
In that time, the platform has grown and evolved rapidly, but my passion for it all has remained. The rules may have changed, but it’s still entirely possible to make Instagram the vital beating heart of all your online adventures.
Whether you’re an artist, a blogger, a maker or a business, The Insta Retreat will guide you, step by step, through all you need to do to create an engaging, popular and profitable account that represents all that you want it to, and becomes an essential part of your world.
It’s perfectly possible to build this, right now, wherever you’re starting from. It takes three things: perseverance, great pictures, and the right strategic plan. This course will give you all three, alongside the community & support to make your dreams come true.
New & revised
I’ve revised, revived and reviewed the entire course for July 2017. Inside you’ll find all the most up-to-date info and insights for Instagram, plus answers to all the questions my previous students have asked.
I’ve also included more points for reflection and creativity, time to pause and take stock – making The Insta Retreat my most comprehensive and wholehearted course yet.
What you get:
6 weeks of carefully structured modules comprising over 35 individual written lessons
Real and actionable strategies to start working on right away
Regular exercises to get you thinking creatively, and brainstorming your own next steps
Weekly homework assignments to keep you moving forwards
An audio download (like a mini podcast!) of each lesson, so you can learn away from the screen
Downloads and printables to help you plan and implement your goals
Access to our members-only community to discuss issues, ideas and inspiration
Placement in a small community support group via Instagram DMs – (like a ‘comment pod’, but designed to give support and encouragement instead of just likes)
In-course support with me and a dedicated TA for the duration of the course
A live video Q&A with me, to discuss bigger issues and questions
Lifetime access to the course content and all future updates
After you finish, access to our ‘graduate’ community, to connect with other Instagram users who’ve completed the course.
What you’ll learn:
The Insta Retreat is a complete guide to all you need to know about Instagram, and is absolutely jam-packed with learning and tips. It includes everything you’d expect from a premium rate Instagram course, plus…
How to find your target audience, and get them to discover you too
Nailing a visual style that feels authentic and exciting to you
The difference between comments, likes, saves and clicks – and which is most important for you
How to convert your Instagram audience into blog readers, mailing list subscribers or customers (and what that all means, if you’re not sure!)
Where to turn when you’re out of fresh ideas and inspiration
The science behind the algorithm, and how to use it to your advantage
How to take much better photos, right now, with what you have
The apps, tips and tricks that pro Instagrammers use every day
How to create a gallery that is irresistibly followable
Help to start using Stories and Live broadcasts to transform your engagement
How to set up a workflow to do all of this in as little as 20 minutes a day
“Without Sara’s advice and guidance I would never have had the confidence to grow my instagram. This year I’ve grown from a few hundred followers to well over 12k. And my (engaged) followers are growing daily despite the changes to the algorithm.” – Helen (@abookishbaker)
“Full of little gems of information that seem so obvious, but I would never have thought of. My following has gone from about 30 to almost 10k.”
“Working with Sara has been such an eye opener. She made me look at what I was already doing and then with only small adjustments I was able to start reaching a much wider audience. My Instagram following has increased almost beyond recognition, from just over 1500 to well over 20k now, and so much of this has been down to work I’ve done with Sara.” – Emma (@owl_emma)
Is this the right course for you?
You’re motivated, creative and open-minded
You’re keen to grow your Instagram for personal or professional ambitions
You like to know why things work, and not just how
You’re looking for sustainable growth without cheap gimmicks or dishonest schemes
You learn best with structure, likeminded people and a little bit of accountability
You’ve got 1-2 hours a week available to dedicate to learning and improving.
You’re ready to dig deep and tackle the problems that have held you back before now.
“My average like per post has doubled, I am achieving the followers goal that I set myself for each week and I am getting messages from people with accounts of 30k+ followers enquiring about my products and collaborations. But most importantly I’ve “met” a lot of lovely people who have helped me along the way and given me more confidence as a maker/designer/instagrammer.” – Alicia, (@Botanical_Threads)
“In the 6 weeks of The Insta Retreat I’ve already seen tangible results from my improved Instagram feed. My follower numbers have gone from 1000 to 2000+ [now 5k] and growing every day and my engagement has grown in line with those. I’ve had 4 approaches from brands (up from zero!) and am being found by the big Instagrammers I’ve always looked up to – and they love my feed!
More than these things, I’ve grown so much in confidence. I’ve always been inspired by Instagram, able to see the opportunities that can come from it, but felt lost and without direction. What the course has undoubtedly given me is clarity – I feel like I know what I’m doing, that I understand how everything is connected and what can lead to success. I now feel drunk on possibility, and excited that this is just the beginning for me.”
Who is this course for? This course was written based on my 1:1 client work with bloggers, small businesses, makers, photographers and artists. It’s specifically for anyone looking to grow an audience for a purpose on Instagram. If you’re just looking for creative inspiration, you might prefer my course Bloom & Grow instead.
I’m brand new to using Instagram. Can I still take this course? Absolutely. If you like to plan ahead and do things with clarity, then taking this course first is a great way to arm yourself in advance. You’ll be required to complete certain tasks on Instagram as you go along, so you’ll need an account set up and ready to begin at the start of the course.
I’ve been using Instagram for a while already. Will I still learn from this course? Yes! I’ve worked with a wide range of clients from beginners to Instagram pros, and I’ve found we are all always learning. I’m sharing insight and ideas I’ve developed through years of professional instagramming, and I’m confident there’ll be plenty you’ve never considered or heard about before. The earlier modules might cover ground you’re already confident with, but it’s a great opportunity to solidify and take stock before concentrating on growth in the later lessons. Even having written this myself, I still find myself coming away with new reflections and improvements to my own work each time I run this course!
How long does the course last? There are six modules, released one per week from July 18th onwards. Most students read one module per week, and action the homework accordingly. However, you’re welcome to spread the work however fits best for you – some people find it helpful to take two weeks to apply each module’s learning, or more.
As you’ll have lifelong access to the course, including any future updates, you can work through it at entirely your own pace.
When can I take this course? When does it start & finish? This course is pre-enrolling now, and will begin classes on July 18th. Before that time you’ll be invited to the members-only community and have an opportunity to chat informally with your course mates.
How much time will I need to spend on it? I recommend around 1-2 hours per week for reading and completing the course materials, plus extra time for photography. If this is difficult, remember you can spread your learning out over several weeks to fit it all in.
What equipment do I need? To get the most out of the course you’ll need a camera (anything from a DSLR to a smart phone camera is fine), smartphone running on Android or IOS, and printer or PDF editor to allow you to complete worksheets.
How long do I have to work through the course? You get lifetime access to the course, including any future updates, so take as long as you like!
I’m a competitor. May I take this course as research?
No. This course is designed for your personal use only, and information and content contained cannot be shared outside of the course, or used for commercial or business use.
When will I see results? This can vary depending on how quickly you work through the course, how well you action the advice shared and how skilled you are when you begin. Although the course lasts six weeks, it can take a few months to work out the exact styles and techniques that work best for you, so expect to work at it for longer than the course runs. That said, many many students have found they achieved their initial objectives during the six weeks of the course itself – gaining 1000s of followers, attracting brand work, growing their customer base.
When will you next be running this course? I haven’t set a date as of yet, but it’s likely to be in the autumn/winter of 2017. This is the only summer class, so hop on board if you want to join in the fun!
“Working with Sara was such a relief after putting so much effort into my Instagram feed for so long, and never understanding why I wasn’t getting anywhere.” – Freya
“Full of little gems of information that seem so obvious, but I would never have thought of. My following has gone from about 30 to over 6.5k”– Helen
“I love the way you teach! I should know…I’ve only signed up to a bazillion courses in search of Jedi tricks (and the real Obi Wan), and have never had so much as an ‘aha’ moment but with each lesson I read in here I can hear my little brain going ‘aha’, ‘aha’, ‘aha!”
“My average like per post has doubled, I am achieving the followers goal that I set myself for each week and I am getting messages from people with accounts of 30k+ followers enquiring about my products and collaborations. But most importantly I’ve “meet” a lot of lovely people who have helped me along the way and given me more confidence as a maker/designer/instagrammer.” – Alicia
“The Insta Retreat is not your average e-course, it is an inspirational journey. Sara’s knowledge, wisdom and encouragements are not only practical, they are creatively enlightening. For anyone looking to grow in every sense of the way.” – Marion
“Without Sara’s advice and guidance I would never have had the confidence to grow my instagram. This year I’ve grown from a few hundred followers to well over 12k. And my (engaged) followers are growing daily despite the changes to the algorithm.” -Helen R
“Not only have my followers increased from around 500 to just under 74k, but I’m now receiving regular jewellery commissions and filling workshop spaces from amongst my Instagram followers.” – Emma
“When I first chose Sara as a coach it was from a curiosity driven approach where I wanted to see how people create truly engaging and inspiring content and how they build communities around their own personal brand. This expectation was almost immediately met. However what I got out of the coaching was so much more than I expected. Sara has an ability to think great and see potential in people. She opened the door for me to reflect over my talents and how to weave them into a meaningful life journey, something I wasn’t expecting would happen. Sara is a great coach for hard working people who feel that they have something within that they want to shape and set in motion, a vision or a calling. Sara words the coaching as Instagram mentoring but I’d say that she’s more of a creative coach who will help you stretch yourself, with the clever questions that require reflection and by generously sharing her own hard learnings. What the course has undoubtedly given me is clarity – I feel like I know what I’m doing, that I understand how everything is connected and what can lead to success. I now feel drunk on possibility, and excited that this is just the beginning for me. “ – Melia
“More than any other e-course I’ve taken, this one is filled with practical and purposeful information I could action week by week and see results really quickly. The Facebook group feels like a real community and I’ve made some awesome friends through it too, plus Sara encourages you with bespoke, personal encouragement at every step. Beyond Instagram, it’s made a huge difference to my blog and given me my creative mojo back!” -Lucy
“In the 6 weeks of The Insta Retreat I’ve already seen tangible results from my improved Instagram feed. My follower numbers have gone from 1000 to 2000+ and growing every day and my engagement has grown in line with those. I’ve had 4 approaches from brands (up from zero!) and am being found by the big Instagrammers I’ve always looked up to – and they love my feed!
More than these things, I’ve grown so much in confidence. I’ve always been inspired by Instagram, able to see the opportunities that can come from it, but felt lost and without direction. What the course has undoubtedly given me is clarity – I feel like I know what I’m doing, that I understand how everything is connected and what can lead to success. I now feel drunk on possibility, and excited that this is just the beginning for me.
If you’re lacking in Insta confidence, you want creative inspiration or just a little more direction, I definitely recommend The Insta Retreat and can’t wait to take more of Sara’s future courses.” – Kayte
Hi I’m Sara, and I’ve been coaching creative people just like you in Instagram and online magic for four years. I’ve helped hundreds of clients grow followings in the thousands, launch successful online businesses and make their creative dreams come true. My advice is tried and tested and learned from experience. Take a look at some of my testimonials here.
I’m a photographer and creative with an (overly) analytical mind and a love of communication. I’m passionate about the internet as a gateway to human connection: that’s how I grew my Instagram following to 160k, built a blog readership of over 35k a month and was able to quit my job to follow my dreams full time. I’ve been featured in Stylist magazine, The Guardian, Buzzfeed and more, as well as talking about Instagram at events and conferences across Europe, and on BBC Radio.
Whenever you work with me you will learn not only the how but also the why. We’ll focus as much on the creative process and producing beautiful, emotive, expressive content as any snazzy tips and tricks. Because it takes both of these things – it takes your heart and your mind. That’s when the magic really happens.