Sara Tasker of Me & Orla is an online entrepreneur, course creator, and Instagrammer with a massive following. With over 143 thousand Instagram followers, it probably comes at no surprise that this coach runs a successful business in teaching others how to harnass influence on Instagram.
What started out as a fun way to kill time while she waited for her daughter to be born quickly turned into a full fledged business. It wasn't long before her side hobby started opening unimaginable doors for her and she took the leap leaving her day job behind.
Here's what she has to say...
Tell us what you do in 2 sentences:
I make courses and classes for bloggers and businesses who want to grow their impact from Instagram in a meaningful way. As a successful blogger & influencer myself, I share the stuff that other people don’t.
At what point did you decide to venture and create your own business?
I started having to turn down big & exciting opportunities because of my day job. Increasingly I felt that it was now or never, and ultimately, I knew I would always regret not trying. A friend said to me, ‘maybe it just works out for a few years, and then you do something else!’. That was the first time I saw it as something other than ‘win or fail’, and realised that the doing is what really matters.
What steps did you take next?
I set up my Instagram mentoring program as a way to bring in a reliable monthly income, and really hone my skills.
What has been the biggest obstacle you’ve had to overcome as a business owner?
Balancing childcare with my work is a constant battle. I often need to travel and stay places overnight, and my husband’s job means he’s unable to take time off to care for our daughter in my place. Switching to selling more online courses, instead of face-to-face workshops, has really improved the balance, and means I can work around the hours she needs me most.
What has been the best part of running your own business?
The radical transformation in my self belief! I keep telling people it’s better than a year of therapy - there’s nothing like trusting your instincts and that feeling of ‘I think I can do this’ to make you re-evaluate your self worth. I love the way I can try things out, and change any element that isn’t the right fit for me. And of course, working in pajamas is a win! ;)
What prompted you to create an online course?
My mentoring was impossibly over-subscribed, and I realised that I was repeating a lot of the same information to all of my clients. I’d wanted to write and sell an e-course right from the start, but initially felt unsure about what questions my audience needed answering. The mentoring gave me the insight to make the best course for my clients, and meet all their needs as succinctly as possible.
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What did your course creation process look like?
I’m a pen-and-paper girl, so a whole wall of my home was given over to rainbow coloured post-its as I worked out where everything would sit. Once I’d drafted out my outline and content, I started selling my first course to give me the impetus and insight to write it for that exact audience.
Your Instagram story is so interesting! Can you share a bit about how you got started and grew?
It started simply as a creative outlet one New Year, while I waited for my daughter to be born. By the April I’d reached 35k followers and was being featured on the Instagram blog. There are so many things you can do to engage an Instagram audience, but at the heart of everything I teach, I always come back to great imagery. The ability to tell your story in simple photography is a skill that will transfer to anything you want to do online, and will outlive any social media platform.
What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs who are looking to go full-time in their online business?
Know your worth! I work with so many small businesses who totally undervalue their time and work, and so of course do their clients and prospective customers. You need to really believe in yourself and your product - because there are people out there who desperately want whatever it is you create!
What are your plans for the future?
There’s a book on the horizon, and a course for Influencers and people looking to monetise their Instagram. A podcast, a magazine column, more speaking at workshops and photography shows. All that &, of course, my endless campaign to make Mark Hamill be my new best friend. Twenty-seventeen is the year he caves and agrees to be besties; I’m sure of it! ;-) x