How To Grow Your InstagramFriday, November 06, 2015
Instagram has just zoomed out of nowhere hasn't it? I mean one minute ago, it was that photo sharing platform where we all shared very dark grainy photos of our dinner and next minute it's this super fancy place where suddenly a grainy photo of a baked potato just don't cut it anymore.
The thing is, if you still want to instagram your baked potato, you can, but recently especially for bloggers, Instagram is a great platform for you and your brand. I love Instagram at the moment, and personally I love thinking of photos to upload and editing them, it's become a bit of a hobby of mine and well if you're photos are good then you can do really well on Instagram. Obviously don't just set out to get big on Instagram cause well we know that ain't a good thing to focus on, but do it for the enjoyment, which I know blah blah how cringe.
Anyway, over the past few months, I have seen my followers shoot up, and I'm not sure why. I think it's maybe cause I've started doing some stuff differently and I thought I'd share some hints and tips for Instagram so if you are looking to build on it for your blog/brand/business, hopefully this will help :)
Take Clear & Crisp Photos- Bit of a 'duh' one here, but taking clear and in focus pictures will always do so much better on Instagram. I'm still using my 5S for instagram so you don't need the latest phone model to take photos, you could use your camera especially now there is no size constraint on Insta anymore. If you're taking photos on your phone, use your finger to focus on what you want to focus on, also if you are taking a photo that is quite dark, tap on the darkest area and it lightens the whole picture up. Aha...
Edit Your Photos The Same Way- Get yourself a little Instagram theme.. I know, I know. But seriously, look at the most popular Instagram accounts, they are all edited in the same way. Some have borders, check out my gal Sarah for this, or they're all edited with the same filter. I like VSCO cam where I use the filter HB1 for all my photos. Some instagrammer's add in certain pops of colour, I like to add pink in, a popular one is blue. VSCO cam is also good for editing your photos and has a grid so you can see all your recently edited photos together so you can see if they go together. Of course this may seem fiddly and may take time, but it honestly takes me a couple of mins and I don't sit and study my Instagram theme. I know that some people probably do and plan it all, but I'd only do that if you really want to build things up or are a brand. It's up to you how you want to play it and how much time you have.
Post Regularly- Make sure you're posting once/twice a day, I'd recommend between the times of 7:30-10am then between 6-8pm as the best times. Weekends are good as well as weekday evenings such as Monday and Thursday night. If you're quite busy, you can schedule instagrams through the Hootsuite app, you still have to manually publish them but it takes out the faff of editing and thinking 'what do I post tonight?'
Share the love- Comment and like on other people's photos, especially people who have a similar audience/theme to you. Don't be fake though, be genuine, if you like someones photo tell them, if you think someone looks smoking in a selfie tell them, but please check if people have tagged outfit items before commenting to ask where they're from.
Tagging Items- If you're doing an outfit post, or posting beauty products etc.. then tag the brand where they are from. Chances are that the brand will pick it up and may like/follow you. I've sometimes had an influx of followers after a big brand has liked my photo. But don't go tagging lots of irrelevant brands/people.
Post about your Instagram- Sometimes people don't always realise that you're on all social platforms. People say to me on my blog sometimes that they didn't know I had a YouTube, so if you have a blog, share your Instagram on there, and twitter and vice versa. It's a good way to link all your social platforms.
Figuring Out What Works: Look back on your photos and see what gets the most likes. Then tailor your content to those kind of subjects. The most popular photos on my instagram tends to be outfit shots, selfies, pictures of frank and funny quotes :)
Of course like with any social platform, it takes time to build a following but hopefully you will notice a difference with your Instagram and hopefully you'll get what you were hoping for. But please remember that it may seem like having loads of followers are the be all and end all but the reality is that it won't really make you that much happier. I'd focus on maybe posting better photos than how many followers you have. Anyway, I'm probably going to finish this post now to go procrastinate on Instagram, maybe next I could talk about my fave instagrammer's? Let me know yours in the comments!
Btw you can totally follow me here if you like ;)