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Grow an Authentic Instagram Following
Our associate photographer, Hailey, has 63K followers and knows a thing or two about Instagram. We thought we'd share! These general tips are intended take your feed to the next level artistically and within the Instagram community.
- Be Authentic. Be you. Add your URL to your profile and make sure you have a photo and your description really matches your content.
- Public account: The whole point of Instagram is to share photos within an inspired community. This allows others search your photos. If you have a private account, it limits your engagement potential.
- Instagram is community-centric so engage and participate by liking, commenting, and following other feeds that inspire you. Graciousness goes a long way on Instagram and makes you and your brand feel more approachable and human.
- Think before your post. Consider the overall beauty of your feed as a portfolio that represents yourself or your brand. Consider how a photo will look on your profile “grid” with the other images. Instagram is essentially a free marketing platform. It's basically your own mini magazine about yourself or your brand.
- Post consistently but don’t over-post. A general rule is one photo per day but if you cannot keep up with that, perhaps just commit to 2-3 photos per week. If you post seven photos a day, just be consistent so your following knows what to expect.
- Give your photography a little effort. Try to compose clean, interesting images with good color and lighting.
- Don’t take the photo within the Instagram program. It produces a low quality file. You can use your regular iPhone camera and import from your camera roll.
- Don’t use the filters in Instagram instead use the new editing “wrench” within Instagram or read our CK guide for additional tips on how to tone photos.
- Relevant hash tagging – If you #HastagForNoReason it doesn’t do much on Instagram. Quirky hashtags work well on Twitter because it’s a text-based platform but on Instagram a hashtag is not meant to be an expression, it’s meant to help other Instagrammers find your cool photo. Link: (Justin Timberlake and Jimmy Fallon on #hashtags --seriously so funny)
- Geo-tagging- What is this? This tags the location where you photographed the image. Click above the image “name this location” and search for the resort, etc. In the wedding industry, this could be helpful if you are working at a venue that a bride might search by clicking on the geo-tag to find photos of that venue. If your photo shows up under that location and catches her eye that is how brides find vendors on Instagram. NOTE: your “Add to Photo Map” must be turned on.
- New feature: If you make a mistake in your caption, The new version of Instagram lets you go back and correct that mistake, add a hashtag, tag a person and even geo-tag a location. At this time, you cannot correct a comment. You can only delete it and re-comment.
Using these tips over the last year, I've been able to double my following on my personal feed and have steadily grown our new business feed over the last few months.
Stay inspired and follow us on Instagram:
*special thanks to Samantha Roberts for contributing the ideas about geo-tagging!