I want to start off by saying that I am by no means an Instagram expert or a social media celeb who has thousands of followers. However, I have grown my following organically and I have good engagement on my page and a lovely community of followers. Instagram is an evergrowing platform for influencers and bloggers and we should most definitely be taking advantage of its features, so here are my top 5 tips for improving your Instagram…
Tip 1: Engagement
This is the most important factor if you are trying to grow your Instagram. Liking posts that are relevant to your page and commenting on other people’s posts will not only attract new followers but I usually find that people return the favour by liking and commenting back. After posting a photo I dedicate at least 20 minutes to scrolling through my feed, liking and commenting and then searching new posts to respond to using hashtags. With the new algorithm, it is no longer a case of coming up first on someone’s feed if you’re the most recent post, so engaging with others after your post is a good way of letting them know you have new content.
Tip 2: Captions & Hastags
Captions are another great way to boost your engagement, asking questions that they can respond to in the comments section. I also use them as a way of connecting with my followers, sharing my view and opinions, as an edited shot sometimes doesn’t portray this.
Using hashtags that are relevant to your post can also attract people with similar content. Try using specific hashtags as it will give you a better chance of being noticed. For example, there will thousands of people using the hashtag #mum. Whereas if you had just had a baby you could use the hashtag #newmum to give yourself a better chance of being seen against a smaller amount of users. It also will attract your niche and specific target market, so people using that hashtag are more likely to be interested in your content as it will be similar to their own. These are some of the hashtags that I use… Remember you can use up to 30 hashtags so take advantage of all of them, the more hashtags the more exposure.
Tip 3: Insta stories
This is definitely a feature I don’t use enough, but Insta stories can be a great way to give people an insight into your lives. At the moment I post mainly quotes and pictures. I also use it to let my followers know when I have posted. However, I love watching people share snippets of their daily lives and it helps me get to know them better. Remeber on Instagram you are your own brand, so sharing realistic everyday moments, as opposed to just single shots on your feed can help your follows relate to you. Think of it like watching a reality series, like Love Island, the more you get to know the people involved the more engrossed you become in their lives.
Tip 4: Stay consistent
Posting regularly at Prime times (weekdays between 12-2 and 7-9) will help you hit the Instagram rush hour traffic! Which in our case is good because more active users online mean more opportunity to get your post seen- although as I explained earlier with the new algorithm you may have to work a little harder to get this to happen. Another thing you may want to consider is how often you are posting on Instagram. At the moment I post every other day but would like to increase this to every day once I get better at planning my feed in advance! It can sometimes be hard especially when you lack creativity, and for me personally, I would rather not post anything then post a picture I am not proud of. However posting regularly just lets your followers know that you are active and present. I gain followers every time I post, so in theory, the more you post the more followers you will gain. Although I wouldn’t suggest posting 10 times a day for this reason as I’m not sure that will have the same benefits! Consistency in posting is especially important if you are a shop/brand as potential customers will want to see that you are efficient and responsive to questions/requests.
Tip 5: Editing
A cohesive theme and well-edited pictures can help attract new followers. I will be doing a blog post soon about how I edit my pictures but these are some of the apps I use on my phone. The main application I use is Lightroom Adobe 5 on my laptop, but I know not everyone wants to pay for their editing tools, so these ones are all free (apart from Afterlight but it’s really cheap) and really easy to create amazing edits. If you are just starting out and want to create a cohesive feed easily I would suggest finding a filter that you like on VSCO and then applying it to all your pictures. That way even if the colour differs the overall look will be the same. You may just have to adjust certain aspects such as the lighting and contrast depending on where the picture is set.
1. VSCO- Best for filters to create a cohesive feed
2. Color Story- Best for playing around with light and bright filters
3. Afterlight- Best for adding texture to your picture e.g dust, grit
4. Air Brush- Best for editing blemishes
You can find my Instagram here.