I’ve been playing on Instagram for almost 2 years now. I opened my account because my son opened one and I wanted to monitor it. However, I soon had my own little Instagram addiction and over the course of these past couple of years, I’ve figured a few things out that I’d like to share.
- Don’t post every photo you take. Please, please, please curate your photos. Only post the best of them. Trust me when I say that no one wants to look at every single angle of that flower, out of focus shots of that nifty house, bad photos of good food or 27 different selfies that you posted within the last 2 minutes. Pick your best photo. Post that one. Quality wins out over quantity every time.
- Edit your photos. After you pick your best photo, use Instagram’s editing tools. They are super easy to use and can measurably increase the quality of your photos. You don’t have to be a photoshop expert to get your snapshots to look amazing on Instagram. Personally, I love the contrast, sharpen and structure tools. I rarely use the filters, but that’s just my thing.
- Be consistent. Now, this is one that I struggle with. However, I sure do love to look at other people’s accounts who are consistent in their style or with their chosen types of subject. I tend to share pictures of my family, landscapes, our travels and lots of flowers. Probably, I’d do better to have a separate Instagram account for each type of picture that I like to take and to keep each account consistent. In addition to the types of pictures you share, you should also be consistent with the feel of the pictures. For instance, mine tend to have a sharp subject, an out of focus background and to be lit a certain way. Others use the same sort of filtering or have dreamy looking pictures. Your followers tend to like to know what to expect and pictures that deliver tend to get the most likes and comments.
- Use hashtags. Hashtags are king in Instagram. They are how you will find other accounts that you are interested in and are how other people will find your account. Use hashtags that are relevant to your photos. Instagram has added features lately that help you to find hashtags that you may not even know you wanted to use. once you start typing after # in your post, Instagram will show you options that come up and will show you how many other posts there are with that hashtag. I pick hashtags that are popular, but not too popular. If there are 32,000,000 posts, yours will get lost in moments. At the same time, if there are only 12 posts, no one will find you.
- Selfie accounts are boring. Ok, there are exceptions to this rule. If you are a celebrity and people can’t seem to get enough of your face or if you are an Annie Lebovitz sort of photographer, feel free to post as many selfies as you want. However, as a general rule, the only person who might, and I stress might, want to see pictures of you making fish lips in your bathroom mirror is your mother. And after 20 of them, even she will get tired of the selfies. If you are going to post pictures of yourself, make sure the pictures are interesting. Remember, a picture tells 1,000 words and think about how you want to be remembered. Personally, I don’t want to be remembered as standing behind an iPhone, looking in the mirror with a toilet or an unmade bed behind me. So, show yourself doing fun things in interesting places. Let photos of you tell a story worth reading.
I hope these tips are helpful to you. Tomorrow, I’ll post more tips about how to find friends and followers. If you want to find me on Instagram, I am CatMellott. The picture I shared with this post is one of my most popular – it got over 1200 likes. Have a great day!