Social Media & Blogging

10 Ways To Step Up Your Instagram Game

April 20, 2016

Today I’m sharing some tips for growing, improving, and stepping up your Instagram game! These tips are extremely versatile and can be used by bloggers, shop owners, social media influencers, or anyone who wants an amazing feed! I have so far to go, but I’ve been able to build an account and feed that I’m really proud of!

Here are my top tips (so far)

Choose a “theme” and stick with it. Aesthetically attractive Instagram feeds have a lot of followers because they are pleasing to the eye (duh)! Being consistent with your filters can help keep your feed crisp, clean and cohesive. I use VSCO to edit my photos (more on that here) and lately, I’ve been sticking to presets A4, A6, A7 and A8!

Use relevant hashtags. I can’t tell you how many followers I’ve gained from using hashtags that are consistent with my photos. I’ve had brands and event coordinators in my city reach out to me because I use the hashtag #phoenixblogger. There are also motherhood accounts that repost pictures if you use their hashtags, such as#motherhoodinstyle (personal fave!), #mothersinprotest or #eternalmotherhood just to name a few!

Be selective in choosing what photos to post. I kinda hate this tip, because part of me wants to be able to post every picture on my camera roll, whether the lighting is good or bad, whether there are cars in the background or not, whether my house is clean or dirty… But the reality is– brands and shops look at your feed to see if you would be a good fit. They want to see clean and bright photos. They want to know their investment in you is a good one, and that they are going to get quality photos in return! I’m really choosey when it comes to my Instagram feed, since it’s less of a “personal account” and more of my blog’s business page… And I post the rest to Facebook! (Edited to add: I created a private Instagram where I can share all the crappy photos my heart desires! I highly suggest that bloggers should do this to avoid getting “burnt out”!)

I’m so thankful to have found such an incredible group of ladies that have helped me grow thanks to their wise words (which come from experience)! They have been kind enough to share a few tips on how they’ve grown their Instagrams!

Style Bloggers

Ashlee of @ashleeknichols, “The biggest thing I have found to help my Instagram grow is to be consistent! Consistently post good and clear content, consistently interact with people in your same interest, and be consistent with your niche! You will end up following people of your same interest which inspires you and helps you to grow as well!” (23k+ followers)

Sandy of @sandyalamode says, “Make sure to tag all brands in your photos if you know/remember them. If a brand likes your photo and fits with their feed, they will oftentimes ask if they can regram or repost your photo, and for me, that’s been one of my best ways of gaining followers.” (38k+ followers)

Krista of @krista.horton says, “The one biggest tip I can give for improving your Instagram is to just be yourself! It sounds so cliche but being the true you will shine through and people will be able to connect and relate with you! My second biggest tip would be picture quality! It doesn’t have to be coming from a professional camera (your iPhone will do just fine) but make sure the lighting is good and have some fun with it! Instagram is all about pictures, isn’t it?! So try and make it a pretty and creative one!” (40k+ followers)

Jess of @positivelyoakes says, “Keep it natural and light! Light in the literal sense (as in lighting, light colors, etc.) and light as in fun, laughter and real! Natural; be in your element, set the self timer and just have fun!” (41k+ followers)

Linh of @abeautifulrawr says, “Include real life moments – There’s nothing better than following a beautiful Instagram account, but I love seeing snippets of those “real life moments” whether it’s illustrated in a picture or reading about it in the caption. I make sure to do this 1-2 times a week and have found that I get a great response from my readers.  It reminds them that I’m human too and have those messy life moments just like them.  I love getting to know my followers and this is a great way to spark up conversation and support for one another.” (5k+ followers)

Bryana of @bryana.likes says, “I think there are two important things to keeping your instagram interesting.  First, I would say to keep it authentic and true to yourself.  The caption is almost just as important as the photo.  Sometimes I will take a photo of say my kids just playing outside and I’ll just want to caption it- “play time”.  But then I think, what will I want to remember about this photo ten years from now? Why is this particular photo important to me? And so then I might say more in my caption about how I love hearing their laughs as they are running around barefoot chasing the butterflies or how excited they got when they found a ladybug and followed it around the yard.  This gives more depth and insight into your world.  I think readers appreciate that depth.  But most importantly, it’s a great memory for you family to read about later in life. Interacting with your followers is great too. You can share recipes, tips, or ask questions requiring feedback.  But remember to keep these things genuine and unique to who you are. Second, I would say composure of a good photo.  When taking pictures of my children, I try to get down to their level and make sure there isn’t too much distraction in that frame.  If the boys are playing in their room, but there is a pile of socks next to them, I might hurry and brush the socks to side for less distraction.   Clean, vibrant pictures are my favorite to look at.  I edit my photos in Afterlight.  There I can adjust the saturation, contrast, lighten, warm or cool a photo, and so much more.  I recommend picking a style and sticking to it with all your photos so when people go to your page, they can feel what you feel.  If you feel like you made need help in the photography department, I suggest looking up ‘rule of thirds’, ‘framing’, and ‘leading lines’.  These are three common guidelines in photography that help keep your photos visually appealing.” (10k+ followers)

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Ashlee’s blog | Sandy’s blog | Jess’ blog | Krista’s blog | Bryana’s blog



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