The most common Instagram question I get is how to grow your Instagram account. Has Instagram success been alluding you? Instagram is a fun, engaging social media site. Is it just for sharing food pics and puppies? No! The versatility and possibilities are almost endless. Instagram is a place where people have been making great business connections and meeting clients. Have you been wondering how you can dig a little deeper and build a community on Instagram?
Instagram success can be yours and you can grow your Instagram. All it takes is a little thought behind it partnered with consistency and you’ll have a thriving Instagram presence in no time!
1. Share your best photos
First of all, Instagram is about quality — not quantity! Take your time when taking and choosing photos to share.
“Lux works its magic by making your photos more vibrant and bringing out details you couldn’t see before. Once you’ve taken a photo or uploaded a saved photo from your phone, just tap the sun symbol in the camera view to turn Lux on. If you have the most up-to-date version of the iOS app, use the slider to adjust the contrast and saturation of your photo.”
Lesser-Known Editing Tips
Rearrange the order of your filters: You can press and hold a filter at the bottom of the screen, then drag it to the desired position.
Keep track of what editing tools you’ve used: In preview mode, a gray dot will appear below each of the effects you’ve applied to your photo.
Adjust filter strength: Once you’ve added a filter, tap the filter again then use the slider to adjust filter strength.
2. Use video to spice it up
Let’s face it, video can be hard to create. That’s why I use Wave by Animatron to make professional videos for my Instagram and other social media. I can use my own video or the videos clips in the app.I love that I can create one video and resize it with one click for an Instagram post or Instagram story. That’s right! You can make square video and video optimized for Instagram stories. It’s super easy.
You can create a quick video for Twitter and then resize it square to share on Instagram as a post. And then as an Instagram story so people can swipe up for the link to this article. It’s truly time-saving and remarkable.
Some of my favorite Wave features:
- Easy to use – even I can make great videos!
- Instantly resize your videos and ads to 6 popular formats, optimized to fit different social platforms, and maximum reach.
- Add your logo and exact colors for your brand.
- Upload your own media.
- Import your own video clips, images, and music with simple drag-and-drop functionality.
- Take advantage of their 2.5 million stock video library
- Add text to your video with real-time previews
- Apply stunning transitions and reorder clips as often as you’d like.
- Discover 100,000 royalty-free audio clips ranging from epic symphonies to relaxing piano tracks and everything in between.
Are you reading this article because you found one of my social videos? I’d love to hear where in the comments!
3. Use hashtags
You can use up to thirty hashtags on each post. I’d recommend sticking to three or four in the comments and then adding more into a comment below. It seems strange, but this is acceptable on Instagram.
Instagram’s best hashtag guidelines include:
- Be relevant — use hashtags that will help people find your photos
- Be specific
- Be observant — look at other photos using the same hashtags and discover some new gems
I like to save groups of hashtags on Evernote for different purposes to make it easy to cut and paste on-the-go. It also helps you build a solid hashtag strategy for your Instagram community.
You can load an app for your phone to find popular hashtags such as SmartHash. (iOS)
For business purposes, chose relevant hashtags and use one for business purposes that is easy to spell and remember.
Additional resource: How to Create a Winning Instagram on a Budget
4. Tweet and share your Instagram snaps
I like to use an IFTTT recipe to share my Instagram photos to my Twitter feed.
If you’re not familiar with IFTTT it stands for If this then that. If I share an Instagram photo, it will tweet the full image on Twitter not just a link to Instagram. It will only tweet 140 characters so it will cut off your long descriptions.
— Peg Fitzpatrick (@PegFitzpatrick) September 17, 2017
5. Share photos from your camera
You’ll have to email your photos to yourself and then share it from your tablet or phone, but it’s worth the extra step to share a special photo.
6. Add text to your images
Apps such as WordSwag make it easy to create a quick graphic for an interesting Instagram photo. You can also create graphics in 1:1 aspect ratio in a desktop program like Photoshop or Adobe Spark using the social media size. 612 pixels x 612 pixels are recommended for the highest quality.
7. Build a community with conversation
Responding to comments on your posts is very important on Instagram. Take the time to check your notifications and comment back to people on your posts on theirs. Turning on push notifications to your phone will ensure that you won’t miss a thing!
Instagram will send push notifications when:
- Someone likes or comments on one of your photos or videos
- Someone @ mentions you in a comment
- Your photo or video makes the Popular page
- You can adjust your push notifications from your account settings.
8. Track those stats
I like to use Iconosquare to help plan my Instagram strategy. Here’s a checklist of things to track:
- Comments [Are you responding to comments? Are you asking questions to encourage comments?]
- Hashtags [Are they working for you? Which ones are working the best?]
- Follower growth
- Most liked posts
- Most commented posts
- Most engaging posts
9. Share the right way
It’s fantastic to share other people’s Instagram photos BUT don’t ever download them and share as your own. As with all social media, you need to have permission to share someone else’s work. The proper way to share on Instagram is to regram someone’s photo using a third-party app like Planoly.
Resource: Oh Snap, Can I Legally Use that Photo?
10. Be creative
Creating a branded, visually appealing Instagram presence can catch the eye of future clients or customers. Keep this in mind when planning your strategy for Instagram.
11. Use filters
The choices are endless once you start playing with filters! Filters can change the mood and tone of a photo, so take some time to find your favorites. If you don’t use a filter, use the hashtag #nofilter to show this is just how amazing your photo came out.
12. Show your personality
Instagram is the place on social media to share things you love, what you do, and paint a picture of your life. Use this space to create a window into your world that will help build your likability and show who you are.
Instagram success doesn’t have to be overly complicated most of all I want you to have fun and infuse your passion into your pictures.
I hope this gives you some ideas to build your Instagram success. Stop thinking of it as only food photos and start thinking of it as a way to share who you are and what you do.
How have you been using Instagram to connect and build your social media platform? I’d love to discuss this with you in the comments below!
Goodies from my INBOUND session:
Sample template for Instagram stories.