3 months ago I wrote a blog post about the does and don’ts of using Instagram and have been conducting experiments for the last 3 months to see if what I suggested worked and to some level, yes it did but there is way plenty of work to do on building a genuine following and its more work than I anticipated. In this post I discuss what I found out and several other Instagram tips on how to continue to grow my following.
Instagram tips 1 – Don’t be personal on Instagram or maybe you should?
This one thing I suggested not to do but yet continued to do, has actually helped improve my Instagram following. I have been fortunate enough to travel a few countries and see many activities taking place in my hometown and my current residence this year that my Instagram is absolutely full of my personal life rather than my work. I have included several pieces of work in my Instagram but not nearly as many as my design and artworks but it seems to be what people like to be viewing, maybe because its interesting to see where people go and what they do other than what they create and the face behind the creations.
Instagram tips 2 – Who is my audience?
Still a bit unaware who is actually interested in my Instagram and my website I still continue to just post images of what I am interested in and the world through my eyes which maybe is one reason my followers haven’t boomed since considering how to grow this social media channel.
Instagram tips 3 – Instagram Hashtags worked but to a small degree
I started using hashtags such as follow4follow and like4like and they did certainly increase my following. In the three months I have been adding images and using these hashtags my following has increased by 100% but that is still just over 100 and I am sure a few are fake accounts trying to get me to buy followers ( which I will never do on any of my social media accounts, see this blog post about buying twitter followers to find out why).
Instagram tips 4 – Editing old photos with hashtags and new image descriptions
Changing image descriptions and hashtags definitely helped boost my likes on those images and helped people find me. This is something I need to do on a regular basis as it helps you to get found by people looking for images like yours.
Instagram tips 5 – Still not looking, liking and following other Instagramers
I still have a tendency to only share my own images in the hope someone might like or start following my Instagram account but rarely look at others’ accounts through the search tool. I did try looking for other people using the follow4follow hashtag, followed maybe 20 and only 1 or 2 replicated the follow. Luckily, using justunfollow.com you can see who you have followed and unfollow them if they haven’t followed back within a few hours. Why use a hashtag if it’s just a lie? 😉
Interestingly, I noticed a lot of photos with LOADS of hashtags! It was probably the same length of the image there was that many. Hashtag spammers indeed, considering this I may do a little more research on hashtags and share them with you in the near future.
Instagram tip 6 – Spam Accounts
As I have tried to generate more interest in my images and work via Instagram I have started getting followed by lots of fake accounts, usually of a pretty girl and on the account, pictures of food and another image about buying followers. It is the same on Twitter, there are people desperate just to have followers to make their popularity look good so these accounts must have some success.
The whole idea of social media is to connect with people who either need your services or have similar interests to yourself. We should enrich each other’s lives and not just look for popularity.
So what’s my next 3-month plan?
For the next 3 months, the 5 things I will be doing on my Instagram account to see if it generates any interest: –
- Follow others that seem interesting and sharing images of things I am particularly interested in.
- Research more hashtags and index the results in a spreadsheet to share with you all at a later date.
- Start using the search feature and liking nice images
- Commenting on images and being less ‘me me me’ and more ‘about others’.
- Edit previous images and decide whether to keep or delete images that may be irrelevant.
How do you find using Instagram and what are your tips to creating a ‘relevant’ following? Please share in the comment box below and if you like follow The Change Creative Instagram Account and see how I fare in my experiment over the next few months. Discover our social media services.