- Define your Instagram goal (for yourself). Is it to get people to your blog or online shop? Get people to your real life shop? Is it to raise brand awareness? Is it to create a positive community? Is it a movement to make the world a better place (like Follow Your Bliss!)? Is it just for fun? Once your goal is defined, content generation will become easier. Oh! Don’t forget, this goal will change and evolve and that’s ok! It could be a combination of goals!
- Focus on contribution rather than significance. This means don’t get caught up on your follower numbers. We like to focus on our community and ensure we are posting the content they want to see. This results in organic growth and a happy, healthy insta community who want to be there!
- Don’t compare. There will always be accounts doing similar things with more followers, or with ‘better’ photos. Remember comparison is the thief of joy!
- Instead of comparing, find Instagram best friends to collaborate with. Look for people with similar following numbers and work with them, or simply share each others’ content. They don’t need to be in the same niche. For example a new Instagram buddy might write this to you “SFS which means shout out for shout out. So then you both go on to share one anothers photo (either random choice or you both choose which one you’d like the other to share). You would screen shot their photo, share it and tag the person. You could say “Regram from @instagrambuddy09” or you could simply be like “Oh. My. Food. @instagrambuddy09 has it sorted with this epic Chocolate Raspberry Raw Cake (that’s a link to our recipe as we made up @instagrambuddy09)
- Depending on your content and goal, share the right amount of personal content (example: pics of you/family/friends). Our Instagram community follow us mostly for paleo/healthy food ideas but we also want to share our personal bliss journey (AKA blogging and merrymaking), so we’ll share a personal pic or selfie every week or two.
- When you share your original pictures, add your own personal hashtag, we use #themerrymakersisters. We also encourage other people to use it when they share their recipe pictures. They don’t always use it… but that’s ok! So make a hashtag and start using it! We also use other hashtags like #makemondaymerry #thisishowwemerrymake just to extend our brand!
- Be consistent. We try to post at least 3-5 times a day. We share images of our new weekly blog recipes and articles, #themerrymakersisters recipe creations from our followers (other people’s content is the best form of marketing right?), and we always end the day with an inspirational quote. We don’t suggest you do what we do but we’ve created a pattern that merrymakers expect and love. So you could make your own pattern. YAY!
- Make sure your piccys are preeeeetty and interesting! Instagram is SO visual. Think about what exactly makes you stop and like a photo. Our tips for pretty pics are: 1. Good lighting, daylight is best, with no shadows. 2. If it’s a foodie shot, make the food look appetising… we stick to simple. We don’t add lots of decorative ‘stuff’ just the bowl, spoon and food! BOOM! 3. If you’re taking a selfie, go for high angles, trust us on this one! OH… and selfie practise makes perfect.
- Speaking of pretty pictures, feel free to use filters and play with brightness. We prefer to do our foodie ones with no filter but that’s only if the lighting is good. If you’re in crappy lighting or if it’s night time you’ll probably need a filter. We’d suggest finding your favourite filter and sticking to it all the time. Some people get all cray cray with awesome customised effects. You could look at using another app to do this… we don’t (hehe).
- You could also stick to a similar colour/theme for your whole feed (we don’t do this… that’s way too organised). Checkout The Luminous Kitchen she’s an amazing food style and photographer. On Instagram @theluminouskitchen and you’ll see that all her photos are so light and bright.
- What’s y0ur call to action? For us, we want to share at least 2 Instagram posts of healthy drool worthy recipes that make people go “oh I need to checkout that recipe” and then they click on the direct link in our profile. We’ll write something like get the recipe, just click the link in our profile! Our other posts are designed to share interesting content or inspire. Have a play around with your CTA… you don’t want to bombard your audience but you also need to share your amazingness… be that your amazeballs site, your epic book or product!
- Use hashtags, just add them in the comments below your post. We say go hashtag craaaaazy. Do a bit of research in to popular hashtags in your niche and add them to your photos. This is how people are going to find you… and the people who find you will be people who WANT to find you… because they’re searching that hashtag.
- Start noticing what your followers like and do more of that. If you get a pic that gets heaps of likes… make a mental note (or an actual note… or an evernote, so many note options!) of what it was and what time and day you shared it. Start noticing when your people are actually on Instagram and make sure you post at that time.
- Reply to your comments, it’s always fun having actual conversations on Instagram! We don’t reply to everyone but we try to reply to longer comments and questions. Comments that are just one word e.g. ‘YUM’ or tagging others (even though we love these comments too) don’t really need our reply.
- Do you have a blogger/Instagrammer you admire? Show them some love, comment on their pictures or tag them in one of your pictures. They will notice you eventually and who knows what it could lead to? We shared the below picture of us listening to Lewis Howes’ podcast and he re-shared it. We got excited!
- Do you use certain products, wear clothing brands, eat at cafés (um of course you do all of that!). Look up the cafés, brand, product Instagram handle (like @themerrymakersisters) share a photo of you eating their food or using their product or wearing their clothes and tag them. Then they might share your picture to their community and you’ll get more followers! As your followers grow this can become an income stream (that’s another blog post!)
Alritey! Now it’s time for you to go and implement some of our easy Instagram tips to make your account more awesome! If you have success… let us know… OR if you have tips let us know because we want to become more awesome too! Sharing is caring!
Emma + Carla