I’ve been doing a lot of these kinds of posts like How To Grow Your Blog and How To Create Flatlays recently and a common thing that a lot of bloggers complain about is Instagram and how it’s harder to use to promote your blog.
I do definitely agree and while I do like Instagram as a supplementary platform for my blog, almost none of my traffic comes from my Instagram page. Instagram is my largest following with Twitter coming in second but my Instagram followers don’t interact with my blog content at all. If you’re just posting images you use for your blog, then fine. But using it to rake in followers? Unless you have a large following and high engagement, that rarely happens.
At the time of writing this, I have about 1,350 followers on my Instagram but my engagement levels are low and this is a common issue and complaint and I believe it’s caused by Instagram deciding that posts were no longer to be displayed in chronological order.
In this post, I aim to help you make the most out of Instagram and gain some sort of following no matter how big or small.
I do have to disclose that I am not a social media expert by any stretch of the imagination and any information I give here is based on my experience and may not work for everyone. As I say with every post like this, if it works for you then keep doing you. But I have written these tips to hopefully give someone somewhere a helping hand!
First issue I have with Instagram is that there is only the ability to link one item in your bio so you get a one time shot at promoting something.
If, like me, you have a YouTube channel, a blog and more that you want to get people seeing, that one link spot is a pain but I recently discovered a way to combat this issue.
LinkTree is a free to use site where you add all your links into one page and use the LinkTree page as your Instagram link. So as you can see on mine, I have 4 different links instead of just one. I discovered this from a brand who was using it to promote all their different social outlets and while I’m yet to see an increase in traffic to my blog, I thought it would be helpful to include in this post to help people who struggle to choose what link to put in their bio.
Hashtags & Tagging People
I mentioned this in my tips on growing your blog and in the initial steps of promoting your content and putting it in front of an audience, this is crucial.
You can use as many or as little hashtags as you want. There’s no set limit on how many will make you successful or unsuccessful. Your hashtags should be keywords associated with your post and overall page content. Don’t ever spam tag and tag unrelated things because people are less likely to interact with your post if they aren’t interested in it.
Most big brands have dedicated teams for their social media and somewhere on their Instagram profile you’ll be able to see a hashtag you can use if you want them to maybe repost your photo. Along with tagging the brand too. This can alert the brand to your content and they may repost it which could gain you some followers who want to view your content.
If you are a makeup artist starting out, some tags that can help are #selftaught #undiscoveredmua and tagging accounts that give shout outs to undiscovered makeup artists. There’s usually this sort of thing for many different areas of ‘expertise’.
When tagging, think about different ways you can say things. For example, if you’ve made a post on SFX Makeup, you may use these hashtags:
Different people have different ways of searching for things so try to be as inclusive as possible.
Many brands have branches of their social media for your specific country. For example, NYX Cosmetics has just NYXCosmetics and NYXCosmetics_UK for their UK audience but they also have Nordic pages and more. Tag both the main brand page and the page for different countries because these accounts are generally smaller than the main pages so you have slightly more chance of being noticed.
Follow Other People With Relevant Content
A lot of people are going to be in the same boat as you so using your hashtags, scroll through those tags and find other like minded people whose content you enjoy and give them a follow. If a stranger suddenly starts following you and liking your content, you go and have a mooch on their account don’t you? So they may end up following you and supporting you.
You can also promote your Instagram on Twitter to find other people you follow there that you can support and most likely they will follow you back too. Start follow posts where other people comment their usernames and you all support each other. Twitter can be so helpful for promoting your content.
Keep A Rough or Tight Theme
While this isn’t essential it does help. Even if that means you just use the same sort of colour scheme or a border on each photo or use the same filter, this can make your feed look organised even when it may not be so organised.
Unfortunately the best loved Instagram pictures are the highly aesthetic ones so if you can stick to these sorts of photos for your theme? You’ll probably do fairly well in the world of Instagram.
At the moment, I’m using a lot of autumnal backgrounds and colours and filters for my images and as Christmas gets closer, my backgrounds and colours will change to fit the time of year. That’s how I organise my layout but if you only want one colour scheme or type of photo, you do you. In the end you are creating a page that represents you so you have to follow how YOU want to do things.
And those are my tips for growing your Instagram! It’s not the most comprehensive list but it’s good for just getting started. These days I don’t think anyone truly knows how to be successful on Instagram because of how crazy it seems to be in terms of how it’s run and laid out but if you can crack it, please let me know how to do it!
If I’ve missed anything, let me know! Share your wisdom with us all!