DOs and DON’Ts of Instagram

DOs and DON’Ts of Instagram

Instagram is one of the main social media out there. It is super important for bloggers who rely on imagery. Instagram is all about pictures after all. It is also a social media that proved tricky and changing. It was fairly easy to get a good engagement and grow a following few years ago. Unfortunately, the algorithm changed this. I hope this post will make it easier for you to make it on Instagram.

DOs of Instagram

1. Like, comment, follow
The best way to get people to have a look at your account and eventually follow you is to go on their profile first. You can either scroll through the followers of a profile you follow or just look at the research tab. Try to focus on account that belong to the same niche as you or that are interested in the same things. Like pictures and drop comments. Ask questions. Engage with your current and potential followers. Reading your name in a comment could spark someone’s curiosity and drive them to your profile.

2. Create a signature look
You want people to follow you. They will follow you if they find you interesting. They won’t be interested in your work if you do the same as everybody else. Thus, you must create unique content that defines you. It must be specific to you. The best way to achieve this is just to be yourself and post things you like. How you style your pictures, add filters and organize your feed is also completely up to you. You choose how you want colors and posts to be coordinated to make it like you.

3. Be consistent
Consistency is not just about your posting frequency. You obviously want your follower to stay with you. Thus, you have to post regularly so that they will still find a value in your posts. Consistency also concerns the quality and theme of your pictures. If you have always taken high quality pictures make sure you follow through and don’t post lower quality pictures. This is the best way to loose followers. If you have decided for a theme when you started, keep it or warn your followers that you’ll change. However, don’t do it too often. Remember, people like consistency.

4. Show your face
There are beautiful Instagram feeds out there. They are creative, refined and neat. The pictures are of high quality. However, they often come across as impersonal. There is always someone behind a nice Instagram account, sometimes even several people. And as much as your followers will love your feed, they will also love to see that you are a real person. It makes you more accessible and relatable, which is the primary purpose of social media. You don’t have to post pictures of yourself every second day. Once in a while is enough.

5. Use hashtags
Hashtags allow people who are interested in a certain topic or type of images to find people interested in the same things and likely to post pictures accordingly. If you want people to find you, use the correct hashtags. Instagram allows thirty hashtags per caption, which leaves plenty of space and opportunity to reach out to potential followers. A lot of people say that five to eleven hashtags are ideal. Personally, I’d say that you should use as many hashtag as you feel like. It’s your profile after all.

DONT’S of Instagram

1. Follow/unfollow
This trend has been massive lately and has driven a lot of bloggers crazy. Basically, people follow you to get a follow back. They will either unfollow you when you do give them a follow back or just follow you no matter what happens. It is super annoying mainly because it is super manipulative. While you should follow an account because you like it, expecting the person to follow back is not genuine and unfollowing when you don’t get what you want is childish. Also, people put a lot of effort in their pictures and unfollowing for no reason is disrespectful. You usually unfollow a profile because you no longer like it… Also, as a warning, Instagram now shadowbans users who frantically follow and unfollow: your account will have  a private account status although still public. People won’t able to find you anywhere, in the research tab nor through hashtags. Only your followers will see your posts.

2. Spamming
Liking and commenting pictures are great for engagement. To a certain limit. When you just drop comments such as “like it”, “love it, “great post” or some hearts, people know that it is fake. Yes, you can love a picture or the styling of a picture but since you are already commenting, you can be more specific. Say why you like the picture or write an actual compliment. People will be more grateful and also more likely to go on your profile and follow you. Also, this kind of comments looks like comments generated by bots, so people may not even know that’s a real person behind it.

3. Buy followers
Buying followers had sparked a lot of controversies on the blogosphere. You can see loads of articles saying how bad it is to buy followers, how pathetic, fake, etc. I personally don’t care about what you do. It is your life, your choice. If you feel like buying followers can help you, then do it but I hope you won’t regret it. The danger with buying followers is that it is clearly and obviously fake. You will pay a fortune to get followers who are either bots or random people not interested in your work. As a results, you will have a bigger following but zero engagement. If you are looking at working with brands, remember: they like followers but they like engagement better. Buying followers doesn’t sound like a good investment.

4. Take crappy picture
Every person is different. Individuals are unique and nobody thinks the same. However, there is something most of us have in common. We want to see beautiful things. We want to appreciate beauty. This applies to Instagram too. People want to see beautiful pictures and won’t waste time on an ugly, neglected and rushed profile. If your pictures are crappy, people won’t follow you.

5. Like random pictures
Liking picture is a great way to put yourself out there, make people find out about your profile and get them to follow you. However, you must like pictures that you actually really like from people with similar interest to yours. Don’t like pictures just for the sake of it. If you’re not interested in the picture you like, it is likely that the person will not be interested in yours. You will lose time or again, will get followers who won’t engage with you.

These may seem common knowledge, cliché or common sense. You may already know all of these. Yet, I still hope you have found this article helpful. If you have any other tips, feel free to share them below. We appreciate all the help we can get.

Thanks for reading. I hope you liked this post.

See you soon,
Love,
Corinne

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84 Comments

  1. April 5, 2017 / 3:26 pm

    I agree with all of these. My feed is mainly beauty with a certain style but I like to add the odd lifestyle pic or selfie pic to show people more of me.

    http://www.EmmysBeautyCave.com

  2. April 5, 2017 / 7:03 pm

    I agree so much with these especially the donts! Following and unfollowing on Instagram drives me crazy! X

  3. Terri
    April 5, 2017 / 7:04 pm

    Ahhh the comments thing does my head in! Would much rather have no comments that have rubbish ones!

    Terri / http://www.territalks.co.uk

  4. April 5, 2017 / 7:04 pm

    This is such a great post honestly, I love this! I try to incorporate all these “do’s” into my daily instagram use and I’ve noticed such a change! Went from 400 to 1k followers relatively fast!

  5. abbeylouisarose
    April 5, 2017 / 7:05 pm

    Yes yes YESSSS! This is such a fab post! It’s an essential read for anyone wanting to grow their Insta! I’ve been gaining followers a lot more now that I’m consistent with my post schedule, it’s such a good feeling! Follow / unfollow tactics just drive me nuts – especially when brands do this too! Ugh!

    Abbey 💖 http://www.abbeylouisarose.co.uk

  6. April 5, 2017 / 7:07 pm

    These ideas/points are so true! I feel like I need to step up my photography though and want to take more time to make sure my pictures look good and go well with my theme! I love this post and might have to come back to this! xx

  7. April 5, 2017 / 7:07 pm

    Follow/Unfollow drives me insane on instagram! I see a lot of accounts with big followings do this day in day out! It’s so easy to spot them out too! Following 200 with 103k followers… why the heck would they follow me haha!
    Being active is number one for key engagement on instagram and also liking, commenting and following! I also find using hashtags really help!
    fab post xxx
    Rachel | http://www.rachelxblog.com

  8. Robyn
    April 5, 2017 / 7:08 pm

    Yes! These are really good tips! Instagram is such a hard platform at the minute so I’ll definitely be using some of these! 🖤
    Robyn // http://www.midnightandlace.co.uk/

  9. April 5, 2017 / 7:12 pm

    Great tips, I really need to step up my insta game!! xoz

  10. April 5, 2017 / 7:13 pm

    Ahh such a good post! It’s so hard at the moment to grow a good, genuine following – this is such a good do/don’t list to follow!
    Hels x
    http://www.thehelsproject.com

  11. April 5, 2017 / 7:15 pm

    Love point 2. I always worry that I don’t have a “theme” for my Instagram and lots of bloggers say you should have one, but I like to post things I enjoy and change the style up to suit the product so thanks for giving me the confidence in what I’m doing! xx

  12. Kate
    April 5, 2017 / 7:21 pm

    I love this post! I’m trying to grow my Instagram but I do struggle so much with theme and consistency. This post really helped and hopefully I’ll notice an increase in my Instagram followers soon!
    xxx http://www.lifeinkateish.wordpress.com

  13. April 5, 2017 / 7:21 pm

    Nice tips. Maybe it’s just me but I hate IG. My account would have been dormant if not for my blog. I feel that it places unnecessary pressure on someone to be who they are not. Then the pressure to get so many likes and followers is so real. The follow/unfollow thingy also gets me.
    Sorry for the epistle but give me twitter any day any time.

    Onyi from http://www.onyixtus.com

  14. April 5, 2017 / 7:31 pm

    I agreed with so much of this! I hate follow/unfollow people so much, and find “great pic!” comments so annoying! Great post!
    Jas xx

  15. April 5, 2017 / 7:33 pm

    Follow/unfollow is the worst and it’s so frustrating! But I agree with all of the points you made. Great post! X

  16. April 5, 2017 / 7:37 pm

    These are great tips! Defiantly a post I’ll be sharing with some of my friends who are new to Instagram!

  17. April 5, 2017 / 7:40 pm

    Great post and some great tips! I’ve not long made a new Instagram because I hated my old one, it was messy and ugh it annoyed me! I love my new one, I’m really happy with my photos, its bright and fun and although I don’t have a “theme”, I feel it’s very Me!

  18. April 5, 2017 / 7:54 pm

    I agree with all of these ! I really need to improve my theme , well in fact start a theme!! My feeds so messy and it annoys me! I definitely need to up my Instagram game! Xx

  19. April 5, 2017 / 8:03 pm

    I go through fits and starts with Instagram, but since I made the decision to give up trying to follow a theme I’ve been using it a lot more and to be honest I’m loving how it looks because it just reflects my life…a jumbled to mess of exciting things, combined with quiet cosy days.
    Alicia x
    http://www.aestheticobsessed.co.uk

  20. April 5, 2017 / 8:04 pm

    Some really good tips! Insta is the social media I struggle the most with hopefully, these will help me to up my game! – K xx

  21. Gina
    April 5, 2017 / 8:35 pm

    Follow/Unfollow drives me crazy! But these are great tips to get my insta game to the next level!

  22. April 5, 2017 / 9:32 pm

    This makes a lot of sense, I agree with all your points and need to work on some things. I’ve experienced the follow unfollow thing!! Some accounts keep following and unfollowing and then following again it’s super annoying! Anyways great post! – bookmarking this to remind me every once in a while 🙂

  23. Ursula
    April 5, 2017 / 9:49 pm

    Very informative! Im going to put this advice in use! I hate people who buys followes

  24. April 5, 2017 / 11:19 pm

    Good post.
    I agree with what you say.
    You write good tips on this post.

  25. April 5, 2017 / 11:20 pm

    I agree with all of this! People who follow/unfollow are so frustrating! It makes it so hard to grow.
    Claire xo

  26. April 6, 2017 / 1:03 am

    I have yet to dive my blog into the world of Instargam! I will keep all of this in mind! Thanks so much for sharing!

  27. April 6, 2017 / 4:20 am

    This is definitely true but you gotta admit, social media is a lot of work. I always love the feeling of finding people I can relate with. Pure joy.

  28. April 6, 2017 / 5:08 am

    I didnt really think about niche for my instagram. I just post what i take on my camera with a little touch of course. but all of you wrote above is true. sadly, theres many blogger, and instagram account that always do the same mistake…

  29. April 6, 2017 / 6:52 am

    So agree with all Don’t all this follow/unfollow is so pathetic. A real good account doesnt need this because people WILL find you and WILL love what you do. Bloggers who play unfollow game are just chasing fame and I don’t think they are honest bloggers xx

    http://www.hairwonderfulday.com

  30. April 6, 2017 / 9:27 am

    I agree with your tips. I always try to talk with people, not only on instagram, but also on my blog or facebook page. It’s worth to look for people with the same interestes, not only like the pics with #like4like hashtag 😉

  31. April 6, 2017 / 9:55 am

    Totally agree with every single point! If only all bloggers were genuine and followed all these simple rules. It has become just about who has the most followers and most likes. Honest bloggers suffer a lot due to this.

  32. April 6, 2017 / 3:33 pm

    I am really trying to focus more on improving my brand on social media so this was so helpful and informative! I have heard so much about the follow/unfollow activity, which seemed “iffy” to me, so thanks for the confirmation.

  33. April 6, 2017 / 3:49 pm

    Buying followers is a big one. Daily, I get emails from spammers “guaranteeing” 1000 followers. Why would you want followers like that? They aren’t going to interact with you and isn’t that the “social” part of “social media?”

  34. April 6, 2017 / 4:07 pm

    I have up ages ago trying to use Instagram to grow my blog following because it simply doesn’t work and I get no interactions from it 😢 Going to follow these tips and see if I can get back into it though 💖

  35. April 6, 2017 / 4:19 pm

    This post perfectly sums up the rules of instagram. I hate follow/unfollow accounts and ones that buy followers/likes with a passion! I don’t understand why anyone would want to lie in this way!

    Sarah | What Sarah Writes

  36. April 6, 2017 / 4:20 pm

    These are spot on. I think most of us hate that follow/unfollow especially when it’s done by the ‘famous instagrammers’, like what’s your point when you unfollow us right after we follow you? Such a nasty move. Great post anyway! x Ain

    http://www.captaineverland.co.uk

  37. April 6, 2017 / 4:20 pm

    Amazing post! I agree with everything you mentioned. I’m trying to get more active on Instagram and experiment with my photography. xo

    Antonia || Sweet Passions

  38. April 6, 2017 / 4:23 pm

    Hi, great tips I need to ip my IG game. The follow/unfollow is a tad frustrating but very common place, Chloe #TeacupClub

  39. April 6, 2017 / 4:45 pm

    Love This! I have pinned for later! To go back and re-read! Your pictures are stunnin though!

  40. April 6, 2017 / 4:51 pm

    I had kinda given up on Instagram as a promotion tool for my blog and YouTube channel, but I think I’ll give some of these tips a go! The follow/unfollow game is so annoying, and the algorithm has definitely messed things up, but if we persist and are smart about it, maybe we can beat the system. Thank you for writing this post, I found it very helpful. 🙂

    xoxo
    Freya
    thatgirlyt.wordpress.com

  41. April 6, 2017 / 5:13 pm

    I’m so bad at being consistent! Sometimes I’m on fire with my posting and then I’ll just run out of things to post for a few days ugh. You can just tell these days with who’ll unfollow you as soon as they follow, it’s so frustrating!

  42. April 6, 2017 / 7:55 pm

    All great tips! Really like the one about showing your face more. Definitely helps with recognising people and becoming more familiar with them

  43. April 7, 2017 / 3:38 pm

    The Follow/Unfollow thing is driving me nuts! I actually download an app that tells me when people unfollow me and if I notice its someone that JUST started following me and did it as soon as I followed back then I’m outta there and unfollow them too. I don’t need to support that craziness!
    That being said I don’t care if everyone I follow follows back, there are a number I am following right now that don’t and that’s cool – just don’t try to use me as a pawn in your game to boost your numbers!

    Britt | https://alternativelyspeakingonline.wordpress.com/

  44. April 7, 2017 / 4:06 pm

    These are excellent points! High quality photography is a MUST on Instagram. It is a visual platform and all your photos should be working towards a cohesive feed. And please people.. stop with the follow/unfollow stuff. All it does is make people irritated which ultimately hurts your brand. Focus on creating quality content 🙂

    Gennifer Rose | http://www.GenniferRose.com

  45. April 7, 2017 / 6:03 pm

    Great post and great tips, I find myself doing all of the above and my follower number has not increased. I have been in Instagram for two years and still only have 800 followers.
    Also, very funny how I found your article “do as I say not as I do” 😉

  46. April 7, 2017 / 7:08 pm

    I really enjoyed this post! I think it’s so hard to grow a following on Instagram at the minute with so many people following/unfollowing! Hopefully it’ll get better soon!

    Lauren | http://www.thelifeofastudentblogger.blog

  47. April 7, 2017 / 7:09 pm

    This is good advice for an Instagram newbie. I haven’t been on it for long and am really struggling to get into it, I just don’t enjoy using it the way I enjoy using Twitter!

  48. April 7, 2017 / 7:30 pm

    First of all your flatlay is insane! I agree with this advice. I try to do these things and find that it helps with growing my account. Really helpful post!

  49. April 7, 2017 / 7:44 pm

    I agree with all of these, especially the follow/unfollow “tactic” that so many Instagrammers are using these days.

  50. April 7, 2017 / 8:18 pm

    The whole follow/unfollow thing is so annoying, I wish people would just realise it doesn’t do them any favours! These are great tips for anyone looking to grow their account.

    Jordanne || Thelifeofaglasgowgirl.co.uk

  51. April 7, 2017 / 9:15 pm

    I am revamping my Instagram with a new theme from Monday, so super excited about it. All the above points are a great to make any newbie successful on Instagram

  52. April 8, 2017 / 5:42 pm

    These are excellent tips! I’ve gotten tons of those generic comments during the time I’ve been on IG and it’s really obvious what those people are doing when they come through.

  53. April 8, 2017 / 7:07 pm

    I can’t stand when people follow/unfollow! I really don’t understand why people do it because it’s so obvious and disingenuous. I’d rather have loyal, engaged followers any day!

  54. April 9, 2017 / 7:43 pm

    This is so helpful, I really need to step up my game when it comes to instagram and I will be using these tips! K xx

  55. April 11, 2017 / 11:21 am

    Great post! I’m working on bringing more followers to my Instagram! I hate the follow/unfollow trend that people are doing. It drives me crazy as well! I don’t have a “theme” on my IG and I’m wondering if I’m suffering because of it. Thanks for the tips!

  56. April 13, 2017 / 5:08 pm

    I’m trying to improve my Instagram at the moment after just ignoring it for a while and not using it for my blog so these are really helpful tips, thank you! Xx

    Kirsty | The Monday Project | themondayproject.co.uk

  57. April 22, 2017 / 8:33 am

    I’ve just created an Instagram for my blog but I haven’t posted or followed anyone yet, thank you for a great head start!
    Zara x

  58. June 14, 2017 / 11:39 am

    These are really great tips! I need to work on engaging more with others.

  59. June 14, 2017 / 12:04 pm

    The follow/unfollow thing drives me crazy, if you don’t want to follow someone, don’t. I hate that the same people follow/unfollow all the time.

  60. June 14, 2017 / 1:37 pm

    I think that engaging with your followers helps too and just being active in general.

  61. Jessica Taylor
    June 14, 2017 / 2:06 pm

    I have such a hard time posting everyday. I feel like I run out of ideas too quickly lol.

  62. June 14, 2017 / 6:50 pm

    I have always hated the follow/unfollow thing. It’s so fake. Some people are just so obsessed with getting 10,000 followers right now.

  63. June 14, 2017 / 8:01 pm

    I have been trying to step up my Instgram game to generate more business. These are some great tips, thanks for posting this.

  64. Josselyn Radillo
    June 14, 2017 / 10:38 pm

    I try to do my best with my feed and share really how i’m. I must admit it’s hard to keep it but I really love how it looks.

  65. June 14, 2017 / 11:40 pm

    I had no idea you could buy followers. Weird.

    I do a lot of the good stuff at least–only I don’t have a lot of pictures of me. I just don’t care to be in front of the camera that often.

  66. Needa
    June 15, 2017 / 12:04 am

    Very Informative !! thanks for share !! some of these tips are very helpful

  67. June 15, 2017 / 2:54 am

    Yes! I hate spammers! I mean don’t get me wrong, comment on my picture all you know but nobody want to know how to “make $500 a day working from home”, am I right lol? Your list is pretty similar to what I believe in, great post!

    prettyfitfoodie.com

  68. Sofia
    June 15, 2017 / 8:42 am

    Personally, for me, it’s the follow/unfollow. Its puts me through the roof! But the rest is up to anyone what they want to do. I see so many accounts with thousands of followers but no posts which is very odd.

  69. June 15, 2017 / 3:23 pm

    Thank you for this post. I do know and resonate with everything you just said, but it is a big relief to read that somebody is on the same page. And yes, I quite dislike the follow/unfollow people!

  70. Erin F
    June 15, 2017 / 4:31 pm

    One of the hardest things for me was to create a signature look. I am so happy that I have found mine but at the same time, I like to do other styles as well and it always “breaks” my flow!

  71. liz Cleland
    June 15, 2017 / 9:34 pm

    I have to say I am so over the people who follow/unfollow. This is beyond ridiculous and it makes my job harder. I want to grow my following not waste precious time.

  72. June 16, 2017 / 2:44 am

    Like your tips about Instagram. I agree with them all and will try some of them to hopefully get more engagement

  73. June 16, 2017 / 2:54 am

    You hit the nail on the head on most of these points. I struggle with showing more photos of myself — never been much of a seflie gal, but I know companies and your followers like to see you here and there.

  74. June 16, 2017 / 4:07 am

    Soliciting likes in instagram is a mortal sin. We should avoid stuffs like that.

  75. June 16, 2017 / 4:40 am

    This is a must kn ow information about using Instagram. Thanks for sharing

  76. June 16, 2017 / 11:49 am

    I 100% agree with your do’s and don’ts, I myself worked hard on each picture I post on my instagram account and I really appreciate real followers and not those who just wants a follow back and then unfollow once you follow them. That is so childish and selfish.

  77. June 16, 2017 / 1:27 pm

    Great tips! I’d also add to not go crazy liking, commenting & following because it can get you blocked and throw up flags with IG. Thanks for this list 🙂

  78. June 16, 2017 / 3:18 pm

    Totally agree with the dos & don’ts. Follow/Unfollow drives me nuts. Great post!

  79. Elizabeth O
    June 17, 2017 / 2:57 pm

    I have 2 Lifestyle blogs and generally post collages from my blog. Your points are well taken but, I think people join social media sites for a variety of reasons and that’s okay too.

  80. June 20, 2017 / 6:09 pm

    YESSSS! People that follow/unfollow drive me nuts, especially when they do it over and over. Like, I remember things from a day ago, people!

    xx
    Emily
    emilyhallock.blogspot.com

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