Five Instagram Tips Part 9

The weekly tips are turning into monthly tips huh? Some people might think I’m running out of tips and tricks, which could be true to a certain degree, but with the evolution of social media almost daily there is always new stuff coming up.

Here’s another batch of 5 tips that could be helpful for your personal and business use of Instagram.

1. Promote your (social media) existence on Instagram
This is something that applies for all social media. I often get asked what I can do to help grow the followers/fans of the various platforms. My question in return is always what they currently do to promote their social media platforms. Almost every time the answer is (close to) nothing.
It blows my mind that people still don’t see the value of building a following on any/all the platforms. We are all so used to putting the website URL on all forms of advertising/promotions but with the smart phones taking over it’s the worst thing to promote. How often do you surf the web on a smart phone? And how often do you check Instagram (or Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, etc) on a smart phone? Exactly!
Not only that, but what is a (first time) website visit really worth? What is the chance that person is coming back tomorrow, next week, next month, next year?
Once someone starts to follow your brand on Instagram (or Twitter, Facebook, etc.) he/she will get an update about your brand “every single day for the rest of his/her life”. Plus they get to see way more different things in a week on social media than they can on your site in 5 minutes. And who spends 5 minutes on a (non-social network) website these days? Even on a computer….

LRG (skate) does it right in their new ads. Show the logo and spell out the username (or URL). And have the same username on Twitter and Instagram!

2. Make a hashtag for your project, not a separate account.
Been seeing this one more and more lately, both in skateboarding and outside of it. I get it, your new project is the main focus for the next few weeks/months, but what’s gonna happen when the project is done? I think it’s way better to make a hashtag for your project, and promote that on your regular account. This way your regular account is growing and once the project is done you’ll keep the followers. Make it easy on yourself!
Besides that Instagram still won’t allow you to run multiple accounts (like Twitter), so you will have to log out of one account and log in to the other one….

3. A good username does not have the word INSTA in it!
This might not apply to personal accounts as much as it does for brands, but I laugh every time I see a username with the word “insta” in it. Instadude, instachick, really? Or even worse, “brandinsta”. I’m sure you can think of a few more….
It reminds me of brands using the word “video” in their YouTube URL/username. Like YouTube can be used for anything else besides videos? Social media has become the front of every business, so having the right branding, across all social media platforms, is very important. And your username/URL is a big part of that!

Corey Duffel is all synched up, with his real name. Winning!

4. Your followers can see what photos you like and comment on
Most social media is out in the open, so what you do on there is public too. On Instagram your followers can see what photos you like or leave a comment on. So if you follow a bunch of questionable accounts and you talk back and forth with them after the sun sets just be aware. Instagram might showcase the part of you that you want to keep private….

5. You can’t follow everyone (that follows you)
Currently I follow close to 350 people/brands on Instagram and if I don’t check Instagram a few times during the day it’s hard to catch up on everyone’s photos. It’s partly because I’m that anal that I want to make sure I catch up, and partly because too many people/brands still post way too much stuff. The number one reason people unfollow you/your brand is still because you’re clogging the feed.
Lately I’ve been trying to post one photo a day, instead of 3-5. Some days are an exemption but if the photos are good/rad I think I can get away with it. This “less is more” tactic is working for more, and I’m sure it will work for everyone else. I get more likes/comments now on the photos I do post.
For Twitter I always advice brands to only follow 10% of the amount of followers. This might be a little higher on Instagram in certain cases, but I think you should follow the people that are close to you. Some of your employees, your teamriders, some media and some good friends. That amount can’t really be more than a 100 I think….

*How many people do you follow on Instagram? And is that too many?
Curios to hear your opinion. Drop a comment here or tag me (@fredvanschie) on Instagram (or Twitter).  Or shoot me an email at [email protected]. Also if you have any questions for me.

For more Instagram tips see part 8 from a few weeks ago.
Thank you and till next time!