Thozi Sejanamane compiled this list of top tips from Webfluential’s top Instagrammers.
The internet has broken down countless barriers in terms of how information and knowledge is dispersed. It’s advent has created an environment where anyone with a cellphone and data can build a considerably large audience of online followers.
Social media has made it possible for everyone to build a following and created a opportunities for people to become ‘influencers’. Ten years ago, we only saw sports stars and celebrities endorsing brands but now ‘influencers’ are advocates in orchestrating brand conversation and play a large part in altering brand perceptions.
The rise of influencer marketing has seen many people jumping in an effort to capitalize and make money off brands. There’s nothing wrong with seizing opportunity but too much of the discourse around influencers has been focussed on attaining a big following and selling that reach to brands. Rather than asking ‘How do I build a big reach?’, influencers should be asking, ‘How do I create great content?’.
We asked three of Webfluentials top Instagrammers to fill us on on the three things they consider to be key when creating great content for the app. Gareth Pon, Levon Lock, and How Far From Home (Chanel Catell and Stevo Dirnberger) have a combined reach of over half a million on Instagram and their audience was built by consistently creating excellent content with a unique perspective. Here’s what they had to say.
It’s more about the story behind the image rather than the image itself.
People often focus so much on the technical ability and settings of the camera and they end up forgetting about the story the image conveys. The narrative behind a photo gives you the ability to speak without ever uttering a word.
Don’t post for the sake of it.
Always have a reason to post an image. It is easy to get caught up in the ‘maintenance’ of your account, but posting just for the sake of it is the quickest way for you to lose your edge.
Continuously challenge your own perspective.
One of the most valuable things I’ve learnt is that the quicker you embrace change, the better. This means knowing when and how to adapt the content you’re creating, whether it’s something instant for client or for an entire shift in your personal style.
Always create content you like
This is the most important vibe for me. I’ve worked on campaigns that force their content on you, and it never get’s the engagement that was expected. Your followers follow you because they like YOUR content.
Say no to brands
If you don’t like the campaign, say no. Simple as that. Chances are, something better will come up.
Instagramming should be fun
When I started instagramming, I became part of a scene that was dynamic and fun. I sometimes feel like that has been lost. Either that, or I’ve lost interest. Keep it fun. Make it about the content, not the money. At the end of the day, you started instagramming because you thought it was a fun and creative way to express yourself. Don’t lose sight of that.
You have to be unique.
Research and analyze all the accounts that are in the same genre as you. If you are in the travel space (like we are) look at all the people traveling around the world, and see what they are doing. This is not so that you can do something similar or copy them, it’s so you can completely differentiate yourself from the rest.
You have to be consistent.
If you are used to posting every second day, or twice a day, or once a week, your community is used to that too. Engagement will depend entirely on your audience, so cater for them and what they’re used to. Also – don’t try put pressure on yourself to post twice a day and then you find you don’t have enough quality images and stories to keep that going. Choose the frequency and stick to it.
You have to have your own look and feel.
As with any branding or art form, you need to have your own style. Instagram works in the same way. It could be the way you edit your photos, the way you shoot them, or perhaps how you style the subject in your photos – have your own look and feel and let people gravitate towards that style.