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Blogtober: Let’s Get Social With Instagram

We had a lot of fun meeting you on Twitter yesterday. Y’all are tweeting rock stars. Today we are looking forward to seeing all of your smiling faces as we focus on Instagram.

Blogtober is a week-long event designed to give you helpful social media tips, and enable you to grow your following as you make new connections.

Blogtober: Instagram

Instagram is slowly becoming my most favorite social network. It’s easy to use, fast, and you can connect with so many bloggers! While it’s harder to get click throughs to your blog, since image captions are not hyperlinked, there are ways to make Instagram work for you. I’ve managed to get over three thousand followers this year, but it wasn’t easy.

Tips For Using Instagram

What’s your definition of success? Are you looking to share photos with friends and family, or do you want to brand yourself and your blog through your images? You can do both, but the best Instagram accounts keep it consistent.

  1. Hashtags: There are entire websites out there dedicated to helping you use the best and most efficient hashtags for every photo you post. Using hashtags strategically can make a difference. But if you are going to use them, save hashtags for the comments. Upload your photo as you normally would, and then add your hashtags later in the comments. It just looks neater.
  2. Clear and bright photos are key! I use Camera+ to take all of my photos and edit them within the app. I then use Pic Tap Go to brighten them or add a vignette. I try to not crop photos into squares if that means cutting out something in the photo. Pic Tap Go can turn your photographs into perfect squares, but so can an app like Squarefx.
  3. Instagram isn’t JUST for photos. Need to share a quote or a fun graphic? Try making it in A Beautiful Mess. There are backgrounds and many fonts to choose from.
  4. Other apps to try: Flipagram (turn photos into a video slideshow), Diptic for collages, and Repost to share photos from other people (it gives them a watermark so you can credit the original owner appropriately!).
  5. Don’t forget VIDEO! Many brands are looking for Instagram videos, so keep that in mind. At one point I had NO Instagram videos, and I needed to make a few in a hurry. I downloaded iMovie to my iPhone and edited video clips within the app. I was able to add music, take out the background noise, add fun transitions, and more. It’s worth the extra five minutes or so to learn how to use this app effectively.

To add longevity to your Instagram posts, feel free to embed them into your blog. You can add Instagram photos or videos to get more exposure.  Just go to Instagram on a computer and grab the embed code.

For more tips, check out all of our posts about Instagram.

Link Up To Grow Your Instagram Following

Link up your Instagram profile below, and follow at least five new people. But don’t just follow and run! Take the time to leave a comment, letting them know you found them through #SITSBlogging, and like one of their awesome pictures.

What is your best Instagram tip?
Share it with us in the comments, or on twitter using #SITSBlogging!

Did you miss the opening day of Blogtober? Don’t fret, there is still time to link up your Twitter handle, and find new friends.

About Krystal Butherus

Krystal is a full-time mom, wife, and blogger who just launched an accountability group for bloggers. She lives in Florida and shares a slice of her life on Krystal’s Kitsch, a Florida food and lifestyle blog. You can find her posting sunshine and palm trees on her Instagram. Cheers!

57 Comments

  • Sandra Watts says:

    I started using BlueStacks to open Instagram using my computer desktop. You can even download photos from your desktop to Instagram. Here is a link I found that might be helpful. http://www.wikihow.com/Access-Instagram-on-a-PC

  • suzanne says:

    Thanks for the great article! Used your tips today to create this great Instagram post (which is already getting likes!):
    http://instagram.com/p/uf5QsbGFIw/

  • suzanne says:

    Thanks so much for all these great tips! I shared your post on my Baltimore Mom blog, the day you published it – and then I used your tips to create a super-cute Instagram post, today. (See link, below.) It took a while to edit, add text, etc – but you’re right, it was really worth it and it’s already off to a great start (likes, comments, etc)
    I also usually post my Instagram pics to the fb fanpage and Twitter profile for my blog, too – so that gives my Instagram posts even more visibility, too. Thanks again for all of the great content you ladies post!
    Suzanne
    ps – Here is my Instagram photo:

  • Tanisha G. says:

    Thanks! I’m #359, looking forward to following some cool new accounts. 🙂 Followed 5 but I will also follow anyone that follows me back, just comment on one of my pictures with the hashtag #SITSblogging so I know where you’re from. 🙂

  • Sandra Watts says:

    It would be even better if it was accessible for those of us that do not use mobiles to connect to the internet.

    • Krystal says:

      I had a friend who created an Instagram account on someone’s tablet that she borrowed. She then used a tool on her computer to update it. There are ways around it, I don’t know if I recommend them, but she does it this way. If you Google it, you can find out what sites let you do that.

  • I’m a very visual person so I enjoy using Instagram. My only tip is to take the time to edit your photos. I can’t tell you how many crappy photos I’ve seen and the accounts that really stand out to me are the ones with bright and clear photos. It only takes a few minutes to brighten up a photo, adjust contrast and saturation, and crop when necessary. I absolutely love VSCO cam for their level of customization, but it looks like Instagram now has brightness, contrast, saturation, etc built in.

  • Usman Tariq says:

    Thank a lot to submit this great idea. I read this post completely and get the more information about the social media

  • This is amazing and overwhelming at the same time! Lol. I am loving all the action and ideas. I hope to really connect with you special ladies.

    🙂

  • Thanks for all the great tips!

  • These tips are great. Of all the social media outlets, Instagram is my favorite. I love the instant connections and looking at my feed while waiting in lines, etc. is a great way to multitask! Plus I love all the droolworthy photos from all around the world..

    I just listed my name above but here is the feed

    http://instagram.com/globetrottingmommy

  • Jennifer says:

    My best IG tip….Use it! B/c it just keeps growing!

  • Joanne says:

    Thanks for hosting this! I followed five but I will also follow back anyone from this linkup. Im #304 on the list. 🙂

  • How I use Instagram:
    Personally: I love snapping pictures of my family (hubby, kids, outings, trips to grocer, etc…) and just posting them. I tend to use Instagram this way as a photo journal. I also like to post random pictures of maybe #whatsfordinner or #favoritethings. I also follow three different daily link ups (haven’t been on top of this this month as I have for some reason been extremely busy!) which prompt me on a specific photo type and then give me a hashtag to use. You can find these link ups in the daily writing prompts link on the left side of my blog.

    Professionally: I use IG to promote my photoblog – Photographypoiema.wordpress.com

    • I apologize that for some reason my link up turned out funky….I am #346 – the “r”

      hahahaha sorry about that…my instagram name is ruthstiles

  • jeanna says:

    Thanks so much for all the great info about Instagram…

  • I LOVE Instagram! The last blogger conference I went to I couldn’t believe how many bloggers weren’t using it! It has definitely gotten me a lot of genuine followers and I can’t tell you how many people have become my Instagram Buddies! It’s another good way to connect with brands when you tag your photos using their IG handles. It’s all about the hashtags!

  • Davia Gorman says:

    Don’t worry about the same photo over and over again…If you have too much dark background try holding a piece of white card stock to balance out the light

  • Steph says:

    Does anyone have trouble with hacks following when you use hastags? LIKE to follow and that nonsense with bare nakes booties? I’m sick of those! Any ideas or is that just expected w Instagram?

    • The hacks can be annoying but not too much. You can delete unwanted comments from your pictures. There are also great hashtags you can use that are less general and more specific to the subject of your pic and those can be great leads into people with similar interests who will actually follow you and like your pics all the time. Good luck!

      • Steph says:

        How do you delete unwanted comments??!!??

        • Steph says:

          And can you delete unwanted likes, too?

          • Steph,if you click as if you are going to add a new comment to the photo then you will be able to swipe to the left which will give you an option to delete it from the photo. As for the likes, you can’t delete those but I’m not sure why you’d want to. We live for likes on IG! You can’t necessarily tell where likes come from. More likes will bring you up more often in other people’s explore mode. Likes are our friends LOL Hope this helps! Let’s follow each other! I’m @outdoorsydiva

  • Woohoo, I heart IG!!!

  • I love Instagram! Hope to gain more followers!

  • Julianne says:

    I’m so bummed I missed out on the Twitter action yesterday! I love Instagram and use it almost every day. I usually edit my photos with Afterlight or Fotograf (really dreamy filters and light leaks). Looking forward to ‘meeting’ everyone! 🙂

    XO, Julianne
    thewinkblog.net
    Instagram/Twitter: @juliannecronin

  • Mrs.AOK says:

    Thanks for the linkup, I’m excited to connect.
    XOXO

  • Such useful tips – thanks so much

  • So many wonderful new friends!

  • melissa says:

    This is definitely my favorite platform! I’m still catching up with everyone on twitter, and it was a blast meeting everyone… looking forward to meeting new Instagrammers!

  • Oh my goodness, talk about ‘out of my comfort zone!’ Ya’ll, today is my first day on Instagram! 🙂

  • Lori says:

    Thanks for these tips and for the link up! I’m finding some fun Instagram accounts to follow. I didn’t know about putting the hashtags in the comments instead, so I’m going to try that. I’ve seen a hashtag recently that is #ontheblog where we can promote a blog post. Do you recommend doing that as long as it’s not too often? Also, I was looking through your other Instagram articles for anything related to how to write a good profile for Instagram. Any tips on that? Thanks again!

    • There’s no reason to NOT use #ontheblog! Use it every time if you want! You can use up to 30 hashtags on an Instagram photo. I definitely recommend using them in the comments.

    • I have used hashtags when I post to a meme or want to mention a topic that goes along with what I am posting. For example I follow @theidearoom and Amy hosts monthly photo-a-day. I use the hashtag to help share what I am posting and so others posting that day can more easily find my post!

  • Montana Ross says:

    I love Instagram! I’ve found that when I ask for comments or opinions I tend to get more interaction. I’m a very visual person, so I’m excited to see what everyone has posted!

  • Keisha says:

    These are great tips. I find Instagram success more perplexin than FB, Twitter or Pinterest. Sometimes it seems you need to post incessant selfies or half-naked pics to get interest (or be a cute cat or dog 😉 ).

  • Laina Turner says:

    Sometimes I struggle with Instagram because I’m not sure my life is picture worthy:)

    • Start with a day in the life. I know that is a big thing in the blogosphere. But seriously. Take random pictures of your day or your kids or whatever interests you…soon you will build your photos and even get followers. Or maybe you could pick a theme for the week and try to post a picture a day on that theme.

  • I LOVE Instagram 🙂 It’s such a great place to brand yourself (and your blog) through visual content- something that can’t be done on Twitter. I agree that using appropriate hashtags is key! Can’t wait to connect with some wonderful new people on IG today!

  • Yesterday it was indeed a lot of fun! I’m looking forward getting to know more bloggers through IG. See ya’ll there!

  • Carrie says:

    if you haven’t already read this post on how she uses instagram, it’s amazing http://eliseblaha.typepad.com/golden/2014/06/how-i-use-instagram-to-promote-my-business.html

  • Emma says:

    I love using Instagram for my Mom, Say Cheese! photo challenge.

  • These are some great tips Krystal.

  • Gina says:

    I’ve had trouble keeping up with Instagram since there are SO. MANY. social media accounts to keep up with. One thing that has been working for me is just making the goal of posting once per day. It’s made me take more photos with my phone, and I’ve seen small growth in followers just by being consistent.

  • Instagram is one of my favorite social media applications. I love to look through the feed and photos people share of their passions or even every day life. I don’t have any videos in my feed either, so I better get on it and try to work with the hyperlapse option. Thank you for the great tips.

  • Great tips. I use the vscocam app to add filters on my photos. They look nicer. As for graphics, I make them on canva (it’s a graphic design website) — I highly recommend it. 🙂

  • Kerry @ Till Then Smile Often doesn’t work

  • I am **NEW** to Instagram and look forward to connecting with all of you! 🙂

    Create With Joy
    http://instagram.com/createwithjoy

  • P.S. I love your Insta-Tips, Krystal! Thank you!! 🙂

  • Yay! Loved all the #SITSblogging action on Twitter yesterday. Super excited to spread the love on Instagram. My second fave social network, behind Twitter!

    Let’s connect!

    – Christine @ xtinedanielle.com
    Instagram/Twitter: @xtineds

  • Yesterday was a blast “meeting” new followers on Twitter! I can’t wait to see what today brings with Instagram!

    ~ Ashley

  • Great idea! I just wish I did Instagram.. I do everything else hahaha. good luck everyone!