How To: Instagram Better

Tips from a Social Media Manager

Remember when instagram was as simple as snapping a photo (in the app) of your waffles and slapping on the Early Bird filter (RIP)? I joined Instagram in 2011 when the app was still just a baby, my first post was an over filtered, orange tinted photo of a lamp in a basement - with a thick black frame. I like to think my technique has progressed.

It’s crazy to think that 6 years later I’m making a living working with social media considering the only reason I started using it was because Pete Wentz of Fall Out Boy posted something about Twitter on his Tumblr.

Instagram has become second nature to me, it feels intuitive and I’ve learned to expect and plan for changes in the algorithm. I’ve learned to adapt and change my strategies to not rely on Instagram doing the leg work for me. But, as I’ve started to do more freelance and less work for bigger companies, I’ve realized that a lot of people just don’t get Instagram.

I spend more of my time with social media clients explaining how the app works than I do executing strategies - which is actually a lot of fun. I love when people a willing to learn new things!

 Here are some easy things anyone with a cellphone can do to get better instagram photos!

 #Instatips - Get your best photos!

I’m not saying your pictures aren’t good but they could probably be better. The highest resolution instagram can display is 1600px x 1600px so you probably don’t have to adjust this. But you should play around with different settings on your phone and get to know the camera features on your phone. Play around with brightness settings to make sure the subject of your photo isn’t getting blown out by back lighting. Take photos with a clear focus and not a lot of background noise.

It's hump day, y'all

A post shared by Bridget Roddy (@bridget_roddy) on

Blue Tones: Photos with bluetones get 24% more interaction than those without! It’s calming and pretty and blends well in your grid, even when surrounded by dark or cluttered photos.

HDR: When photographing something in low light, ensure your HDR function is turned on. It’s a setting that all modern cell phone cameras have and it’ll prevent you from having grainy, unuseable photos.

We cute🤙

A post shared by Pancake (@pancakethechi) on

Be Authentic: Look out for little moments and authentic interactions. You’re a human and Instagram was designed to share human stories. We’re imperfect so it’s okay if your pictures aren’t edited to perfection. Being a real person goes pretty far on a platform that is oversaturated with inauthentic posts and comments.

White Space: White space breathes some life into your grid. If you feel like your feed is getting too cluttered, try posting a few photos with white backgrounds to add some visual space to your feed.

What tips do you have for curated a perfect grid? What do you just not get about Instagram? Let me know in the comments!