5 Tips to Grow your Instagram Account for Bloggers and Small Businesses!

Is there any better time than Saturday morning? It's the one day a week I sleep in (today that meant naturally waking up at 6:30, grrrr!), and I "usually" don't feel rushed to do anything. Although my Saturday to-do list hardly ever gets completed...maybe I should feel a little more rushed...or, maybe not (sips coffee casually).

Saturday's are also the day I work on my Instagram account. Instagram is by far my favorite social media tool. Even if I don't post a pic, I use it daily. I LOVE seeing what others are posting and getting new ideas...it's like a magazine I've curated myself. 

About a year ago I realized how Instagram could be a huge benefit to my blog - giving fans and readers a quick outlet to my blog posts, meeting new potential fans (and social media friends from all over) and even stronger, more beneficial collaborations. And so the work began to "upgrade" my account!

Learn how you can upgrade your Instagram account right here!

The one thing I refused to do? Buy followers (or likes). I wanted my fan base to be real, organic. I read everything I could find on how to not just "get followers," but ways to improve my account. I took editing classes. I started to get it. And within months, I saw my fan base grow by thousands (yes, thousands)! Am I where I want to be, nope. Am I happy with my progress? For sure! 

I'm showing you a few of my favorite Instagram hacks below, and I hope you consider getting notified when I launch my very first Instagram class - geared toward small businesses and bloggers who want to turn their IG account into a tool that helps bring you readers,  customers and collaborations, in addition to more fans and likes.

Tip #1: Know what your audience wants to see! Use tools like Iconosquare or Squarelovin' to find your most liked pics. I was shocked when I first saw that my most liked posts were selfies and full outfit shots. Even though I'm passionate about style and makeup, these were incredibly hard for me to post (they initially were on my blog too). And there popularity wasn't by a few likes...usually by hundreds. It just took Iconosquare smacking me in the face with the cold hard truth to show me. Below is my most liked pic with 529 likes and 32 comments:

Tip #2: Master the flatlay! I should say practice the flatlay because at least for me, it's a constant work in progress. I think my flatlays turn out the best with an odd number of items - usually the few the better, with clean white (or very basic) backgrounds.  Below is my most liked flatlay, with 222 likes and 8 comments, which completely contradicts my typical rules above, lol:

Tip #3: Develop your own filter! True story: the minute I stopped using IG filters is the exact minute my account really took off. That doesn't mean I don't edit my pics, I just have a set of tools I use to adjust the lighting, contrast, etc. I like that even though I have different backgrounds in different locations, my pics look similar.  Below is a favorite of mine, of course using my personal editing techniques:

Tip #4: Engage with brands you like! You may know from my outfit posts that I LOVE Marshall's...like, LOVE. When I tagged them and used their store hashtag, #MarshallsSurprise, not only did they like the pic (which made me happy enough), they commented! Their comment was extra special however, because they indicated they liked the pic so much, they wanted to reward me - they sent me a much appreciated gift card (which was used for more outfit posts, lol) and a sweet lil' card I still have sitting on my table...all because of this pic of a doormat (that was under $8)!

Tip #5: Create quotes. I use Canva to make my quote pics instead of apps that give you "pics" ready to post. I'm able to create quote pics that fit my theme versus posting something that although might say something fantastic, doesn't really show who I am.

What are your favorite things about Instagram (or social media in general)? Can't wait to hear!!!

And if you haven't already, remember to sign up here to be notified when my first class goes live! YAY!!!

Don’t forget the hashtag #BCB on your Instagram posts babes!

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