Optimise your page for organic growth and engagement

10 ways to optimise your Instagram for organic growth and engagement

Looking to improve your Instagram presence?

Optimise your page for organic growth and engagement

Engagement matters on social media platforms. Have you noticed a recent drop in your engagement – or are you looking for ways to improve your overall Instagram presence?

I’m going to share 10 ways for you to optimise your page for organic growth and engagement.

1. Embrace your colour scheme.

Think about the overall look of how your brand’s colour scheme and aesthetics work together on the Instagram grid.  Using a clearly defined colour scheme will help make your brand stand out to new Instagram profile visitors. 

Read more about creating great aesthetics.

2. Highlight your stories

The majority of your Instagram accounts profile views will come from new users/non-followers.

Use the highlights function to categorise your story content and to continue to tell your brand story. Name each highlight with a clear, short title and add icons to match your colour scheme.

Discover how you can use your stories highlights better

3. Refresh your hashtags

Make sure that you are regularly refreshing and updating the hashtags that you are using. Ideally, you should rotate through new hashtags each time that you post. You can have up to 30 hashtags per post – each time you could keep 15 the same and switch in 15 new ones.

Learn more about using hashtags 

4. Carry out an Instagram audit

A full Instagram audit may seem intimidating, but completing one ensures you have optimised your page, that your branding is effective and that you are being consistent. An audit will allow you to ensure that you are keeping up to date with all of the changes and optimising your account.

Why carry out an Instagram audit?

5. Use your best images

For an optimised account you should be sharing the very best of your photos or videos. If someone clicks onto your profile the first thing they are likely to do is to browse through the first 9 – 12 of your most recent images. It is important that these photos give a great first impression or a representation of who you are.

 

6. Engage with others

Instagram is a SOCIAL media platform, so a big part of getting the most from it is by being social yourself! The more social you are on there, the more people will interact and be social back!

One basic but powerful way to interact with people, find inspiration and to gain new followers is to ‘like’ other users photos and like comments on your posts. Take the time to respond to comments and interact.

7. Always add a Geotag/Location

Make sure that you Geotag your posts.
Locations are displayed at the top of each Instagram post once they’re published, right beneath the username. You can tap any location to be taken to its Photo Map page, which shows a collection of all the photos and videos from people who geotagged them to that specific place.

8. Check your insights

You can get a lot of useful information from your analytics – discover which posts are doing well, optimum times to post (based on when your users are online) and your users’ demographics. Make sure that you regularly check on your insights to find out what is working well so that you can replicate that content.

9. Vary your captions

Captions are a great way to engage with your audience. Experiment with different styles for the caption text – you could use quotes, questions, call to action (CTA) or tell a story about the image or yourself.

Explore how to up your caption game.

10. Keep on top of the latest features

Instagram regularly roll out new features so it is important to keep up to date with their latest updates. Ensure you have the app updates turned on.

Follow my @Kistogram page to keep up to date

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benefits of an instagram audit

What are the benefits of an Instagram audit?

Why is it useful to audit your Instagram account?

benefits of an instagram audit

Are you wondering if your Instagram account is working well?

Do you want to evaluate what’s working…and what’s not?

Does your account feel a bit stagnated?

An Instagram audit is a detailed review/assessment of everything related to your Instagram page. An audit looks closely at all elements of your account – to review and assess their effectiveness.

Instagram is constantly evolving as a platform and an audit will allow you to ensure that you are keeping up to date with all of the changes and optimising your account.

An Instagram Audit will help you:

  • Optimise your profile and bio.
  • Discover if your goals/objectives are being met
  • Present a clear picture of your current efforts
  • Review your analytics to influence the strategy you use
  • Evaluate which content is performing well
  • Assess the quality of your content
  • Gain understanding of the engagement from your users
  • Explore how you are interacting with your community

A detailed Instagram audit will cover the following elements:

  • Profile/bio
  • Content (feed and stories)
  • Community
  • Strategy
  • Business/brand image

A full Instagram audit may seem intimidating, but completing one ensures you have optimised your page, that your branding is effective and that you are being consistent.

NEED HELP WITH YOUR AUDIT - CHECK OUT MY INSTAGRAM AUDIT PACKAGE:

Kistography Services-Instagram Audit

Instagram Account Audit

If you already have an Instagram account and would like an audit of the current page then this is for you.
I will measure the success of the account, suggest ways to improve it and recommend a strategy for you to implement. All provided in an extensive report document.

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Instagram new features - May 2018

Instagram Pods / Engagement groups

What is an Instagram pod/Engagement group?

During one of my IGTV videos I mentioned Instagram pods / engagement groups. This sparked an interest from a few people who had never heard about them – and also it triggered a few people who don’t like the concept. I thought I’d take the opportunity to explain a bit more about them and detail some of the advantages and disadvantages.

Simply put – An Instagram pod/Engagement group is a group of instagrammers that exchange engagement on posts.

Why use an engagement group?

Engagement groups, also known as pods came about following the introduction of the algorithm on Instagram. When you first share a post to Instagram, they serve that post to a small percentage of your total audience. Based on how that post performs with a small group of people (in addition to quite a few other factors such as caption contents, network, etc.), Instagram will grade the quality of your content. This “score” determines how your post is delivered in the feed as well as in the Discover tab. By using pods, users can increase the volume of engagement they are receiving in the small testing window, and therefore increasing your content’s “score”.

What is engagement?

Engagement is the number of people who like, comment or save your work as a ratio of your followers at the time of posting.

Instagram new features - May 2018

What are the advantages of an engagement group?

Engagement groups/pods are a way to ‘play’ the algorithm, by communities of like-minded Instagrammers teaming up to interact with each other’s posts. They work best when everyone has a similar interest/genre and when everybody participating in these groups is willing to like and/or comment on other members’ posts in exchange for their own posts getting liked and/or commented. 
If immediately after posting get 10 genuine likes and sincere comments, it can be a very good thing for the engagement on your page.

Engagement pods can:

  • Increase the amount of likes and comments
  • Increase organic reach in the feed
  • Increase the chances of your post ending up on Discover
  • Be a positive community

The disadvantages of engagement groups.

Instagram engagement groups take a lot of investment of your time and the notifications can become overwhelming. You need to be committed to contributing to the group. If the group is not managed well, some users can take advantage – and demand more from the other users (compared to what they give back).
There’s a big risk of members not genuinely being interested in your content and the comments will be generic and lack authenticity. There’s nothing worse than fake engagement.
There has been suggestions that users get what is called a ‘shadow ban’ for being part of an engagement group – however Instagram have recently said that there is no such thing as a shadow ban!

What apps are used for engagement groups?

There are a number of social apps people use to manage a pod. Which one you choose will depend on the group preference:

  • Whatsapp
  • Telegram
  • Slack
  • Facebook Messenger
  • Facebook Groups
  • Instagram messenger (limited to 15 people)

What's the problem?

Why are people triggered by engagement groups? 

Some people frown upon engagement groups as they are considered a bit sneaky and users don’t generally ‘announce’ when they are part of a group.

Many users are ‘purist’ and believe that it’s deviating from the ‘pure’ way of organically using Instagram.

How do I find an engagement pod?

This is probably the trickiest element of engagement groups. They’re not usually openly shared and they can be hard to find.

  • Network with other accounts within your niche
  • Join Instagram-related Facebook groups. 
  • Search Twitter for mentions of Engagement Pods
  • Read the Instagram Subreddit
  • Google it! 

My personal experience of using engagement groups

I have, during the last 8 months – been a member of approx 4 different engagement groups/pods. I left two of them within a couple days as they were not particularly something I wanted to be associated with. They were not really niche, they had awkward or inefficient rules (such as you could only share a post when you had liked and commented on the previous 6 posts… which was great until there wasn’t 6 posts for you to engage with). They were far to prescriptive and quite frankly…fake! I stumbled on these groups by googling.
One other pod I was invited to, was made up of a group of photographers from my region (Devon, UK) – however the group slowly dwindled to nothing and unfortunately it then became ineffective.
The final engagement group which I was also invited to – which I am still an active member of, has become a small Instagram sub community and offers a lot more than just being an ‘engagement group’. What makes this group work so well is that we are all aligned in our style of photography – many of us live within the South West of the UK (although we have members across the UK and overseas) and we all genuinely have an interest in each others photography. The group has expanded to offer technical support, image reviews and general chit chat. I would consider the members ‘insta-friends’. Several members have met in real life to. For me – this is what a true engagement group should be about – the likes/comments/engagement are a bonus because I get so much more from being part of it.
It is also worth noting – that I have seen little impact on my engagement from being part of the group. I believe this is because I have such a large following – 5 or 6 people commenting/liking my photo is not really going to have a huge impact.

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Private Instagram account

Can making your Instagram account private get you more followers?

Back in July I read an article by The Atlantic where they explained why some big meme Instagram pages were making their accounts private and how that going private had made their follower growth explode. I found this strategy intriguing so out of curiosity, I thought I’d like to experiment with it myself.

What is a private Instagram account?

When you make an Instagram account private, the content is hidden from public view and only your followers can see it. You can control the visibility of your account in settings. Select account privacy and then toggle on Private Account. People will then have to send you a follow request if they want to see your posts.

If your account is private, when you add hashtags to a post – your post will only show up to the people who follow you.

Why switch to private?

There are some potential benefits to switching to private – but they are only really applicable to certain types of account. If you run a general photography account or a business trying to sell products, it’s probably not the right option for you. If however, you have certain types of desirable content, it’s could be a useful strategy for you to use.

  1. It can help you get more followers.If you offer information (such as that on my @kistogram page) people will want access to your information. If it is on public view, they can see it without having to follow you. By making the account private, you secure that content to only those who commit to follow you. Therefore, if people really want what you have to offer, they will follow you. This is why it has been such a successful strategy for the meme accounts – which work on people sharing their memes.
  2. Secure your content .By making your account private, people will not have such free access to the content you are sharing and in that respect your content is a bit more protected.
  3. Retaining your followers.You’re more likely to keep the followers you have if the account is private because if someone unfollows, they would need to send a follow request to you again if they changed their mind. This acts as a deterrent for people unfollowing.

Private Instagram account experiment results.

On 21st July I decided I would experiment with making my @kistogram account private to see if it made any difference to my account growth. Prior to switching to private, this account averaged about 30 new followers a month (or around 1 a day). At the time of switching to private I had 953 followers.

After two weeks the account had grown to 1066 followers

After six weeks the account now stands at 1112 followers. A growth of 156 followers.

That means I’ve gained an average of around 105 followers a month or 3.78 a day. Three times the previous growth. Obviously the account hasn’t sky rocketed but switching to private is the only strategy I have changed and used.

I didn’t carry out any other growth strategies during this time – so I wasn’t being particularly active from that account in the same way I would be for my @kistography. As the account is private, hashtags aren’t effective in growth either. The only strategy I used was to announce new posts on my @kistography account stories.

I’m still deciding whether I will continue to keep this account private or whether I will switch it back to public.


You might also like these Instagram articles:

Learn how to create great Instagram captions

How to grow your Instagram followers

How to grow your instagram followers

How to grow your Instagram followers

One of the most commonly asked questions I receive is “how do I grow my instagram followers?”. Although there is not one straight answer to this – and a whole combination of factors come together for growth to take place, I have come up with a number of simplified strategies you can adopt for account growth. Some of these strategies are straightforward, legitimate and organic methods – others are more controversial, some frowned upon and some definitely NOT recommended. I figured I’d highlight them all, as it’s worthwhile knowing why you SHOULDN’T use them.

CORE

This is the fundamental entry level of growing your Instagram followers.

The first and most basic way to get followers is to connect with your own friends and family! Within your profile options you can see ​Follow People – there you can add friends using your other social media accounts such as Facebook or from your contacts. Hopefully, if you follow them, they will follow you back!

Then, for an optimised account you should be sharing the very best of your photos or videos. If someone clicks onto your profile the first thing they are likely to do is to browse through the first 6 – 10 of your most recent images. It is important that these photos give a great first impression or a representation of who you are and your account. You will be adding a well thought out caption and possibly a few hashtags too.

LEVEL UP

The next way that you can level up your follower growth, is to do everything you would do for ‘core‘ but then build on that. Once you have followers…and they are engaging with your account, engage with them. If you don’t interact, people will lose interest, get bored and unfollow. You can learn a lot about your audience by interacting with them. When you post photos, provided your content is good, you will likely receive comments from users who appreciate your work. You can reply to followers comments on your photos by thanking them or responding to the comments they have made. It is good insta-etiquette to respond to them too! I endeavour to acknowledge all comments made on my photos as I feel it it courteous to respond if someone has taken the time and effort to write something. It’s a great way to interact and build up your community. It shows people that you value their interest and contribution.

One basic but powerful way to interact with people, find inspiration and to gain new followers on Instagram, is to ‘like’ other users photos. Liking photos is really the fundamental interaction on Instagram. When you do like photos make sure that you are authentic with the likes you give out and avoid spamming accounts for the sake of it. Don’t like for likes sake, as you will just irritate people. Take it another step further, by commenting too!

Also, by this point you will be more focussed with your hashtags – using ones that are niche, selected for the relevancy and with the content you are posting in mind. See my Ultimate Hashtags list for photographers to up your hashtag game!

FISHING

Now, perhaps you’re wanting to speed up and encourage the follower growth on your feed a bit more. So, you will already be doing everything in ‘core‘ plus adopting the strategies in ‘level up‘ and now you will start adding a bit more targeted and focussed growth strategies. This is what I refer to as fishing – you will actively go out liking and comment on photos – but in an organised and strategic way, in order to try and reel people into your feed.  You need to got out and let people know that you (and your content) exists. This is the ‘knocking on doors’ of Instagram!

Pick one of the hashtags that you use (or the geotag) and go to its feed. Select ‘recent’ and begin scrolling through the feed, liking photos as you go (but ONLY photos that you do genuinely like). When you get to about 20 photos, on the next one, leave a comment as well as liking. Make sure that the comment is genuine, sincere and shows a real interest in the content. Go back to the hashtag/geotag feed and begin the process again…liking 20 photos, then commenting on one. Repeat this for however much time you have spare. This is what I call the 20:1 approach. You can tweak the ratio to suit your available time or what works for you. By balancing out the likes v’s comments it means you are less likely to get banned for liking/commenting too fast and it gives you a rhythm to strategy.

With this method, your ‘fishing‘ will reel in people to your feed, primarily from your comments, but also through the likes. If you do this regularly, you will see a steady growth on your feed.

PODS

After you have implemented ‘core‘, ‘level up‘ and ‘fishing‘, there are very few ‘organic’ ways for you to grow your Instagram following. Two years ago, these three methods alone would have been enough to generate rapid growth. This is how I managed to get my feed to around the 10-12k mark. Sadly, now that Instagram have introduced the algorithm, it is much more difficult to get the same levels of organic growth. This is where pods (engagement groups) can come in.

A pod (engagement group) is a way to ‘hack’ the instagram algorithm. It is a group of Instagrammers (preferably of the same niche) who will collaborate to ensure that as a member posts, their post is getting an influx of likes, comments, saves and even shares. They are usually set up in a messaging software (Whatsapp, Messenger, Slack, Telegram etc) or within Instagrams own direct messaging, where members will announce when they have uploaded a new post. The idea being, that all the members of that group will then go and visit the post to like & comment on it ASAP, after it’s first posted. The reason this is important, is because the algorithm looks at the response the post gets within the first hour – before deciding whether to push it to a broader audience.
Pods are frowned upon sometimes because they can be seen as manipulative, false and cheating. If a pod is well set up – built upon a community of like-minded, supportive and genuine members they can work well. Sadly, many pods are just a load of instagrammers thrown together. This means someone who is a portrait photographer, could be engaging with a dog groomer or cake baker. In a set up like this, over time the interest will fade (unless the portrait photographer happens to be a dog loving, cake eater)!

FOLLOW/UNFOLLOW

This is a controversial, often frowned upon and dubious strategy. The basic principle of this is that you bulk follow a load of Instagram accounts, then shortly (24 – 48hrs) after, you unfollow them. Hopefully within that time period some of those accounts would have followed you. So your followers growing, but your following doesn’t. There are many issues with this – firstly, you risk getting your account banned. There are limits on the amount of accounts you can follow in a day. If the bots pick up that you are a serial follower, you do risk your account being banned and locked out. Notwithstanding the fact, that it blooming well annoys people when they see that someone has follow/unfollowed them!

BIG SPENDER

This is a big no-no! I’m only adding it here as a word of caution and for readers to get an understanding of the lengths people will go to for the sake of ‘popularity’. ‘Big Spender‘ is when people buy followers. When you buy followers, you are often getting fake/spam accounts – they won’t be people that will engage on your feed. This will then become evident on your posts. I have seen accounts that have 50,000 followers, but only get 200 or so likes on a post. This is an obvious sign that they have bought followers. Also when followers are bought, the account growth will happen rapidly over a short space of time (a couple days), where as genuine growth is steady and gradual.

With all of the strategies you adopt, you are looking for QUALITY over QUANTITY. This is why Follow/Unfollow and Big Spender are not wise strategic moves in your growth plan!

A wise Instagrammer once said “Followers is vanity, engagement is sanity”!

 

VIEW MY IGTV CHANNEL WHERE I CHAT THROUGH INSTAGRAM GROWTH.

 

About me

You might also enjoy:

Instagram Algorithm Explained

Instagram aesthetics – Make your feed stand out

 

How often should you post on Instagram?

How often should you post on Instagram?

How often should you post on Instagram?

There are lots of different recommendations available online for how often you should upload an Instagram post. They tend to vary between 1 to 3 posts a day, and surprisingly some experts even suggest up to 10 Instagram posts a day! According to Buffer, major brands will post 1.5 times per day on Instagram.

The truth of the matter is that there is no ‘correct’ answer to this but there has been some research carried out which will give you a rough guide.

Social Media Today notes that increasing how often you upload an Instagram post  (from 1 post a day to 3) can see a reduction in the overall engagement rates per post (but only by a few %).  However, they highlight that per day, there is a small increase overall in engagement if you post more than once.

Often the problem is that you may not have enough content to post more frequently that one post per day. Should you be in a position that you can deliver bunches of amazing pictures, or have access to really strong content to post, then it would seem that posting more frequently could have a small benefit on your overall engagement. As an example of when multiple posts per day works, many hubs will share several images per day. On @loveforsomerset we post once in the morning and once in the evening. By posting at two different intervals in the day you are potentially targeting different users who are active at different points in the day – but also reaching out to users in different time zones.

You could test out frequency of posts over a couple of weeks and see what happens. Look at your day by day engagement with multiple posts per day, versus only one post per day and see how it compares.

Have you tried this? What was the outcome?

Instagram Stories design tools & apps

Instagram stories design tools and apps.

USEFUL INSTAGRAM STORIES DESIGN TOOLS & APPS

Are you looking for some creative ways to take your Instagram Stories to  the next level? Whether you’re after typography, videos, collages, animations or layouts,  there is a whole array of apps and tools available to help you release your creative juices!

In this article you will discover a large selection of apps that you are useful for designing instagram stories in the 9:16 ratio.

HYPE TYPE

If you want to add typography and music to your Instagram stories then Hype Type is what you’re looking for. Hype Type is an IOS app that lets you Hype your Stories with automatically styled and designed motion typography.

TYPORAMA

Typorama is super easy to use even if you have zero design skills. Saves you tons of work by automatically creating complex design layouts“. This app enables you to quickly add attention-grabbing text to photos for your Instagram stories, with over 40 different typographic styles. Users can choose from professional photo filters, overlays and adjustment tools to polish your photo backgrounds.

DIPTIC

“Diptic for iPhone and iPad makes it fun and easy to create collages and slideshows. Use Diptic to create before and after sequences, juxtapose contrasting images or create a photographic series.

Start with one of 179 layouts and then select your photos. Position your photos and customize the inner frame lines using joints or the frame slider. You can apply a filter, add text, and adjust border color, texture, width and curvature.”

CANVA

Canva has a web platform as well as apps which allow you to easily create beautiful Instagram stories as well as other designs and documents

“Use Canva’s drag-and-drop feature and professional layouts to design consistently stunning graphics.”

STOREO

An iOS app for making Instagram Stories longer than 15 seconds.

Storeo slices a video into 15 sec slices for uploading to Instagram Stories. Viewers then see one long video.

Start the app and record. Once you’ve finished, you stop recording and Storeo will slice up the video into neat little 15-second clips ready for Instagram stories.

QUIK

Quik is a GoPro app that allows you to create videos for your Instagram stories with built in templates and music.

You can create beautiful videos with just a few taps.

OVER

This is an advanced IOS app for creating graphics with text – perfect for Instagram stories. “With Over, choose from millions of templates, graphics, and fonts to overlay, add and edit text and design photos to boost your social media profile.

SPARK

Adobe Spark is a free online and mobile graphic design app. Easily create beautiful images, videos, and web pages that make you stand out on social. You can add animated elements such as text which will make your Instagram stories stand out. Adobe Spark has lots of free templates and design layouts to choose from.

PICPLAYPOST

“Add multi collage transitions, personal watermark, branded logo and music to drive more engagement. Create perfect movies for Instagram stories using 9:16 frame ratio and speed up, slow down and reverse videos for entertaining videos. Don’t have time to edit? No worries, use the automated slideshow feature and create a movie in seconds!”

SNOW

Snow is an IOS and Android app that allows you to add cool effects to your videos for use on Instagram stories.

VIDEOLEAP

This is a video editing tool perfect for use on Instagram stories.
Discover how easy it is to get creative with video! Whether you want to make artistic Hollywood-level films or simply share memories and moments with friends, Videoleap is a breakthrough video editor just for you. Pros will take advantage of powerful high-end editing features while amateurs will have fun cutting and combining clips simply, intuitively and on-the-go.

UNFOLD

Create Instagram stories with multiple pages and a variety of layouts. Unfold is a toolkit for storytellers. Create beautiful and engaging stories with minimal and elegant templates. You can add videos and photos on the same layout.

 


Have you found a useful app for Instagram stories that I have not listed here? Let me know in the comments.

Other articles you may find useful:

Instagram engagement – optimise your hashtags

Top tips for getting Instagram hub features

5 Instagram hacks you should be using

Instagram hacks – 5 hacks you should be using

5 Instagram hacks you should be using5 Instagram hacks you should be using

Be a social media pro by adopting some of these easy Instagram hacks! Take on this advice and grow your Instagram knowledge here.

1- HIDE THE HASHTAGS

You can add up to 30 hashtags on your Instagram post, but they can look a little distracting. To hide them out of the way, simply add 5 fullstops/periods, pressing return after each. This will push your hashtags out of view when people see the post on the main feed.

2- HASHTAG YOUR STORIES

Increase your discovery across Instagram with this easy hack! You can add up to 10 hashtags in your stories and the story could appear in the feed for that hashtag. If you feel this might clutter up your story, you can hide them behind a gif or shrink them down small.

3 – ADD A LINE BREAK IN YOUR BIO

Use the notes app on your phone to write your Instagram bio (150 characters) – using the return key to create new lines. Then copy the text.
Go to your Instagram profile (edit profile) and paste the text in the bio space. Select ‘done’.

4 – SINGLE COLOUR BACKGROUND ON STORIES

Have you seen Instagram stories where the background is just one single colour? Want to know how to do that? Open up the pen tool, select a colour and then long press on the screen. This will flood fill the background.

5 – QUICK REPLY TO COMMENTS

I quite often get a ban for commenting too fast when replying to thank people on my Instagram posts. This is because I use a keyboard shortcut on my phone to comment. On IOS, go to SETTINGS> GENERAL> KEYBOARD > TEXT REPLACEMENT. In here set up some phrases with shortcuts, then when you reply to comments you just type the shortcut and it will autofill the whole phrase. I use TY1, TY2, TY3 (ty = thank you)!

More about upping your Instagram game in my other posts here:
Optimise your Instagram content with hashtags

Instagram aesthetics – Make your feed stand out

 

Instagram introducing new features – May 2018

Instagram introducing new features – May 2018

Instagram has been busy rolling out a number of new features lately – with plenty more in the pipeline which are currently being beta tested. Lets take a look at some of the new updates and a few that are expected to be coming soon.

Share feed posts to stories

Last week Instagram announced the news that they had finally rolled out the feature to allow users to share posts to stories.

Instagram say:

“When you come across something in feed that inspires you — like a post from a friend raising money for a cause or a photo of a new design from your favorite brand — you can now quickly share that post as a sticker to your story for your friends and followers to see.”

This feature was first seen being tested back in February and was considered a long time coming. Many users had already been sharing others posts on their feed and stories – either by screenshots or third party apps. This new share option streamlines the process of sharing to stories.

Sharing to stories is a simple process as explained by Instagram:

To share a feed post to your story, just tap the paper airplane button below the post, just as you would to send it via Direct. At the top, you’ll now see the option to create a story. Tap it to see the feed post as a sticker with a customized background ready to share to your story. You can rotate, scale and move the sticker — and tap it to explore other styles.

Mute: A new way to personalise your feed

This is an interesting feature as it allows users to stop seeing content from someone in their timeline – without having to unfollow them. This could be useful if you have accounts that you follow for whatever reason (such as family members or old friends) – but you don’t want to unfollow them. As it’s a measure that can be undone at any point it could prove a useful temporary fix when you want to streamline the content you see in your timeline feed (such as during holidays or busy periods).

Instagram explains:

To mute an account, tap the … menu in the corner of the post. From there, you can choose whether to mute posts, or mute posts and stories from an account. You can also mute posts and stories by pressing and holding on a story in your tray, or from a profile.

This feature will be rolling out to all accounts over the next few weeks.

Usage Insights – Time spent on Instagram

I’m not sure I want to know how long I spend on Instagram, because I already know it’s too long!

Tech Crunch have revealed that Instagram’s CEO Kevin Systrom confirmed that they are trialling a new ‘usage’ feature, which will offer user insights into how long is spent on Instagram. There is much acknowledgement from media and the social media platforms of the negative impact of time spent on social media, so hopefully this is a positive step towards encouraging users towards a more balanced approach to their time online.

Add music clips to Instagram stories using stickers

Code has been discovered within the Instagram Android app that suggests Instagram could be about to introduce a feature that will allow users to add music to their stories via ‘stickers’ – in the same way that they can now add GIF’s, Polls, Locations and Hashtags.

Video Chat for messaging

Instagram is looking to improve their messaging service by introducing an option for group video chats. A feature which they say is being tested at the moment and will be rolled out soon.

Instagram explain:

To start a video chat, simply tap the new camera icon at the top of a Direct thread. You can chat one-on-one or with a small group — and you can keep the conversation going for as long as you like. You can also minimize the video and continue the chat while doing other things on Instagram.

Slow Motion & Cinemagraphs for stories videos

You can already ‘boomerang’, go hands free or rewind! Instagram is currently working on a slow motion and cinemagraphs option for stories videos.

Focus mode for selfies!

Now you can instantly take portraits of yourself or friends that you’ll want to share — with the new “Focus” camera format.

Instagram continues to give Snapchat a run for a money with this new feature which is supposed to improve selfies by keeping the person in focus and blurring the background. Maybe not a feature for the the professional users, but something to have fun with I’m sure!

 

 

15 UK Instagram accounts that will feature your photos

15 UK Instagram accounts that will feature your photos

If you want inspiration or more exposure for your photos and to increase engagement with your feed, hubs are a great way to achieve this. ’Hubs’ or ‘feature accounts’ are large accounts that will feature a selection of photos throughout the day, in return for using their corresponding hashtag.

There are countless hubs on Instagram, which cover a broad spectrum of styles such as sunsets, nature, wildlife, portraits, fashion or landscapes. A lot of the hubs have a massive follower base between 20k – 500k+. This means that if your photo is chosen to be featured it will receive a lot of exposure.

Let’s see some of the popular UK based Instagram Hubs:

1) Best UK Pics

🇬🇧We feature the best pics from UK 🇬🇧Use our tag: #bestukpicsFOUNDER: @quelmarietto ADMINS: @chiarathustra@x_ray_mike@missb68@flying.jc

CONGRATS to 📷@kieran.fallows.photography for this fantastic shot 🙌 💫 Selected by @missb68 ✨(ADMIN) FOUNDER: @quelmarietto LOCALITY: Hadrian’s wall CATEGORY: #Night To appear: • follow us & use #bestukpics We’d appreciate a • REPOST or SCREEN 📷 ⠀⠀⠀ Your pic is also on FB • BESTUKPICS COMMUNITY • @bestpics_community Check out our friends at @ukpotd and @gloriousbritain and use their tag for a chance to be featured ⠀⠀⠀ THANKS A LOT! 😊🏆👏🏻🇬🇧 #bestworldpics #ukpotd #mybritain #britains_talent #photosofbritain #loves_britain #loves_united_kingdom #capturingbritain #icu_britain #scenicbritain #explore_britain #picture_to_keep #excellent_britain #ig_countryside #happytrailz #igersuk #ig_uk #gloriousbritain #britain_online #uk_shots #our_britain

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2) Love GREAT Britain

Official British Tourist Board🇬🇧 sharing beautiful Britain through your pics and stories! Tag #lovegreatbritain to allow us to share on our channels. www.visitbritain.com

3) Britains Talent

🇬🇧#britains_talent🇬🇧 Member @hubdirectory Founder @mrsali88Mods @itslittlemissb@april2740@chrissalephoto@ian_holloway_photography

• We are proud to present this fantastic photo! • 📍Location: Buachaille Etive Mor📍 • Featured artist • 🌟@lee.lumix 🌟 • •🇬🇧🏆•CONGRATULATIONS•🏆🇬🇧• • Please show some 🇬🇧 UK L😍VE to today’s artist by dropping by their gallery and saying hi, tap on a few photos and maybe even change the follow button colour to 💚 • •Photo chosen by @ian_holloway_photography • •🌟Mods • •👉@itslittlemissb• •👉@april2740• •👉@chrissalephoto• •👉@ian_holloway_photography• •🌟Founder• •👉@mrsali88• • For your chance to be featured please follow and tag accordingly: ➡@britains_talent ➡#britains_talent • •🌟Keep tagging you crazy snappers🌟• • #photosofengland #visitbritain #ukpotd #uk #greatbritain #lovegreatbritain #capturingbritain #photosofbritain #visitengland #bbcbritain #instabritain

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4) Loves_United_Kingdom

The Beauty of #UnitedKingdom * Tag #LOVES_UNITED_KINGDOM * Mbr @lovesunited * Team @mpalka_photography@annapemagic@chriswalts@leandri.dannhauser ⇓lovesunited.com

Presents PHOTOGRAPHER | @annahedderly LOVES OF THE DAY April 22, 2018 LOCATION | #Crooklets ——————————————————— SELECTED BY | @chriswalts ADMIN | @mpalka_photography TEAM | @annapemagic @chriswalts @leandri.dannhauser OUR TAG | #LOVES_UNITED_KINGDOM ——————————————————— ♡ Please show your support to our featured artists and visit their awesome galleries for more great shots ♡ ——————————————————— VISIT PARTNERS COMMUNITY: * @Loves_United_Family * @Loves_United_Life * @Loves_United_Europe * @Loves_United_Italy * @Loves_United_World * OUR MAIL | loves.members@gmail.com This award will participate in our weekly contest on @loves_united_europe __ * #l_u_t_c_e_2018_april * #luk_annahedderly — #wms_europe #ig_europa #super_europe #uk_greatshots #ok_europe #igerslondon #prettycitylondon #prettylittlelondon #london_enthusiast #london_masters #london_city_photo #toplondonphoto #unlimitedlondon #culturetriplondon #hello_london #londonforyou #loves_london #loves_united_england #explore_britain #igworldclub #topukphoto #visitlondon #photosofbritain #visitbritain

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5) UK Pic Of The Day

🇬🇧 Featuring the best pics from around the UK Follow and tag your pics #ukpotd or #ukpotd_apr18 Founder @notbrettk Mods @missb68 & @hanupnorth

🇬🇧••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••🇬🇧•••••••• @UKPOTD by: @sixmileimages ••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••• Location: Lough Neagh, Northern Ireland ••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••• New pics #UKpotd •••••••• Old pics #UKpotd_apr18 ••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••• Selected by @hanupnorth ••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••• Check out our friends: •@genuinebritain •@explore.wales •@bestukpics •@landscapes_of_britain . #hubs_united #britain #Explore_Britain #VisitBritain #Excellent_Britain #Ireland #InstaBritain #discoverni #gloriousbritain #loughneagh #bestukpics #lough #genuinebritain #landscapes_of_britain #ukpotd_sixmileimages #northernireland #theimaged #ig_worldclub #osmaps #frozenlake #nature #antrim #master_gallery #thelensbible

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6) UK_Greatshots

✦Tag #UK_GREATSHOTS ✦Tag #UK_GSWORLDfor Sunday’s Travel the World Features ➲ A @miniboy_ ➲ M @alycoste ➲ M @olivergmlewis ➲ M @redinscotland

® Presents Sunday World Traveling Special: ⠀ UK GREATSHOTS 🇬🇧 ® PHOTOGRAPHER | @brian__knox LOCATION | Switzerland 🇨🇭 SELECTED | @alycoste ADMIN | @miniboy_ MOD | @alycoste MOD | @redinscotland MOD | @olivergmlewis FAMILY HUB @greatshots_world_community MEMBER OF | @hubdirectory ⠀⠀ FOLLOW US | @uk_greatshots TAG US | #uk_greatshots ___________________________________________ PLEASE VISIT @icu_scotland @scotland_greatshots @traveling_uk @ukpotd ____________________________________________ #earthcapture #globalshotz #travelpic #uk_gsworld #worldshotz #besteuropepics #forbestravelguide #traveling #landscape_lovers #ig_brilliant #bbc_travel #europe_gallery #instatraveling #travelphotography #passionpassport #travelphotography #ig_cameras_united #venice #ig_mood #nightphotography #landscape_captures #europe #natgeoyourshot #lonelyplanet #switzerland

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7) Photos Of Britain

🇬🇧Founded & Stories by @timholt📸UK images, facts & history daily ✨Follow and tag this account for feature!

Tag a friend who would love to visit Stratford-upon-Avon and see Shakespeare’s home county! I’ve (@timholt) got a whole load of Shakespeare goodies to send to random replies below from this lovely place. Open worldwide! I took this picture just 12 hours ago of a typical traditional thatched house just around the corner from Anne Hathaway’s Cottage (which you can see in my story from yesterday evening) . According to tradition, the great English dramatist and poet William Shakespeare was born in Stratford-on-Avon on April 23, 1564. It is impossible to be certain the exact day on which he was born, but church records show that he was baptised on April 26, and three days was a customary amount of time to wait before baptising a newborn. The whole town is celebrating this weekend… It’s bunting galore! . Could you live here? Although the upkeep can be quite expensive. A complete re-thatch could cost anything up to £25,000 (around $33,000) and there are just 350 thatching firms in the entire country, to service between 55,000 and 60,000 thatched houses. But! What a treat if you have the ability to own such a property! And to think, when other more expensive roofing materials came into vogue, thatch became a mark of poverty, and the number of thatched properties gradually declined. Thatch has now become much more popular in the UK over the past 30 years, and is now a symbol of wealth rather than poverty. Funny how things change. Have a wonderful, peaceful Sunday! Shot by @timholt 🇬🇧 Want your Photos of Britain to be featured? Follow us and then tag this account in your shots too! 🇬🇧

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8) Instabritain

📸Founder @postcardsbyhannah🇬🇧Exploring Britain and the World 👇🏼Checkout our travel guides

9) Explore_Britain_

🇬🇧Please Provide Location🇬🇧 🔹Owner/Admin @ladynicking🔹Mods @peterhumfryes @bethanyfry_ @aemorton1107@lisafroggatt_photography 🔹Part of Explore Family

.#explore_britain . 🌟🌈🌟🌈🌟🌈🌟🌈🌟🌈🌟🌈🌟 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ EXPLORE BRITAIN is proud to present and congratulate today’s featured artist: @tomormerod ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 🌟🌈🌟🌈🌟🌈🌟🌈🌟🌈🌟🌈🌟 . ♦Thank you for sharing your wonderful pictures with us. ♦Please be sure to use our hashtag for a chance to be featured. ♦Please consider Following the hub and our accepted tags: #explore_britain & #explore_britain_. ♦Please only submit your own pictures, no internet or stolen photos! . 🌟🎉🌟🎉🌟🎉🌟🎉🌟🎉🌟🎉🌟 . Photo chosen by: @aemorton1107 . 🌟🎊🌟🎊🌟🎊🌟🎊🌟🎊🌟🎊🌟 Founders: @xemjade @alibongo1963. . #ukpotd #loves_united_kingdom #loves_united_england #capturingbritain #fiftyshades_of_history #britains_talent #GloriousBritain #our_britain #icu_britain #excellent_britain #britain #uk #igersuk #ebritain_tomormerod – #keephubcommunityfair A hub with integrity

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10) Visit England

Making you fall head-over-heels with England one photo at a time. Tag #VisitEngland to feature on our channels. Find thousands of trip ideas: www.visitengland.com

@Postcardsbyhannah here again, this is the last you will hear from me over on Visit England, saving one of my favourite places till last! Does anyone recognise this famous street? This is Steep Hill in Lincoln, and as the name suggests, it really is one of the steepest in England. On this street you will find a whole range of independent boutique shops, and plenty of places to stop for afternoon tea. Lincoln itself is a very historic city, dating back as far as 300 BC, making it one of the oldest settlements in Britain. It was the Romans that settled here first, in AD 50, and built a fortress atop the largest hill. The Romans renamed the town ‘Lindum Colonia’. I hope you all enjoyed my snippets of England this weekend, come say hello to me over on @postcardsbyhannah where you can enjoy more of my adventures around my home country. #VisitEngland #Lincoln #SteepHill #Saturday #Weekend #Takeover . . . .

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11) UK.shooters

#uk_shooters Shooting • Vibing • Hosting Creative Photography From Around The UK

Today’s feature 🇬🇧📷. Shooter: @thedronelad Selected by: @m.visuals . #uks_thedronelad . Follow us and tag #uk_shooters to be featured . • Team • @m.visuals | @luke_jclark | @cyrusnezami | @devise.inspire | @spidergirl | . • Fam • @uk.portraits || #uk_ports @uk.spinners || #uk_spinners @la.shooters || #la_shooters . • Alliance • @globalnightsquad || #globalnightsquad . . #shotzdelight #vibegramz #depthobsessed #serialshooters #urbanandstreet  #ourcolourdays #agameoftones #capturedconcepts #main_vision #incredible_shot #loaded_lenses #leagueoflenses  #visualcollective #moodygrams #gramslayers #all2epic #fatalframes #visualambassadors  #reflectiongram #lensbible #sonyimages #uks_moodymeetslondon

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12) Glorious Britain

ғᴇᴀᴛᴜʀɪɴɢ ʙʀɪᴛᴀɪɴ ɪɴ ᴀʟʟ ɪᴛs ɢʟᴏʀʏ 🇬🇧 🄶🄻🄾🅁🄸🄾🅄🅂 🄱🅁🄸🅃🄰🄸🄽 🇬🇧 #GloriousBritain #GB_GB for features

13) UK Scenery

The UK’s Best Scenery! 🇬🇧 Founders: @shot_by_tom & @jbs_creative🤘 #ukscenery to be featured 📸 Check out our other account 👉 @earthscenery🌍

Featured Photo 🤘🇬🇧 Photographer 📸: @creativecapturesuk Location📍: Ayr Selected By: @jbs_creative . Make sure you check out the photographers gallery and show some love! 😎 . Don’t forget to tag your photos with #ukscenery to be featured so we can show the amazing views here in the UK 🇬🇧 😜 . 👉 Hub Family 👈 @earthscenery – #earthscenery @londonscenery – #londonscenery @devonscenery – #devonscenery . Be sure to check out our friends 👇 @gloriousbritain @north_devon @uk_shooters @ukpotd @traveling_uk . #ukscenery #UK #GreatBritain #Britain #England #Wales #beautifulwales #Scotland #NorthernIreland #uk_shooters #icu_britain #mybritain #explore_britain #visitbritain #excellent_britain #photosofengland #gloriousbritain #coloursofbritain #photosofbritain #bestukpics #ukpotd #britains_tallent #capturingbritain #ig_scotland #insta_scotland

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14) Scenic Britain

Discover the Great British Outdoors! The best countryside, coast and mountain scenery. Tag your shots with #scenicbritain to share.

15) TopUKPhoto

#TopUKPhoto the best of UK 🇬🇧 info@trendingreach.com by @patrickcolpron

Read more about how to get featured on Instagram or how to understand the Instagram Algorithm

Which are your favourite UK Instagram hubs and communities? Share with me in the comments.