This all leads me on rather nicely to something I use my phone for A LOT - Instagram. My relationship with which seems to become even more passionately love/hate by the day. Forcing a (sort of) a break (I could still post photos I’d already taken via my iPad) at just the time when I’m starting to enjoy it again, was challenging but this is possibly a good time to reflect on the time I’m spending on it. Getting new followers is so very hard – I have honestly tried every single tip suggested to me over the years, the only thing is I won’t pay for them (and I’m starting to suspect that rather more people than I realise have – not accusing anyone here!) – but what I’ve experienced lately is a bit of a surge in engagement. I wonder if this is because I’ve started to think more carefully about what images work, but at the same time I’m not religiously striving for an immaculate looking grid any more. Here’s what I’ve discovered since the start of the year:
· People like seeing me – goodness knows why. Doesn’t have to be my face, the back of my head will suffice (but my hands or feet won’t…). The most popular posts feature my face (or back of my head!) AND my work (although the work is preferably incidental to a shot of my ugly, shiny, ageing mug. Of course…).
· So people DON’T like seeing my work as much. Which troubles me as I need to make money from that (rather than my face!!!). However, if the work is on the wall of my studio or being held by me it helps. People LOVE studio photos.
· Posting less often seems to work well. Also the timing seems to matter again – when it appeared to be irrelevant for quite some time. I’m finding 5.30-6.30pm to be the sweet spot for maximum engagement – but this is different for everyone and it depends on when “your people” are killing time on Instagram. Mine are often on their way home from work (but of course Instagram now continues to show images in people’s feeds for DAYS…).
· I’m taking just as many photos (or I was until my phone broke) and saving them up for posting at later dates if I need to (thank goodness I did that!).
· The photos I assume will do really well often don’t. However, I have seen more with 100+ likes than I ever have, all since the start of last month, and in all honesty I’m not sure why (but see my thoughts at the end of this post).
· People always like a good shot of a pretty house.