Instagram Is Hard

Between all the talk of being “Instagram Famous” and how social media isn’t real, and trying to think of ways to grow my Instagram, I came to the conlusion: Instagram is Hard.

I could go on about how I try and portray a ‘real’ version of me across all internet facing entities, but that would be only a half truth. I definitely will take about 10+ selfies (or photos in general) before choosing the one I like best. In fact, earlier this year I did a project on why that just isn’t the case. But, that doesn’t necessarily mean what I show you isn’t real. I do only share my real life. But, that’s not why I’m making this post.

I’m making this post because as I continue to grow my personal brand as well as grow my professional one, I’m finding the hardest accounts to grow, are my Instagram ones.

Getting likes is the easy part. Getting followers is the hard part. Getting traffic to your site is the hardest.

I’ve long given up on using Instagram as a way of creating traffic to my site/blog on a regular basis. Most people are using Instagram to look at pretty things (in my experience anyways) and double tap them, because well, we’re lazy and it’s easy and mind-numbing to do it. If they REALLY like it, they’ll go to your profile and follow your link. Maybe.

Content is king, and Instagram surely drives that home. With the right combination of placement, lighting, angle and hashtags, I can get myself a good 60 likes without trying to hard. Cool.

BUT, how do my friends who have 100-200 followers, use no hashtags manage to get 30+ without trying? Is it their authenticity?

Instagram is Hard.

Everything must be pretty and original.

Sure, memes are great, but they just don’t have the same place on Instagram the way they do across Twitter or Facebook. I will get many, many more likes for posting a picture of my morning latte then a funny meme that I actually put thought into. Memes just aren’t pretty enough for social media. 

And, on top of that, everything needs to be original. RT & Sharing content is much different on Twitter or Facebook than with Instagram. Sure, you can re-gram a post, but Instagram doesn’t make it quite as easy to do so. I feel like originality is key when posting to Instagram, and I’m more likely to be disturbed by repeat content on Insta, than on Twitter or Facebook.

Instagram is Hard.

Content creation is time consuming.

It’s a lot of work to create these images. When I’m at work, I just don’t have the time to create the images I want for our brand that I know will help us grow our social media. We’re a team of four people running an eCommerce site with over 10,000 products. I run all digital, PR and design programs. There’s not enough time in the day for me to be constantly producing these photos.

And when I come home, it’s hard to force myself to anything other than strip off my clothes and watch tv in bed, let alone setup my camera and make pretty photos. But, I do it because I like it.

Instagram is Hard.

It’s hard to be your authentic self

We’ve seen this everywhere, and I mentioned it above, “Social Media Isn’t Real”. While I’m not going to say I agree completely, or even say this is completely a bad thing, I agree that a lot of what we see on social media, isn’t completely authentic.

While I try my hardest to post authentic, true to my life posts, sometimes it can be difficult to showcase our lives the way we want. I like to make pretty photos, because I am an artist. And that’s ok. I’m showcasing a brand, and like any other brand, I create pretty images that will sell my brand better.

Instagram is Hard.

*S/O to my cracked iPhone.