Hey hey friends! Today I want to chat about the bookish corner of Instagram that we call Bookstagram.
Back when I decided to really take blogging seriously, I did a little studying which consisted of youtube videos and really paying attention to the content I subscribed to and I came to the conclusion I needed to utilize Instagram. In my opinion, regardless of your platform-whether you’re a blogger, YouTuber, podcaster..you have to utilize another forum to interact with your audience and boost your content. For me, I decided to give Bookstagram a try.
For me personally, I have a couple reasons why I love doing Bookstagram.
- It gets me out of the house and forces me to spend time alone. As a Mom it is so easy to put everyone’s needs ahead of my own and not make alone time a priority. With wanting to continue to create content for my Bookstagram, I have to get up and get out to do so to stick with the theme of my feed.
- With the theme of my feed being what I’m reading and the latte I’m drinking, I hit a point where I realized I needed to switch it up. I had found a coffee shop that I loved but I needed to seek more. I am lucky that my city has tons. Wanting to switch it up for my feed gave me the encouragement to go explore more coffee shops and cafes which has lead to meeting really cool baristas and just different vibes from place to place.
Now I am by no means an expert and I don’t have a super huge following but I still wanted to share a few things I’ve learned and figured out along the way in the time I’ve had my account.
- First things first: do your research and learn what you can about Instagram’s algorithm. I watched video on top of video discussions about this and read a few articles on it. Do your research so you understand how it works. It is this system that dictates the relevancy of your post. Followers may or may not even know you posted because of it.
- Interact with your followers and people you follow. Interaction plays a part into the algorithm. The more you’ve interacted with someone, the more likely they are to see your post on their feed.
- Visibility is important. This is part of the engagement factor. Especially with the accounts that are bigger than yours–it’s so easy to assume an account with 65K followers won’t see your comment or interact with you, but this isn’t necessarily true. As soon as you see their post, comment and engage with them. The earlier your comment is posted, the better your chances of it being seen. You want to get your name out there.
- Use hashtags! Some popular ones are #Bookstagram #Bookstagrammer #Bibliophile #WhatImReadingNow When people search these hashtags, there is the possibility they will come across your post!
To end off, I want to share a few more tips/pieces of advice that I really think are helpful..a bit typical and cliche but do actually make a difference:
- Natural Lighting is the MVP..I remember getting to the coffee shop when it first opened and it’d still be dark outside. Taking photos was so frustrating and even more frustrating when I’d try and edit them. I learned quickly how much of a life saver natural lighting is.
- Find your theme and make it work. Don’t be afraid to switch it up though. I think a lot of people feel like “all of my photos have to look like it’s autumn all year.” If that’s not what you want to do, then Don’t do it! I rarely change up the theme of my content. For the most part it is always a book and coffee.. sometimes a book and a smoothie, but how I edit has been switched up. There are times when I want my photos to be a bit warmer and times when I want them to be brighter. I’m okay with switching it up and haven’t had any backlash from doing so. Does this cause me to be summoned to the bottom of the list by the algorithm gods..maybe, but I post what I’m happy with and at the end of the day, that’s what matters to me.
- Don’t overwhelm yourself. It is so easy to get caught up in the feeling of having to stay relevant. Don’t post just to post. Post when you have something to say, when you have a photo you love and want to share with the world. I love when a friend will comment on a photo telling me they know when I post, it’s going to be something thoughtful. That’s what I want to be known for. Saying what I mean, sharing pieces of real life and relatable stuff.
- Utilize the Stories feature. Especially on days where I’m not actually posting on my feed, the stories is so useful. I will highlight a passage from what I’m reading and loved. If I have book mail, I’ll use stories to do an unboxing. I also use it for behind the bookstagrammer like when I’m at the coffee shop..just taking photos of my surroundings, my coffee when I first get it..a look into what is going on prior to or after the photo that eventually shows up on my feed.
- Lastly, have fun with it! don’t be afraid to take breaks if needed. Instagram/Bookstagram is a cool way to engage with other people who love reading, but let’s be real..this is 2019 and everything can feel like a competition. Don’t let it feel that way and if it does..it’s okay to take a step back and re-evaluate why you’re doing it in the first place.
Hope this is some helpful input. I would love to see some tips from other Bookstagrammers! If you’re a Bookstagrammer, share with me one of your biggest pieces of advice.