I understand many people’s frustration with instagram, I’ve been there. But if you are an architect or interior designer, there are certain things you should be doing to engage and increase your following as well as get your business out there. As I’ve been slowly growing my following and upping my instagram game over the past few years, I’ve learned a few tips that I’d love to share in hopes that any other great architects and interior designers out there don’t give up hope from instagram.
Make sure your grid is not haphazard
You’ve seen all those beautifully curated grids and wondered how those people are so good at getting the perfect content put together in such an elegant way. I’m here to let you know that many of those brands have someone else managing their accounts. If you have the dough to swing that - do it. But if like me, you don’t, don’t worry. One thing I have found that is helpful is laying out your grid in diamonds. What I mean is that every other image should be similar in aesthetic and color tones. Here is mine as an example - which is by no means perfect, but illustrates what I’m talking about. This idea of curated visual cohesiveness may seem obvious as we are in a visual industry, but don’t think that it happens so easily for every instagram account out there that looks great. It takes planning, collecting great images, and time.
Plan your posts with a planning tool
There are many instagram planning tools on the market, but I use Planoly. It has a free version, which I used for a little while before switching to the paid annual subscription. I try to plan out at least two weeks worth of posts. Sometimes I have the images planned and don’t add the caption until a day or two before - or if I’m slacking, the morning of. But this tool is critical to my ability to post good content daily that my audience wants to see. I like to use it as a research tool to peruse the design and architecture blogs for inspiration. Then when I see something I love, I add it to my planoly and worry about curating the grid later - that’s the great thing about it, you can constantly move around the images and update the captions up until the moment that it’s posted. Planoly also lets you categorize and save your hashtags and even has a scheduling feature if you don’t physically like posting.
Stock photos can be your friend
If you are just getting started out and don’t have a ton of your own work to show - use stock images! I had no idea half of the people I follow were using stock images to fluff up their grids and I’ve only recently started doing this. I still aim to have inspiration images and my own images more often than not - but sometimes it calls for a really beautiful stock image. It’s ok. As long as the images you use are on brand and you write a good caption, put them in there. I recommend using Unsplash which is free and you can choose whether or not you credit the photographer - it’s not required! Plus, the images are so so good.
Use hashtags that your ideal clients follow. I’d recommend starting here as well as looking at the people you want engage with and seeing what hashtags they are gravitating toward. You are allowed a maximum of 30 hashtags per post. There is much debate about whether it’s best to put the hashtags in the comments or on the caption. I do it on the caption, I’ve heard both options argued - bottom line is to use good hashtags and don’t overthink it as that can hold you up from performing in the first place!
Enjoy what you are putting out there
If you don’t enjoy it and you feel down on yourself, your audience will realize it. Even though I post every day, I do it because I want to. As long as you are consistent, you can do 3-4 times a week. Just make sure to stay engaged with your followers and your community and you should see your following grow.