Since starting my bookstagram back in February I have seen a steady growth on my page. While I do wish it grew as quickly as my Twitter at times, I feel that Instagram can be particularly difficult to master. That being said, I decided to put together my Top 5 Bookstagram Tips to help fellow bookstagrammers!
1. Interact and support other people’s content
This is probably one of my biggest bookstagram tips out of all of the five. I have seen so much progress since taking advantage of Bookstagram Follow Threads on Twitter. Don’t just use them to drop your own link, follow other people too! Like their photo’s and leave a comment or two. We are a supportive community and I don’t know about you guys but when I notice someone supporting me I instantly want to go return the gesture. I must mention though, don’t be that guy. Do not comment on people’s pictures asking them to follow you or comment or whatever. Just don’t do it. It’s rude and disrespectful to that persons content.
A lot of people also like to take part in follow Fridays where they list accounts they like and want to share with their followers and will shout them out in their story or post for that day.
Instagram Engagement Chats are also an excellent way to not only drive likes and comments to your own posts but to support your friends too. In honour of this post I’d actually like to try starting my own, so if you are interested in taking part please comment down below and make sure to include your bookstagram handle so I can find you and add you to it!
2. Utilize Hashtags On Your Posts
Hashtags, hashtags, hashtags! Use all the hashtags. Instagram limits users to 30 hashtags per post – this is counted across captions AND comments. If you try to post 20 in your caption and another 20 in your first comment, the comment will not post. In Stories, the hashtag limit is 10 per Story.
If you are stuck for choosing which hashtags to use in your posts I try to at least tag the name of the book(s) and the author(s) featured. I also use a really helpful app called in HashTags. You type in a key word and it searches for all the most popular hashtags relating to that word. To the left is an example of what comes up when I search “books” in the popular hashtags section. I regularly use this if I need to be quick with an upload and I don’t have time to sit and meticulously pick out individual hashtags for a post. Simply copy and paste and it even gives you the option to include a divider if you would like a gap between your caption and hashtags.
3. Be cohesive with your feed
Instagram is a visual platform. It’s all about sharing images. Your feed is where people will go to see what kind of content you post. If people can scroll down your feed and it’s really aesthetically pleasing they will want to follow to be part of it. Make your feed something people want to interact with, something that grabs peoples attention! So many people are sharing pictures of books, how can you make yours unique? Whether its the filter you use, the composition of items in the frame, the colour scheme. There are so many ways you can build a cohesive well constructed feed that people remember you for. I screenshotted some of my favourite bookstagram feeds:
Not everyone has the most expensive camera in the world. These days you don’t even need one with smartphones! No matter what kind of camera you use to take your pictures, try to think like a photographer. Are your photo’s well lit, are the books in focus, are the objects arranged in a pleasant composition in the frame. Thinking about these kinds of things will help you produce better quality photo’s for your feed.
4. Plan your feed ahead of time
This tip ties in with the previous one. Planning your feed ahead of time allows you to keep it cohesive. You can take your pictures, edit them and then place them together on a Feed Planner. I do this every week! I take a bunch of pictures, edit them and then upload them to an App called Garny. This way I can move them around and make sure that as my feed grows it looks how I want it to look. These wont post directly to your Instagram but they will give you a chance to put together your feed before uploading directly to your profile. It comes with a whole host of features:
- Add photos & videos & carousels
- Drag, drop and swap to rearrange
- Multiple Instagram accounts
- Schedule photos & videos & carousels (*For now Garny doesn’t auto-post to Instagram. Push notification is sent as a reminder)
- Caption a post
- Create & Add hashtag collections
5. Take advantage of your other platforms
Now for the last of my bookstagram tips! If, like me, you have a bookish twitter, blog, booktube and so on, use them! Not everyone who follows you on your Twitter might know about your bookstagram! Share it there too. Instagram gives you the option to share your posts on Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr when you create a new post. Use it! By cross pollinating in this way you can ensure your community follows you across all your platforms and can be fully involved in all forms of your online content.
After all, If you have supporters on other platforms already, they are far more likely to want to support you elsewhere too. Unlike the difficult task of bringing new faces who will need a little more convincing. Try to avoid spamming your social media links all over people’s feeds though, It just comes across like you’re only in it for the numbers and not interested in making genuine connections with people.
Don’t forget, if you are interested in being part of the bookstagram engagement chat. Please comment down below your booktagram handle so I can add you!