I have been on Insta the life of my blog, so some 16 months now. It has been a slow grower, but then in the early days I could go weeks, if not longer, without posting, I didn’t know what a hashtag was and I had certainly never heard of a ‘pod’. Deep down I have grown to love it, I think it helps that I get it now, I understand how it works and what I like to use it for.
My biggest love of Insta is the amazing photos. Not all obvs, but some are just amaze-balls. Some people do take a fabulous photo and I can’t help but smile at them. I am sure you have all heard of the #WorldOfLittles, which is the brain child of Pat from White Camelias. This hashtag is full of beautiful photos and Pat herself is no stranger to publishing a gorgeous capture. I confess I do use this hashtag but I am totally letting the team down, apologies Pat.
I LOVE this photo from Pat’s feed.
It’s not just the pretty mummy blogger photos either, I love the stylish interiors, a well placed flat lay, the perfectly filtered smoothie or pair of shoes. I am a sucker for all these.
It doesn’t end here either I am a nosy bugger and some of the people I follow share snaps of their homes, intentionally I am not being stalkery. Be it for a product promo, blog post or just nice or novel furniture. I love interiors and love having a look at someone else’s home and getting inspiration from them. I love to see where people are going on their holidays, especially if it is a child friendly place where the sun shines that I might be able to frequent. I love seeing what people are wearing and what they’re doing. Mum’s night out? Excellent, have a drink for me. Trip to the park for 17th time that week, you have my sympathy, but it won’t stop me having a gander.
One of my favs.
It has unearthed a new form of enjoyment, dare I say passion and that is photography. It is also easy reading. It takes seconds to flick through photo after photo and see what people are up to, and it’s social. You can get a nice little dialogue going over a photo but then the clue is in the title eh, social media.
One of the most inspirational and until recently unbeknownst to me aspects of IG is its potential. Potential for moulin and opportunities. For the savvy amongst you, and no I am not including myself in that, it can be a real earner. It is basically advertising space and if you get it right (not annoying, that is the key) it can be a game changer for you and/or your brand. Frankly this amazes me.
Despite this I am not completely full of gooey eyed love. There are a couple of niggles that really get me. I should probably start with a disclaimer here – this isn’t a personal attack on anyone or any feed in particular. Neither do I blame or dislike people who do the following things, it’s just, for me, it bugs.
My first issue is the concept of needing a niche. I am not saying you don’t need a niche, you probably do, my problem is I don’t really have one. Or at least I can’t decide what it is. At first my feed was a free for all. I started to develop it into just those pretty photos that I love so much from other people’s feeds. The clean shots, the glamorous ones, the perfect scenery. The problem with this though often meant I was going a long time between posts, see my next point. I then flip between the ‘beautiful’ approach and the ‘sharing my day’ approach where I post a more generic picture with very little extraordinary quality about it. Sometimes because I have a story to share and sometimes because I just want to share the picture, glam or not. So what is my niche? Glam? Pretty? Parenting? Lifestyle? Travel? Aesthetically pleasing? Ranty? – well yes to all and then some.
My top 9 from 2016 – you tell me, is there a niche here? Hmm, granted my kids feature a lot but I don’t think that is representative of my feed.
My not so glam photo – a big mac, because I was hungover.
My other issue, and this is probably the sensitive one, and where the disclaimer kicks in. It is the ‘boring feeds’. I use that term with love because boring is of course subjective. I don’t believe it is the persons fault as it is often the ethos behind growing your following. I am not adverse to growing a following, at all, but it is the requirement to post at certain times a day every day. What’s the old saying? If you don’t have anything nice to say don’t say it all, well I can’t help but think, if you don’t have anything good to post… Posting the same old snaps for posting sake, well, yawn. Perhaps this is why my daily posting is a bit sporadic. Some days I can post 2 -3 times a day, others once or nothing. If I haven’t posted it is probably because we have had a crappy day and I have nothing worthy of cluttering your feed with. That being said perhaps this makes me my own worst enemy. Perhaps if I stored the good photos and posted them on those quite days, or if I posted whatever is going on that day irrespective of my so say ‘niche’, my aesthetic standards, or quest for variety or something interesting, perhaps my following will explode and I’ll become on of those inspirational types who have put food on the table from their Instagram. After all there is a reason for posting at certain times a day with certain hashtags…
My first ever IG post.
Ultimately it’s a tricky one and there is no right or wrong and perhaps I just shouldn’t over think it. I’ll keep at my endless search for my niche, keep trying to post the pretty pictures or the ones that may be worthy of a chuckle or a funny story. I’ll keep supporting my fellow bloggers in their quest for insta fame or just growth and I’ll keep sharing the insta love and enjoying the gorgeous photos.
What about you? What do you think? Do you love instagram? Do you have a photo preference? A Niche? Is IG your wage packet? I’d love to hear from you.