Simply Smart Instagram tips to up your game

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In a week where the Interwebz is freaking out about the upcoming Instagram Algorithm changes, I have a few hacks that will help you to get the results you need from Instagram (side note: no suggestion of asking the world to turn on your notifications here, the jury’s still out on that one). 

Instagram is the perfect platform for connecting with your audience in a visual way. Once considered as the place for selfies, dinner plates and drunk pouting, Instagram has proved us all wrong. Over the past couple of years it has become an incredibly powerful tool for businesses. Here are a few hacks to help you get the most out of it:

Leverage your visual content

Yes, Instagram may be filled exclusively with visuals, but they’re also popular on other channels.

Re-air those fantastic images wherever you can. IFTTT is a nifty little tool for helping out with this. Explore the recipes created by other users, or experiment with one of these:


Back up your graphics and make it easy to Buffer across different platforms by storing them in a single place.
IFTTT Recipe: Auto save Instagram photos to Evernote in a running diary log connects instagram to evernote

Hitting the “share to Twitter” button in the Instagram app shares a link to your image, not the image itself. Save your followers the effort of an extra click by using this recipe instead.
IFTTT Recipe: Share your Instagram pics as native Twitter photos connects instagram to twitter

The Facebook algorithm prefers Instagram photos, to those uploaded directly. Take advantage of that by sharing relevant images to your business page.
IFTTT Recipe: When you post to Instagram with a specific #hashtag, upload it to your Facebook Page connects instagram to facebook-pages

Extend the life of your beautifully edited Instagram uploads by sharing them on the other cornerstone of visual content, Pinterest.
IFTTT Recipe: From Instagram with a specific hashtag/s to a Pinterest board connects instagram to pinterest

Embrace hashtag etiquette

You may be used to the 140 character limit on Twitter, but Instagram is a different story altogether. You have the option to add up to 30 hashtags alongside any post, and this is a brilliant way to get “found” by new users”.

However, there is an etiquette. Remember that most users view their Instagram feed on a smartphone – 30 hashtags can easily take up half a screen or more… and that just gets annoying. Instead, include a handful of hashtags with your post, and pop the rest in the first comment.

Your post will still show up in any searches, and you won’t annoy anyone into unfollowing – win/win!

Get creative

A varied, dynamic feed is simply more interesting to follow than a feed filled with very similar posts. One of the benefits of Instagram is that you have the chance to show the personality behind the business. Why waste the opportunity?

  • Share snaps of the people behind the brand hard at work
  • Play around with Instagram video – 15 seconds of film (and the option to edit and filter)
  • Show the “making of” your products and services
  • Have some fun and create your own GIFs with an app such as Party Party
  • Create striking quotes with one of the (many, many) apps out there – I like Wordswag, Typograma and Pablo by Buffer

But wait – there’s more!

For more ingenious Instagram hacks, grab our Simply Smart Instagram Guide by clicking right here:


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