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  • Writer's pictureJenny Hudleston

Common Mistakes Made on Instagram

Growing your Instagram account doesn’t happen overnight, it can take months or even years to build up a loyal following that sees you as a reliable and trustworthy brand. If you’re struggling to grow on Instagram, you might be making one of these common mistakes.

Low-Quality Photos

Because Instagram is a visual platform, it’s all about the look, meaning first impressions really matter. Users will often scan your Instagram grid, making an instant judgment on whether you’re worth following. If customers are greeted with blurry or low-quality images, it’ll make you look unprofessional and they are unlikely to hit that follow button.

Ok, so we’re not all professional photographers with fancy cameras, lighting rigs and bags of time on our hands to set up the perfect shot, but you don’t have to be. There are a few simple things you can do to make sure your photos are Instagram ready!

Lighting is the Key- Lighting can make or break a photo so always try and take your shot in natural lighting as these pictures usually come out best. If natural lighting is limited, I would recommend adjusting the lighting levels before posting. There are a number of tools and programmes out there that will allow you to tweak levels such as Photoshop, Adobe Lightroom CC or Instagram itself.

Don’t Forget the Background - Sometimes we’re so focused on capturing the subject, we forget to look at its surroundings. There have been so many times I’ve seen a potentially beautiful shot that has been ruined by a messy tabletop in the background or someone picking their nose to the side of the shot. Before taking your photo, tidy away any equipment or clutter that shouldn’t be in the shot.

Work Different Angles - Photos taken from the same position every time can be boring. Make sure to take photos from different angles and positions. Mixing up the angles and views will create a more visually appealing Instagram profile, engaging more of your followers and keeping things interesting.

Buying Likes and Followers

It might seem like an obvious no-no, but this trend is one that isn’t slowing down. A lot of businesses have started to buy likes and followers on Instagram in order to be perceived as a ‘trusted’ and ‘popular’ brand. Ok, so you might attract more followers by doing this, but you run the risk of discrediting your business, not to mention the legal ramifications.

There are other ways to grow your following and customer engagement, try one of these…

Engage With Your Followers. Take the time to build relationships with your following by responding to their comments and leaving your own responses on other relevant posts.

Run a Competition. Competitions are a great way of attracting new followers as well as increasing your engagement rate. Ask followers to tag their friends in the comments, like your post and follow your account in order to win a prize. It won’t take long until you see your follower count rise.

Paid Advertising. Paid advertising is a quick way of reaching a wider audience without breaking the bank. Target a ‘lookalike’ audience (users who have similar interests to your current audience) or create a tailored advertising campaign to attract a different kind of audience.

Posting Too Much or Too Little

The big question is how often should I post?

Unfortunately, there’s no right or wrong answer as there are so many factors you need to take into consideration such as the number of followers, business type, engagement rate and the social media platform itself.

Instagram is different from other platforms such as Twitter and Facebook as posting frequently isn’t actually that important, what’s more important is making sure you’re posting consistently. If you’re posting 5 times a day then suddenly start posting once a week, you are likely to see a decrease inengagement and number of followers.

Here are a couple of tips for posting on Instagram…

Plan Ahead – No matter how many times you decide to post in a day, a week, a month, make sure you plan what content you’ll be posting and whether you can sustain this level of posting in the long run.

Pay Attention to Analytics – An easy way of answering this question is to conduct experiments. Post once a day for a week then up it to twice a day for a week then compare the results. You’ll learn what works best and whether your audience wants to hear more from you or whether you need to dial it back.

Quality Rather than Quantity

Before posting, you should always ask yourself, why am I posting this? If you can’t answer, then maybe you need to rethink your content strategy.

Whether you’re looking to drive traffic to your website, tell followers about a new product or boost sales, every post should be engaging and have a specific message or purpose, grabbing the attention of your followers.

Think of Instagram as a platform to share only your business highlights, this way, you can focus on putting more effort into the really important stuff. It’s about quality content rather than bombarding people with pointless posts.


Thanks for reading my Avem blog! If you think your business could benefit from social media or content marketing, get in touch! You can call us on 01423 714984 or drop us an email:

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