I recently joined a community of photographers from around the world, all engaging with each other via Instagram to help everybody build up their engagement organically. Instagram Pods
I immediately saw a rise in not only the engagement from the people in the group, but because people were engaging others also joined in the conversation. I started seeing faces on my activity page who I haven’t seen in months. My posts were reaching them again, because of dedicated interaction from others.
What is an Instagram pod? This is a quick explanation by the famous Instagram manager application Later, Instagram pods are private groups of a few Instagrammers, bloggers, or businesses that have similar audiences and the desire to increase their Instagram engagement and get more followers.
Jumper Media described it as, the goal of forming a Pod is to connect with a community of like-minded Instagrammers and help one another organically increase followers and engagement. I use the term organic because Instagram Pods are made of real people with real Instagram accounts liking and commenting on photos, for real.
After a few weeks in the group, I decided to see how many people in South Africa would be willing to commit to such a group. It does require a lot of commitment from every participant to truly benefit everybody in the group.
Why do people use Pods to help create more engagement?
When Instagram introduced it’s new algorithm in August 2016 it upset a lot of people, especially small business owners relying on their 100% reach and chronological feed.
How does Instagram’s algorithm work now?
Instead of seeing posts in reverse-chronological order, posts are displayed based on what Instagram believes is relevant and popular to each user. According to Instagram, the relevancy of a post is determined by the following characteristics:
• The likelihood the user is interested in the content.
• The relationship the user has with the person posting.
• The timeliness of the post.
The reason I decided to leave the large international group was that the admins allowed anybody into the group, the quality of work the people shared wasn’t something I wanted my brand to be associated with. The broad spectrum of photography was also something that didn’t work for me, from landscape, fine art studio portraiture, cityscapes, HDR (Oh my word, I thought this died out already) and heavy photo manipulation.
I am extremely proud of my work. I may not have the most incredible scenery or most amazing styling for my photos, but they’re mine. I always think about the images I’m posting, does it fit in with the colour scheme I currently have in mind, what am I posting in the description, does it fit my business voice? There is way more to Instagram then posting an image and hoping it reach your target client.
I believe every person deserves a chance to build their dream business and make a living doing so. Building your own business is something to be proud of, not every person has the courage to do that. Staying consistent with what (and when) you post is key to building a better and more engaging audience.
So, if you want to be part of an Instagram pod, dedicated to creatives with like minded views, complete the form below to receive the info pack I put together. It will include tips I learned to help build a more engaging Instagram presence.
PS. This is not just for wedding photographers, but also lifestyle/portrait photographers + videographers, coordinators, designers, florists, make-up artists or even bakers. Anybody with a beautiful instagram feed trying to get more engagement. I am however trying to limit this group to the South African market. Please also share this post with any industry friend you think would benefit from being in such a group.