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  • Writer's pictureAnnie-Mai Hodge

Should you be following these Instagram tips?

Updated: Apr 6, 2023

You may have seen this viral TikTok, where Amy claims she has just come off a call with Instagram and they told her the “best practices” for posting on IG. And recently, I have seen people on LinkedIn sharing the same advice from an unknown Instagram rep. So, let's go through them together:

They won’t push your Reels to as many people if you use content that has a watermark in the video, such as TikTok, you should edit natively in the app: We all know that editing in Instagram is an AWFUL experience, and it was announced two years ago that they wouldn’t necessarily promote recycled content. As well as this, IG said that it wouldn’t promote Reels that are blurry, uploaded with a border around it or has the majority of the image covered by text. Again, this was two years ago. If you open the Instagram app now and go through the Reels – you will see *endless* videos that break all of these rules with a HUGE amount of views and engagement.

UPDATE (30/03/2023) Adam Mosseri recently went on IG live to say that if you use a third party app, it will NOT get down ranked unless it is watermarked - *this could be ANY sort of logo, not just TikTok* - it'll be recommended less in explore.

But I don't think this is the be all and end all. As I said, many Reels go viral that break ALL of IG's "best practice rules" - you could follow these rules until you're blue but it doesn't mean you're producing great content that resonates with your audience.

Algorithm favours those who post to grid every day: There’s not really anything to suggest this. Post at a rate that works for you, posting great content a couple of times a week is better than posting shitty content seven days a week.

UPDATE (30/03/2023): Adam Mosseri recently went on IG live to say that there are o magic rules. It's gotta be aligned with what you want to say and with what you want to get out of Instagram - that could be posting once a month or twice a day. It depends what you're trying to get done.

The algorithm favours vertical videos: This is obviously optimal and better for user experience but it doesn't necessarily mean that your content will be favoured.

Again, look through Reels and see *how many* are not vertical and how well they have performed.

Only use three hashtags, five tops: This was released on IG’s Creators page in 2021, but this doesn’t mean that you’ll be penalised for using more hashtags. Just make sure you do some research and that you’re using hashtags which are relevant and a mixture of high to low volume.

UPDATE (30/03/2023): Adam Mosseri recently went on IG live to say that hashtags won't significantly change your reach but it's good practice to use them when appropriate - do a handful. Don't use too many, it probably just annoys people.

Optimise caption for search visibility: You don’t need hashtags to show up on the Explore page, so this is great advice and something that you should be implementing across social platforms. Just remember not to keyword stuff and make it natural.

Algorithm favours that use trending sounds: Your content has a chance of getting more viability if you’re taking part in a trend or using popular audio, but it’s not guaranteed – you need to be making good, solid content.

Post six stories a day, two in the morning, two in the afternoon and two in the evening: Again, nothing at all to suggest that this is best practice. Adam Mosseri, Head of Instagram, actually suggested earlier this year that you should be posting “a couple of feed posts per week, and a couple of Stories per day” – this helps with maximising viability and engagement. So no, you don’t need to be posting six Stories per day and posting in-feed EVERY day.

Engage with every comment RIGHT after you post: This might be possible as a small account, but this isn’t possible with the majority of Instagram accounts and shocker, there’s nothing to suggest that this is best practice.

Blue Checkmark: Amy said that the IG rep said they WON’T be charging people in the US for a Blue Checkmark – well, I guess they were lying or this entire conversation was made up because they have recently introduced Meta Verified.

So, there we have it. Most of these tips are outdated, basic or outright untrue. Take this as a sign to stop taking advice from random people on the internet with unknown or questionable sources.

*no hate to this creator, just my thoughts.

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