Whether you love them or hate them, there’s no denying it: celebrities, especially those like the Kardashians, have millions of followers because they’re famous for something (or not).
But what about the rest of us, the average Joes and Janes of the world, who just want more followers on Instagram and Snapchat? While we may not attain celebrity status, there are a few ways to obtain some success with your Instagram and Snapchat pics.
1. Have a Hook
One of the best ways to stand out from the crowd is to be unique and have a hook. Not everyone cares about what you’re having for dinner or those shots where you’re attempting to be artsy.
Instead, you should have an angle to get people to care. Some ideas include a dedicated pet account, take photos of your favorite collectible figurine in various locales or meme-worthy pics.
The benefit of having an angle includes reaching out beyond your usual circle of friends who like your photos. You’ll develop a style, and if you keep it up regularly, others should soon recognize your flair.
2. Embrace the #hashtag
Hashtags have taken over the world, so now everything should include a hashtag for maximum reachability. After all, Instagram even allows users to follow hashtags, making it easier than ever to keep up with trends or just their likes.
Good starting points are #photooftheday, #catsofinstagram, or #dogsofinstagram (for cat or dog photos), or whatever else you can think of that fits your image. Or, you can come up with your own hashtags that don’t already exist.
3. Write Fun Captions
Even though Instagram and Snapchat are all about the photos and videos, you shouldn’t forget about captions. When your media has a caption attached, it injects your personality into it.
When you add a funny caption to a sad or even serious selfie, it shows off your humorous side and can make someone laugh. It’s memorable, personable, and having captions means you don’t just have a photo with a mess of hashtags attached—no one needs that.
Every photo has a story behind it. However, it’s not always obvious, and captions are great at conveying narratives to your audience.
4. Lighting Is Everything
Good lighting is the biggest key factor in a good selfie or portrait. The lighting should hit all the right places, and provide a flawless glow on the subject. While our devices all have flash to help with night shots, it definitely isn’t as flattering as natural light.
A good recommendation for getting “studio” lighting for your selfies is the official Kardashian-approved Lumee case. These cases feature LED light strips on the front and back of the case (depending on the model you get) that illuminate the subject with natural light, so no more shadows on your face.
It’s also great for ambient lighting in darker settings, like that fancy steak dinner in a romantic steakhouse with dim lights.
The Lumee has several versions and is available for multiple devices. However, I’d recommend the Duo model, as I have it for the iPhone 8 Plus and it works well. Lumee cases can be purchased directly from their website or for cheaper on Amazon.
5. Positioning and Angles
For a good selfie, you should angle the phone above your head and angle it downwards. It’s supposed to be flattering, and it certainly looks better than from below your face. You should also learn what other angles work for your figure, because everyone isn’t built the same.
For portraits, there are a few posing tricks that give the best results. First, you’ll want a two-thirds turn away from the camera gives an illusion of a slimmer profile. Second, chins should be down, similar to selfies, since this helps open up the eyes more.
Diagonal lines break up the verticality of daily life, and you achieve this effect by having hands on the hip or pocket. Portrait subjects won’t appear stiff with this pose and it adds a bit of sass into the photo itself.
6. Post Regularly and Often
For others to remember you on social media, you must make your presence known to others. The best way to do this is to be active and post on a regular basis. However, watch how often you post—no one likes spam, especially since people can turn on notifications when new content gets posted.
With Instagram, most users quickly scroll through their feeds, so you want to post high-quality content (we have some great Instagram tips) to get people’s attention. This means great visuals, and captions and hashtags help extend your reach.
Since Instagram no longer shows photos chronologically in the feed, high-quality content is key to getting seen. The better quality the content, the longer lifespan it has as well.
7. Make Those Snaps Count
For Snapchat, it’s all about short shelf life. Usually, snaps only exist for about one to 10 seconds before they’re gone forever. But there are also the newer Stories, where they last for up to 24 hours. That’s still short, but the limitation forces you to think more creatively to stand out.
Regardless of platform, it’s good to set up a schedule of when to post. This way, people know when to expect a new update from you, and it gets you used to post often enough to be relevant to other Snappers.
It’s Just the Beginning of Your Stardom
While you won’t be the next Kardashian and making millions from your posts, these helpful tips could give you a taste of success on social media.