March 9, 2018 | How To
Get all the likes: 6 ways to up your Insta game
By Linnea G.
Yes, traveling expands your horizons, gives you a peek into other cultures, and allows you to meet some cool people. But, part of the fun of travel is also showing off the awesome stuff you did/ate/jumped into/saw (and making all your friends jealous). Because if you don’t share it on Instagram…did it really happen?
As the person who manages the EF Ultimate Break Instagram account (#followus), I’m always trying new ways to get all the likes. Here are some of my favorites that’ll help you get all the like, too.
Simple, right? But it needs to be said. Always use a geotag. This is when you “Add Location” to the top of your Instagram post. This ensures that when someone searches the place you’re in, your post could show up. You might even get lucky and show up in the “Explore” feed. Instagram sources photos for the “Explore” feed by location, things you like and people you follow. Yay, geography!
2. Play with hashtags
Use hashtags to extend the reach of your post (more people = more ❤️s). You can keep it simple with #rome or #travel, but you can also go crazy with something like #wheninromeeatgelato.
When you’re figuring out what hashtags to use, try a mix of generic ones that are more likely to be searched (#italy #travel #adventure). Then, you can put in more specific ones (#ultimatebreak #thisisultimate #ilikewritinglonghashtags). I’ve found that posting 7-10 hashtags is best. No one likes the 30-hashtag person. Also, putting hashtags in your first comment keeps the image caption clean, and it just looks better (I like to put my favorite one in the caption). It's that simple.
3. Tags & mentions
This doesn’t mean tag anyone and everyone. Only tag the people that it makes sense to tag; tag @efultimatebreak (because you’re on an EF Ultimate Break trip), tag your friend who’s in the picture or the people you’re with at that moment, tag the weird statue of the boar as your boyfriend. You get the gist. This is another way to get more exposure. You can “mention” the important person or brand (*cough cough* @efultimatebreak) in your caption and then tag people/brands in the image.
4. Choose a look & feel and stick with it
Go look at some of your favorite Instagram profiles; you’ll notice all of their pictures “feel” similar. Try to stick with a specific filter, method, or subject. Although our Instagram has pictures with slightly different filters and times of day, our profile stays cohesive because our subject is always travel.
5. Time of day when you post
Time of day is a tricky thing. It is not easy to determine the perfect time to post to get the most likes as it changes day to day, depending on who follows you. Also, with the new algorithm, posts stay higher in people’s feeds for more time. A couple tips though: post when people are more likely to be on their phones—lunch, commuting times, before bed. And the other thing—avoid posting when people are sleeping. This is good to keep in mind when you’re traveling in a different time zone!
6. The rule of thirds and other photography tips
Instagram is all about the pics, so knowing a little about photography helps. The rule of thirds simply means breaking up the composition of your picture in thirds. The focus of your image would therefore take up one, or maybe two thirds. Turn on the grid lines in your photo settings to help with this (Settings > Photo & Camera > Grid). This isn’t to say that a perfectly centered focus or symmetrical picture isn’t just as good (Wes Anderson movies, anyone?). Try out different tactics and figure out your own photography style. Also try playing with the lighting by tapping the screen of your phone and dragging the little line next to yellow box up or down. And finally, turn on HDR (just like TV—HD pictures are better looking).
Bonus tip (and shameless plug):
If you’re on an EF Ultimate Break trip be sure to tag us and use #ThisIsUltimate. We might just end up sharing your picture on our page for some Insta fame.