Today, we talk to Lisa Dawson, of @_lisa_dawson_
My Instagram story…
I’ve been using Instagram for years for family photos but only started posting pictures of my home when we moved to a new house and it was a blank canvas. I started taking room shots and hashtagging and before I knew it, I’d started gaining followers. I started posting in January 2016 with 35 followers and now have in excess of 50k. Since I’ve started posting, I now write a weekly interiors blog, launched my own business, run monthly Styling Your Home workshops across the country with my friend (met on Instagram), Dee Campling and work closely with brands to help them increase their following and sales on social media.
My top tips…
Take your pictures in daylight
This is essential. Wonky, dark, out of focus just won’t cut it. I had my house photographed by a professional for a magazine and he said that all the best photographs are taken in natural light. I have recently upgraded to an Olympus Pen E camera but prior to that have always had good results using my iPhone. Avoid taking photographs with lights or lamps on, it changes the tone of the picture and reflects. The best posts are evenly distributed and have plenty to look at. When you are looking at your subject, make sure that it’s evenly balanced (don’t just put a chair in the corner and ignore the rest of the room). Balance it out with a plant or a side table.
Post at prime time
There are two prime times: before 9am and after 6.30 pm. These are the best times to post and will ensure you get the maximum audience possible. Lunchtime is also good as it’s when the USA comes online and there’s plenty of big interior accounts across the pond. There are certain days that are better to post than others – Sundays and Mondays are notoriously busy; Tuesday and Wednesday are far quieter.
Stick to a niche
This is essential. You need to have your account focused on interiors if you want to attract followers. The biggest accounts only post about their particular niche. It doesn’t matter what your niche is, as long as you are consistent in theme. Selfies and holiday pics will turn your followers off. They are following you because they want to see your lovely home, not your dinner. That’s what Instagram Stories are for. You can post anything on Instagram Stories – they last for 24 hours and you can vlog, link and photograph to your heart’s content.
Communicate with people
It’s really important that you communicate with people on Instagram, it works the algorithm and ensures that your account is prioritised in feeds. If someone takes the time to comment on your post, then make sure you reply. The same applies to others – if someone has taken the time and effort to post a good picture, comment on it. Engagement will increase your stats and gain you followers.
Keep it real
It’s easy to get carried away with gaining followers and likes. Instagram is a super friendly community, particularly interior wise, and it’s fairly addictive. The main thing to remember is that it should be enjoyable and non competitive. If you are consistent and engage with others, your following will increase organically. Don’t ever be tempted to buy followers – your likes will not correspond with your following.