Do it for the gram


Social media can have a way of creating FOMO, but it can also be a source of motivation, especially when you love living a healthy, active lifestyle. Plus, not only can you find inspiration on social media for your workouts and meals, but being active with your own account can help keep you accountable on those days you’re just not feeling it. Don’t feel like heading to the gym but already tweeted that you are. That can give you the extra nudge you need to get there. When it comes to Instagram, here are some ways you can improve your Instagram account and gain more followers.

Develop your niche

Followers like to know what they’re going to get from your account. If it’s vibrant, healthy meals you’re passionate about, carve that out as your niche. Or perhaps it’s jump rope workouts, such as Janine Delaney (learn more about this workout she swears by on page 46).

Cultivate your Instagram aesthetic

Play with presets on photo editing apps such as VSCO to establish a consistent look to your photos. Perhaps it’s moody and dark or rosy and feminine. People on social media will often view your account as a grid, so having a polished look is a way to capture their attention.

Use hashtags well

Using hashtags will expose your account to more people on Instagram than just your followers. Use ones that aren’t used very frequently (#fit is overused, for example) because, if you do, your post will just get lost in the thousands of posts with commonly used hashtags. Keep your tags concise and specific. For example, rather than just #mother, try #fitmom.

Create compelling food posts

A quick snap of your meal isn’t going to draw many “likes.” Make sure you have good lighting, and style the photo so that it’s a vignette people will be drawn to, such as featuring some of the ingredients alongside your smoothie bowl. Photograph your food from an angle that works best for the dish; a beautifully plated salad may be shot best from above, however, a juicy burger will often look best snapped from the side so that its height and toppings can be seen.

Write engaging captions

Look to have a conversation with your followers. Ask questions. Reply to comments. The idea is to cultivate a community within your followers. Develop your own unique voice with your captions, and since Instagram captions are cut off after a few lines (followers must click to read the rest of the caption), put the important info in the front of your caption.

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