How to become #InstaFamous

One of the required blog posts for my Digital Media module was to give my top 5 tips for visual storytelling, and after scrolling through 10’s of articles in an attempt to find inspiration, I feel like everyone said more or less the same thing. Which is why for my article I’ve decided to add a little twist to it and give you my top 5 tips for the perfect Instagram image/video (because let’s be honest what is more important than getting likes on your selfies, I joke of course).

With Instagram now being a full time career for some of us, in addition to companies now being able to advertise through their app, it is much more than a duck face selfie. So whether you’re a company looking for advertising tips or just a small town girl with big dreams of becoming the next selfie Queen, I hope you can make use of my top 5 visual storytelling tips


Authenticity is something that in everyday life we really value as humans so why should our photos be any different? With images including real people being 2x more likely to lead to a sale , getting the perfect shot is crucial. Posed, forced to smile models are a huge no no, as consumers we are bombarded with hundreds of images a day, and we can easily identify a generic, stock photo. One suggestion to test this is if you can write a decent caption relating to your image, then your image is completely wrong, as proposed by these guys.

Airbnb get an A in Authenticity for this pic!

And for the selfie takers this means that for the love of god first and foremost, stop it with the Facetune app. Blurring your skin to the point where you resemble Voldermort is never a good look, and makes you look like a fraud. Ask your friends to take authentic photo’s of you doing things you love, more candid, less posy pictures, and you’re much more likely to rake in the likes.

Take risks

Possibly my favourite tip, and far easier for those reading who aren’t working on behalf of a multimillion pound organisation but if you are, don’t fret, you can still leave your comfort zone without causing too much controversy. For example, evoke emotions that will get people talking, you can see the top 10 here, they’re all positive, but that doesn’t mean you should be afraid to make people cry through your pictures to truly get people talking.

PETA’s page have the perfect balance of positive imagery such as cute animals and quotes and hard hitting shock imagery such as this one. Yes, it’s not nice to look at, but it gets people talking and is the exact type of risk I’m talking about.

Match your brand voice

This sounds soooo obvious but it is often done poorly by even the biggest brands, yes we’re looking at you House of Fraser and your Emojinal campaign.  Knowing who is buying your products or services and matching your images accordingly is crucial. For example, if you have a younger audience capturing aspirational photos will grab their attention however images including family and stability are more likely to suit the older generations.

Frank Body is known for their, or shall I say, his, cheeky tone of voice and the imagery they use matches this perfectly!

The idea of creating a brand voice may sound a little confusing if you’re just a ‘normal’ person reading this however trust me it can be easily implemented into your posts. If you’re a dog loving vegetarian…show it! If your bible is Kim K’s selfie book show us your best pout and latest pair of shoes. Simply decide on what your own personal values and beliefs are and create innovative images to portray it.

Visuals include videos too!

I know this post has had a strong focus on images however that doesn’t mean that videos should be ignored. Instagram most recently extended their video length to 60 seconds, four times the amount it used to be, and making the most of that time is crucial. For those mere mortals taking videos through the app on their smartphone, take advantage of the pause play filter to include lots of shorter clips. On the other hand, if you do have the budget to take videos using high quality camera’s I would definitely advise you do so and upload separately! Photojojo suggests using music, working with fast and slow motion and filters to truly make your video stand out.

Converse use techniques such as fast and slow mo, music and different angles to name a few,  if you want to learn from the best check out their page!


Saving the most important until last, this tip can be done by anyone whether it be with a smartphone, or the best camera in the world. In this case it’s not the quality of the image, but the way it’s constructed. Nostalgia, joy or modernity, you want to make your audience feel something and there are multiple ways to do so..

Content Marketing Magazine suggest that paying attention to textures, lighting, angles and perspectives can all change the way in which an image is construed. For those who can’t afford the latest gear, this can be as easy as editing your picture through apps such as Afterlight to change the mood of the same image. No matter how you do it the end goal is the same; heightening your followers senses.

For those who aren’t in the know, this is the most liked pic on Instagram. The simple, close up taken on what seems to be a smartphone (it’s not the best quality is it really) most certainly gives us the ‘feels.’

So, whether you’re seeking Instafame to make a bit extra cash, or you’re the marketing exec of Louis Vuitton and you’ve somehow found yourself here, I hope my top 5 tips have helped and I would LOVE to hear yours in the comments below!


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