Your Guide to Using Instagram

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There’s often a concern that posting on Instagram won’t help anything because of the idea of communicating in an echo chamber. Many think “well if most of my followers have the same values and political beliefs that I have, why is it worth posting anything?” It’s worth it. You never know if you’re somebody’s “most radical friend.” What you post influences what your friends post, so you’re reaching many more people than just your followers when you post onto Instagram. 


Campaign State: National/Multi-State
Action Type: Social Media
Coordinator: Emily Von Weise
 

Instagram Best Practice

1. Guide to creating posts

  • When creating an instagram post, make sure it has eye catching visuals 
  • If you’re creating a post to share important information make the text graphic and bold, with few other distractions on the post. 
  • When posting information make sure you back it up with context, facts, and always include an action item. 
    • E.g. if you’re posting about voter suppression in the united states include a slide “What is voter suppression?”, with a brief description; “What does it look like?”, with real world factual examples of modern day voter suppression;  “who does it affect?”, with fact-based information on communities disproportionately affected by voter suppression; and “What can I do about it?”, with specific action items — direct people to specific petitions to get nationwide vote by mail approved, direct them to state specific movements, and tell them to spread the word. 
  • It is easy to create eye grabbing instagram posts with free online software. Canva.com is free to use, offers a variety of Instagram post layout options, and has an incredible library of templates and graphics to use. 
  • If preparing a video to be posted on instagram, make sure you film it vertically so it can easily be posted onto your instagram story, or onto instagram tv. 
    • If you’re posting a video onto your account and it’s longer than a minute, you can post the full length version onto instagram tv (IGTV) and users will be able to continue watching the rest of the video on IGTV by clicking a button. 
 

2. Guide to sharing posts

  • While you can opt to create your own posts, it can be just as effective to share the posts of others onto your Instagram story. 
  • To start, follow activists, politicians, and organizations that interest and inspire you. Some great places to start are @Togetherfor2020, @ACLU, @rockthevote, 
    • After following accounts, instagram will recommend suggested accounts to follow based on your interests. 
  • If an account posts something you think is valuable, and you’d like to share it with your followers, share it right to your story. Often this leads to a chain effect. If your post resonates with your followers, many will feel compelled to share this post to their own story. 
 

3. Interesting Instagram Data Points

  • 500 million people use instagram stories every day (source: Hootsuite) 
  • 67% of Instagram users are 18-29, with 47% 30-49, 23% 50-64, and 8% 65+, making it a great way to reach younger audiences. (source: pew research) 
  • 14% of adults use Instagram as a news source (source: pew research), a number that has surely grown in the past four months with the proliferation of informational posts about COVID and Racial Justice on instagram. 
  • The best time to post on Instagram based on global engagement statistics are 6 am EST Tuesday – Friday, 12 pm – 4 pm EST on weekdays, and 11 am on Saturdays (source: hubspot) 
 
     
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