Instragram is a great social media platform for photographers. Being primarily focused on images, the popular platform allows for talented photographers to develop a feed that provides their followers a sense of who they are and what they do. So what happens when who you are stays the same, but what you do changes?
What does one do when they decide to focus more on a specific genre and less on what they’ve built their feed and following on? Do you keep your previous posts public so new followers get a sense of where you come from, or do you demolish your feed with proverbial dynamite and start all over? Do you ditch your old account entirely and create another one, starting the process of gaining followers all over again? Or do you try to juggle multiple accounts, all displaying a different side of your work?
For the last several months I’ve had a love hate relationship with Instagram (hate, mostly). Not so much because of the platform itself, but because I haven’t been happy with the feed that I’ve randomly and inattentively put together over the last couple of years. I started off in photography photographing some of the tattoo industry's most popular models. The work was rewarding in the sense that I got to meet a lot of interesting people and it afforded me the opportunity to be published in a few magazines and even a book.
As my interest for photography grew into something more developed and focused, I found myself awkwardly posting images of half-naked women a day after shooting family portraits (or vice versa). It left my feed with a strange vibe to say the least. Worst case scenario, perhaps someone was visiting my feed to see samples of my portraiture and instead stumbled upon a lovely gallery of NSFW content with the occasional family friendly images scattered throughout.
I decided to make a change. To re-brand you could say. This way my feed would better reflect what is that I do now, and not so much of the racy stuff I did before. Prior to doing so, a few thoughts crossed my mind:
Creating Another Account
Most would agree that the easiest way to re-brand on Instagram would be to simply create another account and post images specific to the genre you want to be associated with. This is fine, but I honestly don’t feel like losing the followers I’ve obtained up to this point and I already feel as though I'm juggling enough social media accounts as it is. Managing another account just isn't something I'm interested in at this point.
My first thought was to just say "screw it" and delete everything. This led to the consideration of those who had followed me specifically for the racy stuff. That thought process didn’t last much longer than it took me to realize those followers added no monetary value to my business anyway - and I’m a cold-hearted bastard sometimes (not really).
Considering that Instagram is designed to be used on mobile devices, there’s typically a lot of thumbing involved. Just the thought of manually deleting hundreds of images made my thumbs sore, so I searched the interewebs for a solution.
Upon browsing the internet for an easy way to delete multiple images on Instrgram at once, I came across a recommendation for the app called InstaCleaner. The app offers other tools to help manage your Instagram account but I was only interested in the ability to delete a bunch of images at once, which after paying $4.99, I was able to do.
Is It All Worth It?
Was demolishing my previous Instagram feed even worth it? Who knows. I think it will be beneficial for my business, but that’s not to say it’s the best thing for you. I do feel that having a feed with a consistent theme is important in conveying who you are and what you do to potential clients if you’re using Instagram to promote your photography business. For me, that idea is reason enough to take a chance and make a change in the appearance of my own Instagram account. If that makes me further appreciate my body of work and helps more efficiently deliver a message to my followers and potential clients, it’s completely worth it.
Have you ever remodeled or re-branded your Instagram account? Do you have certain rules you’ve set regarding how, when, and why you post on Instagram? Share in the comments below.