Why I Deleted All My Instagram Posts
Last night on a whim, I decided to delete all my photos I've posted on Instagram. I went from 100 something to 1. It's not the first time I've done this at all. To be honest, I'm still discovering my Instagram style. I just can't figure that out, and I feel like I don't really have a reason or purpose when I do. Sometimes I'll post a message on there, but it's nothing you haven't already seen on my blog. Well, I'm starting fresh. This time, I think I have an idea of what I've been doing wrong, and it's time to make a plan.
What I did wrong...
I've posted way too much. Whenever I needed to have a message, post it. Whenever I get a picture that must be shared, post it. The list goes on. Then I would run out of photos when I really DID need to share something, and they'd all be flashback images that didn't go well with what was already posted.
What I posted has no real overall purpose. What's the point posting about traveling and what not? A behind the scenes, I suppose. A message about faith? Yeah, alright. None of it was carefully thought out though, and it would only get posted to Instagram. I like to keep Facebook as more of an updates only type of thing, because I know there's already a ton of people's lives out there. Twitter is more for interacting and opinions. Instagram is for all the things, people. This leads me to my next problem though.
My photos were not organized. Both by the design and their captions/purpose. I started with white type frames around each photo, then I did normal photos, then I went back to the white frame, then I did normal again, then another type of frame, then normal, then I played with lighting and on and on. It was a mess, and I just need to start fresh. Your social media is a reflection of your brand, so I have to take that into consideration. I also have to take into consideration WHY I want to be posting and only post when that reason comes up.
My feed doesn't go well with my other social media or blog. It's just this big random pile of photos about me and all this other, well...junk that is taking up space. Again, I need to find my style with design AND why/when I post! Those reasons need to line up with Sparkles by Ashlee the blog.
What is Sparkles by Ashlee, then?
So what is my brand? I came up with some words to describe it and the photos I love typically look like.
Sparkly - obviously.
Clean - this is a big one. I love a professional and flowing design (I just got rid of Disqus because while it may be easier, it sucks with carrying on my design - Squarespace you win again), and that is what my photos are. Now that I think about it, I hate editing them. I like the clean feel iPhones have, and I want to carry that through.
Real - I'm not going to cover things up. It is what it is, and I want to help people with their struggles. This portrays my captions, mainly, but it could be applied to the filters too.
Bold - I am passionate about what I believe, so my photos I want to be too. I've found that filters actually wreck your photos on Instagram. They make them have more visible pixels. I'm totally done with filters - I'll be using apps instead. I'm also done with frames because if my photos are going to be bold why would I put a frame around them when that's downsizing them?
Witty - I like to have some fun when sharing my messages and stories, so I want to incorporate fun poses and fun captions.
Positive - I'm going to tell it like it is, but I also will have hope in there because there is hope. I want my photos to be positive, whether that be a picture of God's creation or fun times, whatever. Yes, we need to be real and not just have the perfect side of our lives, but we need to have hope. Positive photos can even portray that hope themselves.
So, how/when/why am I going to post?
How: With no filters or frames, just my photos reflecting my personality. Will that be sparkly? Oh, it's bound to be at points! Will that be clean? Yes, because I am a photo perfectionist and will not post blurry/fuzzy photos. Sorry not sorry. Will that be real? Of course, I love photos, and they're always a reflection of me and the things that represent Sparkles by Ashlee. Will that be bold? Yes, the photos will stand out, and my captions will be written as if they were an excerpt of a blog post - whether that be a deep post or a catching up post. Will that be witty? Yes, I promise. Will that be positive? Of course. I know there's hope, and my message is about sharing that.
How you can post better: Make a list of what describes your brand or just you! Then see how you can align your photos with those keywords.
When: I have a new post that needs to be shared, an important update, or a photo that I have a message with. Not just "Beautiful fall day..." Nope. That can be saved for a catching up blog post - my feed is about promoting my journey and mission and what I learn through that PLUS some behind the scenes and real. The blog can do the rest.
When you should post: Whatever is according to your purpose by having social media. If that is to update friends, post when you need to update them and so on. Definitely have a purpose for what you're doing though - even if you're not a blogger.
Why I will post: To share something in my journey or a message I feel you can use or just to make you laugh and know you're not alone. That is #thesparkledjourney.