Want to be a successful Instagram poet but not sure where to begin?
Instagram is a great place to showcase your works as a poet. There are a lot of success stories of poets using Instagram to gain huge followings and ultimately success.
So in this post, I will show you how you too can become an Instagram poet.
The rise of Instagram Poets
Many people believe that there is a rise of Insta poets after the success of Rupi Kaur but that’s not 100% accurate.
In 2013, Lang Leav, a Cambodian-Australian poet become popular on the Internet for her poetry.
Later she signed a book deal with Andrews McMeel, her publishing company. That book, Love & Misadventure, sold more than 150,000 copies.
Another poet named R.M Drake began sharing his poems on Tumblr and DeviantArt in 2011 and also made a huge impact in the poetry industry.
He has published 12 books with several being in the best sellers list internationally.
Currently, he has around 1.8 million followers on Instagram.
How To Become An Instagram Poet?
Since Rupi Kaur’s poetry on Instagram gained a lot of popularity, Instagram is now the go to choice for almost all poets including experts too.
It’s a great place for poets to gain a wider range of audiences and gain popularity without worrying about finding publishers and getting their poetry published.
Now, if you are reading this you probably have written some poems or you want to write some but don’t know how to publish your poems.
I would recommend that no matter what publishing platform you choose, write and post on Instagram as well.
And if you are just starting out, Instagram should be your first choice.
This is important because you can quickly get recognized and be known as a poet.
Here are some things you should consider if you decide to become an Instagram Poet.
1. Create a brandable Instagram Handle
No one is going to follow or read your poetry if it is from someone with a username like @cool123, @devilpoet98452.
First of all, it doesn’t seem professional and secondly these are hard to recognize and consider as brandable.
You should consider creating a profile with some creative names which show professionalism as well as have meaning.
So if you are creating a new profile on Instagram then make sure your Instagram handle depicts your personality as well as your work.
And if you already have an Instagram account make sure to change it accordingly.
Note: You should consider having the same username (handle) across every social media page as it will be easier for your followers to follow you on their favorite social media network. Like I have the same username (@writersxp) across every social network.
2. Maintain Your Profile
You should also consider having a closeup personal picture as your DP.
Don’t use just some random pictures or just quotes for your profile picture.
You should also have a well-written description. This could be either your personal bio, things you love, books or awards you’ve won, etc.
Show some sort of creativity while writing the bio. This is something people will read when they view your profile.
As Instagram also has an option to add a link in your profile, you can include the link of your website, books you published, etc to show some authenticity.
3. Maintain Aesthetic
Poetry is an art, so it is important that you should maintain that aesthetic.
That is, your Instagram page should depict the theme you are trying to portray to your readers.
You should stick to a proper theme for your Insta page if you want to stand out from the crowd.
As you know there are a lot of genres in poetry also, you should start with no more than two genres at a time.
And even then you should have a separate theme for both genres.
For example, you can choose a black background with white text for dark themed poetry and use a red background with black text for love poems.
Take an example from @antoniaspoetry. Here’s what her Instagram profile looks like.
This way your readers can differentiate between the two genres.
I suggest that you stick with one genre until you gather some followers for your poems.
Some of the things to consider for maintaining the aesthetic of your profile:
- Use simple readable fonts
- Don’t overdo pictures and colors, use just for emphasis
- Always stick with your theme
- Don’t use too many words in one image. Instead, break your poems into multiple images and post them together.
4. Post regularly
Consistency is the key to success and this proverb applies here too.
You should try to post every day if you can or you can make a schedule that you will post every alternate day.
This will keep you top of mind and show Instagram and your readers/followers that you are an active user and serious about your work.
If you are not sure when and at what time you should post then you can copy other Insta poets and then follow the same posting pattern.
Do an experiment yourself and choose what works best for you. If using Meta Business Suite to manage your posts, they also have suggestions on best times to post based on your followers.
The main thing here is that you should post regularly no matter if you have a weekly post only.
5. Use The Power Of Videos
Nowadays videos are doing extremely well on all social media sites.
And to grow as an Instagram poet you should use the power of videos to get quick engagements.
But As a poet you will not have ideas for videos.
Still if you have some creative ways to post videos use it to boost your presence.
I suggest that you write your poems and split the words across multiple images and then use tools like Windows Movie Maker, iMovie, or Lumen5 to create a video. This is just similar to having a presentation.
If you have some other ideas then please let me know so I can include here for those who want to become Instagram Poets.
6. Do Live Videos
Doing a live video more often can double up your engagement rate in no time.
And people love live videos as they are able to see their favorite authors and Poets and get a glimpse into their life.
You could show your working area, things you have been working on or writing, tools, apps, systems you use, etc.
And you can take questions from your readers and answer them live.
This will also boost your credibility and you can grow your Instagram poetry page at a much quicker speed.
7. Use Proper Hashtags
Literally I can’t emphasize enough how much #Hashtags mean on Instagram especially when you want to be found by more followers.
Basically Hashtags helps your Instagram posts be seen by people who were not following you.
Hashtags in Instagram helps a post be linked to a feed of related content with the same hashtags that other people are using.
So if you post a poem with relevant hashtags like #poems, the other people searching for the #poems will be able to see it and you may gain a following.
Some tips for using hashtags:
- Use only relevant hashtags and don’t go off topic.
- Don’t flood your post with hashtags. Instagram has a limit of 25 but that’s also too much. Use a maximum of 5-10 hashtags per post.
- Sometimes you should use hashtags in the comments to make your post look clean.
- Follow other poets on Instagram and copy their hashtags for more engagements.
You should engage with your followers as well as engage with other insta poets.
By engaging I mean that you should reply to the comments of your readers, reply to their DM, comment on other insta poet’s posts, share their works, take part in their live videos, etc.
This is a great way to build supporters who in turn will help you to grow also.
When you engage with other readers and poets on Instagram with the same passion you might find yourself with new followers.
9. Read a Lot
You cannot grow as a poet if you don’t read what other great poets have to offer.
Reading is the only way to know more and more about the poems and what makes a great poem.
As it’s an art you will continue to learn all your life.
So you should read the poems of great poets such as John Keats, P.B Shelly, Robert Lee Frost, William Wordsworth, etc.
These great poets and have a lot to teach.
You should follow some of the Insta poets and see what poems they are posting.
Read them too to know what works on Instagram.
10. Write A Lot
If you don’t write a poem you will not have anything to post on Instagram.
And if you want to be consistent on Instagram you have to write daily.
Make sure you allocate some time for writing daily. Make writing your habit.
11. Run Giveaways
Running a giveaway is the best way to market yourself or your work while gaining quick followers.
You can either giveaway a few copies of your ebook or help your readers in some other way.
You can do this by either organizing a contest like tag two friends to be eligible for the giveaway or share the post to enter into the giveaway.
This way your followers will spread your words with other fellow Instagrammers which in turn view your profile, and some may even follow you.
Also, giveaways are great if you are promoting your books and have a tight marketing budget.
The reason for poets on Instagram to organize giveaways is to establish quick engagement and draw more new followers.
12. Create Opportunities for Fellow Poets
Many people who follow you on Instagram for your poetry may also want to learn something from you.
Many may want to become a poet and publish their work and make a name for themselves.
And you can help them.
It is not that you have to spoon-feed them everything.
You can share details of poetry contests, or poetry submission sites which are accepting poetry, or tools you are using, etc.
Give something back to your readers that can help them. They follow you because deep down they also want to become like you, a published poet.
13. Learn and Experiment
You will not become a successful Instagram poet if you don’t experiment regularly.
Yes, that’s correct.
You should check what’s working for you and what’s working for other Insta poets. Then post according to that.
If some type of post with a certain background, font, or text is working well for others, try to switch to the working model without completely copying. It will be beneficial and critical for success.
Experiment with live videos, video posts, text posts, stories, and check what’s working for you.
Like live videos work for some Insta poets that doesn’t mean it will work for you as well. So don’t just copy what others are doing.
Instead, focus on what’s working for you and growing your following as an Instagram Poet.
There is no secret here. It’s a trial and error.
How To Became Successful in Instagram As A Poet [Small Case Study]
Rupi Kaur is an inspirational case study and since then the poetry word, especially in online form, has changed drastically.
Rupi Kaur’s first collection of poems Milk and Honey has sold 3.5 million copies and become the best selling poetry book beating The Odyssey.
But the thing is that she started her poetry career by posting on Tumblr in 2012 and later switched to Instagram.
But during that period, while posting poems on Instagram, she still didn’t earn enough money to pay for the “rent”.
Then Milk and Honey was published in 2014 and it made it to the New York Times bestsellers list in 2016.
Her success didn’t stop there. She has been mentioned in Forbes 30 under 30 list.
Now Rupi Kaur has 3 million Instagram followers.
Now according to the research 12 of the 20 best selling poets were Insta poets.
Half of the poetry books sold alone in the U.S were written by these dozen Insta poets.
You can also achieve success by being an Insta poet and can quickly gain an excellent opportunity to join the list of published poets.
It’s the time for poets to join Instagram and publish their poems as now Instagram is not just a mere social media platform.
It is a platform to showcase your talent and make a career at the same. With little or no barriers to entry.
You will find a lot of poets from beginners to expert who are on Instagram, posting poems and promoting their work.
Like everything, success comes to those who try, show up, and be consistent. With the ideas and tips I’ve shared with you today, I hope you can see that being an Instagram poet is possible. From there you can publish your own poetry books and continue to grow your readers.