Good morning, everyone! I’ve really been wanting to do some blog posts like this to offer some tips and advice for nail artists and nail techs who are new to using a blogging platform, website, social media, and/or YouTube. So, I’m starting off with my top 10 tips for nail Instagrammers! Let’s go!
If you’re going to start an online forum and/or social media account for your nail art, I would highly recommend starting with Instagram. It’s very easy to learn and adapt to the set up. Here’s some screenshots of my Instagram (@threesixtynails) to help you out when you get started:
First is your main account screen. This where you can edit your profile, see who’s following you/how many followers you have, see who you’re following, and view your posts/Story.
Second is your Direct Message or “DM” screen where you can send private messages to other Instagrammers. You can also use this for collaboration groups. This messaging system is quite like texting, except for the ability to send a “heart” that looks like the heart you give when you double tap a post and to un-send messages. DM is really handy for getting in touch with other nail artists, and is a great tool to get acquainted with fellow nail artists the nail community.
Third is your Instagram Story where you can add videos, messages, and pictures that disappear after 24 hours. This is really handy for things such as announcements or pics that don’t necessarily need a permanent post.
And fourth is the screen where you’ll see who’s liked your posts, any comments you receive, tags, and more.
So, now that you know the basics, here’s my general advice for nail Instagrammers from my FAQ page and the top ten tips. Enjoy!
“Try to post daily. Post things that you enjoy and that you hope others will enjoy! Don’t stress if your follower growth slows for periods of time; this happens to everyone, including me. 🙂 Just have fun with what you’re posting, generally follow back nail/makeup-centric accounts, and stay active in your account.”
#1 – Post Nail Art you’re Proud of
Scenario: You just did your nails and you don’t really love how they turned out. To post or not to post? It’s up to you. If you think they’re good enough and you 60%-40% like how they turned out, take a good picture and post. But, if you don’t feel good posting them on social media, you absolutely don’t have to. It’ll help your account if you feel confident in the artwork you post.
#2 – Blurry, Fuzzy, Dark, or Hard-to-See Pictures?
It can take a while to learn how to take good pictures of the nail art you work so hard on. The first thing is to pick a hand position; it can be consistent or you can change it up from photo to photo. You (or your client, if you’re a nail tech) can model with an object or a polish bottle, or nothing at all. Once you’ve got your hand position selected, find a place to take a picture that has good artificial or natural lighting; it also needs a good background, such as a pretty pattern or a piece of white paper. If your background is distracting (like a bedroom or floor), it takes away from your nail art and lowers the professionalism/quality. If the photo is too dark, then it makes it hard to see your nail art. You can totally use your phone for pictures–you don’t need a professional camera. If you’re using your phone or a camera without a tripod, be sure you steady your hand and take at least 3 to 6 photos in quick succession. This should ensure that you get at least one photo that’s focused, has good lighting, and isn’t blurry. Practice a lot and you’ll get there! 🙂
#3 – Posting Daily, Interacting with Followers, and Being Responsible
Great! Now that your photos are all good, it’s time to post! My number one tip for Instagram is to POST DAILY. If you can’t manage it daily, then at least try for three times a week. If you post once and then don’t post until two weeks later, it shows your audience that you’re inconsistent in updating your feed; if you have constant posts, they’re more likely follow and look forward to what you’re doing. It’s also really, really good to interact with your followers. When you see a new nail/beauty follower pop up, it’s good to generally do follow-for-follow. But be sure it’s a quality account that you actually want to follow. Go like some of the new nail/beauty-related accounts posts, leave a comment, let them know you’ve seen them come through and that you’ve checked out their content. Also, be responsible about who’s following you; to create a positive and quality environment, make sure any spam/weird accounts are blocked/ignored. If you get a negative/odd/spam comment or DM, just delete it and ignore it.
#4 – Captions and Hashtags
When you post a picture, you generally, if not always, want to add a caption, just a little message to go with your post. You can add emojis to add some fun to the words and make an impact. Keep the captions relatively short and be sure it has something to do with what’s in the picture it goes with. You can use hashtags to help your posts get some attention from people who’ll enjoy them. So, try this: instead of using a universal hashtags like #love, #wow, #cute, etc., use specific hashtags like #nailblog, #nailstagram, #nailartist, etc.
#5 – Personal vs. Professional
Chances is are, when you start a nail art account, you want to have content about nails, right? That’s what your quality followers are following you for–nails. However, if you start to post personal things like a blurry picture of your breakfast, a snapshot of your kids playing outside, or a selfie of you with a new hairdo, this will start to turn people away from your account. If they come to you to see what you did on your nails today, they may not really want to see selfies and low-quality photos of food. If you enjoy posting more personal things like that, I suggest getting a separate account or a private account for family and friends to see. Keeping your feed nail-centric and professional is important to gain a following. A non-nail-related post is okay, just not every five minutes. 🙂
#6 – Number of Followers
NUMBER ONE: DO NOT STRESS. It takes a very long time to collect a following; it does not happen overnight. There isn’t a point in buying your followers, because in the end, you still only have twenty people who care. Refer to the famous saying “Quality, not quantity” and know that there will be a number of followers who actually care about what you’re doing, want to interact, and want to engage with you. Yes, there’s something to be said about having a bigger following on social media, and getting more attention, but it doesn’t just mean becoming famous and getting sent free stuff; it’s the engagement of the number of followers you have, not the actual number.
#7 – Profile
You only have a few hundred characters to describe your feed when you create a profile. Also, be sure that you put in the name of your account or your name into the bold name line instead of “GIVEAWAY GOING ON NOW” or “HUFFLEPUFF MEMBER”; if you don’t want to put your name or account name, try something like “Just a Girl and her Nails” or “Nail Art, Manis, etc.” Then, for your profile, put some info about yourself/your account. If you have a website or a YouTube channel, put the names or insert the link. You don’t need a profile, but it really helps to engage your followers.
#8 – Videos???
It’s really good to post videos on Instagram. Instagram videos have to be under one minute, but in that minute, you can pack a lot of punch. If you’ve made a full length video and want to promote on Instagram, condense it into a couple of clips with a caption that says something like “see the full video on ______”. If you make only Instagram videos, then just record them normally and speed them up.
#9 – Product Reviews
It’s really good to spotlight products on your account and use company hashtags. It may get the attention of companies and you could benefit greatly from that!
#10 – Have Fun! 🙂
Most importantly, above any of this other stuff, have fun. I know people say this all the time about everything, but it’s true. Having a nail art platform online started with you having a joy in creating nail art and having a passion for this industry; don’t let stress of an Instagram account, YouTube, blog, or other online forum take away from that. Just have fun, and you’ll go far! 🙂
I hope you found these helpful! I hope to do a lot more posts like this across this month, and in the future. Comment below what “nail artist/nail artist online” advice/tips you’d like to see posts for!
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Have a polished rest of your day! 🙂
– Cali, host of threesixtynails