Instagram, an App for Story Tellers

As a photographer, Instagram has become a great tool for sharing my work. With the ability to post high-quality photos in chronological order to my design, I can create an interesting page that represents my work in a fashion that stays to my style. Even further, Instagram has the story feature, which I find myself using for my photography almost daily. The best uses I find for myself is posting high lights of new work I am going to be releasing on my page and website. I also love using Instagram for building stories around the behind the scenes work of my larger photo shoots. Here I am sharing a story saved to my account with the behind the scenes work I did on a photo shoot using a medium format camera shooting on old Polaroid film. I also have another story with the behind the scenes work I had done on a large studio photo shoot.

Following Motherboard across multiple platforms and analyzing how they choose to utilize each social media network for the last few months, I have found some good, but bad habits they have with their internet presence. Focusing on Instagram, Motherboard has a decent account here. Their following is of a larger size at 83 thousand followers. This is tiny though compared to their parent company Vice, which sits at 2.2 million followers. Why is it that a company with a huge following can’t carry that same presence onto its smaller counter parts? From my time observing Motherboard, I see that their social media is lacking engagement and effort to feed fans content they can consume.

Motherboard in the past has taken advantage of the story feature in Instagram. Even further they have taken some of their better stories and saved them onto their page as highlights. This is a great move to keep well thought out stories alive and archived for fans to see at any point. The stories that have been posted have all been intriguing as well. They are produced outside of Instagram to fit the format and include lots of well-designed graphics that are eye catching and lead the audience to swipe up to read more of the story. In their on-site stories where they are posting videos during the time of the event, they keep to the start, middle, and ending format that tells a story. These are good as well with plenty of explanation to what’s happening at the event and videos that allow us to see what is visually is going on. What I haven’t seen from Motherboard is the use of live stories. Since I have begone following their page I haven’t seen any live videos. This may be due to them just not having the personnel to attended events that would make for great live videos. They may also not get priority that is likely saved to vices main page to attend large event worthy of a live video.

There is plenty of room for improvement for Motherboard to apply to their Instagram. The first issue I would tackle for mother board is frequency. As of right now Motherboard has no issue making frequent post. Looking at their feed they tend to post a photo or video that is linked to a story on their web page almost once a day. This is great for keeping their page relevant since it always leaves a post for people to see every day in their time line, but doesn’t draw in a crowd quite like stories do. The issue is the individual post tend to get lost in peoples timelines as they scroll through. Unless the photo or video is absolutely intriguing; most people are going to scroll through without considering what it is they are looking at from Motherboard. If Motherboard focused more on well produced stories I think they could draw in a more active audience. This is since a story catches a viewer in a space where they aren’t swiping up, but instead their whole screen space is consumed by the pages content for what ever time the story last. It may seem like a minor difference between a post and a story, but by being able to hold your audience to see just your content for a few seconds is a lot more effective than relying on them to swipe through and stopping at your post. Even further, if Motherboard can post more eye-catching stories that tease the audience to find out more, then the swipe up feature becomes their number one tool. Doing this more frequently would more than likely create an engaged audience better than their daily posting. Right now, their daily post rely on someone reading a description then opening their main page to follow a link in the bio. As silly as it may sound, social media users are lazy and very unlikely to go through this just to read an article. If the audience can see a well-produced a video though that leave them hanging and a simple option to swipe up, they are going to be much more willing to read further.