Unless you’re Kylie Jenner or Drake, your Instagram bio will have a significant impact on who decides to follow you or not.
It’s an essential step in optimizing your account, so it’s important to get it right before you start attracting tons of eyes.
Here are 5 simple Instagram bio tips to take your Instagram bio from meh to amazing!
Picture this: You’re at an invite-only event surrounded by influental CEOs and investors.
You start chatting with a guy named Jack who just so happens to be interested in your business and is also a die-hard fan of your favorite MLB team (the Atlanta Braves).
As the night goes on, you guys grab some drinks, make some jokes and eventually snap a selfie together. Jack mentions that it’s for Instagram.
When Jack goes to post the picture on Instagram, he asks for your username so he can tag and follow you.
You reply with “Ben78717.”
After you slowly go through the numbers in the username, Jack asks you to repeat it since he can’t find anyone with that username.
You repeat it slower than the first time, and Jack mentions that he forgot to include the ‘1’.
“Alright, got it. That’s a pretty tough username,” he says while laughing.
Is that how you want to be remembered? The guy with the tough username that nobody will remember?
Sadly, this is a common occurrence with average people, creatives, businesses and business owners.
With businesses, you’ll regularly see them using underscores and periods to get the username they so deeply desire.
While it’s not bad to have one underscore or period, it starts getting more confusing and unprofessional with each one you add.
Alright, enough with the bad examples. On to the good usernames.
While it’s ideal to register the exact-match username for your company, sometimes those handles are taken and you have to settle for the next best thing.
So, let’s take a look at a good username that isn’t just the name of the company. Usernames that avoid underscores, numbers and periods.
That’s Louboutin, the well-known luxury footwear company. And their username is awesome.
Notice how they added “world” to the end of their username to make it more memorable, while also staying professional and simple.
If you’re having trouble coming up with a professional looking/sounding username, take a look at some popular brands’ handles for inspiration.
If you still can’t come up with anything, feel free to contact me here and I’ll help you brainstorm usernames free of charge.
Explain what you do (in a specific + fun way)
You only have 150 characters to explain yourself or your company, so use it wisely.
Your Instagram bio should be similar to the ATF (above the fold) section of a website – it should tell the visitor exactly what you do and the benefits of following you, in a fun & specific way.
Instead of writing “Business owner, blogger, mom” in your bio, try to be a bit more specific and fun.
You can maybe change that to “CEO @__, Writing things @__, Mommy of 2 angels. Follow my journey across the world!”
Notice how much more specific and interesting the second one is?
Let’s look at another example.
If you’re a t-shirt business, your bio may rea….you know what, let’s search IG and see what some clothing companies are really putting in their bio.
So, I literally just searched Instagram for the hashtag #tshirt. Here’s what I found.
This tells me nothing about what exactly they sell and who they’re trying to sell to. Selling “to the world” is a bad idea. You want to sell to a specific niche.
So I took a look at the company’s website to get a better feel for what they are actually selling. Come to find out, they sell “Haitian Pride” shirts and some money-making, inspirational shirts.
So, let’s upgrade this bio. How about this:
“#HaitianPride [insert Haitian color emojis/Haitian flag]. Grab your one-of-a-kind Haitian Pride tee & many other styles here: [emoji pointing to the link in the bio]”
This upgraded bio not only narrows down the audience to Haitians, but it also tempts the visitor reading the bio to click the link to check out the cool “one-of-a-kind” shirt.
Notice the amount of blank space? This is something you never want to do.
Try to get as close to 150 characters as you can.
So, let’s upgrade this one. How does this sound?:
“Show your faith like never before! Our high quality Christian apparel is right for every occasion. Available for men, women and children!”
I’ve now confirmed to the visitor that we sell Christian apparel for “all occasions” and for men, women and children. I also used a keyword that Christians know well – “faith.”
It’s extremely important to let people know what you do for many reasons.
For 1, it’s the first thing people will read before they decide to follow you.
It takes effort to follow a user (unless you’re automating it), so people want to know exactly who they’re following and if it’s going to be worth the effort.
And for 2, after someone has been following you for a long time, they may forget who you are and why they followed you in the first place.
In this case, your bio is now being used as a reminder and can prevent unfollows from longtime followers.
Keywords are important for everything online, and Instagram bios are no different.
When people are looking to follow new people, they search.
They search for hashtags to look at pictures and they search for keywords to find new people to follow.
When they search for keywords and click on the ‘People’ tab, your goal is to show up in the top 20 for that keyword being searched.
How do you do this?
- Choose a longtail keyword that relates to what your account is about
- Insert that keyword into the ‘Name’ field of your IG bio
Example: Let’s say I’m an entrepreneur and want to rank for the keyword ‘entrepreneur’. This is unlikely to happen because there are thousands of huge accounts that utilize that keyword and they will always be at the top of the search results.
So, we need to get a bit more specific. I can travel wherever I want and still continue working from my computer, so I guess that makes me a “lifestyle entrepreneur.”
After putting ‘Lifestyle Entrepreneur’ as our name, here’s how the search results look.
We now appear near the top of search results for that specific keyword, whereas we were nowhere to be found when searching the keyword ‘entrepreneur’.
Using basic SEO knowledge and understanding the way Instagram search works can greatly benefit your visibility and organic traffic on the platform.
Ah, emojis. The ultimate way to spice up your Instagram bio.
Emojis are like images, they provoke emotion and draw the visitors in.
This makes the finger pointing downwards emoji (?) ideal for pointing to the link in your bio. It adds that extra emphasis to click the link.
Emojis are also great for the those who just skim through your bio.
Some people will not read through a big wall of text, but if you add in a few emojis, those people will instantly become more interested in what you have to say.
They will also feel less overwhelmed by that giant wall of text.
Some great examples of emoji-friendly bios are below:
It is important to know that there is such thing as too many emojis.
You don’t want to over-do it.
Here’s one example of using too many emojis:
Emojis are a pivotal component of the Instagram bio, and it’s important to use them strategically.
Format for a nice, clean look
While formatting is tricky on Instagram, it’s something that is required for the perfect bio.
Take a look at all of the emoji-friendly screenshots above. That is what formatting looks like.
Here’s how you can achieve this look:
- Open the Notes app (if on iOS) or the Facebook app
- Copy your bio from Instagram
- Paste the text into Notes/Facebook status
- Hit the ‘Return’ key on your keyboard to produce line breaks in the desired spot(s)
- Copy the text (with line breaks)
- Paste the text back into Instagram
It’s that simple! Now your bio will look extra crisp and clean!
You only get 1 link, do not miss your chance to show
..your awesome product/service!
There is only one way people can go from Instagram to web browser – and that’s from the link in your bio.
This is precious real estate that should be taken seriously.
Whether you’re selling a product, service or just trying to collect emails, you should always have a link where the visitor can do something (buy, sign up, etc) immediately.
This means linking to a landing page or product page, not the homepage.
It is also wise to switch up the link on a weekly/bi-weekly basis, especially if you have more than 15-20k followers. (This is a strategy I will write more about in the near future.)
If the link to your page is long, or you want to add parameters (to track in Analytics), you should definitely be using a short link (Bit.ly, Goo.gl, etc).
One thing to consider is that people are becoming more aware of online scams every day, so some people will not click on a masked link because they think it might be a “virus” or a “scam.”
But, as long as your page doesn’t appear spammy, you should not be worried about visitors not clicking the masked short link.
Over to you
Hopefully you took some notes (mental notes count) and plan on implementing some of these tips into your own bio!
If you have any questions or just want to say thanks for the tips, I’d love to see your face in the comments section down below!