If you’re serious about growing your influence for free, then you better run over to your to-do list and write POST REGULARLY ON SOCIAL MEDIA in bold letters. Then highlight it.
In fact, if you want to be really specific, go ahead and write POST ON INSTAGRAM in bold letters.
We could say a lot about posting on Instagram, but in this article we’ll focus on some ways to share content from other creators. Coming up with a plan for what to post can be hard enough without actually having to take all the photos or make the images, so highlighting the work of others can be a good addition to your content plan.
But, you need to do it right.
People who post on Instagram work hard to create their posts, take their photos, edit them, craft their words, curate their hashtags, and all the rest.
You wouldn’t walk into an art gallery and snatch a painting off the wall, so you shouldn’t steal other people’s work from Instagram.
However, there are some ways to share other’s art in a way that’s not rude, mean, or downright wrong. There are ways to share other’s work on Instagram in a way that makes them look GOOD and creates symbiosis instead of leaving the artist feeling downright mad at you.
Something to note: The etiquette for Instagram is different for Facebook. Facebook is created as a tool for sharing. When you click “Share” on a post the original author gets benefit too because the content is still linked to them (in most cases). Instagram isn’t set up this way — it’s a canvas for original works! — so you need to be extra careful to give credit where it’s due.
Etiquette for Reposting Content on Instagram
The golden rule applies to Instagram too: Do to others what you would have them do to you.
- Optimally, get written permission from the photographer for each photo that you share.
The easiest way to do this is to send the Instagram creator a direct message.Be brief and kind; you could say something like “Hi, my name is Lisa and I feature lifestyle photos on my IG account. Your photo of ……… caught my eye and I’d love to feature it on my feed. Would you be willing to let me repost your photo? I will definitely give you credit and encourage people to check out your beautiful feed. Thanks!”You won’t hear back at all from some of the people you contact; you can assume that they get hundreds of messages a day and just can’t keep up. But you will likely hear back from others, some with a “No thanks” and some with a “Sure!”
When you hear a yes you’ll be able to repost those photos confidently, knowing that you made another photographer look good. You’ll look good too, and it’s likely that the creator will be open to collaborations in the future.
- Never use photos without attributing them to the photographer.If you do share something without getting written permission, be sure to put “Photo Credit @account_name” prominently in your photo caption. You could even say “This photo is from @account_name… be sure to check them out for more beautiful photos!”
- If you repost something and the creator asks you to remove it, graciously comply
If you give credit for a photo you’ve reposted, you might get a message from the photographer asking you to remove it. If this happens, respond kindly and quickly remove the post.
- Make the photographer look great!
If you follow rules #1 and #2 you should be good here! Most creators want more followers and exposure, so keep this in mind when you plan your reposts.
- If you didn’t take the photo, don’t act like you did.
Okay, duh. If you follow the above tips you won’t have a problem with this one. Don’t worry about trying to look like SuperWoman who does everything and ALSO takes her own pictures. It’s okay to feature other people on your feed, just don’t be sneaky about it.
Now here are some nitty-gritty details on how to actually reshare photos on Instagram.
How to download photos off Instagram
If you’re browsing any webpage on your desktop or phone, you can usually download any image you see. It’s easy: Hover over the photo, right click on it (or Cntrl + Click on some macs), and you’ll see an option to “Save Photo.” You can choose this and easily save the photo to your computer or phone.
(Even Facebook lets you download photos if you go to a photo and choose Options > Download.)
However, with Instagram photos there’s no such option to “save photo.” Even if you’re on a desktop computer you won’t have an option to save the photo.
If you need to download or save a photo from Instagram, you need to go through an extra step. Thankfully, there are a number of free and easy websites that allow you to enter the URL (website link) from an Instagram post and download the image that way. This can be handy even if you need to download a photo that YOU posted on Instagram but no longer have access to.
One easy site to use is https://insta-downloader.net/. I like it because it’s extrememly straightforward without giving me a lot of spammy content and ads.
Depending on the photo download option you choose, there are typically four easy steps to downloading your photo from Instagram:
- Visit a website like https://insta-downloader.net/
- Go to the Instagram photo you want to download and copy the URL. If you’re on a desktop you can just copy and paste the website address in the bar (like https://www.instagram.com/p/B4wA00WHJ–/). If you’re on your phone, click the “Three Dots” in the upper-right corner and choose Copy Link.
- Paste the URL/link into the bar on the Instagram Downloader site and click Download
- You’ll most likely get a view of the image(s). From here you’ll be able to either download the photo if you’re on a desktop (right click and choose “Save Photo”) or save the photo to your phone (tap and hold the photo to see your saving options.)
How to Repost Photos & Content on Instagram
You can also use a Reposting app to re-share posts from other Instagram content creators. This might be an easier option, just be sure to follow the etiquette rules when you’re sharing. (Optimally, connect with the author to ask if you may repost their creations!)
There are a number of apps available for this. Many are free or have a free version. If you’re interested in using a Reposting app, check out this article from Make Use Of that reviews some Instagram repost apps.
I recommend leaving the “watermark” on reposted posts… this clearly shows the original author’s Instagram handle for easy attribution.
Bonus Sharing Tip: Don’t Forget Instagram Stories
Finally: One of the easiest and most expected ways to “Repost” content on Instagram is through stories. Most accounts give the option to “Add post to your story” when you click the Share/Rocket/Send button below a post. This method won’t add a beautiful pic to your feed but it is a seamless way to get some easy content that also highlights another creator!