Using Content Created By Students To Make Your Instagram Great

By Posted in - Audience engagement journey & Audience Research & Content & Curate & Higher Education & Instagram & Internal Communication & Social Media & Student Marketing on April 23rd, 2015 0 Comments

What are your first thoughts when you hear the word Instagram?

Images, filters and hashtags are all likely to be popular choices. Instagram users across the globe use the app to create dynamic and visually pleasing images and share them with their friends, who will comment and like as appropriate (depending how good the lighting on your selfie is).

Ellie has already given you ten great tips for using Instagram, but have you thought about using it as a tool to find out more about your students?

This month we are talking about the wonder that is curation, and what better content to curate than that of your target audiences.

In this post I will outline how you can use features of Instagram to make your own account appeal to your students (a kind of Instagram-ception).


Hashtags are used in abundance on the app, and can range from the basic ‘#love’ to the weird ‘#puddlegram’. Chances are, if you type in a word on Instagram hashtag search, there will already be a collection of images there to scroll through.

By searching hashtags relevant to your institution, a great opportunity presents itself to gain an insight into what students are saying about the university. The results can range from images of the university, to events they are attending. This offers a valuable view into what students think about their university experience and can aid you in creating relevant content for them on your own official university Instagram account.

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Location Tagging

By tagging your location in your own content, you can access images that have also been location tagged. Similar to the benefits of hashtags, these could provide your institution with authentic images to use and most importantly, they won’t look like they’re straight out of your prospectus. We have evidence that this is not what students want – all will be revealed in our Instagram report coming soon…

NOTE: When using anybody else’s images on Instagram, ensure you attribute them clearly. Or alternatively, use Repost or Regram apps.

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Explore Feed

Not feeling particularly specific, but still interested in what your network and people around you are enjoying on Instagram? If this is the case, the Explore feed is for you. The images featured are a collection of content your network is interested in, along with a few thrown in based on the images you have liked. This is a great way to find fresh content, which could be relevant to you and your students, and perhaps give you some more ideas of what to post.

It is a good idea to be following your students on Instagram, as a result your Explore Feed will be far more useful.

It would be handy to have some suggestions from Instagram about who to follow wouldn’t it? Well you’re in luck because they have that covered. While you’re on the Explore feed swipe left and the ‘People’ feature will appear – complete with a list of relevant people you may want to follow on the app if you’re stuck.

Student Takeovers

What could be a more authentic representation of student life than getting an actual student to take over your Instagram for a day or longer? This will give your audience a unique insight into the student experience and will also let them know that you are actively engaging with your students and involving them in your social media activity.

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Can’t get enough of Instagram and interested in how people use it to interact and create content? Well we have good news; our very own Instagram report will be available for your reading pleasure VERY soon. Keep an eye on our Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn pages for it later this month.

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