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The Ultimate Guide to Marketing Your Art on Instagram: Engagement Edition

The Ultimate Guide to Marketing Your Art on Instagram: Engagement Edition

By Clint Watson
BoldBrush/FASO Founder & Art Fanatic

The engagement strategy is designed to get your posts seen and to build your follower number. Instagram rewards engagement, so a good strategy to “tell” Instagram that you and your followers are engaged is essential. Failing to have an effective engagement strategy is where most people falter on Instagram.


There are three overall strategies here. Firstly is that you need to post frequently, a lot more frequently than you probably realize. Frequent posters are rewarded by Instagram and their posts are shown to more people. Secondly, you need other people to like and comment on your posts. Our strategy to ensure that happens is that you are going to create an “Instagram engagement group”. Thirdly, you need to be engaged by liking and commenting on other people’s posts and responding to comments and followers on your account.

  • Form an Instagram engagement group as outlined below.
  • Get with 5 or more other artists with similar or larger audiences and agree to like and comment on each other’s posts.
  • This will increase the reach of your posts by greatly increasing the chance your post appears on the “explore page” of your colleagues followers.
  • Post daily. Preferably at least 2 or 3 times. Instagram’s algorithm places you in one of three classifications: 1. A daily poster. 2. A person who posts a few times a week. 3. A person who posts rarely. You want to be in the 1st, “daily poster” category if you want your posts to be seen more broadly.
  • You also want your 5 colleagues to be daily posters. You all need to be in the 1st, “daily poster” category
  • If you know any artists with a large following, ask them to like your posts. It costs them nothing other than literally one-click and most will be happy to support a fellow artist in such a simple way. This has the potential to greatly increase the reach of your posts.
  • Like and comment on other people’s posts. This makes YOUR posts more likely to be featured on the explore page because Instagram rewards engagement.
  • When someone follows you, send them a direct message and thank them for following you, let them know what to expect from your page, and let them know to feel free to contact you if they ever have any questions. This will show that you are human and make them more likely to continue following you. It may open the door to other opportunities as well.

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Multnomah Falls, OR


Every now and then, we all suffer from a case of being BASIC. It’s not too hard to find oneself among the masses, doing the same thing that our friends, family, coworkers or whoever else in your sphere is doing. And it’s completely natural for this to happen because, odds are, there’s a reason for it.

Most likely it’s because it tastes good, makes you feel good, looks good, or well… you get the point. But at a certain point, popularity can diminish the value and uniqueness of whatever the thing might be. It becomes mundane and not as cool anymore. It loses its luster and excitement. It becomes, well, BASIC.

Just in case you didn’t know the “slang” definition of basic; describes the word basic as
“being only concerned with things popular, mainstream or trendy.”

Greta J. from boredpanda has highlighted the instagram account insta_repeat, which ever so sarcastically trolls instagram and reposts a collage of images that are all essentially the same. I noticed that they seem to mostly highlight outdoor shots, like the wilderness, hiking, camping, etc. I haven’t looked through the whole account and am just now coming to its attention. 

I have to admit; after reading that article and looking through this account some… I am pretty basic at times as well. In my defense, not that I need to, a lot of these shots are taken because they are of amazing places that are naturally beautiful and most likely not something you see everyday. It’s human nature to want to record those moments to share them with the world and have a record of that time. To say, “yeah, I did that, I was there.” And what’s so wrong with that?



Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram, there are plenty of LESS basic photos.

I figured I’d call myself out and highlight some of my basic Instagram moments.

LEFT Insta_repeat post 
RIGHT My photos © Justin W John

Multnomah Falls, OR

Multnomah Falls
Portland, OR
April 2017

Multnomah Falls, OR
Forest insta_repeat

Somewhere Near Packer John Mountain
Garden Valley, ID
April 2017

Garden Valley, ID
bridge insta_repeat

Foot Bridge at Multnomah Falls 
Portland, OR
April 2017

Multnomah Falls, OR


red cabin insta_repeat

Red Barn, The Bench
Boise, ID
December 2015

red shack
dock insta_repeat

Blue Horizon, Lake Payette
McCall, ID
November 2007

Payette Lake



These next few might be stretching it, but the idea is there and it is basic.

trail insta-repeat

Veterans Memorial State Park
Boise, ID
April 2017

Tracks insta_repeat

Storms on the Horizon, Morris Hill
Boise, ID
June 2015

Railroad Tracks
mountain insta-repeat

Stack Rock
Boise, ID
September 2018

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I was super tired the other day, none the less I was sketching away at my desk. At some point I nodded off and apparently came to and proceeded to just keep drawing. I know this because all of a sudden, i looked down at my drawing (of an Edgewood liquor store in NE DC) and realized I scrawled some gibberish all over it. I was on my way to R.E.M. and you were there and Toto too.

#sleepissues #ineedsleep #sleep #narcolepsy #dream #sketch #sketchbook #draw #drawing #art #artist #sundayfunday #instagram (at Studio 2:22)

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Sketchbook submission for your intuition. Medic! My brain hurts.

#art #sketch #sketchbook #artist #gayartist #artistoninstagram #artgallery #originalartwork #artsanity #artstudio #instagram #instalike #instagood #instamood #instaartoftheday #artoftheday #picoftheday #photooftheday #myartwork #modernart #contemporaryart #expressionistart #instaartwork (at Studio 2:22)