Shocking revelation: I want to quit Instagram. Yes I DO! Don’t get me wrong, I love blogging & think social media is a riot, but Instagram? Not so much. It’s an uphill battle, especially with respect to shoe blogging.

But aside from personal issues with the social channel related to my blog topic of choice, I’m sure there are quite a few Instagram struggles that many can relate to. Fellow fashion bloggers in particular. So here are a few reasons why this shoe blogger would like to quit Instagram. And why I’m likely not going to. 

Why I Want To Quit Instagram 

1. I can’t possibly own so many shoes

In a sense, I get it: it is my duty as a shoe blogger to showcase a ton of shoes & affiliated footwear products. And yes, it’s upon me to present such shoes & accessories in various creative ways on Instagram. Understood.

But shoes are not exactly a sustainable affair when creating original imagery on IG: the prices tend to be higher, the brands/companies selling them are far fewer & I only have 2 feet. For these reasons, I can’t possibly buy or be gifted enough shoes to post on the daily & be on brand without a hefty dose of repetition. And running the risk of having shoes take over my small downtown home! Yes, one of the pros and cons of writing a shoe blog. Did you read that post, btw!? 😉

Yep, I’m sure you can think of many creative ways to display shoes. Guess what? So can I. But sometimes me, myself & shoefies aren’t enough. Which brings me to my next obstacle… 

2. Lack of Instagram husband

This is a major one for me. Although I do quite well in the shoefie & footwear flatlay department, other types of visuals are hard to come by on my own. When you’re blogging about one specific item, switching things up to add interest to your feed is a must. This is where having an Instagram lackey on hand 24/7 comes in mighty handy.

Be it, I have wonderful photographers whom I work with regularly. Such as Conrad, who took the amazing pics for this post! But when you need to schedule shoots in advance, it eliminates the spontaneity that makes for some of the most interesting & engaging posts on IG.

3. No way to program Instagram posts

One the biggest Instagram deterrents for me is that I can’t schedule my posts. Especially since the highest engagement times happen to coincide with the worst of times for me: when I’m getting my son ready for school in the morning, or getting him settled for bed.  Yes, there are those smart-@sses who will point out all the heavenly tools available that can almost do it for you. The operative word here: almost.

You can’t pre-set image tags. Or pre-answer comments. Building momentum on posts within the first couple of hours is vital. Anyone trying to grow their Instagram following knows they’ve got to baby that IG post like mad to have it pick up the engagement it deserves. Merely taking one moment to click that “post  now” button on Later (or the RewardStyle app if you’re monetizing your post) is not going to cut it. 

4. Typing on an iPhone

If we’ve ever met, chances are I’ve talked about how painful it is to type on my iPhone. And how much I miss my old school Nokia 3310, where I felt I could type a million words a minute (yes, I’m that old thank you very much!). But something about Apple’s teeny-tiny keyboard doesn’t cut it for me.

I’m constantly struggling with jelly fingers, resulting in many more “shits” than “shots” & “fab” vs…well, a derogatory term I would never use but my phone seems to auto-incorrect for me. I believe it’s time for Siri & I to have a little chat. Or possibly go Android. Yes, shocking!

5. Getting logged out of my Instagram accounts

I have 2 other IG accounts. This seems to pose a technical difficulty for Instagram.  I’m continuously being kicked out & made to re-login. Seriously annoying because it makes me want to use the platform even less! If anyone’s found a solution to this, please let me know. It’s been making my Instagram experience that much more unnerving.

6. Bloggers who fake it

And I’m not talking about the bloggers who pretend to have the charmed life they really don’t. Nowadays on social media, that’s a given. It’s those bloggers faking their Instagram popularity. Faking their engagement. Buying followers directly via websites/apps, or indirectly via countless loop giveaways. Many do all of the above. Most irritatingly of all, the majority of brands are buying into it & these bloggers are getting the benefit of many more paid collaborations.

So if it works, why don’t I partake, you ask? Well, aside from the exorbitant amount of work & money it takes to keep up the charade, the idealist in me just can’t do it. Time & money on IG is better spent creating great content, which can also be used on my blog & social channels. 

7. Thinking in #hashtags

Searching for the best hashtags to use is the WORST. I mean it’s the best in terms of getting your IG posts out there, but for me, it’s often more time consuming than capturing & editing the photo I’m about to post. Be it, I do spend a considerable amount of time researching the best specific terms to describe every particular post, making sure I target both the more popular & niche tags. However by the time I’m done, I close my eyes #and #all #I #can #see #is #this. Anyone else miss calling the hashtag symbol the number sign!? Things were certainly different back then 😉  

8. Bloggers who follow just to unfollow

Now this one really ticks me off. Just because you have 50K+ followers on the platform & I don’t, doesn’t make me follow bait. Especially since I’m also a fashion blogger (of sorts) & am privy to certain “techniques” used to inflate following (see #6 above). So when I get back-to-back “high rolling” bloggers following me all of a sudden, I have a hunch as to what’s going on. And clearly, I’m going to find out. And it puts into question how organic your following actually is. Please don’t be that fashion blogger, okay?

9. Repetitive Content

It’s not to say that blogger images I see on Instagram aren’t beautiful. Or that their feeds aren’t captivating. And maybe it’s just me, but I feel like I keep seeing the same image recreated time & again by different users. Not that I haven’t done it before myself. I totally get the trend angle. But that doesn’t mean being continuously subjected to the same flatlay or subject matter isn’t mind numbing. I know, it’s hard to be original all the time, but when concepts & visuals are on repeat so often, one has to wonder whether Instagram has lost its original edge & may be on its way out. I certainly wouldn’t complain! 

10. #LatteArt

I get it, you like coffee. You love marble. Foam art floats your boat. And for $5 you can get your caffeine fix & post about it too. But the repetition of the same latte art, in the same lighting (and OMG the same coffee SHOP!) that continuously haunts my home feed? Well, it kind of brings me back to my prior point. Just more specifically 😉 

11. I don’t drink coffee

So maybe #latteart just annoys me because I don’t drink coffee. Translation: I don’t have a cheap & cheerful IG feed filler. I’m not discounting it as a possibility. So maybe I’ll take up a caffeine habit & see how it all works out 😉  Stay tuned!

12. I’m a website blogger

I’m not an Insta blogger. I’m a website blogger. Yes, there’s a distinction! My @shoetease Instagram is a small extension of shoe-tease.com. I create content & imagery primarily for my blog, not my Instagram. Some of it isn’t necessarily fashionably pretty, no matter how much I try to make it so (like talking about shoe inserts or shoe deodorizers). But guess what? These topics are part of what draws a steady audience to my blog & converts into considerable sales. So I’ll be sticking to those for an indefinite amount of time.

13. Instagram algorithm changes

Isn’t it fun when you’ve busted your butt posting daily & generally killing it, when IG switches things up & you’re back to the engagement you had at a fraction of your current followers? I understand algorithm changes to eliminate fake followers, bot account & other dubious Instagram activity (totally for it). But it makes little sense when your diligent efforts keep getting beaten down. It’s not motivating. And it doesn’t make me want to stick around. So bye-bye Instagram?! Drum roll please…

Will I Quit Instagram?

Why I want to quit InstagramPlainly put, Instagram has become a serious pain in my posterior. For all & more reasons outlined in this post.  If I were to apply the 80/20 principle to my blogging life, I would instantly eliminate Instagram as one of my social platforms. For one, the return on time investment is totally off balance. I’m not saying that my IG doesn’t convert. I’m not saying that it doesn’t do well (yes, even at just over 6K followers, you can create traction too!). It’s that the effort involved often doesn’t feel worth the results & it’s stressing me out. So why should I put in the time when I can get more bang for my buck out of a blog post or tweet? 

Well, for starters: FOMO. I would totally be missing out on various announcements, fellow blogger feedback & solidarity. The latter is kind of key. Secondly, everyone knows leaving it would be social media suicide. I often fear what would happen if I did (likely nothing, but it’s a looming concern nonetheless!). I also have collabs lined up & posting on Insta is an integral part of the required work, which I am extremely thankful for!

Nowadays, Instagram seems to be the channel from which brands find their influencers. Having an IG account that is active with an engaged audience is a big draw. So it comes full circle. And like any job, there will be elements that are way less exciting than others. I guess this “way less exciting part” for me, is IG.  

Although I won’t quit my @shoetease Instagram anytime soon, I’ve decided to chill out about posting all the time at the perfect time & do away with the guilt I feel when I don’t. I’ll keep to uploading images I truly love, when I can. And on occasion, I’ll regram an amazing shoe post from a fellow fashionista. And to further keep my sanity intact, I will start following new accounts that don’t post so many darn beige lattes!! 😉

What are your biggest pet peeves about Instagram? Let me know in the comments, below!

xo Cristina

Photography by Conrad C. Photo

21 Comments

  1. Torontoshay

    Gahhhhh. Good on you for writing this.

    1. You’re Instagram engagement is insane – that is one of your secret powers. In the world of Instagram social capital followers can be the equivalent to smoke in mirrors but you can’t fake authentic engagement. That, my friend, you have lots of and that matters!

    2. I have a wonderful husband, but an Instagram husband he is not. I feel your pain, girl!

    3. I agree, 6, 8 and 10 are annoying AF. But I have to disagree about the new Instagram algorithm. I think that it’s slowly exposing the fakers and cheaters and that is a good thing for people that are playing the Instagram game authentically.

    Don’t quit! I just found your page and I need it to feed my ongoing shoe addiction 😊

  2. Haha, you can just substitute “shoes” for “books” and most reasons will fit for me 😀 (book blogger) I can so relate to most of this. But the thing with IG for me is that I KNOW my pics are not that great. I KNOW I can’t take them, and I never did go out of my way to have a cultivated feed (I’m not sure I’d know how, or care to know how). I am also a website blogger (a new one, at that). So I keep my IG light on myself. I just take whatever I fancy and use it as an outlet to express my thoughts. I share book quotes. I take pics to SAY something, not to show a pretty pic (because let’s face it. It’s not in me to take a pretty pic, there are so many others who take PERFECT pics!)… So I guess I use IG like any social media? Just for myself. Not really to gain followers. And then when I get unexpected likes it’s so cool 🙂 it’s especially good because I have been so busy lately, haven’t been able to put much quality content on my blog at all 🙁 but with IG, it’s so simple. Write a paragraph, snap a picture of a quote I want to talk about – done! It’s still something I can share with the community, but I don’t have to sit down, wrestle with writing and formatting and looking for GIFs… You know the drill. Except I’m not sure fashion blogging has need of GIFs, but.. close enough 😀

    • Hi Evelina! Writing about one subject can be tough, right!? Especially in terms of visuals. But with shoes, I feel that it’s still fashion so I still have to take these amazing pictures that fit in seamlessly with my feed. Which is why I keep posting less and less on the platform. I find Twitter much more liberating to share imperfect pictures with an audience that appreciates the content more than the presentation! I like your idea of keeping IG light on yourself and not trying compete with those taking the flawless pics Especially since it seems that blogging is your main focus (like it is to me). Thanks for sharing your thoughts and stopping by !
      xo Cristina

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  5. Ah Instagram…. Where do I begin! I’ve even had a dream one night that the app had varnished and my life had gotten a whole lot easier only to wake up to the sad reality it was still there. I’ve tried almost everything to improve my visibility on it. I blocked hundreds of my own “ghost followers” and left myself with less followers just because I thought that the association with inactive or engaging followers was the problem. I also tried to up my engagement in groups and manually searching and commenting on my favourite blogs as they never appeared right in my feed anymore. None of that really helped by the way…

    I focus on my actual blog more than anything now and get a lot of work because of my Insta account, so I couldn’t delete it just like you. I REALLY need to focus on Pinterest more though and spend less time on that Insta app! Agh – I love seeing your shoe posts. You’re always so creative!

    Also, made me laugh about the coffee shops – I’m always in the same cafe haha AND a coffee addict hehe…

    Hang in there!
    Tatyana xx

    • Haha, I had daydream that IG (and all of social media) would vanish and I wasn’t too flustered by it. Actually, it was a relief lol! How did you find out which were ghost followers? I too heard that getting rid of them helps, but then again, I’ve heard a ton of Instagram “theories” that don’t seem to hold up. IG is just messy and the algorithm changes just make it increasingly more difficult. I don’t get to much work from IG (more on the blog) but then again, it’s been over a year that I’ve started to steer away from collabs (most are very time consuming and often not worth the gain). I’ve been working towards independent funding by way of gaining high traffic that converts into higher sales, better Adsense returns and selling banner ads 🙂

      Your IG rocks, btw! Your images are so beautiful, not at all cheesy or repetitive. It’s a drag to compile all these images, but if it’s working for you, that’s really awesome. At least the pain is worth the gain! 😉

      xoxo Cristina

  6. Such a great post and I am sure everyone is thinking it. I really don’t get the follow/unfollow…..it makes not sense to me. It seems like it’s all about keeping your follower numbers high while keeping your following low. That does not make sense to me. How does someone interact with their followers when they are not following them. When there is an account that has 100,000 followers but they only follow 500 …..are you Beyonce?? lol.

    Don’t get me started on the loop giveaways. I HATE them. With all the changes that Instagram is doing I can understand why people feel like they need to do this but its so annoying. I don’t want to follow 50 people to win a lipstick!!!

    I’m not sure what Instagram is up to but apparently they are shadow blocking people and your followers don’t even see your posts anymore.

    Don’t leave …..you should post more photos with your in them – love it. you look great.

    Let’s hook up for some coffee art – okay, tea art and take some pics !! 🙂

    • Hahaha, are you Beyoncé: that comment seriously made me laugh so hard!! With the egos floating around in the fashion blogging communities nowadays, I wouldn’t put it past them to believe they are on the same plain as Queen B herself!

      I think a lot of people have forgotten about the sharing/social part of the platform. It’s taken on a bit of a dog-eat-dog scenario with loads of behind-the-scenes scheming to obtain those coveted paid collaborations. So although I can rationally understand it, things like loop giveaways (which are blatant forms of follower “purchasing”) are beyond my comprehension. Although sadly, they do work. I’ve seen quite a few Toronto-based IG bloggers build a 50K+ following on those alone. Of course, their engagement is below stellar & they keep having to give something away every week to “top up” their declining numbers, but it certainly does look good in terms of following.

      Yes, let’s get together and push the tea agenda! It’s about time my drink of choice be given some air time!

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts 🙂
      xo Cristina

  7. This really gave me a laugh!! I mean, the way you put things was quite humorous 🙂 I do definitely agree with you on many of these points, and have been “mad” at Instagram enough to consider the same! But in the end, it is such a good tool for blogging, it’s hard to say goodbye!

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts!! 🙂

    Kristin
    http://www.thedelilahblog.com

    • Hey Kristin! Thanks for taking the post the way it was intended: with a laugh! And yes, it’s a frustrating platform but useful too, so it makes it difficult to detach. Especially with fashion blogging, as hardly any of those blogging about beauty/fashion are using Twitter/FB/G+ etc anymore. IG has become the go-to to share news & content.

      Thanks for stopping by and giving your 2 cents!
      xo Cristina

  8. Yes and yes to all of this!!! I hardly post any more because I find that my instagram does virtually nothing for me. I can see the pinterest referrals and google gives me some love but insta? Not so much. I haven’t been putting the effort in though either but my day to day life is just not insta worthy. I mean who wants to insta tax files?! I hate the follow to unfollow and I too am a website blogger. I believe in evergreen searchable content. Not a pretty picture that gets a heart and then that is that. I could go on and on.

    • Hi Jane!

      That’s why I’ve been posting less too. The effort just doesn’t pay off as much as my blog or other social channel does. I have to say that this post brought the highest numbers from Inta to my blog ever! And that’s usually how it goes: unless you’re showcasing something that triggers a nerve (whether via an opinion piece like this one or never-before-seen or highly coveted accessory) IG doesn’t convert to blog clicks. Not many anyhow. And for the IG-heavy bloggers I’ve spoken to, it doesn’t convert outside of their IG pages either.

      My life is also anything but Insta worthy, I hear you! That’s why I began creating shoe-related evergreen content to bring about visitors all year round vs. relying on daily blogging to bring about numbers. And I truly feel blessed that it’s working out for me. At least with high traffic comes better conversions, higher demand for banner ads and a great Adsense payout. Have you placed affiliate ads into your highest yielding blog pages?! It’s definitely worth it!

      xo Cristina

  9. YESSSS!!!!!! So so so much yes!!

    I am really feeling disenchanted by Instagram lately—for so many of these reasons. I have been slow on IG lately because I am rethinking how I do things, for many reasons, but for a lot of reason #9. It. Is. All. The. Same. But I am not (you know, as a person) so I am trying to figure out how that translates to better represent my own individuality on my feed, as well as my blog.

    The buying of followers I do not get. First off, what’s the point?! And it’s not even going to benefit you…Yes, if you were the only person in the world who had access to buy followers than the plan would be a (awful) genius plan. But as soon as more people than 1 are doing it, it makes the common denominator higher, therefore falsely inflating the market, deeming our whole industry useless!! (I could go on and on about this…but I won’t)

    And girl, I fee you—not having an Instagram Husband makes everything harder!! And I always feel like I miss out on moments I could be capturing.

    Don’t get me started on the Algorithm.

    I do love the challenge that Instagram throws in the mix. I will never solely depend on it though, because I don’t trust it. I will always invest most of my time on my website, because that is a piece of real estate that can never be taken away from me.

    All that being said, I am glad you aren’t quitting Instagram, because I love seeing you there!!

    Lots of Love,

    Amanda

    PS. How cute are these photos of you!?!

    • OMGosh I’m so glad I’m not the only one living with #InstaStress (I think I just coined a new hashtag LOL!). Missed you on IG the past couple weeks, btw 🙂 I was AWOL myself for a whole one myself. So yeah, I’ve been slow too, also wondering how to proceed: should I expand from shoes, should I do strictly shoes, should I walk away!? And lack of IG husband is such a difficulty. How many cute outfits & shots was I *not* able to capture or post because 1) no one was there to take a picture of me and 2) I couldn’t take my eyes off my kid :/

      Thanks so much for coming to give my post a read. Your eloquent comments makes me wish you wrote the post for me! I can’t wait to see what you have in store. You’re such a bright star on IG and I’m certain you will not disappoint! And if you need an IG brainstorming sesh, you know where to find me 😉

      xo Cristina

  10. Wow….what a post!

    I think we all have a love-hate relationship with Instagram these days. Despite the things that annoy me about it…the love outweighs the hate for me.

    Of course, I HATE, HATE, HATE when people try to buy their followers or likes, fake engagement with bots, participate in loop giveaways and use the “follow unfollow” method of growth. But – I love creating conversation, seeking and offering inspiration, meeting new people and brands and watching IG stories for entertainment.

    Nonetheless, I hope that by stressing a bit less about the perfection of your feed…maybe some of the fun will come back for you!

    Jackie
    Something About That

    • Hey Jackie!
      Yes, fakers do get me down. It just gives them unfair advantage and what gets me most is that so many brands buy into the bloated followers/engagements. It’s like punishing those of us who are trying to do our best to do things as organically as possible. Which is why it’s so hard not to go over to the dark side lol! But yes, I have been stressing less about it lately (because of lack of posting lol) and feeling a bit better. Thanks for the kind words and for coming by!
      xo Cristina

  11. Hi Cristina!
    I can totally relate and agree with you on so many levels, except the coffee/ latte points because I am a die-hard caffeine addict.
    The algorithm is a bummer.
    In regards to scheduling posts: What has worked for my personal acct., and my work account is I save the picture as a draft with any hashtags and tags I want to use, then just post it when I’m ready to do so. Unfortunately they can’t be scheduled but this method saves me some time.

    #6, and #8… I could go on for days about this! haha. The struggle is real when there is so much beautiful content out there, and some of us are trying so hard to be on top of our game while other bloggers are shamelessly buying likes and followers. It’s very noticeable because the engagement/comments are just not there! I joined a loop giveaway about a year ago, and found out the hard way that the people that follow you will either end up unfollowing you, or become ghost followers; at the end of the day loop giveaways are just another way to buy followers. As you mentioned above, brands are totally falling for this, and I have been so freakin’ tempted to join the bandwagon but at the end of the day, it would be a farce and I would not be true to myself and my true followers.

    Your blog and Instagram are beautiful, so don’t feel discouraged at all. Not only that but you are also a smart women so keep up the amazing job you’ve been doing thus far! <3
    Faby

    • Hi Faby, thanks for coming by and for the sweet words! Yes, I do tend to save drafts with body text & hashtags, but I find getting the picture up with tags & last minute cropping and editing takes me forever lol. But at least saving the headings/hastags does save time you’re right! Would be so great to schedule though. Can’t wait for that to be possible one day 🙂

      I get you about wanting to get on the bandwagon with loop giveaways and all other avenues for inflating numbers & engagement. I have thought long and hard about it too. I mean, if brands are falling for it, why not? In the end, though, these methods are quite the financial/time investment and you have to keep doing them, otherwise your following will plummet. That’s a deterrent enough for me! Why not use that time & energy to grow organically instead? In the end, it will be a lot less work!

      So let’s keep calm and carry on with IG!!
      xo Cristina

  12. I’ve never had an Instagram account, and I’m beginning to think this was a wise decision.