What I’ve Learned From A Week of Posting iPhone Photos on Instagram


When I first heard about the Michelle Take Aim challenge, it seemed easy enough: upload iPhone photos of yourself to Instagram where you are smiling and looking at the camera and try to keep them as in the moment as possible. When Michelle first did this, she experienced a tremendous amount of growth in terms of followers and engagement, both of which are what every blogger on this social media app is trying to do. I figured that it might be a good idea to just try something different because I find that sometimes I get so scared to just do something other than what I’ve been doing for months because I’m scared my engagement will drop or followers will get bored or whatever the fear is that day. Sigh. Remember when an app didn’t control so much of my life?

But since I’ve been freelance growing my Instagram is part of growing my personal brand and my blog. I take my work very seriously and feel like I’ve worked more hours working for my own than I ever put in at my other jobs—and guys, I’ve stayed at NYLON really late before so that’s saying something. Part of that is because with social media, I’m never really off the clock. So I thought why not go for it and see what happens?

To be honest, I know the point was for me to let go of some of the stress that can be felt when you’re constantly uploading to social media but I think at the end of the day, not having a plan managed to stress me out more. Here’s what I’ve noticed five days into this challenge:

My likes and comments (engagement) are pretty much the same. 

There are still ways to make iPhone photos look super professional, like good lighting.

I miss writing out Instagram captions in the app instead of in the notes section of my phone. 

I don’t know how to not pose in photos anymore and therefore will likely forever be incapable of taking a candid, but maybe that’s okay.  

Truthfully, I think most of my engagement is the same because I think my followers generally find my content to be relatable. (Yay!) If I had noticed a spike in followers or likes from this week of photos it would have made me question what I had been doing for the last two or three years and would make me think that people weren’t liking it because they didn’t relate to the content. Even if I post a high quality picture where I look super posed I always try to make the caption relatable, or bring it back down to earth in some way. So will I continue to post iPhone photos on a consistent basis? Probably not. But will I feel more comfortable sharing them every once in a while just because sometimes it’s not as big of a production to have to take out your camera and get “the perfect shot”? Definitely. 

What are your thoughts on this challenge? Would you ever replicate it for yourself?