How To Make Your Pet Into An Instagram LEGEND
Some of us are lucky enough to get 15 minutes of fame in our lifetime, but if you're a cat with nine lives, that amounts to 135 whole minutes. And if you adjust for dog years, 15 human minutes of fame is a respectable 105 dog minutes of fame.
The Internet is obviously the star-maker of the animal kingdom - but The Dodo wanted to go a little deeper and think about how your pets can rack up massive attention from total strangers.
We asked Rebecca, the human who manages the Instagram account for Coby, an Instagram-famous cat with amazing blue eyes, about her secrets for internet success. And we also added a few of our own.
1. Love your little star-in-the-making. A cat like Coby might have striking blue eyes, but part of what comes through in his Instagram images is the love and comfort he feels. "Coby is definitely a natural in front of the camera. He's extremely loving and affectionate, so it's easy to get that across in photos," Rebecca told The Dodo. "He loves to pose and he's always making different silly expressions."
2. Post every day. Give your growing audience what they want: more glamour shots of your furry family member. But don't flood everyone's feeds with fifty photos at once. Be selective.
3. Highlight your pet's personality in every photo. All animals are special, of course, but what makes them especially special? "I try to let Coby's personality shine through in every post," Rebecca said. "His photos and videos show off how silly, sweet and cuddly he is."
4. Mind your aesthetics. The Dodo's social media team urges you to make sure that your photos pop with vibrant colors and that your pet is the main focus of the photo.
5. Don't force your pet into an outfit. If you're overdoing it on the costumes, it's gonna seem a little desperate - and it'll be clear your pet isn't all that pleased. "Never to force your pet to do anything that makes them uncomfortable," Rebecca said. (There are sadly too many examples of people doing dumb things to their pets for a 'like' online.) "Coby loves goofing off for the camera but I would never put him in an outfit that he didn't like wearing." They're perfect the way they are, anyway.
6. Keep it short and sweet. It's Instagram - not your debut novel. The Dodo's social media team suggests keeping your caption concise - just 3 to 4 sentences max. And have fun with hashtags - but don't overdo it. (Why be THAT person?)
7. Don't overthink it. Rebecca never set out to get zillions of followers. "I started an Instagram for fun and to share silly photos," Rebecca said. She created her account just 35 weeks ago, and the simple, stunning photos made a big splash: Coby already has 350,000 followers. "Right away, he started getting lots of likes and follows, and features on other accounts," Rebecca said. "I always knew Coby was adorable and I'm so glad so many people seem to agree."
And remember: Instagram isn't just for feline and canine stars in the making. Esther the Wonder Pig, who was lucky enough to be adopted by a loving family who would end up changing their lives and starting a whole animal sanctuary in her name, has 190,000 followers and counting.
"My job is easy - just capturing all of his cuteness," Rebecca said. "My goal was never to make Coby a legend, just to have fun! And that's the advice I would give to any aspiring Instagrammers with pets."
So, relax, have fun and love your special animal.