May 5, 2014

Updated 5/6/14

Your Instagram bio is one of the first things customers and Instagram users see. Occasionally, someone may see one of your photos before they come to your profile. But if they're going to follow you, they will see your bio. So what impression are you making on them?

We all know the value of a good first impression. Instagram is no exception. So it's important to have a great Instagram bio that draws in users and encourages them to follow you.

If you want to spruce up your Instagram bio, here are some suggestions to consider.

Your Name

First and foremost, your name needs to be your name. Whether it's the name of your business or your actual name, the name people see on Instagram needs to be how they know you. Don't use funny spellings, odd words, unnecessary abbreviations. or other versions of your name. It's your business and your brand. Make this section representative of that.

But, you can go further than just your name. Do you have a specialty? Is there something you provide? Are you known for something in particular? Do you have a specific job title or industry niche? Include this detail in your name!

Your name and username are the only fields that Instagram considers in search queries. So if there's a keyword or niche that you want to be able to be searched for, including this in your name will increase your chances of being found.

For example, my name is listed as Jenn Herman * Blogger *

Find a unique way to stand out but that still represents your brand professionally.

Tell Them What You Do

You do something - and you do something that sets you apart from anyone else. Tell this side of your brand in your bio. Explain what makes you unique. Explain what you can do for them. Explain what you share on Instagram. Tell users what you do and who you are.

Make It Interesting

Instagram is about having fun. Your bio should reflect that fun side of your personality. Don't make your bio too stuffy or formal. Include emojis or symbols in your bio. Use humor. Ask a rhetorical question. Make people laugh. Know your audience.

Whatever you choose to say about yourself or your brand, make it interesting. Draw people in. Make them want to follow you. This is your sales pitch so make it good.

Use Keywords

Keywords aren't used on Instagram in the same way that they are on other sites. Hashtags work well and are easily searched on Instagram. But hashtags in your bio aren't clickable and won't show up in search results. So I recommend avoiding them in your bio, unless you have a custom hashtag you are recognized for.

Even though keywords aren't necessarily going to help you in term of searches on Instagram, you should still use them to connect with other users. I don't recommend keyword stuffing since it's of no value. But using keywords that target your audience and niche will help users better understand who you are and what you have to offer.

Customize It

Once again, Instagram is different from all other social media sites. It's a different audience, and for a different purpose. Therefore, your Instagram bio shouldn't be exactly the same as your Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or Google+ profile bios. Do not copy and paste your other bio(s) into Instagram and walk away. Your Instagram bio can have some similarities and keep the branding content that you use on other sites, but it shouldn't be a direct replica.

Take the time to craft a customized bio that represents your brand and personality but that fits within the Instagram format and culture.

Space It Out

Furthermore, Instagram allows you to space out your bio vertically. This used to be harder to achieve but recent updates to Instagram have made this practice universal. Simply hit the enter or return key on your qwerty keyboard to drop down a line (or two). Doing this will space out your content and make it more legible. It will be clearer for people to read and you can highlight your key strengths. Stand out and connect with users using this method.

Update: It looks like, for ONCE, Android users have an advantage over iOS users. I assumed that since, as an Android user, I can use the return button to space out posts, that iOS users could too. I apologize for making that assumption, even though us Android users never get anything before you iOS users. But, anyways, if you are using Instagram on your iPhone, you aren't able to use the return button to space out your bio. Instead, you can edit your bio on a computer/desktop which will allow you to use the return key. Format your post with icons/emojis and everything on your mobile device, then use the desktop site to space it out. You can also use the notepad app to format your bio then copy and paste it into your Instagram account.

Include Your Website Link

I've said this time and time again, and I'll say it again. The only place on Instagram where you can place a clickable link is in your bio. Take advantage of this real estate and include your website url, landing page, blog page, or other link in this section. Including a link in your bio also shows users that you are a credible business. This encourages people to follow you so take advantage of it.

Now you have everything you need to create an Instagram bio that will draw in followers and help you grow your business.

Yes, this will take time to craft a good bio. But the great thing is that you can change it any time you like! Experiment with different options and layouts until you find the right one.

And, if you really want a professional, interesting Instagram bio that will draw in followers but you just don't have the time or know what to say, I have a great resource for you! Sue Zimmerman is the InstagramGal and she offers custom bio creations through her website. Just head over there and see what she has to offer. And, yes, she did my Instagram bio for me, which you can see on my profile here.

UPDATE 1/21/19: Instagram recently made changes to how the Instagram bios appear and they are getting cut off with a "... more" now. For more information on how to craft your Instagram bio to accommodate this change, check out this post.

Did you find this helpful? Please share:
  1. Thanks Jenn; exactly what I needed!!! We’ve been following each other on Twitter, Pinterest and IG, and I just saw your post on your IG account. Fast forward a bit, and here you go, a revamped IG bio 😉

    1. Hi Frederique! I’m so glad you found this useful and I’m so glad you created a great new bio 🙂 It’s been a pleasure chatting with you today!

  2. Great tips, thanks Jenn. At the moment my Instagram feed is my company’s name. Should I change this to just my name even though there’s more than one person working at the company? Or keep it as the company name?

    1. Carmen, if you’re using the account to represent your company, I would keep the name as the company name. If you’re the one posting to IG, you might want to list your name in the bio. Something like “Posts by Carmen [Last Name]” so that people learn the person behind the brand. But you don’t have to.

  3. Actually you can make a vertical bio with an iOS device. Go into Notes and type out your bio with the vertical spacing and all, then copy and paste it into the bio text field and you now have a spaced out bio!

    1. Yes, Nate, you are correct. Using the notes app to create the bio in iOS devices is the way around this.

  4. Just wanted to let you know a trick that us iPhone users can benefit from when it comes to spacing out your bio.
    A simple solution is to write out your bio in the “notes” app, pressing return when you please, and then copy and pasting into your bio on Instagram! 🙂

  5. Thank you for all this info! I am brand new to Instagram & am sort of muddling through figuring it all out, being a quite non-savvy tech gal. I haven’t written my bio yet [the name I’m under is: nazdorovia] but shall apply your intelligent suggestions.

    1. I’m so glad you found this useful, Elizabeth. Please take a look through the rest of my blog (click on the Instagram tab under the banner) for a ton of other articles to help you understand how to use Instagram well.

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