All right Instagrammer. Now that we’ve hopefully gotten the username of our dreams, we need to do the next thing in line which is to set our account name.
Yes, I know they sound exactly the same and that’s because its kind of the same thing but they also kind of, aren’t. It’s just for some reason this idiocrasy of Instagram that your user name isn’t your actual name.
Now remember, this was originally created for people to share photos specifically ones that were self-conscious about the quality of their photos and hence, that’s why they had filters, to begin with. So each account, was that it was only to be a person. Well, that’s great.
So why not just make the user name the name. Well, because the user name has to work on URL, so that people can access your page and well, you know you are URL, you can’t have a space in them for instance. No seriously, now go try to go to Facebook.com slash your space name with an actual space in it. It just explodes.
Also, the user name has to stay lowercase. Why again because some neckbeard 30 years ago thought it would make sense that capitalizing letters in a URL would take you to different content on a server versus the lowercase version. Again try that one trying to go to your name on Facebook and try to capitalize one letter doesn’t work. At best facebook will change it to small characters and take you to the respective page or account.
That’s also why special characters don’t work in your username. So if you wanted your username to be an actual name, it would need spaces and capitalization.
Can’t do that with you or else so we have this un-Godly mix of name and user name, not the same but not completely different. What’s that. You never really wanted to know why there were separate parts of the profile. Well, excuse me for imparting you with a useless factoid. Anyway, they’re different.
Your name shows up in two different places. At the top of your bio and bold and in the search results. That leads me to the key takeaway of picking a name when you search on Instagram.
Instagram only uses two fields user name and name.
Yes, it is surprisingly unsophisticated in that way, especially when it has so much more information to use, like your bio to make a decision on relevancy. Also, there’s plenty of algorithms out there now that can figure out what’s in a photograph so that would make sense they could parse that up and use in their search but they don’t.
Anyway, this clears things up for us. We know exactly what matters. Name and user name for search because search is pretty important.
So when choosing a name, we’re going to always be thinking of keywords. All right what keywords do we want to rank for and being honest or our theoretical fans or customers going to be searching for us.
If you make WordPress Plugin tools are people going to be searching for WordPress on Instagram? Wouldn’t that be something you’d more likely search for on Google?
So what I like to say is pick two or three keywords that you think people might be searching for and that relate to you. If you don’t know it relates to you. My favorite thing to do is go to www.ranksonic.com/generate-keywords.html
What you can do is just plug into your all of your website and it’ll just look at what you have going on and give you a list of keywords that would assume your niche is interested in. When I plug in https://neilpatel.com, I get things like Google Adwords, how to start advertising on google adwords, google adwords ideas, so I might scratch some of those down, although of those three I would imagine, really only someone searching for like probably business ideas although I could be wrong. That’s my general take on Instagram right now. I don’t know why they would be searching for the other stuff.
Only takes a couple seconds to proof this out. I mean just go to Instagram go to search and just type it out and see what happens.
Once you do have a couple keywords though just set those aside and then follow along as I asked you a couple of basic questions.
- How would you summarize what the account is?
- If a business what’s a clever one short sentence (it’s about 30 characters), so maybe four or five short words that summarize you
In the business case, it’s usually pretty easy. Use the headline from your home page for instance. You can use your brand motto or slogan or you can even use like the subtitle you chose for your website and I mean subtitle meaning. Like when you search for your name in Google what actually shows up as the first sentence underneath the link you click.
Hopefully, you set that because that’s actually pretty important. It’s part of the metadata if you don’t have that Google doesn’t like you.
One of those will always work and it’s generally the same case if you’re creating an account for a person or personality. If you haven’t yet built a business around yourself then you might have to get a little bit more creative.
Here are some pointers:
- So what exactly do you want people to think about you and your profile?
- What do you do on this page?
Answer those questions as succinctly as you can. Remember we can always go back and change this later. And you honestly can’t think of anything at all? It’s perfectly fine to just put your name or your brand name. Actually, it’s pretty easy. You don’t stick out because probably 80 percent of the accounts you see do this. So it’s it just doesn’t look that weird.
It’s really just that it’s more of a wasted opportunity than anything else. So I think of it kind of like blogs and headlines. To go to a blog, you go to a URL and then you get blasted with a giant headline that essentially summarizes the post that entices you to read on. When you share the blog post, you usually only see those two things as well. URL and the headline.
It’s kind of like that if you wrote a blog post about your account, what would the headline say? The next step is basically to see if you can get one of your keywords in that headline and you can great. If you can’t, it’s fine you can always try later. So that’s really it.
I mean what’s the one-two punch, that will get people to click your account and get what you’re there for and do that quickly. Mystery in this case really doesn’t work.
If I can give you one piece of advice here it’s don’t use the same thing for both your user name and your name. Not only do you look amateurish but you’re wasting that space for search.
If you’re trying to arrange for an entrepreneur and you just put entrepreneur four times as your account name Instagram doesn’t count that four times. It doesn’t make a difference.
Now let’s look at some accounts that are actually doing this well. Again look at that company called foundr Australia.
They do pretty well and Instagram foundr is their username (that’s a company name). But then for their actual account name they put ‘Foundr Magazine’. Earlier it was ‘Young Entrepreneur Magazine’.
Now if you saw founder and you didn’t know what it was, that title in bold and in the search would tell you instantly what it was, even before you clicked on it. Double points! Because they got entrepreneurs in there since that’s a big thing they’re going for.
OK now here’s an individual. Look at Dan Martell. If you don’t know him, started a Web site called www.clarityFM.com.
He earlier had ‘Growth-minded Entrepreneur’, but now has his name. So primarily three letter summary of essentially who he is or who he wants to specialize in growth and entrepreneurs. So there were pretty well and he did a good job of doing that.
Now here’s another one on a totally different vertical. one-minute makeup.
[instagram url=https://www.instagram.com/p/1minutemakeup/ hidecaption=true width=320]
If you read just that username, you wouldn’t know what we’re talking about, but the name in bold explains it instantly. It says, Oh what’s a minute one-minute makeup its makeup tutorials.
Now, why am I looking at this page? Makeup tutorials. Great. So hopefully this makes sense to you. You don’t have to do it this way, but it’s the way that I would consider the best practice.
There are a shocking amount of accounts out there that just copy their username into their name field and well, I shed a single tear for them. You use them to summarize your account or who you are and you want to try if you can fit some relevant keywords in.
Remember you only get 30 characters, so choose wisely.
Let’s head to the comments section and see some of your Instagram names. I promise you, if your Instagram name is as explained above, you shall earn my followership.