Twitter for Photographers: Why You Should Post on Twitter and Instagram Separately

Techniques/ Tips

Twitter for Photographers: Why You Should Post on Twitter and Instagram Separately

In general and on the surface, social media is relatively simple when you’re doing it for fun. But when it comes to strategy and using social media for your photography business, there are a few frequently used shortcuts that you should avoid.

It’s common marketing knowledge that you should not cross-post the exact same content to all social media platforms. Each platform has its own audience, format and optimization techniques. For example, loading a Twitter post with 30 hashtags is typically considered spammy – and that’s if you’re even able to pull off the feat within Twitter’s 140-character limit. Meanwhile, “hashtag stuffing” is a completely acceptable and often successful technique for Instagram.

Speaking of Twitter and Instagram, let’s steer you clear of a supremely prevalent mistake: connecting an Instagram and Twitter account so that Instagram posts are automatically tweeted. If you want to share the same photo on Twitter and Instagram, you should take the extra minute to compose two separate posts within each app. Here are a few reasons why:

Twitter users will only see a link.

Those who are active on Twitter have surely noticed that automatic posts from Instagram do not show the photo in the tweet – only the text and a link to the Instagram page where the photo exists. This not only disinterests users, but also voids the photo of an actual existence on Twitter because it doesn’t appear on your Media feed.

Instagram 1.

Who is lil bro?

Instagram posts are not optimized for Twitter on mobile.

The link that Twitter users see takes them to the browser version of Instagram, within the Twitter app. If a follower does happen to click the link, they will be taken through a highly annoying “no man’s land” that makes it difficult to browse your Instagram posts. It really activates the least enjoyable experience of both platforms.

Instagram 2

Hope you didn’t come for more than to find out who lil bro is.

There’s a huge difference in character length.

In a tweet, you have 140 characters to convey your message. In an Instagram caption, you have 2,200. That’s a vast discrepancy. Aside from being a blatant cue of how different Twitter and Instagram really are, the difference in character length creates a mess with auto-Instagram tweets. And sometimes the caption will get cut off at just the wrong spot. Case in point:

Instagram 3

That sounds like a horrible plan, Governor Haley…

Your cross-channel followers don’t want to see the same thing twice.

You can and should post the same photo to Twitter and Instagram. Those who follow you on both platforms are obviously committed. But at the same time, they don’t necessarily want to see a carbon copy of your Instagram post. On Twitter, give them an alternate caption, and perhaps even switch up the hashtags if you see that a different tag yields more activity.


Resist the temptation.

Instagram is for images. Twitter is for thoughts.

There are a lot of photographers doing some great things on Twitter, and you can certainly be one of them. At the end of the day, though, you need to understand that Instagram and Twitter serve different purposes and encourage different types of content. Instagram is used almost exclusively for imagery, while Twitter lends itself more to thought leadership. You don’t have to be a thought leader to sprinkle a little thought leadership into your Twitter posts; all it takes is a little perspective, background or abstract of the photo you’re sharing.

Instagram 4

Want more Twitter tips?

Was this article helpful? We’ve published a few other pieces on why and how photographers can use Twitter to their advantage. Check them out in the links below.

Twitter for Photographers: 5 Reasons to Hatch From Your Shell

Twitter for Photographers: 3 Essential Tips

Twitter for Photographers: 3 More Essential Tips