Want Your Instagram Photos To Get Attention? Use The Color Blue

A new study of more than 30 million Instagram images shows which pictures are likely to get the most likes.

Here are a few things you should keep in mind when posting pictures to Instagram to get the most likes:

  1. Images with blue as a dominant color perform 24% better than those with high concentrations of red and oranges. Think #sky #bluebells #superman.
  2. Bright images perform 24% better than dark images. Think #sunnyday #LEDs #TimesSquare.
  3. Duck-face selfies generate a crazy 1,112% more likes than normal ones. (OK, kidding)

The above findings come to you thanks to some number crunching by Curalate, a visual analytics and marketing platform that published a similar study based on Pinterest images a few months ago. This time around, the company analyzed more than 8 million Instagram images and 30 image features including background ratio, dominant color, lightness, and saturation.

"Likes on Instagram, while incredibly valuable, are hard to come by with 65 percent of Instagram images garnering between 0 and 10 likes," said Apu Gupta, the CEO of Curalate in a press release issued by the company. "By making a few small tweaks, brands looking to connect with consumers on visual sites like Instagram can see their engagement skyrocket, resulting in increased customer loyalty and more importantly, sales."

The study comes at a time when Instagram is trying to generate revenue by putting ads in users' feeds. And despite some user backlash, a sponsored post from fashion house Michael Kors, one of the first ones on Instagram, was recently liked by over 217,000 users, a increase of 360% over an unsponsored post.

In the weeks ahead, expect more studies to come as advertisers try to figure out what works best on Instagram.

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  • Sunny

    I don't understand why people consider likes to be "highly valuable". You don't get money for them so ehy call it that? Just goes to show how ridiculous these things are becoming when that can be called valuable.

  • Allan Holmes

    It's called social currency. You can already barter photos for products. (If you have enough followers) Popular Pays & Klout are two examples.

  • Fatemeh Fakhraie

    Why did you cut up the great Curalate infographic (I noticed you conveniently left out the part that includes them as the author), and then not even link to them in the piece?

    Those interested can see the full, uncut infographic here

    And, by the way, selfies don't generate more likes. There's an asterisk on the infographic (which also appears in your slideshow).