I recently wrote about How to Use Instagram as an Author, showing examples of what kind of content you might share, and why it’s valuable to you as part of your author platform.

Today I’m going to talk about how you can integrate your Instagram feed into your website, and why you should consider doing it to extend your author brand:

1. Displaying your feed.
Your Instagram feed is the collection of images that make up your posts to Instagram over time.  And there are widgets you can add to your WordPress website that allow you to display them in multiple configurations.  Each time you post to your Instagram feed, it’s automatically updated on your website.  This is a great way to add visual content to your site, let people know you’re actively engaged in your platform, and to easily follow you on IG if they find your website first — all without having to do any extra effort once it’s in place.

Here’s an example for author Piper J. Drake’s website:

Instagram for Authors

And here’s an example from Madeline L’Engle’s website:

Authors Using Instagram

2. Embedding a post.
You can take any Instagram post and embed it directly on a page or post of your site.  This works well if you have a post about your book launch, a great award win or review that you’d like to share for awhile on your website.

Here’s an example of an Instagram post someone created about author Jill Eisenstadt’s book, Swell:

Which we added to Jill’s site on the Swell book page: http://jilleisenstadt.com/books/swell/

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Instagram for Your Author Website DesignSo, why do you want to integrate Instagram into your author website design? First, I’m a huge fan of taking advantage of any work you can do once, and then use multiple times over. If you’re already investing time in cultivating a great Instagram following as part of your author platform, then make sure as many people know about it as possible; not just via Instagram itself, but by sharing it to anyone who lands on your site.

Second, it shows that you’re engaged with your projects and willing to participate in an online community with your existing and potential audience, especially those under 40. Any author with a compelling social media presence is much more likely to stay in a reader’s mind than one who doesn’t have one.

And lastly, it’s visual content. Sometimes it’s less obvious what visual elements besides book cover art can be added to an author website, but since Instagram is a visual medium, it gives you the opportunity to display visual content that reinforces your brand without using the same image over and over again.

Some Instagram widgets come packaged with WordPress themes, and others you install separately as plugins, but all are relatively easy to use and integrate into your site.